Monday, September 21, 2009

Brian Frank: California's Tribal Cleansing

Brian is working on a PBS project on Tribal Cleansing in California. Ethnic cleansing the Pechanga way in the story below and at this LINK

As California Tribes Continue To Purge Members, Dissidents Struggle To Get An Audience
by Brian Frank

TEMECULA, Calif. — John Gomez Jr. occasionally reads to his sons in Luiseño, a language native to Southern California but now virtually extinct. One of his relatives, who was a member of the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians here about 90 miles southeast of Los Angeles, helped to compile a book of stories intended to preserve the vocabulary, if not the grammar and syntax.

Gomez's sons proudly wear their long brown hair free, letting it spill over their shoulders in the manner of their ancestors. Gomez wants them to grow up hearing these creation stories, tied forever to natural landmarks around Temecula even if much of the land has been covered with strip malls and gas stations. Gomez tells them about Toad, who inadvertently brought death into the world, and about other prominent figures from the creation stories. And he tells them who they were named after: the name of one of his sons translates to King of the Coyotes.

But for all his knowledge about their cultural heritage, Gomez has difficulty explaining to his boys why they cannot attend the tribal school set up specifically to teach it to them. In 2004, the Pechanga Band kicked out Gomez and much of his extended family—some 130 adults total, along with their children—stripping them of their citizenship in the tribe.



'aamokat said...

"In 2004, the Pechanga Band kicked out Gomez and much of his extended family—some 130 adults total, along with their children—stripping them of their citizenship in the tribe."

That is the point, much of Mr. Gomez's extended family but not all of them were kicked out of the tribe in 2004 but other blood relatives with virtually the same family history are still tribal members, why is that?

So the descendants of Canderaria Nesecat Flores, the sibling of Manuela Miranda, were cleared from disenrollment and the M. Miranda descendants such as Mr. Gomez, were kicked out of the tribe.

A clear violation of Article V of the Band's constitution forbidding malice or predjudice of tribal members

creeper said...

I wonder if this James Mills, tribal consultant, would feel the same if all of a sudden he would get a letter from the White House
declaring his family as non-american since his ancestors where born on another continent.

'aamokat said...

It wouldn't surprise me that James Mills is involved with DCI America, an organization that puts on conferences about Native American affairs.

DCI America, just before we were disenrolled, had some sessions on enrollment and if I remember correctly one of the topics was how a tribal enrollment committee could get around the General Membership of a tribe to disenroll members.

Sound familar? Well it should as our tribe voted in 2005 to stop all further disenrollments but we, the Hunters, were disenrolled in 2006 anyway.

I wonder if DCI America is paid by some of the more dishonest big gaming tribes to come up with plans on how to get rid of their people?

Creeper, I agree, I am sure Mr. Mills would not be very happy if all of sudden the government came after him and his family and claimed over 100 years after the fact that his ancestors were not really American citizens even though he could prove that he really was a legitimate citizen.

Well that is exactly what is happening to thousands of Native Americans who have been or are being disenrolled from their tribes.

Anonymous said...

The fact is.... your PABLO APHISH is M E X I C A N!

not an indian leader.. that title was given to him by the California Mission CHURCH system. why you ask..

because he was a young boy who grow up in the church a was USED to communicate with the native people of the area!!!!

Pablo is a mexican name. not a traditional indian name. what a joke and another piece of time placed in history to mislead and confuse the PUBLIC!

creeper said...

The Creator of all things really had a sense of humor, when he made YOU.

t'eetilawuncha! said...

Dear readers,

as you can read,the resident critic tilts at windmills and trys to mislead you. Indians were from triblets or clans and shared last names to discribe thier clans or triblets. Apish, Guavish, Subish ect... all Luiseno in the native tongue. Many indian clans were torn apart by anglo settlers, indian women were raped, beaten and traded. Only the clans or triblets knew eachother. Pechanga accepted this custom when the reservation was established. Depositions "recorded oral tradition" were taken from tribal elders who knew tribal history for probate information with the department of interior. In the late 1700's and early 1800's surnames and first names were experimented with by the missions and early settlers to try and control the native people. Anytime this critic wants proof we are happy to support it.