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#1 Apr-06-2010 06:02:pm

Gummy Bear
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Registered: Jan-28-2010
Posts: 61

State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

I received an Email yesterday from a friend with ties to a State Tribe in Alabama.
Here is a portion of a letter received by Mrs. Eloise Josey Executive Director of the Alabama Indian Affairs Commission.

"In order to stop the erosion of State Recognition, I believe that it is imperative that you speak with your Tribal members and recommend that they do not vend, dance or participate in any activities that are sponsored by  Un-recognized "Indian Groups". This is absolutely necessary in the prevention of groups of people coming together simply for financial benefit behind the guise of being "Indian".


From the Tribal Chief:
The governing body has voted to abide by all these recommendations.
"The participation by recognized Indian people at events that are sponsored by Un-recognized "Indian Groups" is a key point in stemming the tide of the erosion of State Recognition". I cannot express how strongly I believe this to be true".




I wonder if this means that Pow Wows are off limits? neutral

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#2 Apr-06-2010 09:02:pm

sschkaak
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Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
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Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

Gummy Bear wrote:

I received an Email yesterday from a friend with ties to a State Tribe in Alabama.
Here is a portion of a letter received by Mrs. Eloise Josey Executive Director of the Alabama Indian Affairs Commission.

"In order to stop the erosion of State Recognition, I believe that it is imperative that you speak with your Tribal members and recommend that they do not vend, dance or participate in any activities that are sponsored by  Un-recognized "Indian Groups". This is absolutely necessary in the prevention of groups of people coming together simply for financial benefit behind the guise of being "Indian".


From the Tribal Chief:
The governing body has voted to abide by all these recommendations.
"The participation by recognized Indian people at events that are sponsored by Un-recognized "Indian Groups" is a key point in stemming the tide of the erosion of State Recognition". I cannot express how strongly I believe this to be true".

I fail to see how attendance at these events "erodes" State recognition.  When Indians from federally-recognized tribes vend and dance at such events (and some certainly do), that has absolutely no bearing on the federal recognition status of their tribes.  Avoiding these events will not make any tribe more legitimate or less legitimate than what they already are, in fact.

(BTW, the Chief's statement says that participation in such events (not avoidance of them!) is what stops the erosion of State recognition!)

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#3 Apr-06-2010 11:09:pm

Chevy
Member
Registered: Aug-01-2007
Posts: 1577

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

I received an Email yesterday from a friend with ties to a State Tribe in Alabama.
Here is a portion of a letter received by Mrs. Eloise Josey Executive Director of the Alabama Indian Affairs Commission.

"In order to stop the erosion of State Recognition, I believe that it is imperative that you speak with your Tribal members and recommend that they do not vend, dance or participate in any activities that are sponsored by  Un-recognized "Indian Groups". This is absolutely necessary in the prevention of groups of people coming together simply for financial benefit behind the guise of being "Indian".


From the Tribal Chief:
The governing body has voted to abide by all these recommendations.
"The participation by recognized Indian people at events that are sponsored by Un-recognized "Indian Groups" is a key point in stemming the tide of the erosion of State Recognition". I cannot express how strongly I believe this to be true".

That's the craziest thing I've ever read! big_smile  They're nuts.

Good post, sschkaak  tongue

Last edited by Chevy (Apr-06-2010 11:09:pm)

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#4 Apr-07-2010 12:24:am

bls926
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From: Texas
Registered: Oct-21-2006
Posts: 12082

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

I understand what they're saying and agree completely. There are legitimate State recognized tribes and there are other groups who are nothing more than pretendians. They're trying to distance themselves from the wannabes.

If you were going to attend a Cherokee Gathering, where would you rather go? Qualla, NC or Deltona, FL? If you were going to attend a Delaware Powwow, where would you rather go? Bartlesville or Eastern PA?

I know there are enrolled, federally recognized Native Americans attending, dancing, vending at events put on by fakes and flakes. What does that say about their character? How often have we criticized Curtis for visiting the LNP?

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#5 Apr-07-2010 02:03:am

sschkaak
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Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
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Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

Well, I know the Shenandoahs show up at such events (such as the EDN powwow), and I don't think anyone would be so foolish as to question THEIR "character."  Sometimes, craftsmen and/or artists have to make a living and can't be so fastidious about picking and choosing their venues as can philosophical moralists.

Besides, my point wasn't whether or not attending such events has an ethical aspect.  It's simply that no Indian Tribe can make its citizens one whit more Indian by prohibiting its members from attending such events.  If a "Tribe" is not legitimate, no amount of fastidiousness, in this regard, is going to make it legitimate.  How do Indians attending Wannabe events "erode" a legitimate tribe's recognition?  One thing has nothing to do with the other.

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#6 Apr-07-2010 02:35:am

bls926
Administrator
From: Texas
Registered: Oct-21-2006
Posts: 12082

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

I agree that behavior, good or bad, doesn't make you more or less Indian. I think they're probably just trying to improve their image. Trying to improve the image of State recognized Tribes. Differentiate themselves from the numerous wannabes and pretendians.

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#7 Apr-07-2010 05:01:am

littleoldman
Member
Registered: Jul-21-2007
Posts: 133

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

Putting aside for a moment your opinions on the validity of State vs Federally recognized Tribes, I think that I may have an insight into what is behind this.  In Ala we have had about eight or nine State recognized tribes.  Four are Cherokee, three are Creek, and one Shawnee.  The Echota has split making nine.  Over the last three or four years there have been several who have popped up wanting to be.  I have been to a couple of their powwows waste of time, very few vendors, circle not run correctly, and from a cultural standpoint completely off the beam.  The State of Al at this time is at war with itself on the gambling issue.  Big money is on it big time.  The issue is centered around electronic bingo.  At present there are three places to go all legally owned and operated by the Poarch Creek, the only Federal Tribe in the State.  These are quite legal.  Until the last couple of years you had fifteen or twenty ( my guess) then the State started to go after them.  There is presently a bill in the legislature to go on the ballot in Nov. for the state as a whole to vote the issue up or down.  My present opinion is that the gambling monies are behind a lot of it especially among these new pop ups. My feeling here is that none of the older State Tribes are interested in this matter as an income stream.  Their interest seems to lie only within the realm of  heritage.  At present all the real gambling casinos are located in Mississippi.  Like I said there is a H##L of a fight going on right now.    On the other item of the powwows and or festivals that I have been to I find as a general rule seventy five percent of the vendors are either Fed or State carded.  The rest every thing from church groups to cedar box makers to blacksmiths.  "LOM"

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#8 Apr-07-2010 05:29:am

Gummy Bear
Member
Registered: Jan-28-2010
Posts: 61

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

sschkaak said
(BTW, the Chief's statement says that participation in such events (not avoidance of them!) is what stops the erosion of State recognition!)

I think that this is either a typo or they just misspoke. It sounds to me that BLS understood and as usual LOM hit the nail right on the head. In another forum some one said that the wannabees would pay the Fed NDNs to attend their stuff. so people would think it legit.

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#9 Apr-07-2010 08:52:am

sschkaak
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Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
Website

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

Gummy Bear wrote:

sschkaak said
(BTW, the Chief's statement says that participation in such events (not avoidance of them!) is what stops the erosion of State recognition!)

I think that this is either a typo or they just misspoke.

So do I.  That's why I pointed it out.

It sounds to me that BLS understood and as usual LOM hit the nail right on the head.

I understand the intent of the policy, and LOM may be right about why it was promulgated.  I just don't think it makes any sense. 

In another forum some one said that the wannabees would pay the Fed NDNs to attend their stuff. so people would think it legit.

I'm shocked!  Shocked!  yikes  neutral

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#10 Apr-07-2010 09:09:am

lenape
Member
Registered: Feb-11-2008
Posts: 1779

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

Well, some of the Powwows that we have drummed at require that their vendors, drums, and sometimes even dancers be carded, which is not a bad thing, these are usually legit people though, this doesn't apply when it is a shake and bake group hosting a circus and bringing in "real Indians" to make themselves look legit.  This is often the case, take the Lenape Nation of PA for example, they payed good money to have legitimate Indians make an appearance at their "shows", all for the sake of haveing someone who is actually "Indian" there.

  In my opinion, when it comes down to it, it really doesn't matter when it comes to a "Powwow" that is a public event, Powwows are to make money, trade and sell wares, and see folks that you have not seen in a long time, and if it is a good Powwow when the sun goes down and the public leaves then there is often an exchange of culture.  "Closed" Powwows are very different and serve a different purpose, but mostly here in the East it is simply a show, there have been a few good ones in NY state that we sat up all night doing the night dances, social dances, trade blankets, etc..., but those are far and few between....

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#11 Apr-07-2010 09:39:am

Chevy
Member
Registered: Aug-01-2007
Posts: 1577

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

Good post, lenape.

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#12 Apr-07-2010 12:40:pm

littleoldman
Member
Registered: Jul-21-2007
Posts: 133

Re: State Recognized Tribes vs Un-recognized tribes

Lenape I like the shake and bake analogy seen a bunch of them over the last twenty five or so years.  When someone who is not acquainted with the powwow circuit ask what time it starts I tell them that their powwow starts at nine am and goes to five pm or close.  I don't tell them that my powwow doesn't start till close and goes for ever how long it goes.  Daytime, you are correct is  for the vendors to make a living and for the dancers to dance.  "LOM"

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