March 16, 2011

North Dakota breaks its word

A Native response to the legislation noted in North Dakota Orders UND to Keep Sioux:

Dawes Act reborn as nickname law

By Erich Longie[T]he bill does make clear some disturbing things. For example, HB 1263 clearly shows the government going back on its word (remember, the North Dakota attorney general had negotiated the settlement with the NCAA).

In addition, the bill’s passage tells us tribal people that there is no way we can win in the American political and justice system.

We can jump through the hoops the system puts in our way, and we can follow the system as required by law. But if we somehow win, then the losing players simply will change the rules or introduce a new law to undo our victory.

Not coincidentally, this also is the same tactic the government historically has used to break every treaty with tribes. It’s a very effective tactic—not an admirable, moral or honorable tactic, but an effective one.

And in addition, the passage of HB 1263 means non-Indians no longer can claim they are honoring us. Those claims have been exposed as disingenuous and misleading.

Instead, the reality that we all now see is brutally honest: It declares that “If we can’t get our way through false claims of honoring you, we will take what we want anyway.”
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Legislators "Honor" Indians by Voting Against Them and Students "Honor" Indians by Ignoring Them.

No comments: