Monday, April 24, 2017

Can Donald Trump FAIL to UPHOLD Federal Trust Responsibility To the Same Magnitude as Barack Obama?

We KNOW that former President Barack Obama's administration FAILED to protect the individual Indian from harm by their tribal leaders.  Can we expect Donald Trump to fail as miserably?  Why do our leaders IGNORE THEIR MORAL RESPONSIBILITY?

WHO can be the BIGGER FAILURE on
Trust Responsibility to Native Americans

We write about tribal disenrollment most often, but this goes deeper, including coverage of health care and all the benefits that should come to ALL Indian people.

As noted Native American attorney Gabe Galanda wrote last year:

Dating back to the Marshall Trilogy, the federal trust relationship has been deemed one of "moral responsibility."  Cherokee Nation v. Georgia, 30 U.S. (5 Pet.) 1 (1831).

The Supreme Court explained it most profoundly in Seminole Nation v. United States, 316 U.S. 286, 296-97 (1942): 

Under a humane and self imposed policy which has found expression in many acts of Congress and numerous decisions of this Court, it has charged itself with moral obligations of the highest responsibility and trust.
The High Court has even invoked America's honor in reference to the Indian trust responsibility:  “Out of its peculiar relation to these dependent peoples sprang obligations to the fulfillment of which the national honor has been committed.”  Heckman v. United States, 224 U.S. 443, 437 (1912).

And from the United States' national honor and moral trust responsibility, arises "the duty of protection," towards both tribes and tribal members.  Id.  Indeed: 

In exercising this broad authority, past Secretaries have acknowledged that the Department's relationship with Indian tribes and individual Indian beneficiaries is guided by the trust responsibility and have expressed a paramount commitment to protect their unique rights and ensure their well-being, while respecting tribal sovereignty.” 

Throughout Indian Country, Tribal officials have taken actions which have denied and/or stripped ten thousand individual Indians of their citizenship rights and privileges as Tribal members and denied them access to federal benefits and programs in the areas of housing, education, health, voting and public works assistance. In most cases, these rights have been stripped without due process.

If you recall, in President Obama’s State of The Union, he said this: “But rarely we can agree that the right to vote is sacred; that it’s being denied to many. Well it certainly is TRUE in Indian Country, where many of us, who have been disenrolled can no longer vote in tribal elections or on a matter that will affect us.

The United States has a trust responsibility to the thousands of individual Indians whose basic rights have been infringed upon. Unfortunately, the Bureau of Indian Affairs has determined that their trust responsibility extends only to the Tribal government and government officials and not to the thousands of individual Indian victims.  (h/tip Emilio Reyes )

Please,  let's not let President Trump be as horrible on Native Rights issues as former President Obama was.   Help us to turn the volume up and make the spotlight we are shining on corruption be brighter.  SHARE this and other posts on YOUR Social media.

WIKIPEDIA: Tribal Disenrollment is Worth an Entry

Tribal Disenrollment has reached WIKIPEDIA.   Yes, the process is SO EGREGIOUS, and has made the mainstream media finally take some notice, that it's got it's own entry into the popular website.


From the entry:

While tribe leaders assert disenrollments are meant to protect the integrity of the tribe, critics argue it's politically and economically motivated.

Wilton Rancheria Casino Plans for Elk Grove in HOLDING PATTERN

DICKSTEIN rears his ugly head in the Wilton Rancheria issue.  Add a dash of Dutschke, and this DD combination is not a good one.

Wilton Rancheria’s bid to build a $400 million Indian casino in Elk Grove is in a holding pattern while the Trump administration formulates Indian gaming policy and reviews Obama administration approvals that ushered the project forward, according to tribal-law attorney Howard Dickstein.

“It’s speculative as to where this will end up,” said Dickstein, a prominent tribal industry expert. “It’s going to be a significant period of time before the Department of Interior … makes a determination on the property. Until then, I think it is unlikely that this particular project can move forward.”

In February, the federal government took 36 acres the tribe purchased into trust for the gambling facility. But questions remain about whether the transfer was finalized. The federal action is intended to establish the property as sovereign tribal ground for the Wilton Rancheria and clear the way for the casino to be built along Highway 99 without the city’s approval.

And the transaction is facing new scrutiny from recently appointed leaders of the U.S. Department of Interior and the chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources.

In a Feb. 15 letter to the department, committee chairman Rob Bishop of Utah called for a reversal of the decision if it was done “without a fair consideration of the affected interests.”

BIA, Amy Dutschke.... FAIR?  I don't think so...

Read more here:

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

The MORAL STAIN of TRIBAL DISENROLLMENT: Trust Responsibility FAILURES by Senate Indian Affairs Committee

MORALITY:  a particular system of values and principles of conduct, especially one held by a specified person or society.

The Obama Administration and the George W. Bush administration that preceded him, both seemed to suffer from "SPINELESS MORALITY" Their Bureau of Indian Affairs turn a blind eye to civil rights violations by native American tribes at every opportunity.   Will the Donald Trump administration be just as guilty?

Obama was okay with tribes cutting 25% of their membership, but are going bullistic over perceived civil rights violations such as requiring ID to vote ( a 15th amendment right), while having no problems requiring ID to purchase weapons (a second amendment right).

The spineless Tribal Leaders call on "sovereignty rights" to allow tribes to violate 1st, 14th, 15th and ex post facto laws.  A law has no meaning unless it was rendered with morality, ethics, heart, and equity at its foundation. (h/t C.Sunray)

As Abraham Lincoln said:  "No one has the right to choose to do what is wrong!"    Yet our BIA, our representatives and our executive branch are allowing just that.  
Attorney  Dennis Chappabitty argued that not only does the BIA have a fiduciary duty to protect Pala disenrollees from a corrupt government. THEY HAVE THE RIGHT to do so because Pala has a federally approved constitution. Where is the Senate Committee on Indian affairs?  The last 3 committee chairs, Barrasso, Cantwell and now Hoeven haven't even held a hearing!

We wrote about Temecula excusing the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians "moral dance" here

When is it WRONG to abuse your own people and then wield sovereignty like a club to beat the weak?  How many more than the 11,000 that have been harmed so far need to be hurt?

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, What is the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division's Policy of the Abuses of Indian Civil Rights?

HERE is a letter YOU can and SHOULD send to Attorney General  JEFF SESSIONS, crafted by our friend and guest blogger Reinstatement Resolution We sent this to Obama's last Atty General Loretta Lynch with NO response.

 Maybe...this time.       Image result for jeff sessions images

It's a request for a policy statement,  which could be as simple as "we won't defend the civil and human rights of Indian people harmed by their own Tribes." And may be far too likely.

    US Department of Justice
    Attorney General Jeff Sessions
    950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
    Washington , D.C. 20530-0001
    Fax Number: 202-307-6777

Re: Request for Policy Statement

Dear Attorney General Sessions,

I am writing this request on behalf of thousands of American Indians who have been removed from the Membership Rolls of Federally Recognized Tribes without due process and in violation of their right to equal protection under the law.

Many of the decisions to terminate tribal membership have been imposed by Tribal Leaders without the approval of the General Membership of the Tribe, in direct contradiction of the governing documents of their respective Tribes, and motivated by racial bias. This racial bias is compounded by the fact that some of these Tribal Leaders have no Indian ancestry themselves, and would not meet the same standards as these disenrolled Indians, who have endured discrimination and bias from American society, and now face bias and discrimination from within their own tribes.

Tribal Leaders act with impunity due to the protections of sovereign immunity. Many of these leaders claim that the Santa Clara Pueblos v. Martinez Supreme Court decision gives them the right to exclude legitimate tribal members and they have done so, causing egregious harm to the Native Americans who lose their tribal citizenship. This harm extends far beyond the loss of membership in a Federally Recognized Tribe. It means denial of eligibility for federal benefits to help finance education, medical treatment, and even emergency assistance to families in need. It means the loss of land rights, burial rights, and access to benefits provided by the tribe. It means a denial of heritage, and the legacy of their ancestors, and the connection to their culture.

I want to clarify the facts regarding the disenrollments that are eerily similar in most cases. Disenrollees committed no crime, and in no way compromised their standing within the tribe. The disenrollees did not suddenly stop being American Indians or change in any way. What changed were the Tribal Leaders and their attitude toward certain citizens of their nation. The Tribal Leaders decided arbitrarily and selectively to exclude certain members and targeted them because of their race. They said these members did not belong to the community, that these members did not have the blood of the band, and that these members should never have been enrolled into the Tribe.

Disenrollees do not receive hearings in many cases. They do not have the opportunity to face their accusers, have representation of counsel, present evidence and arguments in their defense, or to be judged by their peers. Disenrollees do not receive equal protection under the law since they have been singled out and placed under a standard that is not applied equally to other tribal members. Disenrollees face ridicule and derision once their membership is terminated, and they are denied recourse because the Tribal Leaders strip them of citizenship and all their rights under tribal law.

Once disenrollees lose their standing as dual citizens, they must be recognized as U.S. Citizens with the full protections of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, yet the powers and authorities of the U.S. Government have completely abandoned them. Their rights have been abused, their identities destroyed, and their tribal citizenship has been revoked without just cause, but the BIA refuses to interfere. When they attempt to bring the Tribal Leaders to justice, the Courts claim they empathize but have no jurisdiction, and regularly dismiss complaints filed against Tribal Leaders on grounds of sovereign immunity. The Department of Justice has ignored all requests to investigate, and even refused to acknowledge that there have been civil rights abuses.

Now these U.S. Citizens formally request a Policy Statement from the Department of Justice. Does the DOJ recognize the civil rights of U.S. Citizens who are also Tribal Members, and support their quest for due process, and equal protection under the law? Does the DOJ acknowledge that they have a duty and obligation to protect these U.S. Citizens from the abuse of their civil rights, and to investigate the reported violations just as they would civil rights violations in Ferguson , Mississippi or St. Louis , Missouri ?

Please do not once again ignore the thousands of people who have suffered harm through civil rights abuses. They are U.S. Citizens and are entitled to know what policy and guidelines the Department of Justice has in place to enforce civil rights laws on behalf of Native Americans who face discrimination within their own Tribes.


Monday, April 17, 2017

HAIKU for the Casino Indians:

APPARENTLY, it's #nationalhaikupoetryday 

So, here's my first ever HAIKU

Casino Indians
Dishonor the Ancestors
Via Disenrollment

Here's Haiku #2 for the ELDEST descendant of Paulina Hunter

DESERVES Heritage Restored

Before She Walks ON

Haiku #3
Pala Tribe's Chief Smith
 Terminated Britten Kin

  Shameful Act Robert

Haiku #4

Pechanga's Murphy
Pechanga Blood Is Absent
Still A Councilman


This despite the fact the Bureau has known for decades, the BIA wrongfully enrolled hundreds of Non-San Pasqual Indians in the Tribe and whose families have conspired with the BIA to keep the True San Pasqual Indians from enrollment in their Tribe, and from Federal Recognition .

San Pasqual Indians
Jose Juan and Guadalup

I have the the complaint HERE (START AT PAGE 13)

How can Bureau of Indian Affairs defend their defense of non-San Pasqual Indians, versus their defense of non-San Pasqual Indians?  It makes NO sense!  
If you think the OROVILLE DAM break would be a disaster, think what is coming up for California's Bureau of Indian Affairs, headed by Amy (her again?) Dutschke. The implications of what the B.I.A.  has done at San Pasqual is STUNNING.  There is a lawsuit outstanding now for $89 million the last I heard.   Is the Sacramento Office of Bureau of Indian Affairs going to attempt to defend their fraud and conspiracy, against the enrollment of the True San Pasqual Indians?   How will Sacramento of Bureau of Indian Affairs, complicit in the corruption of THEFT of INDIAN HERITAGE of Jose Juan & Guadalupe Descendants, defend their enrollment of non-San -Pasqual Indians against the True San Pasqual Indians?

The matter of Jose Juan, wife Guadalupe and daughter Modesta Contreras, which we wrote about in April 2014 has reached the filing stage.  Our U.S. Attorneys will be defending the United States of America.  The documentary evidence we've seen is ...overwhelming.   Might they settle to save this from becoming COBELL in magnitude and costing taxpayers hundreds of millions??

Sunday, April 16, 2017

A Blessed Easter Wish for All.

On this HOLY day for Christians throughout the world, we wish you ALL a blessed Easter.

May the corrupt tribal officials find this day as the beginning of their atonement for their sins against their neighbors, their family and their tribe.

Happy Easter

On the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning, while it was still dark, and saw the stone removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them, “They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him.” So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb. 
They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter and arrived at the tomb first; he bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in. When Simon Peter arrived after him, he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there, and the cloth that had covered his head, not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate place. Then the other disciple also went in, the one who had arrived at the tomb first, and he saw and believed. For they did not yet understand the Scripture that he had to rise from the dead.
John 20:1–9

Friday, April 14, 2017

Dr. David Wilkins New Book DISMEMBERED is Available on AMAZON and GOOGLE: Disenrollment Analysis Please Buy and Read

Our friend Dr. David Wilkins has his book DISMEMBERED out for sale.

While the number of federally recognized Native nations in the United States are increasing, the population figures for existing tribal nations are declining. This depopulation is not being perpetrated by the federal government, but by Native governments that are banishing, denying, or disenrolling Native citizens at an unprecedented rate. Since the 1990s, tribal belonging has become more of a privilege than a sacred right. Political and legal dismemberment has become a national phenomenon with nearly eighty Native nations, in at least twenty states, terminating the rights of indigenous citizens.

I was THRILLED to be mentioned in the acknowledgements, along with our friends Cathy Cory of Chukchansi and Mark and Carla Maslin, who is from the Redding Rancheria.  And Gene and Alice Langton-Sloan, who are subject of a post from this morning are also included.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

KAREN TOGGERY, JAMUL Civil Rights Activist, Who Suffered the Indignity of EVICTION for a Casino, Walks ON

Sad news this week as word reaches us of the death of Karen Toggery, noted activist against the recently opened Hollywood Jamul Casino, has walked on
Karen Toggery of Jamul Indian Village

“She believed (the casino presence) would be a loss of the ‘Indian ways,’ ” Spurgeon said. “She spoke out against having any gaming at the community.”
Spurgeon said Ms.Toggery struggled after losing her home and became an urban Indian after being denied affiliation, rights and privileges by the tribe and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
“Although she was not a tribal member at Jamul, her mother, Marie Toggery, my grandmother, was a tribal member at Jamul,” said Jamul Indian Village Tribe Chairwoman Erica Pinto. “Karen was my aunt, she was just 62, she was young, full of life and outspoken.
“Regardless of our disagreements, she was our relative,” Pinto said. “We are mourning the loss of one of our family members.”
She said the family has been sharing their memories. “My mother Carlene and Karen grew up together at Jamul, and they were friends as kids and played Barbies together.”
Until she became ill last November, Ms. Toggery had been working on a dictionary to memorialize the Kumeyaay language so it would not be lost to future generations. She spoke fluently in the old dialect, Spurgeon said.
“Karen fought the good fight against cancer,” Spurgeon said. “She will be remembered for her courage by the Jamul community, her many friends and relatives.”
We wrote about her EVICTION actions here  Read more about them here

The FIRST ELEM Indian Colony Tribal Disenrollment: Delbert Thomas Sr and Family

I've recently published two articles on the most recent Elem Indian Colony Tribal Disenrollment actions, but I've been recently made aware of another one.  I want to be clear, that I want ALL disenrollment stories to be made public.  Watch the video below

On Nov 10 2007, 25 tribal members of the Elem Indian Colony were DISENROLLED without due process as required by ICRA.
25 tribal members were denied the right to enter and to vote. When an issue regarding membership disenrollment was presented,  a vote was then taken by the  remaining tribal members with the outcome of 41 for and 33 against the disenrollment.  OP:  Tribal Disenrollment to CONTROL  the VOTE.  Don't let people vote for their own survival?
Tribal Disenrollment Protest

Delbert Thomas Sr.  who was born and raised at EIC and one of the original 13 members of the Tribe was one of those stripped of citizenship and all rights afforded to tribal members.

As USUAL, the BIA could only speak ONE WORD on the issue: MARTINEZ 
when in REALITY, they FAILED in their DUTY:

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Nooksack Judge Ray Dodge Asked to RESIGN from NAICJA For Conduct Unbecoming, NON Compliance of ICRA

More embarrassment for the Nooksack Tribe and it's unelected, null and void council. The new judge, RAY DODGE, they installed to their court, after the previous judge, Susan Alexander ruled against their wished, has now been asked to RESIGN from the National American Indian Court Judges Association

MONEY QUOTE:  In sum, NAICJA does not view your Nooksack Tribal Court judicial appointment as valid. Further, while you have occupied the position of Chiefe Judge at Nooksack, proceedings do not appear to have been conducted in compliance with the federal ICRA or fundamental tenets of tribal due process at law.    
OP:  That's gonna leave a mark....and give the Department of Justice some leverage.