Sunday, November 7, 2010

November 2010 newsletter

WOLF SPIRIT newsletter November 2010

Metis Nation District 14, Connecticut looks like winter is on the way. I must be getting on in years, cold never bothered me before but now...I am freezing!!! Hope you are all keeping warm where you are.
This is Native Americna month so do something to show how much you care. I am flying my flags. Show your pride.


                                                      The White House
                                              Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 29, 2010

Presidential Proclamation--National Native American Heritage Month-------

For millennia before Europeans settled in North America, the indigenous peoples of this continent flourished with vibrant cultures and were the original stewards of the land. From generation to generation, they handed down invaluable cultural knowledge and rich traditions, which continue to thrive in Native American communities across our country today. During National Native American Heritage Month, we honor and celebrate their importance to our great Nation and our world.

America's journey has been marked both by bright times of progress and dark moments of injustice for American Indians and Alaska Natives. Since the birth of America, they have contributed immeasurably to our country and our heritage, distinguishing themselves as scholars, artists, entrepreneurs, and leaders in all aspects of our society. Native Americans have also served in the United States Armed Forces with honor and distinction, defending the security of our Nation with their lives. Yet, our tribal communities face stark realities, including disproportionately high rates of poverty, unemployment, crime, and disease. These disparities are unacceptable, and we must acknowledge both our history and our current challenges if we are to ensure that all of our children have an equal opportunity to pursue the American dream. From upholding the tribal sovereignty recognized and reaffirmed in our Constitution and laws to strengthening our unique nation-to- nation relationship, my Administration stands firm in fulfilling our Nation's commitments.

Over the past 2 years, we have made important steps towards working as partners with Native Americans to build sustainable and healthy native communities. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act continues to impact the lives of American Indians and Alaska Natives, including through important projects to improve, rebuild, and renovate schools so our children can get the education and skills they will need to compete in the global economy. At last year's White House Tribal Nations Conference, I also announced a new consultation process to improve communication and coordination between the Federal Government and tribal governments.

This year, I was proud to sign the landmark Affordable Care Act, which permanently reauthorized the Indian Health Care Improvement Act, a cornerstone of health care for American Indians and Alaska Natives. This vital legislation will help modernize the Indian health care system and improve health care for 1.9 million American Indians and Alaska Natives. To combat the high rates of crime and sexual violence in Native communities, I signed the Tribal Law and Order Act in July to bolster tribal law enforcement and enhance their abilities to prosecute and fight crime more effectively. And, recently, my Administration reached a settlement in a lawsuit brought by Native American farmers against the United States Department of Agriculture that underscores our commitment to treat all our citizens fairly.

As we celebrate the contributions and heritage of Native Americans during this month, we also recommit to supporting tribal self-determination, security, and prosperity for all Native Americans. While we cannot erase the scourges or broken promises of our past, we will move ahead together in writing a new, brighter chapter in our joint history.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim November 2010 as National Native American Heritage Month. I call upon all Americans to commemorate this month with appropriate programs and activities, and to celebrate November 26, 2010, as Native American Heritage Day.

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



CERT works with tribes to enhance their sovereignty
Tuesday, November 2, 2010

"Your article on the new pipeline that will bring cleaner-burning natural gas to the West Coast from the Rocky Mountains starting next year ("Pipeline creates tribal dissent," Vol. 30, No. 17) contains numerous factual errors about the project and its vital importance to Indian country. It also badly mischaracterizes the mission of the Council of Energy Resource Tribes, the nonprofit coalition of 58 U.S. Indian tribes and Canadian First Treaty Nations that for the past 35 years has helped tribes gain greater control of their own natural resources to achieve economic self-sufficiency and independence.

The nearly 700-mile pipeline, called Ruby, is currently under construction in Wyoming, Utah, Nevada and Oregon. Once completed in spring 2011, the Ruby Pipeline will strengthen the market competitiveness of natural gas produced on Native American tribal lands in the Rocky Mountain Basin – not just from the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, as the article wrongly implies, but other tribal lands (Northern Arapaho, Eastern Shoshone, Ute Mountain Ute, and the Ute Indian Tribe). Gas from these tribes is relatively underpriced due to a lack of interstate pipeline infrastructure to bring it to market. Because federal law requires interstate pipelines to provide transportation services on an open-access basis – that is, interconnect with other pipelines, much like local connectivity to long-distance telephone service – all five tribes will now be able to sell gas to new customers, including public utilities serving homes and businesses across the West.

Many other Indian tribes and nations will benefit from an environmental standpoint as natural gas replaces coal-fired power plants as mandated in California and other states. This includes tribes focused on developing their renewable energy resources for greater independence from foreign supplies, a vital mission of CERT and its membership. When the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine, reliable access to affordable natural gas – made possible by projects such as Ruby – provides the essential bridge to green energy."


Tribal court reinstates candidates
By Jomay Steen Journal staff

Tuesday, November 2, 2010 7:30 am
Anthony Waters’ name will not appear today on the Oglala Sioux Tribe’s official election ballot on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation following a ruling by the Supreme Court of the Oglala Sioux Nation.

But seven tribal members have been reinstated and remain candidates for today’s election, according to the court.

Waters had petitioned to run for Pass Creek District representative, although he lives in Martin, which is historically considered part of the Lacreek District. The OST Election Commission refused his request.

The council approved Waters’ appeal of that decision, but the election commission again refused to place Waters’ name on the ballot.

Chief Justice Michael T. Swallow and Associate Justice B.J. Jones ruled Saturday that while the election commission did have the authority to remove Waters’ name from the ballot, it did not have the authority to remove the candidates who are Tribal Council members.

The election commission had dropped council members Joe Rosales, James Cross, Robin Tapio, Barbara Dull Knife, Phillip Good Crow and Sonia Weston and President Theresa Two Bulls from the general election tribal ballot, saying that the council members’ original decision to allow Waters to remain on the ballot had violated tribal election codes. The justices ruled that the council members had acted in their official capacity as council members — not as individuals or as candidates.

On Oct. 26, Waters had petitioned the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council to have his name placed on the ballot after the second refusal by the election commission because of residency issues.

The election commission took action against candidates Rosales, Cross, Tapio, Dull Knife, Good Crow and Weston, informing them that their names would be removed from the general ballot because their actions had resulted in election code violations, which automatically forfeited their candidacies.

The commission also informed President Theresa Two Bulls of two complaints of election code violations against her, and it removed her name from the ballot.

At that point, Two Bulls and tribal council candidates initiated a lawsuit.

According to court documents, the OST Tribal Council lacked the legal authority to place any potential candidate on the ballot, ruling that that authority remains with the election commission. Placing Waters on the ballot was beyond the scope or authority of the law of the tribe, saying the decision of the election commission to deny Waters the right to run for Pass Creek District representative was correct.

But the court stated that when tribal elected leaders take action without violation of rights or malice in a legislative capacity, their action may be overturned by a court of law but no repercussions may befall them individually.

Contact Jomay Steen at 394-8418 or


Oneida Nation starts construction of project for renewable energy
Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Oneida Nation of Wisconsin began work on a renewable energy facility.

The 70,000-square-foot plant will convert garbage into energy. Kevin Cornelius, the chief executive officer of Oneida Seven Generations Corp., said it can process enough waste every day to provide electricity for 3,000 homes. "This should be looked at how much it's going to save taxpayers," Cornelius told The Green Bay Press-Gazette. "The important thing here is that instead of 150 tons of garbage going to a landfill, we'll create electricity for taxpayers."

The tribe is negotiating with Brown County to accept waste from a county transfer station. Cornelius also said the plant will accept garbage from other entities.

The facility is due to become operational in December 2011.



The members of the Spirit Warrior Society were uniquely different from all the other established society membes. They were responsible for the spiritual protection of the clan. These highly respected warriors were not trained to do physical battle, but rather the far more dangerous type that took place on the unseen plain of the spirit.

The people were highly enlightened in spiritual matters and considered the dark forces as their greatest and deadliest foe.

This chant is for strength and courage against dark forces.


Oh Great One above,
Bring strength to me
and keep my power strong.

Dark ones keep from us.
Shield us from their face.
I am not afraid to fight.

On Great One above.
I am Spirit Warrior of the people.
I guard my people from the dark ones.
I will protect with my life.

Oh Great One above.
I am Spirit Warrior.
I will shield with the Great Ones light.
I am not afraid to fight.


Chief of First Nation cancels election, prompting protest blockade
Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Members of the Bearspaw First Nation of Alberta are upset with the cancellation of next month's election.

Chief David Bearspaw was due to leave office on December 6. But he plans to remain on board until 2012, prompting band members to set up a blockade to the reserve.

"Us young people, we just want to our voices to be heard," protester Tiffany Lefthand told CBC News.

Bearspaw said he canceled the election in order to clean up the band leadership. He has imposed mandatory drug and alcohol tests for council members.

"I feel it that has to start from the top," Bearspaw told CBC News. "There has to be good leadership, good accountability, good role model."

The Bearspaw First Nation is part of the Stoney Nakoda First Nations.


Tribes see progress a year after Obama's Indian Nations summit

Monday, November 1, 2010

A year ago this week, President Barack Obama held the first-ever White House Tribal Nations Conference.

Obama promised to work closely with tribes and consult them on issues that affect them. Since then, he has signed the Indian Health Care Improvement Act and the Tribal Law and Order Act and has reached settlements in the Cobell case and the Keepseagle case.

"In all of these areas, tribal leaders across the country are not only being more engaged, but they're more informed," Jefferson Keel, the president of the National Congress of American Indians, told The Great Falls Tribune. "There is actually dialogue back and forth. It's constructive and it's productive."

One big issue still on the table is a fix to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Carcieri v. Salazar. Congress has failed to take action so the Obama administration plans to address the ruling through changes in regulation.


It's so sad when people try to homogenize everybody. Everybody be the same. We're just like flowers on the earth. It would be so boring when we go out there and we see nothing but daisies, black and white daisies. Different people, differnt ideas, and different beliefs, makes life so much more interesting.

Cecilia Mitchell (Mohawk) 1993


Navajo presidential candidate dismisses indictment as 'political'

Monday, November 1, 2010

Navajo Nation Vice President Ben Shelly, who is running for president, says an indictment against him in tribal court is "political."

Shelley and his running mate Rex Lee Jim, a delegate to the Navajo Nation Council, are being accused of misusing discretionary funds. Shelly is a former council delegate.

"I want to go before the judge Monday," Shelly told The Farmington Daily Times. "I want to clear my name for the people because I plan to represent them."

Shelly has fired back by filing ethics violations against other council delegates and against ice presidential candidate Earl Tulley, who is running with Lynda Lovejoy. Shelly says Tulley also misused discretionary funds.

Nearly three-fourths of the sitting Navajo Nation Council have been charged in the case, which was investigated by Alan Balaran, the former special master in the Indian trust fund lawsuit.

On an Indian Reservation, a Garden of BuddhasBy

ARLEE, Mont. — On a rural American Indian reservation here, amid grazing horses and cattle, a Buddhist lama from the other side of the world is nearing completion of a $1.6 million meditative garden that he hopes will draw spiritual pilgrims.

"There is something pure and powerful about this landscape," said Gochen Tulku Sang-ngag Rinpoche, the 56-year-old Tibetan lama, as he walked down a gravel road on a sunny fall day. "The shape of the hills is like a lotus petal blossoming."

Richard Gere has not been seen house shopping here — yet. But on the land of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribes, a 24-foot statue of Yum Chenmo, the Great Wisdom Mother, has risen in Mr. Sang-ngag’s farm field. Nearby, in his old sheep barn, amid rubber molds and plaster, some 650 statues of Buddha sit in neat rows, illuminated by shafts of light pouring in through broken boards.

It seemed the perfect setup for a clash of two cultures when Mr. Sang-ngag, a high-ranking Buddhist lama, came to this remote part of Montana a decade ago, liked the landscape feng shui and bought a 60-acre sheep ranch. At the foot of the towering, glacier-etched Mission Mountains — not unlike his native Tibet — he and a band of volunteers began building a Garden of 1,000 Buddhas to promote world peace.

The arrival of the exotic culture here in cowboy country, with multicolored prayer flags flapping in the breeze, made some from the Salish and Kootenai tribes uneasy, to say the least.

An unusual land ownership pattern was partly to blame. While most Indian reservations are majority-owned by the tribes, a 1904 law allowed nonmembers of the tribes to homestead land. And as a result, there are four to five times as many non-Indians on the reservation as there are Indians.
Mr. Sang-ngag called his place Ewam Sang-ngag Ling, or the Land of Secret Mantra, Wisdom and Compassion. It turns out that it was sacred to the tribes as well, a place where, oral traditions hold, a coyote vanquished a monster and drove out many bad spirits so the people could live here.

Julie Cajune, the executive director for American Indian Policy at Salish Kootenai College and other Indians began working to build bridges between the tribes and the Buddhists. They suggested that the Buddhists bring traditional gifts, prayer scarves and tobacco, to the tribal council, which they did.

"Many people move here without recognition they are a guest," Ms. Cajune said. "None of the mainstream churches or the Amish have done that."
Buddhists in Japan, Taiwan and China have sent money for Buddha statues. The Dalai Lama has agreed to come and consecrate the Garden of 1,000

Buddhas after the project it is finished, perhaps in 2012.

But the patchwork of Indian and non-Indian land holdings within the reservation remains contentious. Some tribal members are worried that groups drawn to the Buddhist garden will buy up nontribal land, driving prices further out of the reach of Indians, and ignore tribal rules and customs.
They point to the case of Amish families who have bought farmland within the reservation, said Ms. Cajune, who is Salish.

"It’s ironic, but many Indian people can’t afford to buy land on their own reservation," she said. A typical acre for building a home here might cost $30,000 — an enormous amount in rural and tribal Montana.

But Ms. Cajune said there was also an uncanny kinship between the tribal and Buddhist cultures, based on understandings of sacred landscapes, and even notions of honor and respect.

The biggest driver of rapprochement here is a shared history of subjugation and displacement — for the Tibetans, at the hands of the Chinese (Mr. Sang-ngag spent nine years in a Chinese labor camp) and for the tribes, by the American government.

"There is a shared vision of cultures being under pressure and surviving," Mr. Sang-ngag said through a translator.

The heart of the 60-acre development is the 10-acre Garden of 1,000 Buddhas. When tribal elders came and blessed it, the two groups found they both used juniper and sage as purifying incense for ceremonies, for example, as well as similar prayer cloths and ritual drumming.

After much outreach by the Buddhists, including asking permission from the tribe to have the Dalai Lama consecrate the ground, Ms. Cajune said, "I think local people are feeling more comfortable."

The sheep are gone from the green hills here now. "They achieved Buddhahood," joked Mr. Sang-ngag, as he walked through the garden, designed in the shape of the dharma wheel, which symbolizes the core teachings of Buddhism. The Great Wisdom Mother statue contains sacred vases and holy texts. Swords, guns and other symbols of war are buried underneath, to symbolize a triumph over violence.

In the Buddha barn, meanwhile, is a Norton motorcycle, which members here jokingly refer to as the sacred chopper. It will be raffled to raise money to finish the garden. About half the money has been raised.

Last week the Buddhists began planning with the tribal officials about managing pilgrimages to the site, a possible headache for the tribe. "Some people want to keep the reservation a good, quiet secret," Ms. Cajune said.

But Mr. Sang-ngag says good karma, or spiritual energy, is ebbing from the earth, and the garden will help enhance it. "It’s designed to awaken the Buddha nature" of wisdom and compassion in anyone who gazes upon it, said Lama Tsomo, a student who lives nearby.

A potential cultural clash has become cultural reconciliation. "It’s two cultures honoring each other in peace," Ms. Cajune said. "That’s a powerful story people need to hear." October 31 2010


What is life?

It is the flash of a firefly in the night

It is the breath of a buffalo in the winter time.

It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.

Crowfoot (Blackfeet) 1880


HuffPo honors Dr. Patricia Nez as a 'Greatest Person Of The Day'
Monday, November 1, 2010

"Every day on HuffPost, we're highlighting one 'Greatest Person' -- an exceptional individual who is confronting the country's economic and political crises with creativity, generosity and passion. Today we feature Dr. Patricia Nez Henderson, a member of the Dine' (Navajo) tribe and Vice President of the Black Hills Center for American Indian Health, an American Indian nonprofit health organization located in Rapid City, S.D.

She is the first Native American woman to graduate from the Yale School of Medicine. For the past 10 years Dr. Nez Henderson has collaborated with tribal communities all over the country in implementing comprehensive tobacco control and prevention programs. Her tireless efforts to change the way Native Americans see and use tobacco, and her work in advancing the health of Native communities across this country, is something we all can learn from and be inspired by.

Huffington Post: Part of what makes you so inspiring today is where you come from and the path you've taken to get here. Tell us about growing up on a Navajo reservation.

Dr: Patricia Nez Henderson: I grew up in the small community of Teesto, in the southern part of the Navajo Nation, in home with no electricity or running water. My father was in construction, and my mother was a stay-at-home mom. My childhood was wonderful; my relatives lived all around me, and since we had no television, we did so much together to entertain ourselves.

HP: Describe your education before college.

PNH: I went to boarding school starting in the fourth grade through high school. Before high school, I went to school with mostly Navajo kids. In high school we were a much smaller population, but were the only students to board at the school. I was fortunate to have great mentors in high school, to help me through and permit me to do extra and advanced work because the opportunities at my school were fairly limited. They really nurtured a love of science within me."


Night World....

The night is dark and cool. A star glows in the sky. There is a slight breeze, and I feel a chill. I can hear the owls as they sing in the trees near the lake. Where is the moon? I can't see it through the clouds.

The hour is late, but I don't want to sleep yet. A bat swoops through the air near my head as it hunts for food. It flies close to me, and I can hear the beat of its wings.

The leaves fall from the trees and land on the ground. The grass is wet with dew, and the fall air is sweet. A toad hops down the walk, and I must watch where I step.

I walk....I think....I dream....I wish.... and the world is still.

And then, at last, the voice of the night tells me it is time to go to bed....

Submitted by: Barbi

Thank you to our friend for her submission.


Native Sun News: 'Growing pains' for Rosebud Sioux Tribe store

Friday, October 29, 2010

MISSION, SOUTH DAKOTA –– The Turtle Creek Crossing store located west of town is facing what may be described as "growing pains" much like that experienced by any new business. Rosebud Sioux tribal president, Rodney Bordeaux explained that it might take any new business five years to see real growth. The new manager at the store is Trent Poignee, a former RST council representative from Antelope community.

The store began during Bordeaux’s election campaign in 2005 with the vision and input of the Rosebud Economic Development Corporation or REDCO and which celebrated its one year opening this summer.

The reasons for RST opening a store included high prices locally for groceries, tribal concerns over stores being unfriendly, raising prices on food stamp day and the fact that 80 percent out of the dollar is leaving the area and is not being reinvested on the Rosebud according to written statements supplied to the Native Sun News by Bordeaux in an interview over the weekend on the premises of the TCC store.

The cost of construction and the sources of funding for the store include, a $3 million dollar loan, two $2 million dollar grants in fiscal year 2007-08 from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community and an additional $177,199.50 for the parking lot and $153,450.00 for the access road.

There was an initial desire to build a quality store in the agency town of Rosebud, but no suitable location could be found and it was subsequently located in Mission.

The store originally hired nearly 60 employees and that number has been reduced to 24 employees. Some of the shrinking numbers have been due to routine turnover of employees as well as a recent reduction of employees in order to streamline the budget.

Bordeaux said, "The sales haven’t increased to the point where we could justify the number of employees we had before. The labor costs are so high that the profit margins are so low we had to take some drastic action. With new management coming on, Trent was able to actually start doing that."
It has seen a significant turnover in store managers, however Bordeaux says, "With our current and new store manager, Trent Poignee we have a tribal member with some experience and the drive to accept the challenge. We have a lot of faith in his leadership."

Poingnee described some of the specific strategies he will employ in order to increase sales. He said, "The strategy for marketing to get people in the door is we are going to have our reward card. For every hundred of dollars spent you get $5.00 off your next purchase. We are going to go back having drawings, nightly drawings."

"We will have different themes for different nights, maybe a pizza night. We are going to Shakopee in a week or so and ask for another grant…I’m going to really hit hard with that grant," Poingnee said. "Hit marketing, newspapers, giveaways and promotions. We just need to advertise and market it. That is what I am going to hit. Give things away with our logo on it. Our meat department is number one in the area."

The store was built as a way to create local jobs for Rosebud tribal members as well as to attract local shoppers and keep the money on the reservation. Some tribal members also believe that there is simply too much money that is spent in reservation borders town and not enough reinvested on the Rosebud.

It is a complicated issue that is compounded by the fact that many business and outside workers also come to the reservation to solicit tribal business and that money is taken back to other communities and not necessarily "turned over" on the reservation to support its economy. It is a microcosm of what happens in other tribal communities across the nation and there is no easy answer for policy makers.

The store has seemingly had difficulty in attracting a regular clientele as most grocery stores do. On any given day or evening the number of vehicles outside of the store might number in the single digits, while the other two stores in Mission might be have three or four times that number.

Bordeaux said, "That really gets me because one of the reasons for the store was the competition. They were unfriendly, the prices were high and when we came to town they cleaned their act up. However, I always thought our people would automatically follow the tribal grocery store, but that is not happening. And, I think it has something to do with advertising. A true sense of sovereignty is when we start thinking as a people or as a whole…we don’t seem to have a sense of unity."

The TCC store does boast a delicious noon buffet that features deep fried chicken that is reasonably priced. A complete meal can be purchased for just around $6.00, while other locations might charge a dollar or two more. There are times when the seating area is packed during the noon hour as workers from area schools and the hospital are seen routinely eating there.

‘We are looking at getting a franchise. We talked about maybe McDonald’s, a Hardees and maybe Kentucky Fried Chicken, Taco Bell. We are exploring those options" said Bordeaux.

A couple of months ago the store discontinued a successful rebate program whereby shoppers would get a $10 rebate for every $100 spent at the store or in the deli. The $10 could be used to purchase gas at the Rosebud Casino Fuel Plaza or for the purchase of a $10 bingo packet. The rebate program has returned as noted by Poignee.

The other issues of concern which the store continues to face are, that some tribal members do not support the store, a "concern that tribal sovereignty to be truly achieved is for the people to support tribal business, lack of qualified and experienced individuals in the area with business related management experience, further economic development, and more business needed in the same location" according to Bordeaux.

With respect to the future Bordeaux added, "I think we need to hit really hard in terms of advertisement, getting out there and really selling this store; and, making it competitive with uptown."

"I don’t know what it is. I just thought people would come here…I think what initially hurt us at the outset was due to some management issues. We were unable to keep the shelves adequately stocked" he added.

It was also noted that presently tribal employees are not able to use payroll deduction to shop at the store, but that might be an option to explore.
The benefits cited for new businesses locating at the TCC store site include the fact that they pay a 4 percent sales tax as compared to paying 6 percent in Mission. Also, there is plenty of room for expansion and development.

Finally, in addition to attracting a franchise to the location, Bordeaux also noted that the tribe is "working on a credit union for area citizens who want a difference or better service than what they are getting locally and working to attract other businesses to locate at the business site where TCC is."

(Dr. Archie Beauvais can be reached at


Native Sun News: Tribes hold keys to address changing climate

Friday, October 29, 2010

MISSOULA, MONTANA –– Indian tribes bear the brunt of climate change, but they also hold the keys to stem global warming, experts said at the Society of Environmental Journalists 20th Annual Conference in Missoula, Montana, Oct. 13-17.

"Climate change is having the worst impact on people who did not set the energy policy," said Alexis Bonogofsky, senior coordinator for the National Wildlife Federation’s Tribal Lands Conservation program.

The people of more than 535 federally recognized and other tribal governments have suffered from a "massive lack of federal oversight" of energy resources development, she said. That development in the form of oil, gas, coal and uranium extraction has left Super Fund sites around Indian country.

Meanwhile, tribal households pay significantly more in home energy expenses than most other Americans, and the money paid to energy providers leaves the reservations because most utilities are owned by non-tribal entities, according to NWF. Fossil Fuel Projects Damage Resources
"Native Americans don’t have a lot of time to sit and talk about climate justice," said Northern Cheyenne tribal member Gail Small, executive director of the Northern Cheyenne Native Action non-profit. "The crisis that we’re having means you have to look at what can be done on a small scale as well as looking at the global level."

The component of fossil fuel in climate change has affected not only mining locations and utility rates but also snow packs, water supplies, fishing stocks, and forest health, all vital to land-based indigenous cultures, leaders at the conference said.

However, native traditions, sovereign legal standing and reservation renewable energy reserves strengthen the tribes’ hand in both mitigating and adapting to the rising pressures from greenhouse gas generation, according to panelists.

"We’re moving into a new era of sovereignty opportunities for tribes to take control over their own resources," Bonogofsky said.

The Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation has refused to sacrifice tribal values for profits from coal strip mining on its lands, recently establishing a Class I air shed under EPA standards that require the nearby coal mining and refining operations to comply with the strictest federal legal controls.
"We need to look at keeping coal in the ground," Small said. Compensating land holders for not mining is an alternative that environmental lawyers are pursuing, she said. "We have to be creative," she added.

Lower Brule tribal member Pat Spears, president of Intertribal COUP (Council On Utility Policy) congratulated the Northern Cheyenne on the Class I Air Quality designation, adding, "Leaving coal in the ground makes much sense: It filters our water, it is the organs of our grandmother, the liver and the kidneys."

Intertribal COUP represents South Dakota tribes, Wyoming’s Northern Arapaho, and Nebraska’s Omaha tribes, but Northern Cheyenne’s location is within the same Lakota Territory once left to tribes by treaty, Spears observed.

"We’re the sway vote in this climate debate that’s going on," Spears said during the panel entitled Energy Issues on Tribal Lands. "The call amongst our people is to help grandmother earth," he added. Tribes Can Grow Their Own Green Energy
The first tribal wind farm was at the Campo Kumeyaay Nation in California, which has targeted 2020 for 20 percent of the tribe’s energy to come from renewable energy sources.

Intertribal COUP cut its teeth on the wind generators at Rosebud Sioux Reservation, KILI Radio windmill on Pine Ridge Sioux Reservation, and the turbine at Mandan/Hidatsa/Arikara Reservation at Ft. Berthold, two in South Dakota and one in North Dakota. Now its 15 tribal government members are going for more.

"We have one-quarter of the energy capacity in this country," Spears said. "We want to use the transmission system to distribute wind energy, and we want to do it as an intertribal alliance, because if you do this on a larger scale, it makes it cheaper for community wind."

Intertribal COUP also advocates for funding regimens that would allow tribes to access subsidies and bonding for energy development that are available to private or other governmental utility developers.

When a U.S. Department of Energy Western Area Power Administration (WAPA) report came out in August saying that tribes could only provide a small fraction of the wind energy feasible for the grid, Intertribal Coup filed comments to substantiate that tribal governments had the potential for greater capacity.

Spears said Indian country needs to build to take advantage of U.S. President Barack Obama’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Target for Federal Operations, announced in October 2009. The directive calls for federal green power purchases to reduce global warming, based on the fact that the U.S. government is the single largest energy consumer in the national economy.

We don’t want wall-to-wall wind turbines," Spears said. But he added, several conventional power plants proposed for the Northern Plains have been postponed indefinitely due to "serious trouble trying to feed the monster" of fossil fueled energy production.

"We’re putting pressure on the coal and fossil fuel boys. We’re not going to just sit by," Spears said. Intertribal COUP uses scientific studies from foundations and academia as fodder for its arguments in government-to-government negotiations between tribes and federal energy clientele, he noted.
The organization’s scheme is to use smart-grid power-source switching to emphasize wind power, using Missouri River hydropower as a back-up for higher demand, and opting for coal-fired electricity only as a last resort. That is the opposite of the current paradigm. Tribes are preparing to negotiate with WAPA in the next round of five-year power contracts, he said.

Community wind production is just one part of Intertribal COUP’s plan to make Indian country the leader in clean energy production for the global climate’s sake. Energy efficient housing, such as construction with high-insulation-value straw bales is another.

Southwestern tribes have additional potential for solar power generation. According to NWF, tribal lands have the capacity to power the country 4.5 times over with solar energy.

Clean energy can help protect natural heritage and stabilize climate change, while it creates employment, analysts conclude. Several federal agencies offer grants for tribes and reservation businesses to install green technology, according to NWF. Addressing Obstacles for Tribal ManagementHis remarks addressed the release of his organization’s report entitled, "The New Energy Future in Indian Country: Confronting Climate Change, Creating Jobs, and Conserving Nature". It was released in collaboration with Intertribal COUP, National Tribal Environmental Council, and Native American Rights Fund.

"The vast potential on tribal lands to generate clean energy from renewable resources means that Indian tribes can help to provide for their own energy needs, generate clean power for a new energy future in Indian country, and put America on the path to energy independence, said Bob Gruenig, senior policy analyst of National Tribal Environmental Council.

However, many obstacles remain for tribes that decide to go into green energy generation. Among them are: heavy reliance on insufficient federal funding, little to no equity in production, no access to renewable energy tax credits, state taxes on fee-land facilities, no reservation taxation power, and long distances from transmission lines.

Obama admitted this in his November 2009 address to leaders at the Tribal Nations Conference. "Up to 15 percent of our potential wind energy resources are on Native American land, and the potential for solar energy is even higher," he said. "But too often, you face unique hurdles to developing these renewable resources.

"We’re streamlining and expediting the permit process for energy development and transmission across tribal lands," he promised. "We are securing tribal access to financing and investments for new energy projects," he added.

(Talli Nauman is the co-director of Journalism to Raise Environmental Awareness. Contact her at


Two airline mechanics get off work at the local U.S. airport and one says, "Lets go have a beer." and the other one says, "Why don't we try drinking jet fuel? I hear it tastes like whiskey, and you don't have any hangover in the morning." So they drink about a quart of it apiece and it tastes great and they have a good time. In the morning, one of them calls up the other and he says, "Hey, how do you feel?" "I feel great." "Me too, no hangover." "Just one thing, have you farted yet?" "No..." "Well don't, I'm calling from China!"




3 tablespoons shortening
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour*
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup milk

Cut shortening into flour, baking powder and salt with pastry blender until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir in milk. Drop dough by spoonfuls onto hot meat or vegetables in boiling stew (do not drop directly into liquid) Cook uncovered 10 minutes. Cover and cook 10 minutes longer. 10 dumplings: 105 calories per dumpling.

*if using self-rising flour, omit baking powder and salt.

**Cheese Dumplings: add 1/4 cup shredded sharp cheese (1 ounce) with the flour

**Harb Dumplings: add 1/2 teaspoon herbs (such as dried sage leaves, celery seed or dried thyme leaves) with the flour.

**Parsley Dumplings: add 3 tablespoons snipped parsley or chives with the flour.

* * * * * *


24 graham cracker squars
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup margarine or butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Heat oven to 350*. Arrange crackers in single layer in ungreased jelly roll pan. 15 1/2 X 10 1/2 X 1inch. Heat brown sugar and margarine to boiling. Boil and stir 1 minute, romove from heat. Stir in vanilla. Pour over crackers, spread evenly. Sprinkle with pecans. Bake until bubbly, 8 - 10 minutes, cool slightly. Cut into bars, about 2 1/4 X 1 1/4 inches. 48 bars: 50 calories per bar

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Thousands Rise Up for Mountains at "Appalachia Rising"This week thousands of activists, including Center for Biological Diversity attorney Bethany Cotton, gathered on the steps of the nation's capitol for Appalachia Rising, an event to urge the government to ban mountaintop-removal coal mining. Mountaintop removal mining literally blows up mountains to get at coal and dumps toxic debris directly into streams, poisoning endangered species and human communities -- with a current toll of more than 500 decimated mountains and 2,000 miles of ruined streams.

114 people were arrested during the peaceful Appalachia Rising protest, including NASA climate scientist James Hansen. Mickey McCoy, an arrested Appalachian resident and past Inez, Kentucky mayor, stated: "I have talked, begged, debated, written letters to officials, published op-ed pieces in newspapers and lobbied on the state and federal level to end mountaintop removal. . . . My home and people are paying the real price for mountaintop removal. They are dying."

Despite Appalachia's suffering, the Environmental Protection Agency recently went back on plans to announce whether it would veto a permit for the planned Spruce Mine in West Virginia, which would bury seven miles of streams and annihilate 2,300 acres of hardwood forest. In May 2010, the Center urged the EPA to veto the permit and stop what would become the largest mountaintop removal mine in history, and we'll keep working to save Appalachia's mountains


Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes hosts prayer days in Washington

Friday, October 29, 2010

The Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma is observing American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month with days of prayer in Washington, D.C.

All tribes are invited to send representatives to The Ellipse near the National Mall and the White House from November 2-7.
"We will gather to pray each day for the country, its leaders and its people and we will give thanks, and ask all to pray for prosperity and the fulfillment of the pledges that America has made to its peoples," the tribe said in a statement.


Chief Strong

Clan Mother White Fawn..wisdom and strength

Chief Standing and wisdom


Paugusett their endeavors
Wisdom..for all our Clan Mothers, Chiefs and council members


Buchanan: Being a black Indian at a Chickahominy pow wow
By Shonda Buchanan
Published: Oct 29, 2010
I knew as the sweat rolled down my face that I was being watched.

"This is how tribal wars get started," I said to my friend, Jane.

"Huh?" She said. I shook my head, not wanting to implicate her. Not yet. Besides, she "looked Indian." I did not. As we exited, three men accosted me.

"So, you didn’t hear what I said to you last time?" The man said gruffly. "Excuse me," I laughed. He furrowed his brows.

"Did you hear what I told you before?" He was brown-skinned, sporting a moustache, about my height, and muscular.

"Brotha," I touched his shoulder, "let’s talk over here." People moved aside cautiously: What did she do wrong? Their curiosity buzzed above our heads in the coolness of the Sunday afternoon. She’s dressed like an Indian. What did she do?

I knew exactly what I had done.

Danced without a tribal card at a Native American pow wow that forbid it. On Chickahominy tribal grounds.

This is what my mother would call "the sh-t hitting the fan."
I had registered maybe once in the last five years of dancing at pow wows. Getting a tribal card to prove your Indian blood is, to me, a result of Manifest Destiny, when Indigenous Americans were moved off their lands and relocated or dumped into Oklahoma territory, and because this displacement caused confusion for the government, an enrollment process was instituted. This process excluded the tribal members who left the reservation in search of jobs or new prospects, tired of the poverty and misery. Those who left became mulattos or colored, fading into the seams of America. Those who married another race left, becoming exiles, and their children mixed bloods.

So, when the emcee announced four intertribal dances, I thought I could dance with my friends, even though they wore blue jeans, shorts and sandals. They simply wrapped shawls around their street clothes.

But the angry man, and the other two flanking me, one in regalia with patient, sad eyes, and the other in street clothes, yellowish skin and dark sunglasses, made me suddenly realize that this was an Indian shake down.

"Didn’t you see our signs?"

"Where I come from," I touched my heart in earnest, "everyone can dance during intertribal."

"No," he said. "You cannot."

"Who are your council people?" I said. I could feel my chest tightening, and the tears came. "What are your names?" They said their names but in the heat and frustration, their names fell away.

"We are the council," Tall Dark Sunglasses Yellow Skin said. "He’s on the council. I’m on the council. These are just our rules."

"But those rules were set up by a white government that wanted to count and classify Indians. You’re holding me to the same standard?"

"This is what we do because the government tells us to," Dark Sunglasses said.

"Wait." I said. "You’re saying the government is here counting the Indians dancing in that circle?"

"Look," Mr. Gruff Brown Skin said. "Everyone in that circle has registered and has their cards."

None of my friends had tribal enrollment cards either. Were these Virginia Indians racist? Was I carded because I was the most visibly black, despite being adorned in a buckskin dress?

I felt my heart moving up into my mouth, swallowing the feeling that women from the tribe should have approached me, not men. Yet to be fair, I saw these council members’ point. I understand how this could be as frustrating for them as it was for me, an unknown woman who didn’t register as a dancer in their circle. Their fight to maintain their Indianness, to them, is on one level a way of protecting their heritage and culture, but on another level, it is highly exclusionary of those who are Indian without cards: black, white, Mexican.

These three men in front of me were a phalanx, they thought, for their culture, but to me, at that moment, they were no better than the white patrols that made Indians show their cards to get blankets and rations in South Dakota, in Montana, in the Plains while pillaging Indian lands. Erasing tribal lines with strokes of pens, shiny trinkets, quick brushes of thumbs against white sheets of paper.

For the last 12 years, I have been on what we call the Red Road, and embraced what was in my family a quiet-as-kept secret – being Indian. "You got some Indian, some French and German, and an itty, little bit of black," my mother intoned when I was growing up. My people migrated to Michigan in the 1850s, and for the longest time – because one of my great-great uncles was adopted and trained by Ottawa healers, earning him the name Indian doctor – I thought we were Ottawa too. But after years of research, I have found all but one ancestor that lands us in Sample County, Clinton, N.C.

A missing ancestor. This is the ultimate dilemma and frustration of every African American who has done their research, who makes their own regalia, who participates in the Native American ceremonies, who, like me, dances without cards where they let us. And sometimes when they don’t.

To argue with my uncles felt like a burden had been lifted.

I simply wanted them to see me. Recognize me. Because maybe I will never have "proof."

Maybe nothing, even a DNA test, will ever prove I am the child of Indians as well as Africans. But I know I am the daughter of Velma Stafford-Cloud, daughter of Clifford Stafford and Dorothy Manual, of the North Carolina tribes; daughter of John Buchanan, of the Okolona, Mississippi Choctaw Buchanans. There is no evidence of direct descent yet. No evidence except my heart. Beating in that circle. For card carrying and non-card carrying Indians alike, beating for us all. Aho.

Shonda Buchanan is assistant professor in the Department of English at Hampton University. Of North Carolina and Mississippi Choctaw Indian ancestry, Buchanan is a board member of the Weyanoke Association, which educates the public on the shared heritage of African Americans and Indigenous Americans.




Thyme: One teaspoon of dried herb per cup of hot water. Sip You can also use it as a compress to ease the aching muscles in the neck, shoulders and back that can contribute to tension headaches.

Peppermint (mentha piperita) Mixed with a little alcohol and rubed on your temples, peppermint oil helps alleviate headache pain. You can mix it with lavender, eucalptus and rosemary. ****Warning: these oils are for external use only.

There are many herbs that can be used for headache. Other ones to try are: cinnamon, lemongrass, basil, blackpepper, caraway, coriander, ginseng, lavender, plantain, poppy seeds, rosemary, rue, tea and yarrow.


Delaware woman chose life as U.S. citizen
Anna Grinter was a Lenape Delaware Indian."

Her Indian name was "Windagamen." It meant "Sweetness." Her white name was Anna.

She was a Lenape Delaware Indian who married Moses Grinter, and when she died in 1905, she was a wealthy, prominent woman in Kansas City.

Moses Grinter was among the first whites who settled in Kansas; first, operating a ferry across the Kansas River and later opening a trading post for travelers, soldiers and freighters along the Oregon-California and Santa Fe Trails.

Together, the couple built a farm and an orchard. Their two-story brick house, built in the late 1850s, is the oldest unaltered building in Wyandotte County.

It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is operated as a museum by the Kansas State Historical Society.

In the early 1830s, the Lenape Delaware tribe was one of several relocated from the Eastern United States to the Fort Leavenworth Indian Agency.

In 1836, Moses Grinter married Anna. At that time, Kansas was Indian Territory.

More than 10,000 Indians from nearly two dozen tribes emigrated to the Kansas Territory.

Two forts were built to oversee the tribes — Fort Leavenworth and Fort Scott.

Some of those tribes were the Wyandot, Munsee and Shawnee.

The military hired Grinter to operate his ferry on the Kansas River near Fort Leavenworth.

Some of the earliest records giving an indication of what Grinter charged to carry people across the river can be found in James Kennedy’s list of expenditures for conducting

Kickapoo immigrants to their reservation above Fort Leavenworth, written in May, 1833:"Moses R. Grinter, for ferriage of Indians, four wagons and baggage, across the Kansas River [the amount of $38.75]" and "Moses Grinter for ferriage of 5 wagons and teams across the Kansas river [the amount of] $9.25."
The venture was not without hazards.

The Rev. Isaac McCoy wrote of a cholera threat that "so alarmed the Delawares, that they removed their ferry boat to prevent travelers from crossing to them."

Still, the Grinters survived and prospered. They built a store . A government-run blacksmith shop was located nearby. A post office opened in 1849.
The Grinter land was part of the Delaware reservation, covering what is now several counties in northeastern Kansas. When the federal government moved the Indian tribes from Kansas into Oklahoma in 1867, the Grinters chose to stay behind.

Anna became a U.S. citizen. She was one of 26 adult Delaware who elected to remain in Kansas and become citizens of the United States. And, when her husband died in 1878, he left her a wealthy woman.

She had 200 acres — 90 of which were being cultivated — on a farm that was then valued at $10,000.

It is in the Muncie neighborhood of Kansas City, Kan.

When she died on June 28, 1905, Anna Ginter’s last words were a prayer she said in Delaware.

Read more:

"The honor of the people lies in the moccasin tracks of the woman.
Walk the good road.... Be dutiful, respectful, gentle, and modest my daughter...
Be strong with the warm, strong heart of the earth.
No people goes down until their women are weak and dishonored, or dead upon the ground. Be strong and sing the strength of the Great Powers within you, all around you."

 -- Village Wise Man, SIOUX

The Elders say the Native American women will lead the healing among the tribes. We need to especially pray for our women, and ask the Creator to bless them and give them strength. Inside them are the powers of love and strength given by the Moon and the Earth. When everyone else gives up, it is the women who sings the songs of strength. She is the backbone of the people. So, to our women we say, sing your songs of strength; pray for your special powers; keep our people strong; be respectful, gentle, and modest.
Oh, Great One, bless our women. Make them strong today.


Thats it for this month. Don't forget, if you have something you would like to submit to the newsletter please send it to: This can be: news, birthdays, deaths, items of interest, poems, etc.

As usual....Blessings and be healthy and safe.
Shiakoda Autumn Wolf Moon Q.

"With 95 million acres of land under their management and centuries of experience conserving the natural world, Indian tribes can play a significant role in protecting natural resources from climate change and coping with a warmer world," said Steve Torbit, director of NWF’s Rocky Mountain Regional Center, based in Boulder, Colo.

Studies show 90 cents of every dollar tribes spend on energy immediately leaves tribal communities, according to Intertribal COUP. To build tribal economies, the organization has been working for access to the power grid that will allow wind generation from reservations to feed into the electricity mix.

About 40 percent of the United States’ coal comes from eastern Wyoming’s Powder River Basin, which the federal government has long-since dubbed a national sacrifice area, panelists noted. Among other environmental impacts, coal bed methane thumpers scare elk and sage grouse both sacred and sustenance sources to the people of the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation located 15 miles from there. JIM ROBBINS