posted on Dec, 25 2007 @ 02:04 PM
I have had considerable dealings with Indian tribes in the past. Life on the reservations, even by the accounts of Indians themselves, is not so rosy
as perhaps they would like the rest of the world to believe.
There was a time when the misery on the reservations was the white man's fault, but I guess the emphasis has changed to the point that they want
anyone, even whites, to join the Lakota nation.
The fact is that Indian reservations are already sovereign nations. Dealing with them on legal issues such as child custody can be a nightmare.
Indians pride themselves in not acknowledging time in the same way as the white culture, so if the tribe says that it will convene to consider an
issue shortly, you might be waiting an eternity and unfortunately for those of us who depend on their actions, including their children, that can be
The degree of difficulty in dealing with tribes varies. The Navajo tribe here in New Mexico has an excellent reputation for establishing liaisons to
advocate for their children who come into custody.
Indians receive considerable funding from the federal government and now with legalized gambling on reservations, tribes are rolling in dough and it
is quite evident.
In my opinion, conventional war with Indian tribes who decide that they no longer wish to abide by treaties is not practical or rational.
There are two sides to all treaties. Cut off funding to such tribes would be a strong measure to take, but also finding ways to cut off the flow of
Americans' discretionary income into the Indian casinos would be devastating.
As long as I have lived in the Southwest and had relatives here, there have been militant Indians. They are the spoiled children of a society that
has coddled them for a hundred years and are not a majority.
For much longer than I have been alive, most Indians have been loyal Americans taking pride not only in their nations, but in the United States of
Their traditional warrior cultures fits well with the American military in times of war and they have high rates of voluntary service.
The worst thing for the American Indians is to keep honoring their rights to national sovereignty while granting them all the rights and privileges of
Too many Indians die everyday because the reservation is a haven for them to engage in high risk behaviors such as drinking and drug use and those who
are raised on reservations often have a terrible time dealing with the structure of the American culture.
When you live in an area where all these paradoxical realities are evident everyday and you see the effects of a people who voluntarily marginalize
themselves, the folly of the old treaties becomes even more evident.
Perhaps, it is time for the treaties to be abandoned, but the claiming of what is now American land is unacceptable.
They can try it, but when the money dries up, the onus will be on the indigenous peoples to get with the program just like everyone else.
If that fails there are always diplomatic negotiations and if such fails, the insertion of the National Guard might become necessary.
[edit on 2007/12/25 by GradyPhilpott]