Tuesday, May 29, 2007

From Paulina Hunter's Blog: Pechanga Helping to Destroy Sovereignty

Paulina Hunter's blog

PECHANGA & CA Tribes on Path to Destroy Sovereignty?

I have been saying for years that the violations of civil rights by Pechanga and the skirting of laws by Pechanga and other California Tribes will be responsible for the erosion of Tribal Sovereignty in the United States.

The author below apparently believes as I do. CONGRATULATIONS PECHANGA, you are hurting Indian Country. I'm guessing your WHITE MAN, MURPHY, that you put on your Tribal Council doesn't care.

Pechanga, it's NOT TOO LATE! Simply reverse your decision to disenroll "upon further review" and bring your families back into the tribe where they belong. Admit you were in ERROR when you failed to follow Tribal law. SWALLOW your pride and DO THE RIGHT THING.

The Never-Ending Fight to Defend Sovereignty

Indian law, sovereignty and jurisdiction are not "one size fits all" issues in Indian country. There are too many variances in how different states view the Indian nations within their borders and even in how the federal government reacts to issues of sovereignty.

With the surge in Indian gaming in states like California, a state where Public Law 280 gives the state government jurisdiction over law enforcement and the courts, the issues are far different than say in South Dakota, where the state government has no jurisdiction.

When Public Law 280 was first pushed upon the different states by the federal government it was intended to open the doors for state jurisdiction on Indian reservations. The tribes of South Dakota, the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota, have always been strong advocates of their own sovereign status. They had been at war with the state government for too many years to not understand that state jurisdiction in their courts and in law enforcement would automatically bring about severe inequity.

The former president of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, Robert Burnette (now deceased), fought the idea of Public Law 280 tooth and nail. He pushed the reality that if the state assumed jurisdiction over the tribal courts, jails and law enforcement, the costs to the state would be prohibitive. With nine Indian reservations in the state and upwards of 70,000 Indians, the transition alone would have cost the state millions and

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