Thursday, February 19, 2009

Tribal Disenrollment Protest in Sacramento: More of the story

Chloe Auletta-Young Interviewing in Sacramento.

Poor Magazine has done a story on the protest in Sacramento agains tribal disenrollment. The reality of how many have been hurt by California's tribes primarily is finally gaining its voice. Thank you Chloe, for being there to hear our tales of corruption, civil rights violations by our OWN TRIBES.

Chloe Auletta-Young/PNN
Thursday, February 19, 2009;

On February 5th, 2009, I approached the State Capital in Sacramento for the first time in my life. I find it fitting that my reason was to witness a protest at its doorstep, California Native Americans uniting to charge certain tribal leaders with corruption, and to urge congress for more oversight and regulation. As the crowd trickled onto the north-side grounds of the building, those associated with the press started to make themselves known. As this was my first time working under this designation, I momentarily stepped into voyeurism to see how the others operated. At one point, a man obviously affiliated with some variation of corporate media stepped onto the scene with his large camera equipment and loudly asserted, “I need to get a statement from someone here, I don’t really care who,” only to get his brief interview and then promptly leave without gaining perspective on any of the happenings. I decided this was not the approach I wanted to take, so I went about my own way of piecing together the context for the event.

The crime is the unjustified disenrollment of Native Americans from their traditional tribe, not only stripping them of their ancestral right to belong, but also the educational, medical, and financial support provided by their governments. The root cause is an alarmingly inequitable distribution of casino earnings, triggering immense poverty on certain reservations, while others reap the benefits of an industry with annual revenue in the billions. “Reservations are essentially third-world countries here in the US, some operating with no running water, electricity, or stable education system,” said Quanah Brightman, Vice President of United Native Americans Inc., the hosts of the protest. He asks a very fair question, “Where is all the money going?”

Click the link above for the rest of the story
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