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Ancient Voices - Contemporary Contexts

American Indian Institute, Bozeman, Montana


No. 073, June 2017


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1836 treaty puts Michigan tribes at center of Nestle water bid

Updated on June 6, 2017 at 6:40 AM Posted on June 6, 2017 at 6:30 AM


"TRAVERSE CITY, MI -- Native American tribes with treaty rights to natural resources north of Grand Rapids are quietly coordinating with Michigan officials who are deciding whether to let Nestle Waters North America extract more spring water from trout stream headwaters where the tribes have inland fishing rights.

"According to state officials, tribes in the Chippewa Ottawa Resource Authority (CORA) have met with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, other regulatory agencies and Gov. Rick Snyder's liaison three times since MLive revealed in October that Nestle was asking permission to pump more water...." Read the Entire Article.



Ann Marie Sayers, Mutsun Ohlone, director of Costanoan Indian Research, gave opening remarks at the Resilience of Sacred Places: Defining Security event this month.

4 Native Women Redefine Security and Fight for Sacred Places

Brave Native women fighting for sacred places are our hope

Rucha Chitnis • July 22, 2015

"'Welcome to Ohlone territory! We are still here, and we are still on our lands where we have always been,' said Ann Marie Sayers, Mutsun Ohlone, director of Costanoan Indian Research, in her opening remarks at the Resilience of Sacred Places: Defining Security-dialogues held over two evenings in July 2015 on the connection between sacred sites and security that were hosted by the Sacred Land Film Project and the David Brower Center in Berkeley, California. Four Native American women and defenders of indigenous cultures and sacred sites shared their perspectives on notions of homelands and security.

"Ann Marie Sayers, Mutsun Ohlone, born and raised in Indian Canyon, west of Hollister, remarked that this was the best time to be alive as a California Indian since contact. She was alluding to the bounty on the heads of Native men, women and children during the Gold Rush, in some instances 25 cents for a scalp. Sayers used the Allotment Act of 1887 to reclaim land that had been in her family for centuries at Indian Canyon..." Read the Entire Article



Blood for Oil: Book Explores Osage Murders

'Killers of the Flower Moon' brings out the horrific scope of the Reign of Terror among the Osage

Alex Jacobs - May 18, 2017

"Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI (Doubleday, 2017) covers two-dozen sensational murders of Osage Indian men and women between 1921 and 1926. But further research by author and acclaimed New Yorker writer David Grann confirmed what Osage Indians had been claiming all along: that easily a hundred, and perhaps hundreds, of their relatives had been killed by unscrupulous whites just for the opportunity to embezzle millions of dollars in oil money. In a book praised by Ojibwe author Louise Erdrich as a 'mesmerizing read' that 'rescues unbearable truth' through 'meticulous detective work,' Grann lays out the scope of the murders in excruciating detail.

"Indian Country Media Network connected with Grann, also the bestselling author of The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon (Doubleday, 2009) and The Devil and Sherlock Holmes: Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession (Doubleday, 2010), to talk about what drew him to the Osage story, and how the reporting unfolded...." Read the Entire Article.



This Culturally Appropriate Chicago Blackhawks Logo by First Nations Artist Mike Ivall Went Viral

Culturally Appropriate Chicago Blackhawks Logo by First Nations Artist Goes Viral

A 'much cooler' Chicago Blackhawks logo design by a First Nations
artist goes viral

Vincent Schilling - November 18, 2015

"When Winnipeg radio hosts Tom and Larry posted a 'new and improved' and culturally appropriate Chicago Blackhawks logo created by Ojibway artist Mike Ivall on October 29th, the logo quickly went viral on social media, collecting over 15,000 likes, 12,000 shares and had been viewed by approximately 2 million people by that following Monday.

"Ivall, who told the Huffington Post he now designs hockey jerseys and logos due to the success of the image he first created in 2007, later told the radio show hosts why he decided to make the logo...." Read the Entire Article.



Supreme Court gives Washington NFL team a big win in battle over "Redskins' trademark

'Disparaging' trademarks are now protected by the constitution.

Washington Redskins football helmets are seen on the field during an NFL football team practice, Wednesday, June 14, 2017, in Ashburn, Va. CREDIT: AP Photo/Nick Wass

"Washington D.C's NFL franchise scored a big victory in its ongoing battle to preserve its racist name.

"On Monday, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the government is not allowed to deny a trademark to companies or other applicants solely on the basis of the name being offensive..." Read the Entire Article.



The quiet crisis: mass eviction shows toll of homelessness on Native Americans

While LA, Seattle and New York regularly garner headlines over homelessness, the ongoing housing emergency on tribal lands is more hidden - but just as dire

Roberta Strong, 67, was evicted from her home at a Yakama Nation housing project in Washington. Hundreds have been evicted, many with no place to go. Photograph: Sofia Jaramillo for the Guardian

"To Jenece Howe, it seemed like an ordinary yard sale. But as she surveyed the items, arrayed on a patch of land on the Native American reservation, she paused. It appeared to her as if the contents of a home had simply been dumped outside. And the elderly women selling them looked distraught.

"Soon Howe, an enrolled member of the Yakama Nation, learned the reason. The woman, and many others, had been evicted from a tribal housing complex. 'It was horrible. Horrible. Families had lived there for 20 plus years. That was their home. That was their everything,' Howe said...." Read the Entire Article.



INTERVIEW-Mexico's native crops hold key to food security - ecologist

by Sophie Hares | Thomson Reuters Foundation
Tuesday, 13 June 2017 17:34 GMT

'Biodiversity is there - you have to just select and use it'

"TEPIC, Mexico, June 13 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Mexico's ancient civilisations cultivated crops such as maize, tomatoes and chillies for thousands of years before the Spanish conquerors arrived - and now those native plants could hold the key to sustainable food production as climate change bites, said a leading ecologist.

"José Sarukhán Kermez, who helped set up Mexico's pioneering National Commission for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (CONABIO) 25 years ago, said that analysing the genetic variability of traditional crops, and supporting the family farmers who grow most of the world's food offered an alternative to industrial agriculture...." Read the Entire Article.



How Indigenous Millennials Are Using Tech to Save Their Dying Languages

Polina Bachlakova
JUN 6 2017, 8:05AM

Decades of oppression and forced assimilation have led to the steep decline of Indigenous languages. Now tech-savvy young people are fighting to preserve their culture.

"For generations, Lydia Prince's family used storytelling as their primary way to pass down knowledge and language. 'Elders would speak to the children in their language and the kids would naturally pick it up,' says the Vancouver-based Indigenous app developer, who is Carrier from the Tl'azt'en Nation on her father's side and Cree on her mother's side.

"But that began to change in the late 19th century once the Canadian government passed the Indian Act. This law enforced colonial authority over First Nations peoples, partially to force assimilation through policies that displaced Indigenous people and removed them from their communities. Most notoriously implemented through church-run residential schools that aimed to erase Indigenous children's cultures and connections to family, these institutions enforced a language ban. If Indigenous children were caught speaking their own language, they would face corporeal punishment...." Read the Entire Article.



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