19 year old Raffi Roberts, a youth from the Nooksack 306 has written a piece on tribal disenrollment and how it affects many people, by finishing the work of colonialists. The stripping of heritage from the young, via lies and innuendo, and falsified records, is NOT the Native Way. But will it become so? Please, read and share.
Tribal Disenrollment seems, to me, to be the most un-Tribal action to do.
As one of the most neglected and underrepresented minorities in the world, we should be trying our best to preserve our culture, not try to eradicate it for money and power.
In fact, by treating a Tribe like a business is an infuriating insult and goes against everything our culture has taught us. By kicking out members out over nothing substantial but out of material motives is exactly what the Europeans did to the tribes of North America centuries ago.
The dark part of Tribal history should be a lesson of what NOT to do to a culture of proud people rather than a positive model. So it is baffling as to why some Tribal people want to do that to their own Tribe when they chastise early Europeans for doing the same thing they are doing now.
Along with the very small repercussions of being disenrolled like losing a house, losing a job and not be hired because of biased on tribal land, or financial support for ambitious students, the rich culture of Native Americans, that all those Tribal members grew up on, will be considered invalid. Also, it teaches our children to respect everyone - except for CERTAIN families; that is true for both the disenrollers and disenrollees.
Think about this: If the eye-for-an-eye mentality keeps chugging along then more and more tribes will be influenced to kick people out of their own tribes until there's only a scarce amount of "official Natives." It is a dangerous precedent that will lead to the elimination of Native Americans and their history. They would be finishing the Imperialist genocide the early Europeans set out to do. And classrooms in the future will be occupied by some Native American blood but the lecture will be about how politics chose who and who isn't Native American, not actual blood lineage.
And the federal government is fine with this. When there are biased Tribal members breaking laws within sovereign land, the US government will turn a blind eye and say "well, that's their problem." They try to overstep into our jurisdiction so many times, but when it is something like this, all of a sudden, it's not their job.
But to the Tribal people, in any Tribe, trying to kick real Native blood out of a Tribe, when your kids ask why some Tribal people and their kids are being kicked to the curb, don't make childish excuses like "they're not really Native", just have the most minute shred of respect and say "I just don't like that family" or cut off any sort of personal or ethical attachment to the issue and simply and smugly state "It's just business."
I don’t know if I may have mentioned this, but I WILL NOT ACCEPT my disenrollment, I don’t care what letter I received that stated I had been disenrolled, they could have sent me a letter saying I am no longer a Human Being, it doesn’t make it true. Disenrollment had been Removed from Tribal Law by having the General Council vote to have it removed and to STOP ALL DISENROLLMENT’s almost a year before disenrolling us.
As far as I am concerned I am still a member of my Tribe, I still have a membership card (although when I first received it, I thought it was a bit silly to have a “card”), and there is NO EXPIRATION DATE on it. They just have to return my rights as a member, and allow me to attend meetings again and to vote again like I used to. I don’t feel like I should have to be re-enrolled
Well done Raffi.... Thank you
I realize that lack of education has played a significant roll in Tribal prosperity. I also realize that everything that the Tribes own is based on English Land Law, therefore the government owns Tribal lands. If the government owns Tribal lands they will do whatever they please. The uneducated Indian needs advancement in this area of expertise. If not, natives will soon be out of existence. If you're worried about one family being excommunicated, nonetheless by their own tribe, shouldn't you worry about the total existence of the Native race? Probably to big of a subject to even think about.
OP Thanks for bringing disenrollment to light, but the stories are the same from everyone. No one likes to be disenrolled, we get it. Lets get creative and do something about it. Also stop saying your the only one. You are not the only one. You are one of many.
Disenrollment is the most cowardice act of all-time. Leadership is given the power to do good for the masses and the betterment of the Tribe, not to destroy and divide. It is such abuse of power, there’s nothing that could justify such actions or mask the lies and greed, which is driving this process. There’s no difference if a person is to rob their neighbor of their first born and all their possessions. Wrong is wrong, so there’s no sugar coating it. It doesn’t take education to know right from wrong, only a conscious and a soul. You have to question whether the Leadership behind disenrollment has one or are they simply in denial. They will have to one day answer to their Creator.
@ November 4, 2015 at 9:30 PM
If OP writes about all tribes who disenroll, and the other family's from Pechanga who were either disenrolled or in the moratorium, how can Anonymous 11:30 say that he acts like he's the only one?
Sounds confusing to me....
What I believe is OP has shared his feelings out load and believes more people could share their feelings also by sharing their feelings here in the blog. I believe everyone everywhere can do anything and it is making a difference. Several bands are broadcasting their feelings out load and protecting ALL band members rights and broadcasting it to ALL natives everywhere. Indian Law is also sharing it's important for bands to protect ALL members rights and Indian health is following the broadcasting. OP and several other news broadcasters are sharing the TRUTH! Hope we ALL can help share it also, our Ancestors and heirs deserve it! We are ALL here for a reason.
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