Local members of the Santee Sioux Nation are frustrated with what they see as a lack of representation in their tribal government. Currently off reservation members have no voting rights on Council decisions.
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Native American spiritual leaders and other indigenous people will join with city and state officials in Medford at noon Wednesday at the Southern Oregon Regional Peace Pole for the opening ceremony of a five-day event celebrating the 20th International World Peace and Prayer Day. The remainder of the event will be held Thursday through Sunday at Howard Prairie Lake.
A federal grand jury has indicted 41 people in a drug trafficking conspiracy that distributed heroin, methamphetamine and other hard drugs across the Upper Midwest and on two large Minnesota Indian reservations, according to court documents unsealed Wednesday.
From 2004 to 2006, Washington was transfixed by the revelations that several Indian tribes had paid exorbitant fees to then-uber lobbyist Jack Abramoff to stop other tribes from opening casinos that might siphon gamblers away from their own operations.
Ten years later, and little has changed. Since 2009, the Gila River Indian Community (GRIC) in Arizona has spent nearly $11 million on lobbying Congress to pass legislation that would prevent the Tohono O’odham Nation from opening a competing casino. A sister tribe, the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community, also with casinos in the Phoenix area, has dropped a couple million dollars more on the fight.
That’s a lot of money spent in service of an issue that most Americans care nothing about. Two Arizona members of Congress, Rep. Paul Gosar and Sen. John McCain, keep the issue bubbling. The question is why.
Pope Francis lauded the work of Father Junípero Serra, an 18th century Spanish priest in California. Others disagree that Father Serra should be dubbed a saint.
Tribal leaders in California say Serra beat and imprisoned local peoples, suppressed their cultures and facilitated the spread of diseases that decimated the population.
Approximately a dozen Native actors and actresses, as well as the Native cultural advisor, left the set of Adam Sandler’s newest film production, The Ridiculous Six, on Wednesday. The actors, who were primarily from the Navajo nation, left the set after the satirical western’s script repeatedly insulted native women and elders and grossly misrepresented Apache culture.
The examples of disrespect included Native women’s names such as Beaver’s Breath and No Bra, an actress portraying an Apache woman squatting and urinating while smoking a peace pipe, and feathers inappropriately positioned on a teepee.
Even some Native Americans don’t know about the archaeological riches their ancestors left in Cedar Mesa.
A week ago, on a tour of the area, a member of the Hopi Tribe was shocked to find his family’s Flute Clan symbol in a rock pictograph.
“It was a very powerful, very emotional tour,” said Mark Maryboy, a Navajo elder. “A lot of them didn’t realize how much history and how much evidence their people left behind. There are many generations.”
The federal government invades a gathering of Native Americans, confiscates their property, and threatens to punish them if they resist. Sounds like tragic history from the 1800s, right? Robert Soto is living through it right now.
Mr. Soto is an award-winning feather dancer and Lipan Apache religious leader. In 2006, he attended a powwow – a traditional religious ceremony involving drumming, dancing, and Native American dress. But a federal agent cut the celebration short when he noticed that Mr. Soto and other American Indians possessed eagle feathers.
In Montana, the 49th parallel marks a 545-mile-long line along which the state rises to meet three Canadian provinces. This International Boundary, commonly referred to as the border, distinguishes two nations and was born of negotiations that helped end the American Revolutionary War.
But to members of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and the Blackfeet Nation, among others, the U.S.-Canada border is an arbitrary line demarcating ancestral lands, separating families and undermining tribal sovereignty.
Below is a list of federally recognized Native American tribes that have laws either defining marriage as between a man and a woman or explicitly prohibiting same-sex marriages, along with excerpts of those laws. At least 10 other tribes recognize same-sex marriages, while many more are silent on the matter.
On Monday, March 30 a federal judge issued a landmark decision affirming that officials in South Dakota violated numerous provisions in the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) and denied Indian parents their rights under the Due Process Clause of the Constitution. Referencing widespread and systemic failure to protect the integrity of Indian families, Judge Jeffrey Viken issued a partial summary judgment in favor of the plaintiffs in Oglala Sioux Tribe v. Luann Van Hunnik on seven issues before the court regarding emergency removal hearings, also known as “48-hour hearings,” in Pennington County, South Dakota.
Each year, thousands of American Indian and Alaska Native patients are diagnosed with life-threatening blood diseases such as leukemia and aplastic anemia. For most, their only hope for a cure is a transplant of healthy marrow or blood stem cells from someone who shares their tissue type.
Assembly member Roger Hernández (D – West Covina) announced Assembly Bill 1973 passed the Senate Governmental Organization Committee on a 10-0 bi-partisan vote. AB 1973 elevates the recognition of Native American Day from a proclamation to an official state holiday, recognized annually on the fourth Friday of September.
June 27, 2014 – After years of negotiations, today the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC) has reached a historic settlement with the U.S. Indian Health Service (IHS) for the payment of 14 years of overdue contract support costs for providing health care services for more than 143,000 Alaska Native and American Indian people in Alaska.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has canceled the Redskins’ trademark registration after five Native Americans petitioned the government over the football team’s controversial name. Calling it “disparaging to Native Americans,” the USPTO’s ruling strips away six of the Redskins’ trademarks.
Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry, a group of Native parents and their allies from across the country started a pledge drive on change.org “Pledge to Stop Using FedEx While They Still Quietly Support the Washington ‘Redskins’ Shameful Mascot” for consumers or investors who wish to stop using FedEx products to show support in their decision to boycott the corporation.
With President Obama scheduled to arrive in North Dakota today, eyes of the nation are on the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe as tribal leaders and community members from across the Northern Plains gather in Cannon Ball for a historic visit by a sitting president and the First Lady.
We are living in historic times for Indian Country. As we are still celebrating the confirmation of Diane Humetewa, the first Native American woman who will serve as a Federal Judge, there is another opportunity for a historic ‘first’ at our fingertips. The United States Senate is scheduled to vote on Keith Harper’s Nomination to be the United States Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Council.
The U.S. Interior Department on Thursday announced proposed changes to the rules for granting federal recognition to American Indian tribes, revisions that could make it easier for some groups to achieve status that brings increased benefits as well as opportunities for commercial development.
A Chicago based production company, a Branded Media Digital Campaign with One Tree Forest Productions, is looking for a male descended from a native American line in South Dakota and who has become disconnected from his native roots for the lead role in a new documentary film.
“I am the heir to the Powhatan Empire,” said Crown Prince Emperor El Bey Bigbay. The Crown Prince – as he wishes to be called – is Trenton native William McRea.
“We don’t know where he came from. We don’t know anything about him,” said Obie Batchelor, a Powhatan Renape member from Pennsauken, Camden County. “He just popped up out of the woodwork. You can’t just pop up and claim yourself chief.”
But the Crown Prince can’t simply be written off as eccentric or prone to gibberish: He has managed to get control of the Powhatan Renape Nation’s phone number and he’s accepted artifacts on behalf of the tribe, posing for pictures with elderly women in a large headdress that no Powhatan ever wore.
October 12 is a federal holiday in the United States called Columbus Day, which celebrates the explorer, Christopher Columbus. When asked to describe him, most people say one of two things:
1. Christopher Columbus was a brave explorer, who despite terrible odds, sailed across the Atlantic Ocean and proved the world is round.
2. He was a courageous hero who discovered a new continent, called the New World in his time, which is known today as North America, Central America, and South America.
Both of these “facts” are still taught in many American schools. But, if you agreed with either of those statements, you would be wrong.
Tribal leaders, widely tired of political games surrounding the federal budget – as well as the profound impacts of ongoing sequestration – are frustrated by the government shutdown, to say the least.
The federal government has a trust responsibility to tribes and their citizens. It is a unique relationship, which means there will be unique – and painful – consequences as a result of the government’s current shutdown, tribal leaders say.
The shutdown, which began at 12:01 a.m. on October 1, occurred because U.S. House Republicans passed several short-term continuing resolution budgets that included provisions to delay and/or defund portions of the Affordable Care Act, widely known as Obamacare. Both the Democratic Senate and White House would not agree to those provisions, which set the stage for the first federal shutdown in 17 years.
n 2007, Cherokee Nation citizens voted to kick out descendants of Freedmen and other non-Indians. The dispute has been in and out of the courts ever since.
The Cherokee Nation and descendants of black slaves once owned by its citizens, now known as Freedmen, are asking a federal court to sort out their longstanding dispute over tribal citizenship rights.
Five stickball teams from Oklahoma and Mississippi will showcase their skills Saturday in the inaugural Cherokee National Holiday men’s stickball tournament at Sequoyah Schools’ Thompson Field.The double-elimination tournament using traditional Choctaw rules will start at 8 a.m. Admission is free.
Federal law bans the sale of alcohol on Native American reservations unless the tribal council allows it. Pine Ridge legalized alcohol for two months in 1970s, but the ban was quickly restored. An attempt to lift prohibition in 2004 also failed.
Native Americans on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation have now voted to end prohibition and legalize alcohol so the tribe can use the profits for education and treatment.
Johnny Depp’s controversial portrayal of Tonto in the upcoming Disney film “The Lone Ranger,” has prompted Disney to offer the proceeds from the movie’s opening premier to the American Indian College Fund for a scholarship fund for native American students. Premier tickets are selling for $1000 each.
RAPID CITY- When James Czywczynski first announced that he was selling the two forty acre tracts of land, one at Wounded Knee and one at Porcupine Butte, for a total of $4.9 million, many people scoffed at the notion that someone would be willing to pay that much for the land.
Nonetheless as the months have passed and several potential buyers are now negotiating a final deal on the land the Oglala Sioux Tribe has decided to take action and file in federal court under the premise of eminent domain to seize the land.
Vision Maker Media is a Native organization that is heavily funded by Public Broadcasting. The group is always looking for provocative and engaging completed films from independent or public television producers. Their goal is to encourage works that address new and current issues reflecting the changing nature of Native American communities.
“We’re particularly interested in programs such as Native American Graduates, Women and Girls who Lead, and Veterans’ Issues,” said Shirley K. Sneve (Sicangu), Vision Maker Media’s executive director.
SHIPROCK — Tribal officials are proposing more severe sentencing for criminals on the Navajo Nation.
The tribe’s Law and Order Committee this week is holding public hearings regarding changes that could be made to Title 17, the tribe’s criminal code that deals with sentencing on the Navajo Nation. A public hearing will be held 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday at the Shiprock chapter house.
The changes could include steeper penalties for a variety of crimes, including the possession of alcohol one of the most common offenses on the Navajo Nation.
The committee is reviewing the code because in January 2000 the tribe eliminated or lessened jail terms and fines for nearly 30 offenses. The tribe had limited resources to penalize offenders, according to the committee.
Spokane Tribal leaders are deciding whether to oust their vice chairman for lying to a game officer investigating bison poaching in Montana.
Rodney W. Abrahamson was convicted of five misdemeanors after he illegally killed two bison north of Yellowstone National Park in February, while traveling with a group of Nez Perce hunters who were on a legal hunt. The court record states he lied to Montana wildlife agents about his identity. He claimed to be Nez Perce, the tribe that has rights to hunt bison. The Spokane tribe does not have treaty rights to hunt the animal.
Actor Wes Studi this weekend will become the second Native American ever inducted into the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum’s Hall of Great Western Performers in Oklahoma City.
In an interview from his home in Arroyo Hondo on Wednesday, Studi said the honor is particularly significant because “I’m the only one who’s still alive.”
Coming as a surprise to everyone, especially members of the Navajo Tribe, Obi-Wan Kenobi will soon say, “May the Force be with you” in the Diné language.
Navajo members will soon be able to hear the beloved character from the Star Wars Saga say this and more as the Navajo Nation Museum, Navajo Parks and Recreation, and Lucasfilm, Ltd. have joined forces to dub Episode IV of the classic space fantasy film, Star Wars into the Diné language. This marks the first time that a mainstream movie will be dubbed into the Navajo language.