'Action' On Pechanga Disenrollment!
Submitted by Original Pechanga
UCLA Student addresses Sen. Byron Dorgan on Tribal Disenrollments
DISENROLLMENT ISSUE BROUGHT TO SENATOR'S ATTENTION
Senator Byron Dorgan (SD- Dem), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, held a listening session for tribal leaders at UCLA earlier today. The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs which is responsible for hearing issues affecting Indian tribes and Indian .
The purpose of the listening session was to allow tribal leaders from the region to address Senator Dorgan regarding their priorities and concerns. Representatives from Pechanga, Morongo, San Manuel, and other regional tribes talked about a wide range of issues pertinent to their communities. However, it may have been the remarks of a non-tribal leader that drew the most attention.
An unexpected speaker, a UCLA student, caught many tribal leaders off guard as he came forth and addressed Chairman Dorgan regarding the growing number of disenrollments occurring in Indian Country in general and California in particular.
While tribes have the authority to determine their own membership, there is a growing concern that many tribes have violated the basic human and civil rights- such as those set forth in the United States Constitution, the Indian Civil Rights Act of 1968, and other tribal, state, and federal laws- in the disenrollment and denial of membership of thousands of California Indians.
The issue of disenrollment, as well as civil rights violations in Indian Country, had not been addressed by any of the tribal leaders in their presentations to the Chairman. And it was apparent that some tribal leaders wish the issue would have not been brought to the attention of Chairman Dorgan at such an event.
It is now up to the Chairman and the Committee as to how they will take the information gathered from today's listening session and address the issues brought forth. More importantly, how will the Committee address the concern regarding disenrollment and basic rights violations now that it has been formally presented to them in an open forum.
UCLA STUDENT IDENTIFIES HIMSELF
My name is Andrew, and I am the UCLA graduate student who addressed Sen. Dorgan regarding the growing number of tribal disenrollments taking place in California and across the United States. First, I need to give credit to the work of John Gomez Jr., Original Pechanga's Blog, and Pechanga.info for laying the ground work and educating the public to the plight of those who have been disenrolled.
Please keep up your good work, there are people such as myself who are paying attention to what you write. I have to admit that I sat there a bit nervous and for a moment there I was unsure if I should get up and speak -- knowing that my topic may be uncomfortable for some present, however, in these situations I often ask myself, what is the right thing to do? I draw strength from the courage of my elders and ancestors, they were never silent.
In my remarks I tried to make the connection that families make up clans, clans in turn make up a tribe, and in California large families are being disenrolled thereby altering the religious-political make-up of that tribe. I pointed to the San Pasqual case as an example where a "scholastic-administrative" review process was used by means of the BIA, and the process worked.
Now, I would prefer the tribes take a direct approach toward implementing a review process in connection to their disenrollments as a means of self-regulation. On the other hand, I don't see tribes doing this. I also don't see Congress altering Martinez v. Santa Clara in the near future, but I have to admit that there is growing "chatter" among politicians that something needs to be done, they just don't want Congress to be the ones to do it.
Once again, I believe that it will take a community of people to continue to press this issue. I ask that you continue to stay active.
Repost of Letter To Senator Dorgan;
Please send in a request
February 17, 2009
Senate Indian Affairs Committee
838 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington , D.C. 20510
Re: Request For Committee And Field Hearings On Civil Rights Violations In Indian Country
Dear Chairman Dorgan and Honorable Committee Members:
I respectfully submit this letter as a request to your Committee to hold hearings on the growing number of civil rights abuses occurring in Indian Country.
The number of civil rights violations in Indian Country has reached epidemic proportions. Thousands upon thousands have been stripped or denied the basic due process and equal protection rights provided for in the United States Constitution, the Indian Civil Rights Act of 1968 (“ICRA”), and tribal laws.
Most recently, a report by the Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) referenced the fact that internal tribal disputes “seem to be occurring more and more frequently”. In response to the growing number of these types of disputes, the GAO felt it was necessary and appropriate that nominees to the Secretary of Interior be asked how they would address such issues.
The responsibility to address this issue does not lie with the Secretary alone. The number of civil rights violations in Indian Country will continue to grow unless Congress once again takes action, just as it did in enacting the ICRA, to further protect individuals from the “arbitrary and capricious” actions of tribal governments.
Considering the current situation and an environment which rewards the villain and punishes the victim, I ask you, “How do you plan to address this problem?”
I believe that hearings on the current civil rights situation in Indian Country are not only warranted, they are long over due. Therefore, I respectfully request that your Committee hold hearings as an initial step to further action that will uphold and enforce the rights of those who, to date, have been stripped of or denied the basic rights guaranteed by law.
I trust you will thoughtfully consider my request, and I will eagerly await your response.
A RECAP OF PECHANGA CASINO'S PER CAPITA HISTORY
check on site below:
“The Pechanga tribe voted that 90% of all net profit goes to per capita.“
1000 members at 15,000 per month is 15,000,000 pot to split. If you cut 130 down, you split the 15,000,000 with 870 people. You cut another 95 and you split that same 15,000,000 with 775 people.
“The tribe is currently paying $30,500 per month in per capita.”
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