Indian Country

In Memory of Elouise Cobell

October 18, 2011

. This blog began in late 2008 to recount my yearlong nationwide travels through Indian Country with documentary photographer Julia Dean. Those travels themselves were inspired by my publication earlier that year of “Aboriginal Sin,” in Tikkun. The article (scroll down for an image link on the right) presented an overview of the historic assault […]

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“Special” Rights and the Accomplices to Discrimination That Are Those Who Call Them So

September 2, 2011

In a recent Indian Country Today essay, Peter d’Errico, the eminent Native American rights advocate, argued that “we need to be careful with the phrase ‘special rights.’ Perhaps we shouldn’t even use it.” In this instance, I think d’Errico is too moderate in his judgment. d’Errico was writing about the term specifically in its application […]

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Time to Renounce the Doctrine of Discovery

July 25, 2011

Not much reason amid all the attention on reaching a debt deal that most people, including in the media, would have paid any attention to a meeting of the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. Not much reason ever, by normal lights. Still, the happy advent of Gay marriage in New York managed to catch […]

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From the Annals of Indigenous Resistance: “Terrorism”

July 13, 2011

How, you were wondering, is the field of power like a four-walled racquetball court? Sometimes the strikes are straight on, at the front wall or (oops, sorry) at your opponent’s back. Sometimes – often, in fact – there is the ricochet, off the side wall, angled then low on the back, then low to the […]

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The Navajo Concentration Camp at Bosque Redondo

February 4, 2011

The premise from which I write about American Indian issues is that while some Americans are ignorant, callous, and self-justifying about the nation’s history with Native America – and sometimes, still, clearly racist – most people are ignorant in the innocent sense of simply lacking knowledge. Most Americans, one can learn merely from raising the […]

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Native America in the Courts of the Conqueror

January 28, 2011

Image via Wikipedia A common sense of the matter among those little knowledgeable or arrogantly unreflective about the Native conquest in what became the United States is that it took the form, simply, of ages old civilizational conflicts, in which one expanding and militarily superior culture historically and amorally superseded another. Like the Persian Empire […]

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Cobell v. Salazar Heads for Settlement after 14 Years

December 3, 2010

This email arrived from Elouise Cobell late yesterday afternoon. As I stated in my last Ask Elouise letter of November 22, 2010, the Senate passed the Cobell Settlement as part of the Claims Resolution Act of 2010. Since that time, I and our Representatives have been advocating for the successful passage of our settlement to […]

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The Lakota and the Pine Ridge Reservation

November 30, 2010

Aaron Huey, an extraordinary photographer and journalist of growing acclaim has covered stories all over the world, from Afghanistan to walking across the U.S. Probably no project of his – and it is very much a personal project, not an assignment – has garnered more attention than his several years establishing relationships and photographing on […]

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A Proper Apology to Native America

November 26, 2010

Though I have been advocating for a few years now an annual day of remembrance of the crimes against Native America, to coincide in historically instructive fashion with Columbus Day, Thanksgiving is, for what should be obvious reasons, a good time to remember too. Indian Country Today reports, President Barack Obama will be asked – […]

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The End of the Indian Wars: 120 Years and Counting

November 24, 2010

I first wrote about Cobell v. Salazar in Tikkun in March, 2008, when that Individual Trust Fund lawsuit was already 12 years old. Lead plaintiff Elouise Cobell‘s pursuit of an accounting and settlement of land use fees collect in trust by the Department of the Interior since 1887 had met nothing but delay and obstruction […]

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The American Indian Tribal Colleges

November 8, 2010

(This is a guest post by Brian Jenkins of BrainTrack. BrainTrack is the oldest and largest directory of universities and colleges on the Web. It provides information on over 10,000 institutions listed from over 190 countries. Brian has been writing about education and career topics for BrainTrack for the past two years. He has contributed […]

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Facing National Wrongs

October 8, 2010

Over the past several days Jeffrey Goldberg has been blogging about what I like to refer to as recalcitrant Southern boobs – the kind of people who display the Confederate Stars and Bars, who advocate and maintain that flag as any part of a state symbol, or who argue that there was anything honorable in […]

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September 8, 2010

Maureen Doallas, the Columbus, Magellan, and Vasco da Gama of bloggers, always discovering new worlds in this one while navigating the idea-swept oceans of the Web, leads us to another: Debut of Australian Indigenous Art Website A new Website showcasing Indigenous artists from urban Australia has debuted: Storylines. A joint effort by The University of […]

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Ancestors and Descendants: Ancient Southwestern America at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century

September 8, 2010

If you are in, or in reach of, New Orleans this fall and share this blog’s interest in Native America, be sure to catch this exhibit at the New Orleans Museum of Art. A little known American Indian archive is currently on display at the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) until October 24, 2010.  […]

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The Hidden World of Girls – Brave Heart Women’s Society

September 4, 2010

From The Hidden World of Girls website: A NEW KITCHEN SISTERS RADIO SERIES ON NPR THE KITCHEN SISTERS are launching a new NPR multimedia series exploring the hidden world of girls. Stories of coming of age, rituals and rites of passage, secret identities—of women who crossed a line, blazed a trail, changed the tide. This […]

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Cobell v. Salazar: Fourteen Years and Counting

July 2, 2010

More than six months and several deadline extensions for Congressional approval after the negotiated settlement of the fourteen-year-old Individual Indian Money Trust Fund suit, Cobell v. Salazar, Indian Country Today reports Cobell settlement stumbles in Senate Any last-minute hopes that the Cobell settlement could pass the Senate as part of a tax extenders package before […]

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The Conquest of Native America… Continues

May 28, 2010

One of the favorite argumentative gambits of conservatives and those otherwise unsympathetic to the making of present amends for past national crimes, is just that point – it’s in the past. It’s over. Let it go. And let me tell you something: I didn’t commit any crime. Leaving aside the validity of that argument, which […]

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Apologizing to Native America – in a Whisper

May 21, 2010

Reader Yuras Karpau, from Belarus, asks in the comments section what I think of Wednesday’s official apology by the United States government to American Indians. Yuras has an interest in Native American issues and is an ardent advocate of the cause of Leonard Peltier. My first answer to such questions is always that it doesn’t […]

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Honest Injun

May 11, 2010

Image by United Nations Photo via Flickr It can be difficult to assess progress in the movement to recover from the history and consequences of indigenous culturcide. Great symbolic and conceptual achievements are growing. In the former category is the Australian apology to its aboriginal population. In the latter is the 2007 U.N. Declaration on […]

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Developments in Indian Country

April 30, 2010

The Ninth Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues concludes today after eleven days.  Among the documents produced, according to Indian Country Today was a “groundbreaking report examining the roots of Christian domination over indigenous peoples and their lands”: North American Representative to the Permanent Forum Tonya Gonnella Frichner, an attorney and […]

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Earth Day Climate Change Conference

April 21, 2010

Officially titled the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, the conference, running from April 19 though tomorrow is being hosted by President Evo Morales of Bolivia, which has the only majority indigenous population in the Western Hemisphere, at approximately 55%. The following press release from the Indigenous Environmental Network […]

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