With the olympics going on , not much is being said about our people despite our participation. there is a great website put out by the national museum of the American Indian .. check out the video on the link..
Best in the World: Native Athletes in the Olympics
May 25, 2012–September 03, 2012
Related Public Programs
This exhibition features Native athletes who have provided some of the most dramatic moments in Olympic history. Special attention is given to the 1912 Games in Stockholm, whose centenary we celebrate in 2012, and in which Jim Thorpe (Sac and Fox ) won both the Pentathlon and the Decathlon (a feat not since accomplished); Duke Kahanamoku (Native Hawaiian) won the 100 Meter Freestyle; Andrew Sockalexis (Penobscot) placed fourth in the Marathon; and Lewis Tewanima (Hopi) won the Silver medal and set an American record for the 10,000 Meters, which stood for more than 50 years until another American Indian, Billy Mills (Oglala Lakota), won Gold in Tokyo in 1964.
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
With the olympics going on , not much is being said about our people despite our participation. there is a great website put out by the national museum of the American Indian .. check out the video on the link..
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 8:50 AM
Monday, June 18, 2012
Howka tribal members, as many of you the Paipa family suffered a loss in their family.. If anyone would like to post a condolence please go to the link below.. My prayers are with the family..
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 12:46 PM
Thursday, June 14, 2012
The Marin Museum of the American Indian seeks work by Native American Artists, aged 16-25, to showcase on a rotating basis.
There are no deadlines.
Work does not have to be strictly Native in content but must be of high quality.
Arrangements can be made with the Museum for sales.
Great resume opportunity for students applying to art schools, colleges, and universities.
Museum of the American Indian
Miwok Park, 2200 Novato Blvd.
Novato, Calif. 94947.
Contact: Colleen, 1(415) 897-4064
office @ marinindian.com (take out spaces),
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 8:01 AM
Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Howka tribal memebrs, there is a new essay contest that our tribal youth can enter.. here is the info (below) if any tribal member wins.. please let me know..
~ Essay Contest ~ Guidelines Who Can Participate: Native American students enrolled in grades 5th - 12th. Length and Language: 1200 - 2500 words. Essays must be a minimum of 1200 words but not exceed 2500 words. For Winning Authors: First place receives $300, second place receives $150, and third place receives $75. Deadline: June 30, 2012 Theme: Living Proof Native nations continue to make great strides in governance, economy, education and social welfare. We work daily to triumph over generations of destructive federal and state policies that sought to end our political, cultural and social existence. We are the living proof that our people did not just "survive," we continue to "thrive." The theme of this year's For All My Relations Conference is "Living Proof". We can all look to historical examples, heroic figures and personal anecdotes that speak to our resiliency and determination. Each one of us is "living proof" that the strength, pride, courage and cultural values of our communities continue to thrive. Write an essay illustrating how you or a member of your family or community demonstrates the "Living Proof" theme in overcoming historic or contemporary challenges. Rules: Entries will be judged anonymously. Each essay must be original work of the contestant. All essays may be published in whole or part by NIJC. Winning essays will be published. Submission: Essays must be submitted to NIJC by June 30, 2012. Essays may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or faxed to 707-579-9019 or mailed to 5250 Aero Drive, Santa Rosa, CA 95403. Each essay must be submitted with a page that includes the applicants name, age, grade, tribal affiliation, address, phone number, and email. ________________________________
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 10:34 AM
Thursday, May 3, 2012
Howka tribal members, As many of you know over the century there has been numerous stories about the SY Mission and the elusive mission bells.. Many stories have swirled around about who took them and or where they went.. This is a recent story..
Solving an 86-Year Mystery
Oral History Leads to Piece of Missing Mission Bell
By Mimi Ko Cruz
April 27, 2012
A piece of a missing mission bell more than two centuries old soon will be back where it belongs, thanks to history sleuth Kathleen R. Frazee.
COPH now is temporarily housing this historic bell piece. Photo: Karen Tapia Download Photo
Fascinated by the mystery of the missing bells of Santa Ysabel, an asistencia (or sub-mission) of Mission San Diego de Alcalá, Frazee, a staff member in the Center for Oral and Public History, did some research.
In 1926, the mission’s two original bells, which date back to 1723 and 1767, from Santa Ysabel’s chapel disappeared. While the clappers were found the next day and returned in 1959, the whereabouts of the bell shells remained a puzzle — until last year, that is, when Frazee read an old oral history by the late historian Helen Smith.
Among the collection of Smith’s oral histories, which were donated to the center by her daughter, was an interview with an individual identified only as Anonymous.
The now-deceased unknown narrator, who Frazee learned was born the year the bells disappeared, told Smith the story he had heard from his father, an auto shop owner in Redlands who heard it from his friend, Fig Tree John.
The oral history most likely was recorded around 1975, Frazee said. In it, the narrator said that Fig Tree John approached his father saying three young friends had some metal that they wanted to have assayed.
“My dad said, ‘sure, bring a chunk of it in, whatever it is, and I’ll be happy to send it off to L.A. and have it assayed for you.’ So, Fig Tree said, ‘Fine, I’ll send them in and tell them where to find you.’ ” the narrator said. “I think this probably happened within a few months after the bells disappeared.”
The three friends brought in the brassy-colored chunks of metal that they had hoped were gold, according to the oral history, which indicates that the narrator’s father sawed off a small sample and sent it off for authentication, only to learn it contained “40 different metals, a wild combination of stuff. It was not just copper and zinc, it had multiple things in it.”
So, the narrator’s father tells Fig Tree John, who reports back to his friends, and they never returned to collect the pieces.
Curious, the narrator asks Fig Tree John where the metal chunks came from and hears this story: “It was a very rainy, stormy night. ... There were three or four of them. They had one or two acetylene torches. Literally, in the dead of night, they cut the bells into pieces that could be moved, and they stashed the things into gunnysacks — an eeny-meeny-miny-mo-kind of thing, approximating the amount of weight so that each of them had their fair share of these chunks and went off with them. And that was it.”
Upon hearing that account, the narrator recalled, “My dad said, ‘oh, for God’s sake, tell them to come and get them. I don't want them in my garage.’ Fig Tree John said, ‘Well, I’ll tell them, but ... if they don’t have any gold in them, they don’t have any more interest in them. They don’t want to be caught with the things.’ And, my dad said, ‘well, I don’t really want to have them either.’ And, so, Fig Tree John said, ‘dump them. That’s okay. Take them out to the city dump and get rid of them.’ ”
But, “my dad didn’t really want to do that. It ran against the grain,” the narrator continued. “So, he kept the idiot things and kept them clear up until he retired in the mid-’40s. The war was well on its way. He retired, sold the garage, and here is this old gunnysack full of chunks of bells. So, at this point, he took them home, and they were in his garage at home for a long time.”
Later, the narrator, who had been using the top of one bell as decoration in his Lafayette home, said he read about the missing bells in a 1965 issue of Sunset magazine. Immediately, he recognized the top of the bell in the photo as a match for the one he had on display at his home and felt a need to write to Santa Ysabel, telling his father’s story.
He said his father had felt “a great deal of guilt” about how he ended up with the bell pieces, but was afraid to turn them over to authorities for fear of being accused of stealing the bells in the first place.
A Catholic priest, Father Nardi, paid the narrator a visit some weeks after receiving the letter and took the bell top back to the mission, promising not to divulge the name of the source. Today it sits in a museum at the asistencia.
Enough names and locations were mentioned in the oral history that Frazee followed the clues, made some calls and tracked down the narrator’s wife, who told Frazee she had a piece of one of the bells and would gladly hand it over to the center. The wife asked to remain anonymous, Frazee said, and it is unknown what happened to the rest of the missing bell pieces.
Last week, a center volunteer picked up the wife’s bell piece and delivered it to Frazee, who proudly clutched the 6.5-pound slab of metal to her chest, smiling wide with excitement.
“This is part of one of the oldest bells in California, maybe the oldest,” she said. “Isn’t it amazing?”
The center now is arranging a date to deliver the bell piece to Santa Ysabel, Frazee said.
Natalie M. Fousekis, COPH director, praised Frazee’s detective work, calling it a “great public service.”
“As historians, we record individual stories and memories,” Fousekis said. “When scholars and the public use one of these interviews, we expect them to do additional research to verify the historical facts and stories in them. In this case, Helen Smith's oral history helps solve the decades-old mystery of the missing mission bells. What a wonderful, surprising discovery! And, we have thousands of fascinating oral histories in our collections that reveal all kinds of untold and unknown stories like this about Southern California.”
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 12:12 PM
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
May 1, 2012, 6:00 a.m. EDT
Fan Palm Research Project Launches New Book on Trailblazing Native American Woman Leader
SANTA BARBARA, Calif., May 01, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- "We are just dirt rich," admitted Vyola Olinger (later Ortner) in the summer of 1958, when, as chairman of the first all-women tribal council in the United States, she presided over "one of the biggest real estate deals . . . in the country" and the most consequential ever on Indian land. Released by the Fan Palm Research Project, You Can't Eat Dirt: Leading the First All-Women Tribal Council and How We Changed Palm Springs chronicles Olinger's trailblazing political career.
Part autobiography, part biography, this beautifully designed and thoroughly researched publication--filled with rare historical documents and archival photographs--tells the remarkable story of Olinger's rapid ascent in 1954 to the chairmanship of the Tribal Council for the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians in Palm Springs, California. It explains how--against all odds--she and her fellow female tribal leaders came together during the 1950s to forever alter the destinies and fortunes of the Agua Caliente Cahuilla and, ultimately, of other tribes across this nation.
At the heart of this amazing success story is Olinger's campaign to maximize the potential of her tribe's primary economic asset--land. Olinger wisely understood that this profoundly underutilized resource could transform her people. Consequently, in a sequence of many "firsts" for the tribe, she pioneered innovative models of business development and progressive governance. At the same time, she built new and enduring relationships between the Agua Caliente Cahuilla and the city of Palm Springs, motivated to protect and enhance some 7,000 acres that the tribe owned within the city limits. She went on to fight for her people in the halls of congress, both in Sacramento and Washington, D.C., amending and creating historic legislation.
Among Olinger's most noteworthy accomplishments was the establishment of the right of tribal members to enter into long-term leases of reservation land--a radical departure from years-old restrictive Indian law and public policy. Signed by President Dwight Eisenhower in October 1959, this momentous legislation opened up entirely new business opportunities for the Agua Caliente Cahuilla as well as for other tribes throughout the United States.
At once an engaging personal testimony and an absorbing profile of an extraordinary political and business leader, this book is an essential addition to women's studies, Native American studies, US-Indian relations, tribal law, women business leaders, the history of modern Palm Springs, and the Agua Caliente Cahuilla.
You Can't Eat Dirt, by Vyola J. Ortner and Diana C. du Pont, is available through www.youcanteatdirt.com , amazon.com, and selected venues.
For further information, including the full text of the press release for the book launch and author biographies, please visit www.youcanteatdirt.com .
To request a review copy, please contact email@example.com.
Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available: http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/mmg.cgi?eid=50259458&lang=en
SOURCE: Fan Palm Research Project
Fan Palm Research Project
Diana du Pont
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 10:13 AM
Thursday, April 26, 2012
WHY MUST THEY CONTINUE TO DISRESPECT THE ANCIENT ONES.. IT SEEMS THAT SOME PROFESSORS ARE TELLING US WHO AND WHO ISN'T OUR PEOPLE..
Professors sue to stop ancient bones transfer
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
(04-25) 10:46 PDT San Diego, CA (AP) --
Two skeletons that rested undisturbed on a San Diego cliff top for nearly 10,000 years are at the center of a modern court battle.
The University of California, San Diego, had intended to transfer the skeletons of a man and woman to an American Indian tribe for traditional burial. But lawsuits are complicating the plan.
The bones were discovered in 1976 during an excavation at University House, the traditional La Jolla home of the UC San Diego chancellor. The university was preparing to hand over the bones to the local Kumeyaay tribe when three UC professors filed a lawsuit Monday in Northern California to block the transfer.
Margaret Schoeninger of UC San Diego, Robert Bettinger of UC Davis and Timothy White of UC Berkeley argue that the bones are precious research objects and there is no evidence that they are Native American remains.
In a declaration, Schoeninger said the skeletons were not buried in a way consistent with ancient Kumeyaay practices and collagen taken from the bones indicated the two ate ocean fish and mammals different from that of the tribe."These are not Native Americans," said James McManis, a San Jose lawyer for the professors.
"We're sure where they're from," he told U-T San Diego (http://bit.ly/IgSIwF). "They had primarily a seafood diet, not the diet of any way of these tribes. They were a seafaring people. They could be traveling Irishmen who touched on the continent.
"The idea that we're going to turn this incredible treasure over to some local tribe because they think it's Grandma's bones is crazy."Respecting Native American preferences, the university has not permitted DNA testing of the bones, which are being kept at the San Diego Archaeological Center in Escondido.
In anticipation of the professors' suit, a dozen bands of Kumeyaay filed their own federal suit earlier this month, demanding transfer of the skeletons.
By law, Native American remains held by federal agencies or institutions receiving federal funds must be given to Native Americans. That includes unidentified remains found on aboriginal lands, said Dorothy Alther, an attorney for the Kumeyaay Cultural Repatriation Committee, which represents the 12 bands.
"A lot of the tribes were concerned that their ancestors were lying around in the basements of museums and not being properly interred," she said.
"What we're saying is that these are Native American remains," Alther said. "But even if someone says they are not, they were found on aboriginal lands. They go to the Kumeyaay."
The university is aware of the competing lawsuits, spokesman Jeff Gattas said in a statement.
"We believe the University process has achieved a decision that is in accordance with both the law and our commitment to the respectful handling of human remains and associated artifacts," he said.
Information from: U-T San Diego, www.utsandiego.com
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 1:59 PM
Monday, April 23, 2012
His Holiness speaks on upholding universal ethics and compassion San Diego, California, USA, 10 April 2012 - On his final full day in San Diego during this visit, on April 19th His Holiness the Dalai Lama continued with his theme of compassion without borders and spoke to a sold out crowd of 13,000 people at the San Diego State University on upholding universal ethics and compassion. He also participated in a discussion on neuroscience and the emerging mind with scientists. In the morning, His Holiness visited the Viejas Arena of San Diego State University and gave an interview to Maureen Cavanaugh of KPBS, the San Diego affiliate of Public Broadcasting Service. He responded to questions relating to compassion in the American society and on his devolution of political authority. This is being broadcast later in the day. San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders presents His Holiness the Dalai Lama with the Key to the City in San Diego on April 19, 2012. Photo/Tim Mantoani Thereafter, His Holiness entered the stage of the arena to a thunderous welcome from the people. Dr. Elliot Hirshman, President of San Diego State University, welcomed His Holiness to the event. Thereafter, San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders presented His Holiness with the Key to the City. In a brief remark, the Mayor said, “Throughout his teachings, His Holiness encourages all of us to strive for a better future, through peace and compassion for others. With this key, we offer His Holiness a promise to keep working for a brighter tomorrow." The Mayor said that His Holiness’ message of compassion and peace resonates with the citizens of his city. Ms. Lauren Powell Jobs, in her introduction of His Holiness, said his message was that altruism to our spiritual wellbeing is a civic responsibility. She termed His Holiness a religious leader who includes and not excludes. She applauded the approach of His Holiness and the Tibetan people even in the face of “terrible experience of oppression that continues even to this day.” His Holiness then began his talk on “Upholding Universal Ethics and Compassion in Challenging Times” His Holiness said he usually began by calling everyone brothers and sisters, through which he wanted to indicate that we are truly the same human being. He said we have the same potential for construction and destruction. He said fear, jealousy, anger, frustrations, etc. ultimately bring destructive action, both physical and verbal. His Holiness the Dalai Lama adjusts his San Diego State University visor during his talk at the University on April 19, 2012. Photo/Tom Mantoani His Holiness said the seed of compassion was in each and every individual. He said even animals like cats, dogs and birds respond to affections shown to them. He added that kittens and puppies could respond these form of biological compassion. He talked about newborn puppies whose eyes may not be opened but nevertheless looks for the nipples of their mother and feel happy once they find them and start consuming the milk. He said turtles might be an exception as the mothers don’t care for the eggs once they are hatched. With alligators, His Holiness said that he had noticed that the mother would watch from a distance as her egg hatches. These show that compassion was needed when life begins, he said, adding that compassion was essential even at the time life ends. He said showing of closeness feeling at the time of a person’s death will ease the process for the person and that money, power , fame, etc. are of no use at that stage. His Holiness said from his own experience he knows that an affectionate feeling shown by others has a positive feeling in oneself. He talked about his experience with doctors saying some doctors merely seem to treat patients without much of a personal feeling. At such time, he said he gets the feeling that the doctor may merely be performing an experiment on him. His Holiness suggested generating a feeling of oneness and recalled a chant that he had heard in Hawaii recently, the meaning of which was explained to him as being. “Your bone is my bone, your blood is my blood.” He said this was very meaningful and said that we need to have the feeling that “your life is my life, your health is my health.” He added that such an attitude was very useful. Explaining that compassion was something that needed to be cultivated by oneself, His Holiness talked about his growing awareness of western societies since his first travel to Europe in 1973. He said Tibetans had the impression that Europe was highly developed. In fact, those Tibetans who settled in Switzerland in the early 1960s expressed that the country was indeed paradise. But through his subsequent travels to Europe, the United States, Canada, etc., he became aware of another reality that was beneath the beautiful surface. He learnt about problems of stress, alcohol, drugs, etc. His Holiness said the situation in these countries clearly indicated that material development alone cannot bring about inner peace. He added that physical comfort couldn’t subdue mental affliction. On the other hand, if one is mentally calm, this can subdue any physical pain. Some members of the packed Viejas Arena of San Diego State University listening to His Holiness the Dalai Lama speaking in San Diego on April 19, 2012. Photo/Tom Mantoani His Holiness also talked about the situation of gap between the rich and the poor throughout the world. He said during his visits to Africa and Latin America, he could see this condition. He said one of the issues affecting the world is corruption, which he said is the new cancer. He said these problems come about because of a lack of self-discipline and training in moral ethics. Although there are people who say that moral ethics should be based on religion, His Holiness said such a situation would have limited effect as no one religion can claim universal acceptance. Since the problem, is universal, he said that we need to look for a universal solution. His suggestion was to look for an approach that is not grounded in religion. He said this was not a new idea as it has been a part of ancient Indian thoughts. He talked about the secularism that was promoted by India and that this did not mean being against religion. He said that children interact with each other without any thoughts of their respective background or social conditions. But as one grows up one begins to be taught about backgrounds and the earlier feeling of oneness becomes dormant. Instead different feelings grow. He talked about the importance for people to make a distinction between these feelings. Competition in the sense of wanting to excel and to be at the top was good, but extreme competition that makes one desire worse outcome for others while wanting good for oneself was negative. Similarly, if one had extreme self-centered ego that disregarded other’s feelings it was negative while a sense of strong self in order to serve other people with infinite altruism is positive. He said the feeling of desire that is mixed with attachment was destructive and shortsighted. Also, anger that comes out of a sense of concern for the wellbeing of others was positive while anger born out of ill feeling was negative. San Diego State University's Viejas Arena, venue for His Holiness the Dalai Lama's talk in San Diego on April 19, 2012. Photo/Tom Mantoani His Holiness said people could understand the importance of the need to promote compassion through common experience, use of their common sense and through scientific findings about the connection between a healthy body and a healthy mind. He said calm mind could only be developed through warm heartedness. His Holiness talked about the importance of training the mind in this and to remove grounds for fear. Some fear, he said, would be valid and gave the example of people living in Dharamsala being afraid of earthquake as it is in the earthquake zone. Under such a situation the fear leads people to take precaution, he said. His Holiness also talked about his visits to China and India in the 1950s and being nervous then while meeting the leaders in these countries. However, subsequently through increased familiarity as well as through training he was able to overcome the nervousness, he said. His Holiness said his tradition of dedicating his body, speech and action to the wellbeing of others every morning was helpful in transforming his mental state. His Holiness said we needed to go away from the old concept of differentiating between me and others or we and they. Instead we need to think of a concept of Big We, with the entire seven billion people of the world being part of that. His Holiness then answered some questions. When asked how could an individual make a difference in this world, His Holiness said change occurs because of the combination of effort by individuals. We need to think along these lines and to know that an individual’s effort can multiply. He said Jesus, Buddha and Mahavira, etc. were all individuals, who were able to make a difference. His Holiness the Dalai Lama answering a question from the audience during his talk at San Diego State University on April 19, 2012. Photo/Tom Mantoani A questioner asked about the most important thing to achieve in life. His Holiness responded by saying that in terms of the humanity in general, it would be a peaceful life. At the individual level, he said that those believing in theistic religion would want to go to heaven. Since he is a Buddhist, His Holiness said many Tibetans would like to achieve Buddhahood in three years, which is unrealistic. But he said he was realistic and was striving to achieve the same in eons. Asked about the biggest inspirations in his life, His Holiness said since he is a Buddhist he may be prejudiced, but the Buddha is his inspiration. In modern times, he said Mahatma Gandhi is his inspiration adding that he had not met Gandhi, except in a dream. He added that he also admired Vaclav Havel, Mother Teresa, and Thomas Merton. At the end His Holiness stressed on the people gathered to strive to cultivate warm-heartedness and a sense of global responsibility. He said those people below 30 years or so have the opportunity to make the 21st century a better century. Thereafter, as per the tradition established by His Holiness with events connected with him, the organizers made a financial statement. He said no public fund was used to bear the expenses connected with the visit. The total income as of April 17, 2012 from the events was $ 574,000 and the expenses to date were $527,000. The organizing committee’s representative made it clear that His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama does not charge a speaking engagement fee and no aspect of His Holiness' visit is being used to profit financially. He added that any funds raised through sponsorships and tickets sales will be used only to cover expenses for the events. Any surplus fund from the events will be disbursed to national and international charitable organizations. The organizers presented Ven. Tenzin Dhonden, Chair of the Organizing Committee, with a citation appreciating his contribution. Members of the Native American Kumeyaay tribe perform traditional song and dance for His Holiness the Dalai Lama in San Diego on April 19, 2012. Photo/Tom Mantoani Following lunch, His Holiness met a group of people from the Kumeyaay tribe of Native American people. They performed some songs and dances to welcome His Holiness in their tradition. They also expressed their understanding of and support for the Tibetan people based on their own experience with their homeland in the United States. His Holiness advised them on the importance of getting good modern education and at the same time preserving their culture and language. He suggested that they think of devising a written script to promote and preserve their culture and language. He also said people could learn from the Māori people of New Zealand as they are the most advanced among indigenous people.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 7:32 AM
Friday, April 20, 2012
RIVERSIDE — The University of California, Riverside will commit $210,000 across the next three years for programs geared toward encouraging and assisting Native American youth seeking a college education, it was announced Wednesday.
UCR Chancellor Timothy White told 50 or so attendees at the campus's Native American Educational Summit on Tuesday that he would be willing to dedicate funds to support a “stay-in-the-game” effort that contributes to higher college attendance by students from regional tribes.
The money would not be drawn from state appropriations, but instead come from the university's pool of discretionary funds, according to campus officials.
“This will make a difference. If everyone (at the summit) participates, it will be successful,” said Cahuilla tribal member and UCR graduate Mike Madrigal.
He agreed with White's observation that because young Native American adults lack a support network away from the reservation, they're often reluctant to move ahead with advancing their academic achievements.
Tribal leaders should put more emphasis on outreach, offering new avenues for youngsters interested in a post-secondary education, according to White.
“The chancellor has involved the American Indian community in an engaging way,” said Clifford Trafzer, UCR professor of Indian American affairs. “He has provided us with the resources to touch the lives of children, parents and tribes interested in furthering American Indian education.”
The summit led to plans for the Inter-Tribal Education Collaborative to establish a website that profiles the higher education options available to Native American students, according to UCR.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 11:15 AM
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Next week, the USDA will decide whether to allow Monsanto and Dow to introduce one half of the chemical mixture Agent Orange into our food supply. Widescale use of Roundup has led to a new generation of resistant weeds, and the next step in the pesticide arms race is 2,4-D -- a chemical linked to cancer, Parkinson's and reproductive problems.
Farmers that sign up to use genetically-engineered 2,4-D-resistant corn will be required to spray down their fields with both 2,4-D and Roundup, double-dosing our food, our soil and our waterways with the toxins. Some experts estimate this will increase the use of 2,4-D 50-fold, even though the EPA says the chemical is already our seventh-largest source of dioxins -- nasty, highly toxic chemicals that bioaccumulate as they move up the food chain and cause cancer, developmental damage, and birth defects.
We can stop this. The use of 2,4-D is banned entirely in parts of Canada and Europe, and right now the US Department of Agriculture is accepting public comments on 2,4-D to decide whether or not to approve the widespread industrial use of the toxin.
Add your name to our letter to the USDA urging them to deny approval for Dow's 2,4-D-resistant GMO corn.
This is part of a growing problem, an escalating herbicide war going on across America’s heartland. From 1996 to 2008, herbicide usage increased by 383 million pounds. Nearly half of this took place between 2007 and 2008 after the introduction of another strain of herbicide-resistant plant pushed by Dow. Like Roundup before it, 2,4-D is only a temporary solution that will require more and more tons of toxins and more and more potent chemicals leaching into our food supply.
2,4-D is nasty stuff and has been linked to a number of health problems, such as tripling the rates of non-Hodgkins lymphoma in Nebraska farmworkers exposed to it and causing reproductive problems -- birth defects and high rates of miscarriage -- in both mice and men exposed to it in the lab and field.
Tell the USDA - we don’t want Monsanto’s toxic pesticide.
-Kaytee, Claiborne Taren and the rest of the team
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 9:59 AM
Monday, April 16, 2012
Winnemem Tribe Demands Forest Service Respects Native Women's Rights P R E S S R E L E A S E* **Winnemem Wintu Tribe** ** **For Immediate Release: April 16, 2012** * *For more information:*Caleen Sisk, Tribal Chief: 530-710-4817James Ward, media relations: 530-638-5580 *WINNEMEM TRIBE DEMANDS FOREST SERVICE RESPECT**NATIVE WOMEN’S RIGHTS** **• Agency Refuses to Provide Closure of McCloud River Necessary for Girls’Traditional Coming of Age Ceremony**• Winnemem Women and Chief Demand Face-to-Face Meeting With RegionalForester at Vallejo Headquarters** • Winnemem Men and Supporters Picket with Signs** ** **EDITORS NOTE*: Tribal leaders will address the press directly at 11 am onthe front steps of the U.S. Forest Service office located at 1323 ClubDrive, Vallejo, CA 94592 *Vallejo, CA* – Today members of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe *willchallenge *U.S.F.S.Regional Forester Randy Moore at his Vallejo office on the issue ofprotecting Indigenous Women from racial slurs and physical harm duringtheir coming of age ceremonies. The Tribe is demanding that the *Shasta-TrinityNational Forest* provide a* four*-day *mandatory* closure of a quarter milestretch of the McCloud River during a coming of age ceremony for a teenagegirl, which is planned for late June. The Tribe's past two Coming of AgeCeremonies have been disrupted by racial slurs, alcohol use, and indecentexposure from passersby in motorboats who refused to honor a voluntaryclosure. These boaters also endanger the physical safety of young tribalmembers who swim across the river as part of the ceremony. Winnemem tribal members and their supporters will picket the Forest Serviceoffice while tribal women seek a face-to-face audience with the RegionalForester*. Tribal members will form picket Line at 9 a.m. Winnemem TribalChief and Spiritual Leader Caleen Sisk will hold a press conference at 11am to discuss the Tribe’s demands and the outcome of the meeting with Mr.Moore.* “Since 1941 most of our ceremonial sites have been *buried* beneath thestill waters of Lake Shasta,” according to Chief Sisk. “We ask that theForest Service grant us this one small dignity by allowing our girls toenter womanhood in privacy at one of our last remaining traditionalceremonial sites.” The Tribe has requested for the past several years that the Forest Serviceclose this stretch of river during their Coming of Age Ceremonies, which isheld in an area accessible on Lake Shasta by boat. Although the ForestService has issued “voluntary closures,” which discourage most boaters fromentering the area, several times during each ceremony groups of individualspowered into the ceremonial area, often with beers in hand and musicblaring as they verbally insulted members of the Tribe. During a Coming ofAge Ceremony in 2006, an individual “flashed” the ceremonial participantswith naked breasts and yelled racist insults. “If someone did this during Mass, they would be arrested,” says Sisk, whonotes that there were no authorities present to cite the individual forpublic indecency. A mandatory closure was issued later at this sameceremony by the Shasta County Sheriff after a Forest Service DistrictRanger's kayak was rammed by a boat. For the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, this is about respecting and protectingNative women while they pass on traditional ways to the next generations.According to Sisk, “Like many traditional people, we hold our women in highregard. This beautiful ceremony is vital to our girls' transitioning towomanhood with confidence, grace and knowledge. We must hold this ceremonyfor our tribe to survive." *# # #* Learn more about the Winnemem Wintu at http://www.winnememwintu.us/ Learn more about the ceremony at http://www.saveourceremony.com Download Video of motorboats speeding past ceremony and flashing theparticipants at: http://vimeo.com/39867112
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 12:28 PM
Monday, March 26, 2012
It was that time of the year again.. Dr. Seuss's birthday .. I love this time of the year because I get to see all the smiling faces of the kids. This year I brought enough books for every child to have 5 books and a pencil.. The children were scrambling everywhere to find a book that peaked their interest.Got my nephews Nyemii and Jaleel on my arms..Here is a group picture of most of the children.Looking forward to my summer book giveaway..
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 2:20 PM
Friday, March 9, 2012
THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE IS TRANSMITTED AT THE REQUEST OF THE
CALIFORNIA HIGHWAY PATROL.
A CHILD ABDUCTION OCCURRED ON MARCH 9 AT 9:30 AM IN THE CITY OF
WILLOWS... GLENN COUNTY... CA.
THE FIRST CHILD`S NAME IS RANDI EN MARTINEZ, A TWO YEAR OLD
AMERICAN INDIAN FEMALE.
THE SECOND CHILD`S NAME IS VANESSA AY MARTINEZ, A FIVE YEAR OLD
AMERICAN INDIAN FEMALE.
THE SUSPECT IS LEONARD DALE TUTTLE JUNIOR, A THIRTY YEAR OLD
AMERICAN INDIAN MALE.
POSSIBLY DRIVING A 2002 WHITE MITSUBISHI LANCER VEHICLE. CALIFORNIA
LICENSE PLATE NUMBER 5...PEE...EYE...BEE...3...4...7.
TO REPORT POSSIBLE SIGHTINGS, CALL 9 1 1.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 2:52 PM
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
Howka tribal members, Have you heard about the new outlet for Native media? Sounds like a great opportunity for our native writers, producers, filmmakers, etc.
Way to go San Manuel... I , like Wes Studi didn't think I would ever see this in my lifetime as well.
FNX: First Nations Experience is the first of its kind endeavor introduced by PBS member station, KVCR, and founding partner, the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians of Southern California. A 24/7 high definition (HD) multiplatform digital media vehicle, FNX launched on September 25, 2011.
A member of the World Indigenous Broadcast Network, FNX is the first general public, multimedia venture in the United States created to showcase the lives and cultures of Native American and indigenous peoples around the world.
Initially serving the second largest market in the United States of potentially 18 million viewers, FNX broadcasts from the KVCR Studios in Southern California's Inland Empire. Within one year, FNX plans to expand and lead the way as a U.S. producer and national and global exhibitor (via the Internet and over-the air, satellite and cable broadcast systems) of authentic First Nations storytelling. Programming will comprise varying genres including documentaries, sports, feature film, drama series, news and comedy.
Let FNX be your experience.
All people originate from an indigenous source. Whether you are a producer, interactive user, viewer or donor - if you support the FNX mission and share its vision, then become a valued and active stakeholder in the experience.
Welcome to FNX. It's time.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 3:05 PM
Thursday, February 2, 2012
This is a great new technology that might benefit some of our tribal members.
By AppleView More By This Developer Open iTunes to buy and download apps.
The iTunes U app gives you access to complete courses from leading universities and other schools — plus the world’s largest digital catalog of free education content — right on your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch. Whether you’re majoring in molecular biology at a university, taking Spanish in high school, or just interested in European history, you now have a valuable tool to help you learn anytime, anywhere.
Free courses in a wide array of subjects
• Take free courses created and taught by instructors from leading universities and other schools
• See all assignments and updates from the instructor in one place, and check off assignments as you complete them
• Take notes and highlight text in iBooks and see them consolidated for easy reviewing in the iTunes U app
• Access course materials, including audio, video, books, documents & presentations, apps, and new iBooks textbooks for iPad
The world’s largest catalog of free education content
• Choose from more than 500,000 free lectures, videos, books, and other resources on thousands of subjects from Algebra to Zoology
• Browse collections from education and cultural institutions in 26 countries — including Stanford, Yale, MIT, Oxford, UC Berkeley, MoMA, the New York Public Library, and the Library of Congress
• iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with iOS 5 or later
• An Apple ID with an iTunes Store account
• iTunes 10.5.3 or later is required to sync with a computer
• The selection of courses, collections, and availability of content linked from within a course may vary by country
iTunes U SupportApplication License Agreement
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 8:35 AM
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
My friend Susan Hanks sent this.. I thought it might benefit some of our tribal members.
New Online Course Introduced for Native American Small Business Owners WASHINGTON - Native American entrepreneurs have a new tool to helpdetermine if they're ready for business ownership and to help them getstarted. Native American Small Business Primer: Strategies for Successis a free, self-paced online business course developed for NativeAmerican business owners. The course provides an overview of basicbusiness principles and makes them aware of the programs and servicesavailable from the U.S. Small Business Administration. "Native American Small Business Primer: Strategies for Success willenhance the agency's effort to provide important resources for emergingNative American entrepreneurs," said SBA Administrator Karen Mills."Our ultimate goal is to help create jobs and stimulate economic andbusiness development in our Native American communities. This course isan essential business development tool for the entrepreneur's toolbox." The new online course: emphasizes business planning and market researchas essential steps to take before going into business; informs NativeAmerican entrepreneurs about the legal aspects of starting a business,including the type of ownership (legal structure) and licensing; andprovides key information on seed money for starting up, raising capital,and borrowing money. In addition, there is a section on how to estimatebusiness start-up costs that can help assess the financial needs ofgoing into business. The course is available from the SBA's Online Small Business Trainingweb page under Online Courses for Starting Your Business athttp://www.sba.gov/content/online-courses-starting-your-business. SBA's Office of Native American Affairs works to ensure that AmericanIndian, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiian communities have full accessto all SBA programs and services. Each year, more than 200,000 AmericanIndian and Alaska Native and 29,000 Native Hawaiian-owned businesses addbillions to the American economy. Course participants completing the online training programs can earn acertificate of completion from the SBA, with their name, date and coursetitle. The Native American Small Business Primer course is one ofnearly 30 online tutorials offered by the SBA's Online Business Training(www.sba.gov/training). Free courses are offered on Starting aBusiness, Managing a Business, Financing a Business, and Contracting. SBA can also help pair new business owners with expert advisers,counseling and mentoring services through an SBA representative orresource partner about management assistance, financing options, orparticipating local SBA lenders.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 10:06 AM
Monday, January 30, 2012
DOWNLOAD PDF Funeral Services flyer.
Ernest Salgado, Sr.
In Memory of Ernest Salgado Sr.
Soboba Tribal Elder
Ernest Salgado Sr. passed into eternal life on Monday, January 23, 2012 at his home on the Soboba Indian Reservation. His wife of 60 years, Fidelia succeeded him into eternal life.
Mr. Salgado was born on October 16, 1920 on the Soboba Indian Reservation. He is survived by, two brothers and three sisters, Henry “Sonny” Bentiste, William “Billy” Bentiste, Francis Bentiste Arres and Alice Bentiste Helms from the Soboba Indian Reservation and Nelia Salgado Heredia from the Cauhilla Indian Reservation: Six children, Ernie C. Salgado Jr., Hemet, CA, Robert J. Salgado Sr., Soboba Indian Reservation, Richard L. Salgado Sr., Palms Springs, CA, Lorraine Salgado Masiel, Hemet, CA, Francis Salgado Diaz, Soboba Indian Reservation and Rose Salgado, Soboba Indian Reservation,:14 Grandchildren, 43 Great-grandchildren, 13 Great-great-grandchildren and numerous nephews and nieces.
He attended the Valle Vista elementary school in Hemet in the late 20’s and Sherman Indian High School in Riverside and played on the schools championship baseball teams in the late 30’s.
Mr. Salgado was a World War II veteran serving in the U.S. Army. During WWII he served in five major combat campaigns including the Battle of the Bulge and the invasion of Normandy. He was awarded the Bronze Star and Silver Star Medals for bravery. He was also awarded the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal.
He was a strong advocate and supporter of the American Indian Rights and education throughout his life. As a tribal and community leader he served on the Soboba Tribal Council and was a Charter member of Ahmium Education, Inc., serving as the Vice-President of the Board of Directors since 1975. He was a life member of the California Indian Education Association.
A Catholic Rosary will be held at the McWane Funeral Home in Hemet, CA at 6-7pm on Thursday, February 2, 2012. A Christen service will be held at 9am on Friday, February 3, 2012 at the Assembly of God in Valle Vista, CA followed by graveside services at the Soboba Tribal Cemetery. A traditional tribal fellowship dinner will be held at the Soboba sport complex after the graveside services. DOWNLOAD PDF Funeral Services flyer.
Obituary written and submitted by Mr. Salgado's son, Ernie C. Salgado, Jr., CALIE Editor in Chief and CEO.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 8:41 AM
Thursday, January 26, 2012
I am hoping this site will help all our students in school from k-12 & our college students.
Encyclopedia of Life
The Encyclopedia of Life (EOL), a free, online resource of biodiversity information is working to bring together our collective knowledge. The mission of EOL is to increase awareness and understanding of living nature through an Encyclopedia of Life that gathers, generates, and shares knowledge in an open, freely accessible and trusted digital resource.
There is also the Biodiversity Heritage Library.
The Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL) is a consortium of natural history and botanical libraries that cooperate to digitize and make accessible the legacy literature of biodiversity held in their collections and to make that literature available for open access and responsible use as a part of a global “biodiversity commons.” BHL also serves as the foundational literature component of the Encyclopedia of Life (EOL). BHL content may be freely viewed through the online reader or downloaded in part or as a complete work in PDF, OCR text, or JPG2000 file formats. For help with downloading content, please see the Tutorials page.
To perform a simple search of BHL, enter an EXACT PHRASE such as "proceedings of the academy" (without quotation marks). Entering keywords such as "proceedings academy" will not return results.
For advanced search options, please use the Books/Journals, Authors, Subjects, Scientific Names, or Citation Finder (BETA) tabs above.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 11:31 AM
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
EXCLUSIVE: Tribe owes county $3 million, judge rules
By EDWARD SIFUENTES firstname.lastname@example.org North County Times | Posted: Saturday, January 14, 2012 9:00 pm | (2) Comments
A North County tribe was ordered last month to pay the county $3 million for failing to make payments for public safety and other services under an agreement signed in 2005, according to court documents.
The Santa Ysabel Band of Mission Indians struck the agreement with San Diego County in January 2005 as a condition of the tribe's gambling deal with the state.
The money was supposed to help pay for the off-reservation effects of the casino, including additional law enforcement, emergency and fire services.
The payments were also supposed to help pay for gambling addiction programs and the prosecution of casino-related crimes.
Santa Ysabel Casino opened in April 2007 but apparently failed to generate the kind of revenue the tribe anticipated.
According to the county, the tribe never made any payments, about $600,000 a year.
After nearly three years of missed payments, the county asked for arbitration negotiations in January 2010, according to court documents.
"Between the time of the casino opening and the date of the final arbitration award, the tribe made none of the payments required under the agreement," court documents state.
Tribal officials did not respond to repeated calls or emailed requests for comment. Supervisor Bill Horn, whose district includes Santa Ysabel, deferred questions to the county counsel.
Deputy county counsel Tom Bunton, the county's lead attorney in the case, could not be reached for comment Friday.
Santa Ysabel Casino, a 35,000-square-foot facility that cost $30 million to build, has struggled to attract enough customers to its remote location near Julian. As of January 2010, the casino was $24 million in debt, according to court documents.
In 2008, tribal officials told the county that "the casino was having a challenge in paying its bills and employees," according to a letter from the county's lead negotiator with the tribe.
Santa Ysabel got a late start in the gambling boom that started in North County in 2001. Tribes such as the Pala, Rincon and San Pasqual opened larger casinos closer to major roads, such as Interstate 15.
Unlike most gambling tribes, Santa Ysabel did not sign a gambling agreement, or compact, with the state until 2003. Most tribes negotiated their agreements in 1999, allowing them to build up to two casinos and operate up to 2,000 slot machines.
In 2003, Santa Ysabel signed a different deal that allowed only one casino and a maximum of 349 machines. It required the tribe to pay 5 percent of its winnings to the state and to pay the county for off-reservation problems such as traffic and increased crime.
At the time, Johnny Hernandez, who was chairman of the tribe, said it was a good deal.
Having no more than 350 machines means the tribe also qualifies for an annual payment of $1.1 million from larger, more established gambling tribes.
In May 2011, the arbiter, retired Judge Alice D. Sullivan, awarded the county $3 million, which the tribe failed to pay.
Soon after, the county filed a civil lawsuit in Superior Court in San Diego against the tribe. Attorneys for the tribe did not dispute that Santa Ysabel owed the county money, but they said it owed less, according to court documents.
"The award should be corrected because the amount of the award was not calculated correctly," according to a document filed by the tribe's attorney, Mark Radoff.
The document did not say exactly why the arbiter's award was incorrect. It said that based on the casino "books," the tribe owed the county $1.5 million.
Judge Michael Groch ruled Dec. 28, 2011, that the tribe owed the county $3 million.
Call staff writer Edward Sifuentes at 760-740-3511.
Read more: http://www.nctimes.com/news/local/sdcounty/exclusive-tribe-owes-county-million-judge-rules/article_5b8f0ab2-cc58-541f-946a-32af6b85cd7f.html#ixzz1jjUUyiDs
SANTA YSABEL: Casino theft case remains unsolved
SANTA YSABEL: Casino theft case remains unsolved
By EDWARD SIFUENTES email@example.com North County Times | Posted: Friday, January 13, 2012 4:00 pm | 1 Comment
After burglars walked out of the Santa Ysabel Casino with a large amount of money in October, authorities said it was just a matter of time before the case was solved, but as of Wednesday no arrests had been made and the investigation continued.
Not much information about the case has been released on how the theft occurred and how many people may have been involved. According to the San Diego County Sheriff's Department, deputies were called to the casino Oct. 17 to investigate a significant amount of cash, reportedly over $100,000, being taken from a secured area in the casino.
At a press conference held in Poway following the theft, sheriff's Sgt. Thomas Evans, who has since retired from the department, said the thieves left a "large amount of evidence" at the scene and that the case would be resolved.
"It's just a matter of time," Evans said.
On Wednesday, the Sheriff's Department said it's conducting a joint investigation with the FBI, but declined to provide additional details about the case.
"We're not in a position right now to discuss any facet of this case, as it is ongoing," sheriff's spokeswoman Jan Caldwell said.
Repeated requests for comment were not answered by casino and tribal officials.
The Santa Ysabel Casino, which opened in April 2007, belongs to the Santa Ysabel Band of Mission Indians. The casino is the smallest in the county, with 349 slot machines and about 115 employees.
In recent years, the 900-member tribe's casino has struggled to attract customers and compete with larger operations, such as those on the Pala and Rincon reservations. Santa Ysabel is in a more remote location, near Julian about 40 miles east and more than an hour's drive from Escondido.
Tribes are sovereign nations with authority over their reservations. However, under state law, the Sheriff's Department is responsible for investigating crimes on local tribal lands.
When the casino opened, the Santa Ysabel agreed to pay the county for additional deputies to patrol the area, as well as fire and emergency medical services, but the tribe was unable to make the payments and the program was ended.
Call staff writer Edward Sifuentes at 760-740-3511.
Read more: http://www.nctimes.com/news/local/sdcounty/santa-ysabel-casino-theft-case-remains-unsolved/article_30e1043b-ad58-57fb-801c-ae0570375c1d.html#ixzz1jjUiyZiU
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 8:15 AM
Friday, January 13, 2012
California Indian Honored War Dead
The following Honored War Dead, are listed by Name, Tribe and Location of death. The name under the photograph is the person shown. No additional information was provided in the book.
Reginaldo Helms, Mission, (Soboba) Belgium
John P. Emeterio, Sacramento, Belgium
Otto Hodge, Yurok, Italy
Baron D. Risling, Hoopa, U. S. A.
Romaldo Natt, Yurok, Germany
Joe Blacktooth, Mission (Palo), Japan
Augustine Quevas, Mission (Santa Ysabel), Japan
Lee M. Angel, Mission (Mesa Grande), Germany
Gilbert Cleland, Mission (Mesa Grande), Germany
George Estrada, Mission (Mesa Grande), Germany
Steve Levi, Mission (Torres-Martinez), Saipan France
Gene Pablo, Mission (Santa Ysabel), Pacific
Philip Peters, Mission (Pauma), U. S. A,
Fred Rodriguez, Mission (Rincon), Germany
Bob Smith, Mission (Mesa Grande), Germany
Wilfred Word, Mission (La Jolla), Germany
William Besoain, Korok
Melvin Cadoza, Hoopa (Smith River), Saipan
Henry Davis, Hoopa, (Weott)
John Duncan, Hoopa (Wailak), Holland
Charles L. Henderson, Hoopa (Mcttole)
James Ladd, Klamath, Italy
Eugene Lewis, Yurok, Iwo Jima
Jock Mattz, Yurok, Holland
Leonard W. Mosely, Hoopa, (Eel River)
Floyd Pilgrim, Klamath
Arthur Case Jr, Karok
Notes About Book:
Source: Indians In The War, By lian H. Steward, United States Department of the Interior, Office of Indian Affairs, Chicago, Illinois, November 1945
Notes about Online Publication: This manuscript has been ocr'd and heavily edited. Many of the Native American words have been reproduced as clearly as online publication will allow us, but not all are exactly the way they were in the original work. The structure of this manuscript has been changed to allow better online presentation.
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 10:31 AM
Thursday, January 12, 2012
How Do You Prove You’re an Indian?
By DAVID TREUER
Published: December 20, 2011
In California, Indian Tribes With Casino Money Cast Off Members (December 13, 2011)
Related in Opinion
Room For Debate: Tribal Rights vs. Racial Justice AMERICA’S first blood quantum law was passed in Virginia in 1705 in order to determine who had a high enough degree of Indian blood to be classified an Indian — and whose rights could be restricted as a result. You’d think, after all these years, we’d finally manage to kick the concept. But recently, casino-rich Indian tribes in California have been using it themselves to cast out members whose tribal bloodlines, they say, are not pure enough to share in the profits.
What is surprising is not that more than 2,500 tribal members have been disenfranchised for apparently base reasons. (It’s human — and American — nature to want to concentrate wealth in as few hands as possible.) What is surprising is the extent to which Indian communities have continued using a system of blood membership that was imposed upon us in a violation of our sovereignty.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the United States government entered into treaties with Indian nations that reserved tracts of land for tribal ownership and use and guaranteed annuities in the form of money, goods or medical care. Understandably, tribes and the government needed a way to make sure this material ended up in the right hands. Blood quantum, and sometimes lineal descent, was a handy way of solving that problem. For instance, if one of your grandparents was included on the tribal rolls and you possessed a certain blood quantum — say, you were one-fourth Navajo — the government counted you as Navajo as well.
But it had another benefit, for the government at least, which believed that within a few generations intermarriage and intermixing would eliminate Indian communities, and the government would be off the hook. “As long as grass grows or water runs” — a phrase that was often used in treaties with American Indians — is a relatively permanent term for a contract. “As long as the blood flows” seemed measurably shorter.
Indians themselves knew how artificial this category of tribal membership was, and could use it to their own advantage. Before my tribe, the Ojibwe, established the White Earth Reservation in Minnesota in 1867, Chief Bagone-giizhig lobbied to exclude mixed-bloods from the rolls — not because they weren’t Indians but because, most likely, they formed a competing trader class. Bagone-giizhig swore they would rob White Earth blind. That he was right is a bit beside the point — he probably wanted to rob it blind himself.
Something similar happened after the passage and subsequent amendment of the Dawes Act of 1887, which established a process of allotment under which vast lands held in common were divided into smaller plots for individual Indians. Although excess land could be sold off, full-blood Indians were forbidden to sell. But whites wanted the land, and sent in a genetic investigator. In short order, the number of registered full-bloods at White Earth Reservation went from more than 5,000 to 126.
After Congress passed the Indian Reorganization Act in 1934, effectively ending the allotment of land, the provisions of blood quantum remained ingrained in Indian communities. They determined if you could vote or run for office, where you could live, if you’d receive annuities or assistance, and, today, if you get a cut of the casino profits.
Blood quantum has always been about “the stuff,” and it has always been about exclusion. I know full-blooded Indians who have lived their entire lives on reservations but can’t be enrolled because they have blood from many different tribes, and I know of non-Indians who have been enrolled by accident or stealth just because they’ll get something out of it.
Things were different once. All tribes had their own ways of figuring out who was a member — usually based on language, residence and culture. In the case of the Ojibwe, it was a matter of choosing a side. Especially when we were at war in the early 19th century, with the Dakota — our neighbors (many of whom were our blood relatives) — who you were was largely a matter of whom you killed. Personally, I think this is a more elegant way than many to figure out where you belong.
Who is and who isn’t an Indian is a complicated question, but there are many ways to answer it beyond genetics alone. Tribal enrollees could be required to possess some level of fluency in their native language or pass a basic civics test. On my reservation, no schoolchild is asked to read the treaties that shaped our community or required to know about the branches of tribal government or the role of courts and councils. Or tribal membership could be based, in part, on residency, on some period of naturalization inside the original treaty area (some tribes do consider this). Many nations require military service — tribes don’t have armies, but they could require a year of community service.
Other nations take these things into account, and in doing so they reinforce something we, with our fixation on blood, have forgotten: bending to a common purpose is more important than arising from a common place.
Of course, just remaining alive and Indian for the last 150 years has been one of the hardest things imaginable. A respect for blood is a respect for the integrity of that survival, and lineage should remain a metric for tribal enrollment. But not the only one. Having survived this long and come this far, we must think harder about who we want to be in the future, and do something more than just measure out our teaspoons of blood.
David Treuer, an Ojibwe Indian, is the author of the forthcoming “Rez Life.”
Posted by Karen Vigneault Librarian at 12:52 PM