Posted by on Mar 11, 2015 in Featured, News

Expansion of Indian Court Jurisdiction by Al Baker

Expansion of Indian Court Jurisdiction by Al Baker

A recent expansion of Indian Court jurisdiction is evidence that the judicial process may be moving closer to recognition of true Tribal Sovereignty. During the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) on March 7, 2013 President Obama stated, “tribal governments have an inherent right to protect their people, and all women deserve the right to live free from fear.” https://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2015/03/11/making-native-communities-safer. After conducting a pilot program the Justice Department has now authorized Tribal Courts, that meet certain procedural requirements, to investigate and prosecute non-Indian defendants who commit acts of domestic violence in Indian Country. The authority to prosecute non-Indian defendants for crimes committed on Indian Land marks a change in existing federal law following a 1973 United States Supreme Court decision that overturned the conviction of a non-Indian by a Tribal Court. http://www.kpax.com/story/28356264/tribal-governments-can-now-prosecute-non-indians-for-some-crimes. The legislative delegation of jurisdiction to Tribal Courts under VAWA may foreshadow future legislative action that will continue to strengthen Tribal Sovereignty by expanding Tribal Court jurisdiction over non-Indians who commit other crimes on Indian...

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Posted by on Jan 19, 2015 in Featured, News

Article on ND US Attorney Tim Purdon by Al Baker

Article on ND US Attorney Tim Purdon by Al Baker

Since 2013 North Dakota’s United States Attorney, Timothy Purdon has been chair of the Native American Issues Subcommittee (NAIS) of the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee of U.S. Attorneys (AGAC). I know Tim. He has appeared before me when I was a Hearing Officer for the North Dakota Department of Transportation. He is a very good attorney. He is a very effective advocate. I did not know that he held such an important position until I saw several news releases about the United States Attorney General’s new policy that would allow the growing and selling of marijuana in sovereign Indian Country. At first I thought I was going to write about this recognition of sovereign rights in Indian Country, but after a little contemplation I decided a better topic was the resource available to tribes in North Dakota. “The NAIS is made up of 30 U.S. Attorneys from across the United States whose Districts contain Indian Country or one or more federally recognized tribes. The NAIS focuses exclusively on Indian...

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Posted by on Dec 7, 2014 in Featured

The Kansas City Mic-O-Say Chiefs, By Jimmy Lee Beason II

The Kansas City Mic-O-Say Chiefs, By Jimmy Lee Beason II

At first, I wasn’t going to comment too much on the Kansas City Chiefs and there slightly less offensive team brand and all the culturally appropriated hi-jinx that ensues because of it. You know the usual stuff; white people (and usually anyone else who isn’t Native) wearing a “war bonnet” and red “war paint”, wielding a plastic tomahawk whooping and hollering. Or the tomahawk chop where thousands of fans ritualistically extend their arm and hand to simulate a “chopping motion” while humming some weird noise. Or that time when the Sonic Drive-in at Belton, Missouri posted the phrase on their sign, “KC Chiefs will scalp the Redskins; feed them whiskey send to reservation.” Although I played some football in high school, sports don’t exactly garner much of my attention these days. Sports fervor in American society is akin to religious fanaticism with cults of fans worshipping athletes with pre-game rituals and superstitions. This is even more exasperated when the team has decided to make Native people their pet. Proponents...

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Posted by on Dec 6, 2014 in Featured

House Approves Bill to Give Apache Lands to Foreign Corporation

House Approves Bill to Give Apache Lands to Foreign Corporation

On December 4th, the House passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) which included a provision to transfer 2,400 acres of Apache ancestral and ceremonial lands to a foreign mining company. “Since time immemorial people have gone there. That’s part of our ancestral homeland. We’ve had dancers in that area forever – sunrise dancers – and coming-of-age ceremonies for our young girls that become women. They’ll seal that off. They’ll seal us off from the acorn grounds, and the medicinal plants in the area, and our prayer areas.” ~ Terry Rambler, chairman of the San Carlos Apache Tribe Prior to the House vote, the House and Senate Armed Services Committee attached a provision to the NDAA that would transfer Apache ancestral lands located in the Tonto National Forest to Resolution Copper, a subsidiary of Rio Tinto an Australian-English mining company. Sen. John McCain (R- AZ) was instrumental in pushing to get the provision language included. Apache leaders learned of the inclusion of the provision to the NDAA while attending,...

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Posted by on Dec 6, 2014 in Featured

Native Americans Challenge the Washington R*dskins With #ChangetheName #WinAGame #Karma Twitterstorm

Native Americans Challenge the Washington R*dskins With #ChangetheName #WinAGame #Karma Twitterstorm

For Release: Friday, December 5, 2014 For more information contact: Jacqueline Keeler Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry 503-915-5011 or jackiekeeler@mac.com Native Americans Challenge the Washington Redskins With #ChangetheName #WinAGame #Karma Twitterstorm Portland, Oregon –Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry, a group of Native parents and their allies from across the country, are launching a #ChangetheName #WinAGame #Karma Twitterstorm on Sunday, December 7, 2014 calling upon Washington Football Team fans to demand their team drop its racially inflammatory name “Redskins” ruled to be an unTrademarkable slur in April of this year by the USPTO. The team has faced protests by Native Americans at nearly every game this season. At the November 2nd game in Minneapolis 3,000 Native Americans protested and again in San Francisco on Nov. 23rd 400 Native Americans protested. After losing to the Vikings, the team came out for its meet and greet to be met only by Native protestors and no fans. Indeed, the Washington team lost every game during Native American Heritage month (November) and are facing a possible...

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