Friday, November 30, 2007

Senator Webb's Endorsement

On November 8, 2007 the six Virginia Indians state-recognized tribes joined Senator Jim Webb in Washington seeking approval of the tribes’ federal recognition bill from the United States Senate.

After endorsing the Thomasina E. Jordan Indian Tribes of Virginia Federal Recognition Act of 2007, Webb joined Representatives James P. Moran and Bobby Scott, along with members of six Virginia Indian tribes, in urging the Senate on Indian Affairs Committee to approve the bill.

Early in October 2007 Webb announced his support of the tribes’ bill. He wrote a letter to the leaders of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, requesting the committee approve the federal recognition bill. Senator Webb says, ''I have come to the conclusion that this recognition is justified based on principles of dignity and fairness''. Webb feels the tribes meet the established standards for proper recognition on a federal level and should be placed on equal footing with our nation's 562 other federally recognized tribes.

The six Virginia tribes include the Monacan, Upper Mattaponi, Chickahominy, Chickahominy - Eastern Division, Rappahannock and Nansemond.

Representative Moran wrote the federal recognition bill and is an advocate of the 400 years of history of Virginia tribes. Jamestown is an icon of Virginia Indian history which the unique Virginia “documentary genocide” attempted to remove Indians from the records.

Webb told the tribes he did his research, and he believes that the tribes should have federal recognition and believes the congressional way is the way for the tribes to receive recognition, said Chief Adkins. ''I believe Senator Webb is the kind of person that when he gets behind an issue, he works hard for it, and we're hopeful that's what he'll do for our recognition,'' Adkins said.

Nansemond Chief Barry Bass, though not at the press conference, said he was happy when Webb announced his support of the tribes' federal recognition bill.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dorgan's Backlog


WASHINGTON, DC - The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs held three oversight hearings, a series of listening sessions, and multiple meetings with tribal leaders to discuss the longstanding problem of violent crime in Indian Country. Senator Byron Dorgan, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, has developed a concept paper which has been sent to tribal leaders. Read the concept paper which is a compilation of comments from tribal leaders that examines the problems and lists a number of proposed solutions to law enforcement issues in Indian Country.

The Committee will continue to meet with tribal leaders over the next few months in the development of legislation to address this issue. For those who wish to provide additional comments are invited to share their comments and ideas through the Senate on Indian Affairs website. Click on the link below and share your thoughts. If you wish to submit any documents in addition to your comments you can e-mail with both your comments and attachments. You may fax the comments to (202) 228-2589 if you prefer.

The Indian Tribes in Virginia have a peaceful history and would be no trouble to the federal government if only they were granted federal sovereignty.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Read Native Blog

Equity is the part of the equation that supports the rule of law with respect to Native American justice. The honesty and integrity that has been maintained by Native American Indians is reflected in the caricature and expression of Native American blogs: THE NATIVE BLOG

The feelings, hopes, thoughts, and dreams of the American Indian are reflective in Native Blog.

National American Indian Heritage Month, 2007

National American Indian Heritage Month, 2007
A Proclamation By the President of the United States of America

National American Indian Heritage Month is an opportunity to honor the many contributions of American Indians and Alaska Natives and to recognize the strong and living traditions of the first people to call our land home.

American Indians and Alaska Natives continue to shape our Nation by preserving the heritage of their ancestors and by contributing to the rich diversity that is our country's strength. Their dedicated efforts to honor their proud heritage have helped others gain a deeper understanding of the vibrant and ancient customs of the Native American community. We also express our gratitude to the American Indians and Alaska Natives who serve in our Nation's military and work to extend the blessings of liberty around the world.

My Administration is committed to supporting the American Indian and Alaska Native cultures. In June, I signed the "Native American Home Ownership Opportunity Act of 2007," which reauthorizes the Indian Housing Loan Guarantee Program, guaranteeing loans for home improvements and expanding home ownership for Native American families. Working with tribal governments, we will strive for greater security, healthier lifestyles, better schools, and new economic opportunities for American Indians and Alaska Natives.

During National American Indian Heritage Month, we underscore our commitment to working with tribes on a government-to-government basis and to supporting tribal sovereignty and self-determination. During this month, I also encourage Federal agencies to continue their work with tribal governments to ensure sound cooperation. Efforts such as on-line training programs will improve interagency collaboration in the Federal Indian Affairs community and help to strengthen relationships with tribes, building a brighter future for all our citizens.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim November 2007 as National American Indian Heritage Month. I call upon all Americans to commemorate this month with appropriate programs and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand seven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-second.


Friday, November 16, 2007

Two Supreme Court Cases on Indian Law

The United States Court involved with two cases on Indian law.

The Court issued a decision in the Zuni Public School District, et al. v. Department of Education, et al. case on 4/17/07.

Petition for writ of certiorari was denied on 4/16/07 in Davidson v. Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Moral Courage in a world that yields painful change

The quest for Federal Sovereignty by the Virginia Indian Tribes is a task that adds a new vista to the landscape in Virginia. In a global village the United States help to forge; the world is watching the Virginia Indian Tribes struggle in their quest. It is our history that dictates who we are, but it is our moral compass intertwined with conquest, development, and the creation of a new nation that provides the many challenges ahead.

To quote Robert Kennedy, "moral courage is a rarer commodity than bravery in battle or great intelligence. Yet it is the one essential, vital quality for those who seek to change a world that yields most painfully to change...and those [who] enter the moral conflict will find themselves with companions in every corner of the world."

A man who's influence has inspired many through out the years. Who will take up the flag for a cause that everyone agrees is morally right, but can not agree on how to accomplish "the right thing to do"? I believe it is this type of thought that brings merit to the theory of using International law related to indigenous people to complete the circle for the Virginia Indian tribes pursuit for federal sovereignty. Forging thoughts and ideas to lay a foundation cemented with International Law that would bring support from the four corners of the earth to breath life into the combination of law and moral rights to force this issue in new light.

The dawn of a new era should embrace new ideas and new concepts where men come to an agreement using tools shaped during the last 400 years together with a desire and understanding for peace, respect, and prosperity. It is these ideas that will force America and polish it for all times to come. With the help and support of the right people whose new ideas would bring justice to this issue.

The Virginia General Assembly has accomplished a portion of that which is necessary to make this dream by granting state recognition. It is now incumbent upon the United States Government to recognize the final and important last mile; granting federal sovereignty to the Virginia Indian Tribes.

Remember, John Marshal developed the "Doctrine of Discovery" based upon a moral theory not a rule of law by using the Inter Cetera bulls to establish Johnson v. McIntosh.

Indigenous "Sovereignty" and International Law

The indigenous community greeted the United Nations' decision to officially proclaim 1993 as the "International Year of the World's Indigenous Peoples" rather warily. Fourteen years later the United Nations created the Working Group on Indigenous Populations.

The purpose of this group was to formally address global indigenous issues. The gain has been more than an international symbolic response to a quest for cultural, social, economic, and political autonomy. The focus should be more on the human rights using international law to gain this perspective of a normative world development concept.

To gain a better understanding of this concept read:

Saturday, November 3, 2007

What is the term "sovereignty"?

There are at least 13 different overlapping meaning of the term sovereignty.
Sovereignty may refer to:
  1. Sovereignty as a personalized monarch (real or ritualized);
  2. Sovereignty as a symbol for absolute, unlimited control or power;
  3. Sovereignty as a symbol of political legitimacy;
  4. Sovereignty as a symbol of political authority;
  5. Sovereignty as a symbol of self-determined, national independence;
  6. Sovereignty as a symbol of governance and constitutional order;
  7. Sovereignty as a criterion of jurisprudential validation of all law (grundnorm, rule of recognition, sovereign);
  8. Sovereignty as a symbol of the juridical personality of Sovereign Equality;
  9. Sovereignty as a symbol of "recogintion";
  10. Sovereignty as a formal unit of legal system;
  11. Sovereignty as symbol of powers, immunities, or privileges;
  12. Sovereignty as a symbol of jurisdictional competence to make and/or apply law; and
  13. Sovereignty as a symbol of basic governance competencies (constitutive process).
In regards to the Virginia Indian Tribes a historical basis of sovereign immunity doctrine in 1831, the United States Supreme Court first recognized that native Indian tribes possess sovereignty that is different from foreign countries and is subject to the dominion of the United States.

United States v. United States Fidelity & Guaranty Co.

With respect to International Law the character of sovereignty is changing.

Read "The Changing Character of Sovereignty in International Law and International Relations."
By Winston P. Nagan and Craig Hammer

International law is an avenue the Virginia Indians could pursue in their quest for Federal Sovereignty.