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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Cedric Sunray on The Cherokee Freemen Expulsion: Worse Than Jim Crow, in an Enlightened Age

Supposedly Enlightened to predjudice, racism and marginalization.  But CNO use of the words "them people" makes them ignorant of their own history.

From Cedric's H.E.L.P Newsletter:

Well, I said I would get back with the listserve if something big occurred. It doesn't get any bigger than this. The Removal of the Cherokee Freedmen cannot be likened to Jim Crow anymore. Jim Crow was a horrific experience for many including historic South and Eastern Indian communities.

However, when we attempt to view it through a contemporary lense it is difficult due to the time at which it occurred (and in some ways is still occurring). The removal of Cherokee Freedmen in 2011 is done in a time when people are more enlightened on the issues of prejudice and marginalization and so its occurrence could be argued as even more appalling.

 Not even the United States, who tribes have argued with generationally for the countries actions against indigenous people, stooped so low as to disenfranchise citizenship from former slaves and their descendants. As someone living in Tahlequah, OK (capitol of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma), I was directly exposed to the racial hatred spewed by certain members of the CNO. John Ketcher, a former Deputy Chief and fixture in CNO politics, was caught on video saying, "Well you know how them people are." in reference to the Cherokee Freedmen.

If you are from a historic "non-federal" tribe in the South and East you know the term "them people" well. Our people have been called "them people" in various forms by racist white southerners for many, many generations. Of course we all know what "them people" in North Carolina, aka Lumbee, did to those KKK boys who liked using such terms. DISENROLLMENT is the work of immoral and unethical people and is a clear form of paper genocide. It is not "sovereignty". Sovereignty is a constantly renegotiated concept which is used by some Indian people today as a defense for negativity. Is Libya sovereign? Who controls their sovereignty? Is Haiti sovereign? Can sovereigns be completely dependent on their financial welfare from other sovereigns? These are all complex questions.

Sheryl Lightfoot does an incredible job of addressing such issues in her aricle. Going after the CNO is not an affront to sovereignty as she will explain when you read the attached article. Please see the three articles pasted below from various newspapers today. Here is a quote from Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma council member Cara Cowan-Watts from the July/August 2005 Manntaka, "I didn't hear of freedmen until this whole issue came up," she says. "I didn't hear of them or meet them." -Cara Cowan


Why would a racially white, non-traditionally raised, non-Cherokee Nation raised "council member" have heard of them.

Only actual Cherokees know Freedmen, have lived by them, intermarried with them, etc. for many generations. I have attached a copy of an email petition created and sent out by Cara Cowan in 2006, a copy of a Newsletter from the Descendants of the Freedman Association counteracting lies by the CNO, an incredible article written by Ojibwa Sheryl Lightfoot challenging the CNO's use of "sovereignty" as a cover up for immoral and unethical behavior, as well as an article showing the massive stimulus fund dollars paid out to the CNO. Funds which go into the war coffer they use against their own people and historic "non-federal" tribal communities.

Their (some CNO individuals/"leaders") hatred is not representative of all CNO citizens and that should be remembered by everyone. However, if CNO tribal members continue to not be critical of the racists in their midst, then their silence should be viewed as support.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I don't understand this. First of all, WHITES (except through fraud) cannot get to "tribal members" so they can receive free per cap checks and subsidized life styles. Why are blacks entitled -- just because they are former slaves? Blacks enslaved each other and sold their conquests to the Westerners. They were not stripped of their land.

We need to rethink why ANY class of people should live like parasites over another -- this has given brith to the greed and degeneracy that exists on reservations today.

Blacks have been playing victim for fall too long -- in ordder to elicit millions. Jesse Jackson made a racket out of blackmail -- screaming racism to get $millions.

Then blacks teamed up to get millions of dollars in free reparations for slavery.

When that didn't work, they founded their own Indian tribes (like the Mashpee and Mashantucket Pequot.)

It is a disservice of any race to continue to trade racism for parasitism.

We are all Americans and are all equal. Rather than try to become Indian to get something for nothing, the Freedman should move on with their lives. They are not Indians and do not belong on an Indian reservation if those people do not want them there.

Why do they feel they must impose themselves in a tribe that does not want them -- how absolutely disgusting.

smokeybear said...

OF COURSE THAT IS TRUE IN MANY WAYS, EXCEPT: FOR THE ONES THAT HAVE ACTUAL BLOOD TIES BY MARRYING INTO THE CLAN AND HAVING CHILDREN....BLOOD TIES FROM THE 1800'S. THAT SHOULD BE THE ONES THAT SHOULD BE COUNTED AS LEGITIMATE. BUT THE COURT OPINION SAYS...NO ONE...THAT IS WRONG ON MANY LEVELS. THEY ARE "FREEDMEN," AND THAT SHOULD COUNT FOR SOMETHING WHEN "ACTUAL BLOOD TIES" ARE IN EFFECT: LEGITIMATE!" THIS MEANS THEIR CIVIL AND HUMAN RIGHTS ARE BEING DENIED FOR NOTHING MORE THEN "GREED,"...."AGAIN!".. IT SEEMS TO ME THAT IF THEY (FREEDMEN) CAN PROVE THEIR LINEAGE, THEN WHAT IS THE PROBLEM? RACISM AND GREED AT THE FOREFRONT, AND...AGAIN... BECAUSE THEY "CAN." COMMON STORY WITH REGARDS TO TRIBAL LEADERS AND THE COURTS SIDING WITH EACH OTHER AGAINST THE TRUE NATIVE AMERICAN, THIS TIME BECAUSE THEY HAPPEN TO BE PARTIALLY "BLACK," AND PARTIALLY "NATIVE AMERICAN. THAT IS TRUE FOR ALL TRIBES. THEY MARRY AND HAVE CHILDREN AND THEY HAVE CHILDREN, AND THEN THEY HAVE CHILDREN. THIS DOES NOT DIMINISH THE FACT THEY ARE ALL RELATED BY "BLOOD TIES," AND THAT THEY ARE STILL TRUE "NATIVE AMERICANS" "THEY MAKE THIS UP AS THEY GO!" FOR WHAT...."GREED!"

White Buffalo said...

I smell a hint of Racism. It appears that some would use the same argument against us. Who is to say the Freedman decedents are not Indian if they were born into the tribe. If Indian slave owners had children by having sex with their property means that they are indeed one-half Indian regardless of the color of their skin. With all that our ancestors have gone through I am surprised and disappointed with some of the posts that are so insensitive to the real people who are face the same mistreatment that our families have endured. Shame on you. If you don’t like what I have to say keep in mind that I post under my name and I can easily be reached.

Anonymous said...

has any one done an D.N.A. test.

Anonymous said...

I had a DNA test and I say it's worth the time, effort, and $.

Expected result was 1/4 American Indian and 3/4 European; however, the result was 25% Indian, 4% Sub-saharan African, and balance European.

While my sibling and I share the same biological parents,and the same genetics, our phenotypes are very different physical appearances.

My sibling is 'fair' which was treasured by our European parent and I, on the other hand, was 'dark' and treated quit the opposite.

Had my true identity not been hidden, I would not have felt so 'inferior' to my light sibling.

My European mother hid our identities by using aliases to identify us. It was shocking to learn I was not who my alias pretended me to be!

Had I known my true identity and parent, I would have understood the differences in the phenotypes expressed in my sibling and me.

Shocking as it may seem; biological parents of lighter European extraction are not exempt from displaying racism when their own mixed ethnicity children 'show' the less desirable appearance of their
'darker' genes.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Cedric, for your insight.