Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Gaming Revenue Blamed For Tribe's Disenrolling Members: Indian Country Today

Indian Country Today has caught the fact that the NYTIMES has discovered tribal disenrollments at Chukchansi after a decade of abuse.

From the article:

Tribal governments universally defend their reasons for disenrolling members, claiming they are removing people with little tribal association, who likely joined to exploit the services, scholarships and monthly checks from casino profits. “You have people who want to be tribal members, where no one knows who they are or where they came from,” said Reggie Lewis, chairman of the Chukchansi Tribal Council, to The New York Times. “We are sworn to uphold the Constitution. And basically that’s what we try to do.”

But for people like Ruby Cordero, 87, an ousted Chukchansi, expert basket weaver and one of the few last native speakers of the Chukchansi language, disenrollment is the equivalent of robbery of her identity and culture. “She was born and raised on that property,” Nancy Dondero, Ruby’s great-niece, told the Times.

In October, Indian Country Today Media Network reported in “Bitter Fight to Determine Who Is an Indian Turns to DNA Testing” how many tribes have adopted a DNA-testing ordinance to determine tribal membership.

Indian Country Today is owned by the Oneida Nation which has had some disenrollment issues themselves. That could be why they don't print my comments...
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