Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Attorney General William Barr, WHAT is your Policy on Protecting Native Americans from Civil Rights Abuses

Please, send AG Barr a letter you can copy here...I know he's busy, but maybe he will respond, where Sessions, Lynch and Holder had not.

 Image result for William Barr

US Department of Justice
    Attorney General William Barr
    950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
    Washington , D.C. 20530-0001
    Email: askdoj@usdoj.gov
    Fax Number: 202-307-6777

Re: Request for Policy Statement

Dear Attorney General Barr,

I am writing this request on behalf of thousands of American Indians who have been removed from the Membership Rolls of Federally Recognized Tribes without due process and in violation of their right to equal protection under the law.

Many of the decisions to terminate tribal membership have been imposed by Tribal Leaders without the approval of the General Membership of the Tribe, in direct contradiction of the governing documents of their respective Tribes, and motivated by racial bias. This racial bias is compounded by the fact that some of these Tribal Leaders have no Indian ancestry themselves, and would not meet the same standards as these disenrolled Indians, who have endured discrimination and bias from American society, and now face bias and discrimination from within their own tribes.

Tribal Leaders act with impunity due to the protections of sovereign immunity. Many of these leaders claim that the Santa Clara Pueblos v. Martinez Supreme Court decision gives them the right to exclude legitimate tribal members and they have done so, causing egregious harm to the Native Americans who lose their tribal citizenship. This harm extends far beyond the loss of membership in a Federally Recognized Tribe. It means denial of eligibility for federal benefits to help finance education, medical treatment, and even emergency assistance to families in need. It means the loss of land rights, burial rights, and access to benefits provided by the tribe. It means a denial of heritage, and the legacy of their ancestors, and the connection to their culture.

I want to clarify the facts regarding the disenrollments that are eerily similar in most cases. Disenrollees committed no crime, and in no way compromised their standing within the tribe. The disenrollees did not suddenly stop being American Indians or change in any way. What changed were the Tribal Leaders and their attitude toward certain citizens of their nation. The Tribal Leaders decided arbitrarily and selectively to exclude certain members and targeted them because of their race. They said these members did not belong to the community, that these members did not have the blood of the band, and that these members should never have been enrolled into the Tribe.

Disenrollees do not receive hearings in many cases. They do not have the opportunity to face their accusers, have representation of counsel, present evidence and arguments in their defense, or to be judged by their peers. Disenrollees do not receive equal protection under the law since they have been singled out and placed under a standard that is not applied equally to other tribal members. Disenrollees face ridicule and derision once their membership is terminated, and they are denied recourse because the Tribal Leaders strip them of citizenship and all their rights under tribal law.

Once disenrollees lose their standing as dual citizens, they must be recognized as U.S. Citizens with the full protections of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, yet the powers and authorities of the U.S. Government have completely abandoned them. Their rights have been abused, their identities destroyed, and their tribal citizenship has been revoked without just cause, but the BIA refuses to interfere. When they attempt to bring the Tribal Leaders to justice, the Courts claim they empathize but have no jurisdiction, and regularly dismiss complaints filed against Tribal Leaders on grounds of sovereign immunity. The Department of Justice has ignored all requests to investigate, and even refused to acknowledge that there have been civil rights abuses.

Now these U.S. Citizens formally request a Policy Statement from the Department of Justice. Does the DOJ recognize the civil rights of U.S. Citizens who are also Tribal Members, and support their quest for due process, and equal protection under the law? Does the DOJ acknowledge that they have a duty and obligation to protect these U.S. Citizens from the abuse of their civil rights, and to investigate the reported violations just as they would civil rights violations in Ferguson , Mississippi or St. Louis , Missouri ?

Please do not once again ignore the thousands of people who have suffered harm through civil rights abuses. They are U.S. Citizens and are entitled to know what policy and guidelines the Department of Justice has in place to enforce civil rights laws on behalf of Native Americans who face discrimination within their own Tribes.


Monday, December 9, 2019

ABC's STUMPTOWN Brushes with Tribal Disenrollment on Recent Episode

ABC's rookie show STUMPTOWN starring Cobie Smulders had a brief foray into the issue of disenrollment and banishment in it's episode "The Other Woman"

Needless to say, it was more a drive by in this show about a private investigators with ties to the local native american tribe.

The episode had to do with attacks on the tribal chairwoman (played by Tantoo Cardinal of Cree and Metis descent)  and the investigator Dex's ties to her son.  A young tribal member was disenrolled and banished for drug sales.  The tribal leader used sovereignty rights to protect him as he was the nephew of her right hand man.  She simply would have him re-enrolled, realizing mistakes were made.

Disenrollment has been the subject in other shows including LONGMIRE and HOUSE of CARDS   yet none seem to want to delve deeply into the issues, which includes greed, power and abuse

For more on tribal disenrollment, I have over 50 links here

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indian Disenrollments: When Hearsay Trumped Historical Evidence

The Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians in Temecula disenrolled 25% of their tribe, including my family, descended from Paulina Hunter.  Pechanga's enrollment committee commissioned noted anthropologist John R. Johnson to research her ancestry.   When he determined that she was indeed Pechanga, they simply didn't considered the report they paid for.
Paulina Hunter 

Here is what they accepted:

Despite the unequivocal proof of Paulina Hunter as an original person of Pechanga Temecula the ROD (record of decison) notes “Raymond Basquez, Sr., Gloria Wright, and Vincent Ibanez (then imprisoned for child sexual abuse) provided affidavits and statements to the Committee contending that Paulina Walla Hunter and her heirs were not historically recognized as Pechanga members.”  ROD at 25. 

The Enrollment Committee does not indicate what evidence supports the positions of Mr. Basquez, Ms. Wright, or Mr. Ibanez or provide any analysis or why their opinions are to be given greater weight than the litany of evidence supporting the membership of Paulina Hunter, or how a previous Enrollment Committee made any error in providing membership to Paulina Hunter’s descendants. 

Unlike the statements provided to support the membership of Paulina Hunter, Mr. Basquez, Ms. Wright, and Mr. Ibanez did not live during the lifetime of Paulina Hunter and have no direct knowledge of her membership in the Tribe or residence on the Reservation.  None of these people are anthropologists or experts in genealogical research.  Their testimony should not have been given greater weight than contradictory affidavits from others evidencing Paulina Hunter’s membership. 

Further, most of Mr. Basquez’s family are members of the Concerned Pechanga People (CPP) and have publicly called for the disenrollment of the Hunter family.  Mr. Basquez clearly has a conflict of interest and his testimony should have been disregarded.  Ironically, Mr. Basquez’s family traces through Maximimio Leyva, whose 1928 application also indicated San Luis Rey instead of Pechanga

Under the Enrollment Committees reasoning Mr. Basquez’s family is not Pechanga either.  Like the letter from Mr. Basquez, Gloria Wright’s letter should have been disregarded because she is a member of the CPP and has publicly stated at a Pechanga general membership meeting that “you people [including the Hunter family] are out voting us and that is why I’m in favor of

What Pechanga did stinks.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Is Pechanga Chairman Mark Macarro a Political Albatross? His Backing Produces Losers Including Hillary Clinton, Kamala Harris

It appears that the only candidate that Mark Macarro backs that can win is HIMSELF. And that after eliminating 25% of his potential opposition votes via tribal disenrollment.   The leader of the Apartheid tribal nation of Temecula can't produce a winner?

His candidates haven't done so well
Andrew Masiel , a loser who was a loser in CA-75 election to Marie Waldron
Hillary Clinton a big electoral loser to (gasp!) Donald Trump
and now his huge endorsement, broadcast to Twitter by Kamala Harris lead NOWHERE, she dropped like a stone:

BREAKING: FAILURE Kamala Harris to DROP OUT OF Presidential Race

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is dropping her bid for the presidency, she told staff in a phone call Tuesday.  She dropped below latecomer Michael Bloomberg. Even Democrats can't stand her

Harris is expected to release a video announcing her decision later on Tuesday, according to multiple reports.

GOODBYE, GOOD RIDDANCE, now only WE in CA will suffer with her as Senator....
Decade of Indifference in Indian Country

Monday, December 2, 2019

DUNCAN HUNTER, who stood by while Tribes Abused Civil Rights of Their Members, TO PLEAD GUILTY

 Embattled Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) plans to plead guilty to a charge of misusing campaign funds for personal expenses, the congressman told the TV station KUSI Monday.  SEE YA..

We told you about this in August 2018

California Republican Duncan Hunter and his wife Margaret have been indicted for allegedly using $250,000 in campaign funds for personal expenses, including dental work and trips to Italy and Hawaii.
To conceal their purchases, the Duncans misclassified purchases in their campaign finance records, labeling expenses as “campaign travel” or “dinner with volunteers” in submissions to the Federal Elections Commission.

Hunter, along with Rep. Chris Collins of New York, were the first members of Congress to endorse Donald Trump in 2016 in his run for the presidency. Both men have now been indicted.

The Justice Department alleges that instances of Duncan illegally using campaign money to pay for personal expenses date back to 2009 and the indictment chronicles them through 2016.

The criminal investigation began in June of 2016, two months after the Federal Election Commission and the San Diego Union-Tribune questioned some of Hunter’s campaign expenses as potentially personal, according to a Justice Department release.

“The indictment alleges that Congressman Hunter and his wife repeatedly dipped into campaign coffers as if they were personal bank accounts, and falsified FEC campaign finance reports to cover their tracks,” said U.S. Attorney Adam Braverman in a statement. “Elected representatives should jealously guard the public’s trust, not abuse their positions for personal gain. Today’s indictment is a reminder that no one is above the law.”
The Hunters’ arraignment is scheduled for Thursday. The charges include conspiracy to commit offenses against the United States, wire fraud, falsification of records and prohibited use of campaign contributions.
Hunter’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but it appears that his name will be on the ballot in November despite the indictment. Sam Mahood, a spokesman for California's Secretary of State, told Roll Call, “At this point there does not exist a process in elections code for him to have his name removed from the ballot.”
Hunter faces Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar in the fall.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Pechanga's ORAL HISTORY: We Pechanga Indians INCLUDED Paulina Hunter


It is very clear that Pechanga elder Dolores Tortuga included our ancestor Paulina Hunter in the inclusive "we Pechanga Indians" when she testified in the 1915 probate hearings by saying in response to the examiner's question below:

"Were you acquainted with the deceased Pechanga Indian allottee Paulina Hunter?"

Tortuga responded by saying, "yes, I knew her as a neighbor when WE PECHANGA INDIANS lived on the Pauba Ranch near Temecula, California."

Tortuga's testimony was collaborated by Pechanga elder Jose David Rodriguez who added that he knew Paulina Hunter as a neighbor on the Pechanga reservation.

There is NO DISPUTE that our family has a land patent as Temecula Indians from the U.S. government.

Paulina Hunter, who lived her whole life as a Pechanga Indian was an
official citizen of her Indian Tribe, even if she wasn't a citizen of the United States.
To retroactively take away her Pechanga citizenship leaves the Hunter Family's founding matriarch without any historical citizenship whatsoever. This is nothing less than an assault on the true heritage of the Hunter Family and an abomination of the history of the Pechanga Tribe.  (Jeffredo v Macarro)

Hunter family disenrollment is UNJUST and the sitting tribal should overturn the injustice.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving from Original Pechanga's Blog

This day is a day of thanks, no matter what happened in history, it's NOT about PILGRIMS.

A day to be thankful for your family, for those things in life that have made us better.

I'm thankful for those who continue to fight for justice for Native Americans that have been harmed by their tribes. Each one of you that remains in the fight, are helping those who have given up, or lost interest.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

BIA LOSES SKIRMISH to Media Representative EMILIO REYES on FOIA/Tribal Disenrollment

Emilio Reyes, who has been working tirelessly for years on forcing the Bureau of Indian Affairs to be transparent on their complicity in tribal disenrollment, has won his latest skirmish.   You can read about his battles here and their attempts at the okie doke here

He reports:

FOIA Settlement Conference Update:

BIA must provide me 2,100 pages related to tribal disenrollment and waive a $300 fee because CA BIA has finally acknowledged me as a Representative of the News and Media.  Cccording to other BIA Agencies I have been categorized as a Rep. of the News and Media. CA BIA was the only Dept. Of Interior Agency challenging my requester category.  

Catching them in their subterfuge leads them to try any tactic to get out of providing the truth about the THOUSANDS of Indians they helped corrupt tribal leaders like Mark Macarro remove from tribes.

WELL DONE, my friend, well done. Amy Dutschke won't be happy.  And readers, remember this:
YOU WON'T WIN A FIGHT,if you aren't in the game

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians Destroyed Their TRUE ANCESTORS

Repost from 2010, for those who don't know the story:
Hunter cousin A'amokat has put together some historical facts on the Disenrollment of Paulina Hunter to answer a frequent "drive-by" commenter that smoothly says we couldn't prove our ancestry.  Yet, we have more evidence than ANY other family currently enrolled in Pechanga.  And people want to boycott Arizona for civil rights violations?  Try Pechanga.

Paulina Hunter
Recognized as Pechanga by those living at her time
Our critic from the tribe says we never answer what he considers tough questions but we have done so many times but since he just pops in and runs, I will tackle those issues once again for all to see.

1. “Dear Reader, that the mouthpieces for the Hunter clan never address the fact that their declared ancestor, Paulina Walla Hunter, had no available birth record.”

While it is true we couldn’t find a birth record for our ancestor Paulina Hunter, she is not alone in this regard as Dr. John Johnson from the Museum of Natural History in Santa Barbara, Ca, commissioned by the enrollment committee to research the ancestry of Paulina Hunter, said in his report to the committee, “The original books of baptisms, marriages, and burials for Mission San Luis Rey have been lost for more than 150 years which hinders many Luiseno families in their search for documentary evidence pertaining to their ancestors.”

So a lot of today’s Pechanga tribal members also don‘t have birth records for their ancestors who were born during the period after the surviving San Luis Rey padrones (census records), which were recorded between 1811 to 1835. So the only thing this proves is that Paulina Hunter was in the same boat as a lot of other tribal members from the historical period.

2. “Or the fact that while the historical record lists the parents of PWH, nobody knows their ancestry.”
While Paulina Hunter’s maiden name is listed as Walla in some records Dr. Johnson in his report on her ancestry indentifies her family name as being Quasicac and that the man who was almost certainly her father, Mateo, was the only Indian listed in the pardrones as being born at the place known as Pechanga over 75 years before the Pechanga reservation was even created! Also the records indicate that her maternal grandmother, Restituta Quenix, was from the from the original Temecula Indian village.
So how can we explain the discrepancy of last names from one generation to another generation?
Again Dr. Johnson elaborates in his report to the enrollment committee on the ancestry of Paulina Hunter:
Many Indian families of this period (the 1800’s) were adopting the use of surnames, as was the Euro-American custom. The church records show that there was considerable experimentation with surname use by all former Mission Indians. A variety of surnames would be used, even within the same family, before one version was finally chosen that continued to be used as an inherited family name.”

So again the Hunters are in the same boat as a lot of other Pechanga families in proving with 100 percent certainty by today’s modern standards that their ancestors from previous generations, who often also had different last names from one generation to the next, are indeed their ancestors.

3. “Or the uncomfortable fact that the Bureau of Indian Affairs has no Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood on file for PWH, meaning the BIA never tracked PWH as an Indian.”

If the BIA never recognized Paulina Hunter as a Pechanga Indian or even an Indian at all, then why do Hunter family members have CDIB cards that say Pechanga and why didn’t the enrollment committee make it an issue during the Hunter’s disenrollments?
One would think that if, as our esteemed critic from the tribe tries to imply, that if we the Hunters weren’t even Native Americans that the committee would have stated this was the case. After all, a slim majority of the committee, as we have shown here on this blog many times, was biased against us and I am sure they would have jumped at the chance to try to even further discredit us.

In fact the enrollment committee in its Record of Decision against the Hunters of March 16, 2006 stated:
“Nothing in the Committee’s findings shall be construed or interpreted that the Committee is making a determination of the Indian or Native American status of Paulina Hunter or her descendants.”
Also, in addition to the fact that the Hunters do have CDIBs, Hunter family members who have gone through probate for their share of the Hunter family allotment have official probate documents from the United States Department of the Interior that name their loved ones as “deceased Luiseno Mission (Pechanga Band) Indians” including those who have gone through probate after the Hunter family disenrollment.
So clearly the United States government still considers us Pechanga Indians even if the tribe officially at this time does not.

4. “Hunter clan tried to bring politics to bear on the disenrollment process, to stop its proper function of removing non-members from the membership roll. This effort failed. The process went forward. Doing its duty, the enrollment committee disenrolled the Hunter clan, returning it to its true status as non-members.”

The Hunters played politics with the process? Nothing could be further from the truth as it was our opponents who played politics with the process by perverting the process by going against the wishes of the people.
Because on July 17, 2005 the general membership of the tribe, the final authority in all matters of tribal government and business of the Band under Article VIII of the Band’s constitution and bylaws, voted to outlaw disenrollment and to strike from the books the disenrollment procedures. This law stated that as of the justification date of the petition of the new law, June 19, 2005, that all tribal members in the Band would remain tribal members and could not be disenrolled. So the disenrollment of the Hunters on March 16, 2006 was clearly illegal. By the way, the Hunter family were not the ones who presented the petition to outlaw disenrollment to the people so no, we were not playing politics with the process.

And I haven’t even scratched the surface by showing here once again how the evidence was very much in our favor but instead of what our opponent would have you believe, the list goes on and on in our favor not the other way around.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation DENIED Federal Recogntition

Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation logo

The Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation has been waiting 37 years for a decision from the U.S. government about their petition for federal acknowledgment as a Native American tribe.

The California tribe with historic ties to Yosemite National Park and surrounding areas received bad news a year ago indicating a final decision denying them federal recognition could be near. A proposed finding with this recommendation was issued, looking at just one part of one of seven criteria, defining the tribe’s modern community.

It’s an unexpected finding, and an unexpectedly brief 25-page response, for the tribe which has submitted thousands of documents and endured decades of back-and-forth with the Office of Federal Acknowledgment.

A public comment period is underway. The deadline for submitting letters is
Nov. 18.

Read the full article by award winning journalist Carmen George here