The context begins with the free existence of our Native nations and peoples, extending back to the beginning of our time through our oral histories and traditions, contrasted with the system of domination that was carried by ship across the ocean and imposed on everyone and everything.
Prior to the invasion of this continent by representatives of the monarchs of Western Christendom, the original nations and peoples of the continent, such as the Apache, were living their own free and independent way of life.
What “#LandBack” Leaves Out of Focus “A return to an earlier or normal condition” is one definition of the word “back.” In relation to land and Native nations or peoples, the word “back” is often expressed as, “they should give the land back to the Indians.” “#LandBack” has now become a popular meme among some
Sixty-six years ago, in November of 1954, the U.S. Justice Department submitted a bizarre argument to the Supreme Court in the case Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States. The United States argued that the Tee-Hit-Ton Band of Tlingit Indians in Alaska should not receive monetary compensation for a taking of timber from their Tlingit territory. Why?
In what is being described as a “landmark” 5-4 decision, McGirt v. Oklahoma, the Supreme Court decided today that Congress never violated a 1866 treaty between the free and independent Creek Nation and the United States by explicitly and unilaterally disestablishing the Creek Nation’s territory, which the Supreme Court called “a reservation.” We see incoherent
Prior to the first voyage of Columbus in 1492, the original nations of the two continents that are now called North and South America (the “Western Hemisphere”) were living completely free and independent. The vast Atlantic Ocean separated those distinct and free nations from Western Christendom (Western Europe). Today, we, as the descendants of our
In his splendid book The Lawless Law of Nations (1925), Sterling E. Edmunds says that governments may be defined as “groups of men possessing arbitrary power over other men.” (p. 426) If Edmunds is right, the idea of “self-government” is not a remedy of much merit for American Indians, for such a system would
One of the most significant sections of the Johnson v. McIntosh ruling of 1823, is Chief Justice John Marshall’s assertion that the Indians’ rights to complete sovereignty as independent nations” had been ended by “Christian people” (original emphasis) becoming knowledgeable of the location of lands inhabited by Native people “who were heathens” (Marshall’s phrase). Marshall
Ever since the election of Donald J. Trump as President of the United States, a renewed focus has been placed on “white supremacy” and “white nationalism” and their role in the early origins of the United States. As a result of the 400 year commemoration of the arrival of the first slave ship in Virginia
I have often wondered why federal Indian law attorneys dare not mention the crusading tradition of the United States against “heathens” and “infidels,” namely, American Indian nations. The Western Shoshone Nation is directly challenging this tradition in court and in the U.S. Congress. Their challenge brings to light the strange and startling fact that U.S.