Monday, August 17, 2009

Pechanga's Culture of Corruption VII: Pechanga Expert Contradicts Pechanga DISenrollment UPDATED!

What better way to control the voting in the tribe than to eliminate a large voting bloc? Compare it to say, the Republicans eliminating a voting area, like the Northeast, so that many liberal votes would no longer count. Sound fair?

Here's a story from 2006 that shows that the TRIBE hired the foremost expert to prove that Paulina Hunter was NOT Pechanga. Except, the preponderance of the evidence showed she was. How to get around those FACTS? Don't use the report, make believe they didn't even pay for it.

TEMECULA ---- A renowned anthropologist hired by the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians to study their lineage and ancestry has called the tribe's recent disenrollment of a large family from its rolls "unfortunate and not based on solid evidence."

"They ignored whatever I did in their decision-making," said John Johnson, who was hired by Pechanga to determine whether Paulina Hunter was one of the tribe's ancestors. "It's too bad economics and politics have been injected into (tribal lineage rulings)."

Johnson has worked as curator of anthropology at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History since 1986. He earned his doctorate in anthropology at UC Santa Barbara and teaches a course called "California Indians" at the campus. For more than three decades, he has worked on detailed studies and recordings of California Indians' archaeology, archival records, cultures and history. OP: Dr. Johnson works with Las Padrones, the HISTORICAL records of the Spanish missionaries begun before Abraham Lincoln was BORN.

He researched the Hunter lineage as a paid independent consultant.

Last month, Pechanga's enrollment committee handed down a ruling that rejected an appeal by Hunter's descendants, a family of about 100 adults, to reverse the tribe's decision to disenroll them. OP: And our children too, about 100 and our spouses, another 70.

When Pechanga disenrolls a family, it not only strips the extended family of their membership in the tribe, but also health insurance, college scholarships and other benefits provided by the tribe, including thousands of dollars in casino profits tribe members get each month.

The Hunters are the second large family in two years to be booted from the tribe's rolls, in addition to the large Apis clan. There is talk that another family is set to be disenrolled from Pechanga soon.

Hired by Pechanga two years ago, Johnson researched whether Hunter was of Temecula descent. He made his comments on the tribe's ruling earlier this month, after it rejected the Hunter appeal. He said he is "90 percent" sure Hunter was an original Pechanga Indian, based on all the available documentation.

The reason he said he cannot be 100 percent sure is because when studying the lineage of Luiseno Indians ---- who include the Pala, Pauma, Rincon, La Jolla, Soboba and Pechanga bands ---- there are three "primary" mission record books missing that detail births, marriages and deaths from 1835-1852. These books were established when the mission was founded.

The name "Luiseno" derives from their having lived at or near the Spanish mission San Luis Rey, established in 1798 and located in northern San Diego County near Oceanside.

Hunter was born sometime during the 1830s or 1840s, and lived on the reservation in Temecula, Johnson's research shows. That is the tie her descendants point to to show they are Pechanga descendants.

Determining exactly who Paulina Hunter's parents are is not cut and dried without those primary record books, Johnson said. With that, he made his determinations using other various baptismal and marriage records, California census books, Pechanga Indian census records, genealogical evidence and other sources, he said.

He determined that Paulina Hunter was an original Pechanga Indian based in part on the fact that the man most likely to be her father, Mateo Quasicac, was the only person listed from "Pechanga" in census books from that time.

Moreover, he said, Hunter was listed on tribal rolls in the late 19th century and was the recipient of Pechanga Reservation allotment No. 62.

"Paulina Hunter would not have been given an allotment if she was not of the Temecula Indians," Johnson said. "So, why was she given an allotment?"

What's more, anyone currently enrolled in the Pechanga band whose ancestors were born between 1835 and 1852 would have the same trouble proving their heritage using primary resource books, he said.

"They are all in the same boat as Paulina Hunter," Johnson said. "She is not unique."

Johnson said he wrote a lengthy report to the tribe detailing his results in 2004, and sent a letter to them reiterating his findings a few months before the enrollment committee's August ruling.

Pechanga Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro would not comment on Johnson's remarks. He did not respond to requests for an interview. OP: In Macarro's hometown of Colton, that would be enough to be labeled "pussy".

In an August statement, Macarro said the decision to deny the Hunter appeal was reached after months of investigation and hearings.

"This is a very complex intertribal matter involving Pechanga history and genealogy," he wrote. "Questions about citizenship, therefore, are resolved by the Pechanga enrollment committee, the government body with the proper authority and ability to determine if a person meets criteria for Pechanga citizenship.

OP: See A'amokat's comment in the comment section below, but let's take Macarro's statement on ABILITY. Who you you choose?

The FOREMOST authority on California Indians genealogy or:

Ruth Masiel - uneducated homemaker, slept through one Hunter hearing, puppet of daughter Jennie Miranda
Bobbie LaMere - Casino employee, who got family members enrolled while a moratorium is in effect.
Ihrene Scearce - BIA clerk reprimanded for changing records, stole from tribe (as per Ed Burbee)
Frances Miranda - barely educated homemaker

"The insinuation that these actions are motivated by politics or profits is reprehensible. The fact is that disenrollments occurred long before Pechanga ever opened its gaming facility." OP: But never entire families of members, and their VOTES

One Hunter family member who asked not to be named because she said she would face retaliation as she lives on the reservation, said Pechanga enrollment committee members are taking the word of former Tribal Chairman Vincent Belasco Ibanez, who is finishing up an eight-year prison term for child molestation, over Johnson's findings.

Ibanez was known as a local expert on the preservation of American Indian artifacts and for conducting nature walks and seminars on native plant species for the Dorland Mountain Arts Colony east of Temecula. OP: Yet, Ibanez (related to Ed Burbee,see previous posts) was NOT alive when Paulina Hunter ws, and Pechanga has SWORN depositions from tribal members taken in the LUISENO language that Paulina Hunter was a tribal members. Let's see, tribal members, alive, giving SWORN testimony, or a child molester? WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

The Hunter family member also said that because records show Paulina Hunter's mother was baptized at the San Luis Rey Mission, enrollment committee members are taking it to mean she was from there. But everyone traveled to that mission to be baptized during that century, she said.

"These people are targeting certain families," said the Hunter family member. "They are just throwing out all the facts. It's all about financial gain. It's all about more money."

The ousted members of the Apis family turned to the courts to plead their case, but have not won a verdict. Indian sovereignty and disenrollment have taken on a new significance around the nation, with the rise of Indian casinos and the money and political clout that accompany them. Pechanga is not the only tribe to disenroll some of its members.

"I don't agree that it was an unfortunate mistake. In my opinion it was a premeditated decision to disenroll the Paulina Hunter descendants," said John Gomez Jr., a spokesman for the 130 disenrolled adult Apis family members.

"We've been proud of (our heritage) and participated in the different aspects of being a tribal member, an Indian person ---- and one decision has all that taken away. We can't participate in tribal affairs, we lose our health benefits, the children lose their culture. That's the most devastating because that is your identity." OP: Similarly, Hunters have been on the tribal council, water committees and worked to build the health clinic.


OPechanga said...

Thank you to Dr. Johnson for all his work and for standing behind that work on television

'aamokat said...

Mark Macarro said, "This is a very complex intertribal matter involving Pechanga history and genealogy," he wrote. "Questions about citizenship, therefore, are resolved by the Pechanga enrollment committee, the government body with the proper authority and ability to determine if a person meets criteria for Pechanga citizenship."

Mr. Macarro, what history and geneaology are you talking about regarding my family, the Hunters?

Because the only geneaology and historic research on my family line was done by Dr. Johnson who concluded that we are Pechanga Temecula Indians.

Also, if the enrollment committee is the only body with the authority and ability to determine tribal membership, then why in 1986did the General Membership vote to take in the Murphys as tribal members, overruling the enrollment committee's decision to not enroll them?

So current sitting Pechanga councilman Russell "Butch" Murphy is living breathing proof that the General Membership trumps the enrollment committee on membership issues.

Conversely though, if as the Macarro led tribal council asserted in its March 2006 letter informing the tribe ( just two days before we got our walking papers) that the Hunters were not included in the July 2005 General Membership decision outlawing disenrollments, that the General Membership could not interrupt or question the decisions of the enrollment committee because it is a violation of established tribal legal precedent, then why are the Murphys tribal members if that is the case?

Anwser, because there is no tribal legal precedant that the General Membership is not the final authority on membership issues.

So Mr. Macarro and the tribal council are either ignorant of tribal law or they are liars.

What, gentle readers, do think, are they ignorant or are they liars?

'aamokat said...

I know our critics will say that just because we have an allotment on the Pechanga reservation, doesn't mean we are Pechanga, that Indians from other local tribes who were living at Pechanga also got allotments.

But in going through the allotment
records any exceptions to being a Pechanga Indian were noted in the margin of the official allotment records.

And Dr. Johnson would not have concluded we are Pechanga if my ancestor was such an exception.

For example, Jose Antonio Sal, who received allotment #68, is listed in the allotment records as being a Pala Indian.

By contrast, my ancestor Paulina Hunter, recipient of alottment #62, is listed as Head of Family which is the same designation as a lot of other Pechanga tribal members who got allotments.

But if there are still doubts in some people's minds, then consider, as we have posted many times before, that vaunted (much praised) Pechanga elder Antonio Ashman said in a notarized statement when asked if he knew Paulina Hunter as a member of the Band, "yes, I knew her as such."

By the way, Mr. Ashman is called a vaunted tribal elder on the official Pechanga tribal Web Site and his recounting of the people's eviction from the old Temecula Indian village is on the tribe's site on the history link.

So the tribe believes Mr. Ashman about what happened during the 1875eviction but doesn't believe his testimony about my ancestor being Pechanga?

OPechanga said...

So, it is as A'amokat says. But readers, they say it's to correct the membership, there was a mistake. There was a Paulina Hunter from Ohio. Put your OWN name into Facebook and see how many come up.

The facts are the facts. Hunters are Pechanga according to Pechanga's expert.

Therefore, WHAT DO YOU believe is the reason? Correction of tribal rolls after 110 years, or the type of people we have described in the last 7 blogs?

t'eetilawuncha! said...

Good job cousins, and thank you Dr. Johnson for your unbiased fact based study of my family.

Anonymous said...

I have a question to all that have posted information regarding the masiel/basquez not being from pechanga, have any of you thought of providing this information & documentation to all the other families still in the tribe? On this site there have been posts of which family could be next. If you hunters/mirandas provided information that resulted in the masiel/basquez family being disenrolled rather then one of the other families that family might be do the right thing and help you get back in. It seems like it would be worth a shot.

Luiseno said...

I wanted to bring this question up because I am sort of at a loss to answer it myself. I thought I knew the answer, but it seems I am in error in my judgment. Let me start by first stating a few facts that both the enrollment committee and myself agree upon.

1). Both the enrollment committee and myself agree Paulina Hunter and all her decedents were/are of Indian blood (Paulnia being 100%).

2). It is not disputed that she was a Luiseno/Temecula Indian (they have pretty much gone so far as to agree this also).

3). She moved with her fellow Indians when they were kicked out of the Temecula village to the place known as Pechanga to live there with them (this they also acknowledge).

4). She was given a land grant on that reservation as a Luiseno/Temecula Indian (also a undisputed fact).

5). She is listed on every census record from the creation of the reservation until her death, sometimes as a Luiseno Indian, sometimes as a Temecula Indian, and even some list her as a Pechanga Indian.

Ok, now the enrollment committee says that being a Luiseno Indian is not enough, nor is being a Temecula Indian enough, also living on the reservation and receiving a land grant as a Temecula/Luiseno Indian is not enough to make her a Pechanga Indian (or so the enrollment committee has told us).

Please note that at the time of the creation of the reservation, that Pechanga was a place, not the name of an Indian group. Also according to Dr Johnson's report (who was hired by the enrollment commettee to research Paulina Hunter) , Mateo Quasicac Paulina Hunter's father was born in Pechanga (this was before there was a reservation there). In fact he is the only indian listed in the mission records as being born at Pechanga. Lets also not forget the fact that other Pechanga Indians who were alive at the creation of the reservation gave written statements that they knew her as a Pechanga member (they say that the reference to living with them is not enough proof, disregarding the inclusive references in there statements.). Also lets not forget that Ashman also stated in a wittiness and signed statement that he knew her as a Pechanga member.

So PLEASE tell me....... WHAT does make a Pechanga Indian a Pechanga Indian (I really would like an answer to this one please, because I seem to be at a loss for an answer myself). Apparently my family has been mistaken for several hundred years, and we need to set the record straight.

'aamokat said...

After new enrollment committee members in 2003, including members of the now disenrolled families, found evidence while on the enrollment committee that the committee, including people from the Masiel/Basquez family, had enrolled adults during the moratorium before the 2000 elections and that the committee had not enrolled people who had beaten the deadline for the moratorium, they went to the tribal council with this information.

Well the CPP members on the committee then filed disenrollment challenges to the whistle blowers and their families even before any evidence had even been presented against the now disenrolled families.

Well the tribal council did not allow the disenrollments to go forward, at least at that time, because no procedures were even attempted to be followed by the CPP commttee members as the CPP members just served their fellow committee members with disenrollment papers with no evidence to back of their claims.

After this the CPP regrouped and had their family members and their allies present letters and statements to the committee against the now disenrolled families.

That is when the now disenrolled members who were on the committee counter-filed disenrollment challenges to the CPP members on the committee.

But the tribal council allowed the committee to take the disenrollment cases out of order and the CPP committee members, including the Masiel/Basquez, were cleared by only three members of the enrollment committee, which is less than the legal quorum, and they were reinstated to the committee to vote the now disenrolled families out of the tribe.

So yes our family members did present the evidence we quote showing the Masiel/Basquez family have questionable ties to the tribe.

But the problem with doing so now is that it is now illegal to disenroll families so how can we show that we were illegally disenrolled if we don't follow the tribe's laws by trying to now get people disenrolled?


I still don't know how we can do so but we can't go after the criminals by acting like criminals ourselves.

I know this sounds weak to some people but to me it is twisted logic that they think that in the tribe that the biggest criminals win.

Anonymous said...

why is it that all i ever here is about paulina hunter shes not only real indian in the tribe ive been in this lousey moratorium for twelve years i just hope that if the hunters are let back in the tribe they dont turn theirs backs on the rest of us in the moratorium remember shes not the only true indian youve known what its like to be in the tribe alot of us havent

'aamokat said...

Of course we will not forget the moratorium people in fact, when I was still in the tribe, I went to a well known tribal elder with the idea of presenting a petition to end the moratorium.

I had never put together a petition so I needed help on how to present it as I didn't want the council throwing it out by me not following the proper procedure.

But this elder said we needed to stop the disenrollments before we tackled the moratorium issue but we were disenrolled before I had a chance to present my petition.

Realize that members of the Hunters were also stuck in the moratorium for years and they too never were able to be tribal members and they, at least at this time, may never have that chance unless all of the wrongs are made right.

At least you have a chance technically to be a tribal member if that God forsaken moratorium is ever lifted so I hope if you get in, you will help us as well.

I know in my heart that I never supported the moratorium and I voted against it when it was presented to the General Membership.

And mark my words, if I do get back in the tribe I will do all that I can to end this shameful bogus law!


Luiseno said...

The reason I write about Paulina Hunter is because its the history I know about, the history I have researched. I repeat myself so that the new visitors to this site can have a chance to read the truth. I could write about other familys history, but I really haven't researched any others very deep, so it would be mostly from memory and word of mouth.

I would love to have other family histories put up by there members, maybe you could place a post yourself as I am sure new readers of this site would love to get more info.

There were hundreds of Temecula Indians living at the time of there exile, I myself would love to hear from more decedents of them.

OPechanga said...

The anonymous from yesterday asks:

why is it that all i ever here is about paulina hunter shes not only real indian in the tribe ive been in this lousey moratorium for twelve years

Excuse ME? I've done stories on Redding, San Pascual, Picayune, Snoqualmie and our own moratorium people including the Tosobal Family, to which I provide a link on the sidebar and stories on Joe Liska.

Are you from ANOTHER FAMILY that's if the moratorium? IF so, WHICH one?

Please, tell me your story, send it to:
Be specific and detailed.

IF you are from the Rios family, I'll turn the question around back at you: WHY don't we hear from the Rios/Tosabal family? WHY aren't our family here or at the site regularly? WHY don't you use THIS SITE to become more vocal, and add your family's weight by building this blog up?


Luiseno said...

This was not meant as an attack on you, we really need your help. And I am sure your family could use your help by everyone becoming more involved. The moratorium is WRONG, and yes the Hunters when enrolled were trying to put a stop to it. It was one of the reasons for our family being targeted. My own elderly mother was thrown out of the enrollment office (well yelled at and told to leave) when she confronted them on this matter.

OPechanga said...

Yes, not an attack, simply a question, What are you doing?

Why aren't you speaking up here. And that goes for ALL our familiesy, Tosabal, Manuela and Hunter, along with any other that feel they belong.

Why should politicians care, if YOU DON'T care enough to do a little legwork by simply visiting the sites?