Original Pechanga is on vacation, here's a post from November 2008 by Carla Foreman-Maslin, AIRRO member and fighting for justice for ALL in Indian Country.
Today, guest blogger, Carla Foreman-Maslin, disenrolled member of the Redding Rancheria, and AIRRO member compares the latest news of Pechanga's abuse of power in the beating of Richard Swan that we've been discussing for days, with her tribe's casino in Redding. Thank you Carla for your contributions
This sounds a lot like Redding Rancheria. They have harassed, threatened & beat up employees, customers, their own tribal members & other Indian people who have been invited to participate in events or have come to put their money into the casino.
It is a very shameful time for tribes and their citizens who have allowed this type of behavior. The dictatorships and the bullying that is taking place is so outrageous and it really looks bad on American Indians everywhere.
I never thought I would see it all come down to this. I was always proud to be a part of what I felt was a historic time in this country when I witnessed my dad, who was our Tribal Chairman at a gathering of all Tribal Leaders at a Senate meeting in Washington, DC. I witnessed the Tribal Elders along with other Tribal Leaders who fought in the Vietnam war tell stories of their tribes and how they struggled with poverty, etc. I watched grown men cry as they testified on why Indian Gaming was going to help Tribes with economic development for their people to be able to have education, housing, health benefits through self reliance.
I believed in this vision and was proud to see it all come to life. I stood in the field with other Indian people and Mark Macarro when we filmed for Prop 5. I participated along with other California Indians in San Francisco when we all demonstrated for Indian Gaming in California. I will never forget the march to the steps of the Ninth Circuit Court with all the other Native men, women and children.
And now to see what has become a terrible disrespect to some tribes not only to their tribal citizens, but to our elders who have passed on and fought to live to see their children survive and make something of themselves through education. I was going to college when my rights and my family's rights were violated. I lost my education as the tribe was paying for it. Many other family members lost the same rights to their education.
I am appalled that those rights and other rights have been stolen by people who have no right to take the most sacred part of our being away from us. This is such a crime and the criminals have to answer for it. The fact that the loophole of "sovereignty" has allowed them to push their crime to other levels is a joke.
This is a major crime to any human being. Sovereignly is not for committing crimes against humanity, it is to be used as a protection for people. Whoever thought of using sovereignty as a way to protect their crimes has a very dark and evil mind. It is as evil as the mind of Hitler and other evil dictators throughout the world.
The victims need to stand up for their rights and continue to protect what is rightfully theirs. Teach your children to stand for their rights. There is nothing wrong when it is right. The only wrong is letting the criminals continue to commit crimes against the victims. In this case, the criminals have been given fame, when they deserve shame.
Greed, power and corruption has ultimately become a way of life for some of these tribal leaders and as long as they get away with it without justice, more tribal leaders will figure out that they can do the same to any tribal member, because they are untouchable. I never thought I would ever see such injustice in this time in our lives. Shame on those who don't stand for the innocent victims.
I would like to see a hero rise up and take a stand for our American Indians who have lost their voices and their rights.
Peace & Love