Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Request for Johnny Mathis to Cancel Performance at Pechanga

After Bill Cosby made his stand at Chukchansi last year, we are requesting that Mr. Mathis, one of America's greatest singers, support those who have had their civil rights violated by Pechanga. Fax numbers are INCLUDED in the comments. Here is that letter I received from family: Dear Mr. Mathis: Please accept this letter as a request that you decline to perform at the Pechanga Resort and Casino, which is owned by the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians, on December 13, 2008. Over the past 4 years, Pechanga Tribal Officials have denied and/or stripped tribal members of their basic human and civil rights and eventually stripped of the members of their tribal citizenship. Even though such actions violate tribal and federal laws established to protect individuals from "arbitrary and capricious" acts of government officials, Pechanga tribal officials have escaped prosecution by claiming immunity from suit. As a result, nearly 400 tribal citizens have been stripped of the rights and privileges other tribal members currently enjoy. Elders and children have been cut-off from programs, health insurance and medical care have been denied, education benefits have been cut, and per capita payments have been stopped. In addition, tribal members are no longer eligible to receive federal assistance since their status as a federally recognized Indian has been taken from them. Pechanga is not the only place where such actions are occurring. Sadly, California Indian Country has been over-run by gross human and civil rights violations and thousands of individual Indians have been victimized. Pechanga has most recently been surpassed by the Picayune Rancheria (Chukchansi) near Fresno , California. The Chukchansi Band reportedly rid itself off half its membership, 600 in all, with threats of more terminations to follow. In response to what is happening at Chukchansi, Bill Cosby cancelled his Labor Day weekend appearance at the Chukchansi Gold Casino in 2007 Please read the stories attached regarding the actions taken by Pechanga Tribal Officials to victimize their own members. These acts have been compared to cultural genocide as hundreds of Indians are being "killed-off" so that others may benefit. I hope after reading the information provided you decide to cancel your performance at the Pechanga Resort and Casino. If you need more information, would like to discuss this further, or would like to meet with those who have been stripped or denied of their basic human and civil rights, please feel free to contact me at


Anonymous said...

Maybe Johnny Mathis could play Pala or San Manuel instead of Pechanga.

Standing up for those whose civil rights were violated, PLUS, impacting those who perpetrated those violations is a perfect way to express moral outrage.

Please consider showing support Mr. Mathis, it would be Wonderful, Wonderful.

Anonymous said...

wow great letter. well written! if i was him, i would cancel my performance and tell the tribal government why -- genocide and violation of civil rights is just wrong and i don't want to associate with this!

Anonymous said...

An interesting thing about the Pala band of Mission Indians, painted as a thorn in the side of Pechanga by some of the Pechanga's leaders because Pala, in those Pechanga leader's minds anyway, was giving away too many concessions to the state.

Anyway, Pala's history is unique in the region because up until 1903 there were only Luiseno people living at Pala when some other Indians known as Cupenos were forced out of their land near what is now Warner Springs and moved to Pala.

Today the two groups live as one tribe and the Luiseno people at Pala all of a sudden over 100 years after the fact don't try to disenroll the Cupeno people just because the Luiseno were there first.

Pechanga on the other hand tried to find reasons to divide the people but in the case of Pechanga the people the tribe got rid of were there first and the people who voted them out of the tribe don't appear to have a presence before the early 1900's.

By the way, the Pechanga reservation was created in 1882 so an orgininal Pechanga person is from then, not from after 1900.

Anonymous said...

One more thing, I really don't know if Pala in their compact gave away too many concessions to the state or not but I believe that any tribe should not lobby state officials in opposition to another tribe's government to government relationship with the state.

I just know that Pechanga opposed any tribe who they believed was doing so.

Added note: if members of certain famlies of the CPP faction of the tribe hadn't filed disenrollment papers against us, we would have never challeged their membership credentials even if we had reason to believe they are not orgininal Pechanga themselves.

After all, they have had a presence on the reservation for many years even if not from the beginning, so we would have left them alone.

I think that these people know they don't have the credentials as original Pechanga people so they went after us first thinking that we would expose them.

You know, a good offense is the best defense.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Mathis was a victim of civil rights violations as a young man when he started his singing career. He would know what some tribal members are going through.

Chukchansi eliminated almost 50% of their tribe, Pechanga 25%.

When Johnny Mathis was performing at least he was still American and nobody tried to take away his citizenship, like Pechanga, Chukchansi, Redding, Enterprise among others have done. Many of us stood with Dr. King and some of our own families have African American blood. They know what loss of or lack of civil rights is about.

Mr. Mathis, PLEASE do not perform at Pechanga.

Anonymous said...

A big name like Johnny Mathis, cancelling a concert would really help the disenrolled Pechanga in making a statement.

Pechanga doesn't need MORE bad publicity.

Anonymous said...

People don't realize it, but what Pechanga did, in terminating 300 people is comparable to California removing 8,000,000 of it's citizens.

OPechanga said...

The fax numbers for William Morris Agency

NY 1-212-246-3583
LA 1-310-859-4462
Miami 1-305-938-2002

Rojon Productions 1-818-567-4433

Anonymous said...

Mr. Mathis, both as a gay man and an African American, should know more than most people about discrimination and hate....but can he legally cancel his contract without the tribe suing him??

Anonymous said...

At this early date, there is probably an out clause.

Funny, the tribe suing, and yet those on the outside of the tribe can't sue a sovereign nation?

Maybe we should just request people stay away, or stage an informational picket?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the letterr and fax numbers OP.