Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Is VIOLENCE the ONLY Way to Get the BIA involved in Tribal Disputes?


It’s disconcerting to look to the Bureau of Indian Affairs for help in tribal disputes, including disenrollments..  Many times, we hear them say “we can’t help” or “it’s an internal matter”.   We saw this to be the case in the recent upheaval that the Chukchansi Resort and Casino.

Take a look at the progression of quotes from Troy Burdick, the BIA’s Central California Superintendant:

2/26/21012

The Chukchansi tribal government was formed under rules that, Burdick says, keep federal authorities from stepping in -- even though the BIA has intervened twice in Chukchansi election issues since 1992.

OP:  Mr. Burdick blames ‘the rules’.   
2/27/2012

Reached Monday evening, Troy Burdick, the BIA's Central California Agency superintendent in Sacramento, said, "I'm sure there is something we can do to resolve this. We are going to try to do what we can. I don't want to say anything to make it any worse."

OP:  Apparently the rules had changed in ONE day from not being able to step in to.. “I’m sure there’s something we can do.
So the question is WHAT changed?   Was it the violence?   Is the BIA saying that they will step in when there is violence involved?    Is that NOW a course of action at San Pascual and Pala?

RELATED STORIES

Read this editorial in the Fresno Bee
More on San Pascual
Read this NCTIMES story on Pala


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