Tribal Leaders - Join Us For The 2006 Native Vote
Its election time again! Every member of the House of Representatives is up for election this year! Tribal leaders please join us to build on the successes we saw in 2004!
Many tribes have been running successful independent Get Out The Vote Campaigns. In 2004 we combined our resources to run the national Native Vote campaign. Collectively, we increased voter turnout, as well as elevated our voice in Washington, D.C. and in the media exponentially. Now, more than ever, we need to have our voices and issues heard again. Please join the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) in combining our efforts nationwide for the national Native Vote 2006 campaign.
The Native Vote Campaign is a national non-partisan effort to mobilize the American Indian and Alaska Native vote. The Native Vote structure will include the appointment of a state-wide Native Vote coordinator (and Election Protection coordinator) for each targeted state, and a Native Vote coordinator (and Election Protection coordinator) for each Tribe or Native community.
Together we will share resources, training, experience, expertise and materials.
Tribal Leaders we need you to:
(1) Designate a Native Vote Coordinator for your Tribe.
(2) Designate a Native Vote Election Protection Coordinator for your Tribe. (Can be a tribal attorney or the Native Vote Coordinator can serve as both)
(3) Send Tribal Coordinators to the Native Vote Meeting and Get-Out-The-Vote/Election Protection Training at the NCAI Mid-Year Convention.
Get Out The Vote. The State and individual Tribal Native Vote coordinators work on getting Native voters registered to vote, educating them about all elections and candidates, and ensuring they make it to the polls on November 7, 2006.
Election Protection. The Election Protection portion of the Native Vote program works on the legal aspects of the election, protecting our rights to vote, providing voter information, and monitoring the polls on Election Day. An example of one of the Election Protection projects is ensuring that all states that require photo identification to vote, accept Tribal ID's as a valid form of identification.
Native vote is critical in all states. This year we will be placing particular emphasis on: Alaska; Arizona; California; Colorado; Idaho; Michigan; Minnesota; Montana; Nevada; New Mexico; New York; North Dakota; Oklahoma; South Dakota; Washington and Wisconsin.
Click here for Native Vote 2006: National Kick-Off Meeting & Training Agenda
Click here for Native Vote 2006: Tribal Contact Form
If you have any questions about Native Vote 2006, please contact Irene Folstrom at mhtml:mid://email@example.com or A-dae Romero at mhtml:mid://firstname.lastname@example.org Or contact the NCAI office at 202-466-7767.
NAJA URGES MEDIA TO CONTINUE ACCURATE TERMINOLOGY TO DESCRIBE IMMIGRANTS
VERMILLION, S.D. _ As thousands of immigrants march today to demonstrate the impact they have on the economy, the Native American Journalists Association urges the media to continue to use accurate language when describing those of other countries living in the United States.
"Through historical and continued similarities, the indigenous population of the United States can readily recognize negative stereotypical language use in media," said NAJA Board Member Ron Washines (Yakima), adding that Native people have been dealing with immigration for more than 500 years. "Today's society must begin to accurately portray our diverse population in order to begin to instill the journalistic integrity required to provide factual accounts."
The National Association of Hispanic Journalists, NAJA's partner in UNITY: Journalists of Color, has issued a list of accurate and pejorative terms used to describe immigrants. Of particular concern is a trend to use the word "illegals" as a noun, shorthand for "illegal aliens." NAHJ says not only is it grammatically incorrect, but the term criminalizes the person rather than the action they are purported to have committed and recommends using the term undocumented workers or undocumented immigrants.
NAHJ Executive Director Ivan Roman says the media has improved its word usage since the debate moved to Congress last month but the level of improvement is haphazard, depending on the outlets involved.
"The language used is important not just for language or grammar's sake, but because it can frame the issue in a way that does a disservice to the principles of fairness and neutrality that are supposed to govern news media coverage," Roman said. "By incessantly using metaphors like 'illegals,' the news media is not only appropriating the rhetoric used by people on a particular side of the issue, but the implication of something criminal or worthy of nothing but suspicision. That helps to predetermine the credibility or respect given to one of the protagonists of this debate, which is not conducive to good journalism."
At the 1994 UNITY convention, the four UNITY partners - NAJA, NAJH, the Asian American Journalists Association and the National Association of Black Journalists - issued a joint statement on the term "illegal aliens." The associations agree the term, except in direct quotations, should not be used. "Do not use the phrase illegal alien or the word alien, in copy or in headlines, to refer to citizens of a foreign country who have come to the U.S. with no documents to show that they are legally entitled to visit, work or live here. Such terms are considered pejorative not only by those to whom they are applied but by many people of the same ethnic and national backgrounds who are in the U.S. legally."
For a reference of appropriate terms, go to NAHJ's Web site at http://www.najh.org/.
Editorial Opinion From Bobbie -
First of all, I want to state that as editor of Native Unity, I have mixed emotions concerning the immigration problem and I find it rather intimidating the NAHJ - National Association of Hispanic Journalists – would like journalists to be “politically correct” and use the terms “undocumented workers” or “undocumented immigrants” in their copy rather than “illegal immigrants”.
According to my dictionary, the term “illegal” means “not legal; contrary to law; unlawful”. In my column when I write about “illegals” I am referring to the thousands of people from Mexico and Central America that cross the border everyweek onto the Tohono O’odham reservation who harass and steal from the residents, run off the native animal population and literally trash the environment with plastic water jugs, discarded clothing, soiled diapers, junk vehicles which have to be cleaned up by tribal members at their own expense. This expense includes hospital care for those who are found at the brink of death under a creosote bush or removal of the bodies of the unfortunates who died from dehydration.
My heart goes out to the thousands of people who illegally cross the border to come to this country to work. My heart does not go out to the “coyotes” who lure them into the country for monetary gains and oftentimes at the request of greedy U.S. employers in search of a source of cheap labor.
The summer season is about to begin which means they will continue to trek across the border and risk their lives in 100 degree plus temperatures. It is tragic and heartbreaking to know that many of these people will die in the canals and on the desert.
NAHJ, forget diplomacy. When I write about the people who recklessly risk their lives and the lives of their children to cross the border without proper documentation, I shall continue to call them “illegal immigrants.”
TO SUBMIT an ARTICLE or OPINION PIECE to the Native Unity Digest, e-mail email@example.com.
NATIVE UNITY - A place for Native American Peoples to solidify their tribes to make a positive impact on the cultural, social, economic and political fabric of American society and a place for non-Natives to better understand the ways of the American Indian.
Visit Vietnam Vet. Larry Mitchell at http://www.potawatomivet.com and click on his blog at the site.