There is a gathering storm, of oppressed Native Americans, who have been harmed by their own tribes, sometimes by those who were fraudulently enrolled, or adopted with NO blood of the band.
In 2004 and 2006, as part of the Concerned Pechanga People’s Indian Removal Policy, members of the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians were forced to give up their membership in the tribe whose reservation is in Temecula, CA. Life-long members, who have had land on the reservation for centuries were forcibly expelled from the tribe. This act of paper genocide has had devastating effects on 25% of the Pechanga people.
Elders no longer qualify for the health care that they lobbied the tribe to provide for all its members. The young are not allowed to attend the reservation’s school, being forcibly blocked and told to leave, much in the manner of the white racists who blocked black children from integrating schools in Little Rock in the 1950’s.
Those who were removed, face an unsecured financial future. Many worked for the tribe, were part of all events, meetings, have their dead buried in the Pechanga Cemetery. Now, that has ended. In order to increase the per capita ($15,000 per month at the time of the first removal) some of the descendents of Pablo Apis, the family of Manuela Miranda were terminated from the tribe. Per capita grew to $20,000 per month (plus bonuses) for those remaining, members of the Concerned Pechanga People initiated a misinformation campaign, one that has successfully terminated over 300 Native Americans of Pechanga descent at the time of the second removal (the descendents of Paulina Hunter.) The per capita is now reportedly $40,000 per month.
Blood relatives are banished from the reservations, families who are no longer in the tribe, but live on the reservation property that they’ve owned since the late 1800’s live in fear that the tribe will take away their water, which has been threatened by some of the remaining tribal members. Will Pechanga really turn off their lifeblood, as easily as they took away their civil rights? It’s not difficult to think so, after the atrocities that the CPP have already committed.