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From: Cherokee21 DelphiPlus Member Icon7/29/08 9:30 PM 
To: All  (1 of 3) 

Cherokee officials open to lawsuit from Freedmen
TUESDAY, JULY 29, 2008
Filed Under: Law

Officials of the Cherokee Nation, but not the tribe itself, can be sued by the Freedmen, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today.
In a unanimous decision, the court said the tribe cannot be joined as an indispensable party to a lawsuit filed by descendants of former Cherokee slaves. The Freedmen plaintiffs sued the Interior Department to enforce an 1866 treaty.
Neither the treaty nor the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which outlawed slavery, waived the tribe's immunity, the court said. But tribal officials can be sued over "allegations of ongoing constitutional and treaty violations," the court said.
"[T]he Thirteenth Amendment and the 1866 Treaty whittled away the tribe’s sovereignty with regard to slavery and left it powerless to discriminate against the Freedmen on the basis of their status as former slaves," the decision stated.

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From: ctj20107/30/08 10:36 AM 
To: Cherokee21 DelphiPlus Member Icon  (2 of 3) 
 2463.2 in reply to 2463.1 

The Great White Fathers giveth...

The Great White Fathers now taketh away!

And how much more of a wake up call do the elected officials of the so called five 'civilized'  tribes need?

But not just them either!



From: Mike (stormstudio) DelphiPlus Member Icon7/31/08 3:30 AM 
To: Cherokee21 DelphiPlus Member Icon  (3 of 3) 
 2463.3 in reply to 2463.1 

Tch. Yes, suing's a wondrous way to force policy change. Or at least in this case, to exact some idea of cultural revenge.  

Pity. They're essentially on the same boat as everyone else. You could be Javanese and still be enrolled. If you have 1/8th the blood. Not about being black, or the descendant of African slaves. Just about being: Cherokee descent.

Of which there are many that are also Freedmen. Additionally, with their general proximity to the larger Cherokee community, likely much more than your average anglo or other. But not every or any Freedmen descendant. Same with every or any other man or woman.

Dawes tends to stand in the way of any descendant not directly involved enough by family or record or culture. Not Smith. Don'tcha know.

Don't get me wrong. There was a better way to handle it. Somehow. People shouldn't think this was an easy decision at all. Or the choice of a few people without any consultation with tribal body.

The real fact of business was an old promise versus the real economic practicality of being able to maintain it. Additionally, tribal integrity via bloodline. Solid fact with most tribes. Even if it is only 1/8th. Fair enough. It's 2008. We're grown folk.

My understanding being there with eyes and from Oklahoma Cherokee spoken with, was this; there was the promise, yes. But, you didn't see them much, they weren't so involved. Stayed to themselves more often than not. At no gatherings or singings or stomps, powwows much at all. Frankly, they seem to have another culture. 

In respect to any culture, that doesn't surprise me. You go with your own. Why begrudge.

In real respect to the people though, gentle easing from the process of being Cherokee in benefits would have been kind. Forget about the rest. Those needing for age or disability have grown to depend on it.

Best, Mike


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