The Week That Was: The Big Stories in Indian Country, June 23, 2013
It's our weekly wrapup of the stories that mattered most in Indian country:
NO TRESPASSING: Trespassing charges have been dropped against three sacred land activists who tried to pray at the Hickory Ground ceremonial site in Wetumpka, Alabama last winter where the Poarch Band of Creek Indians has a $246 million casino expansion project underway.
DESIGNERS CHOSEN: Paul Frank Industries has announced the details of its promised collaboration with Native designers, a venture that came about in the wake of a racially-insensitive party held in September.
PRESIDENT ARRESTED: During a protest in Whiteclay, Nebraska June 17 in which Oglala Sioux tribal members were protesting beer truck deliveries to beer selling establishments in the town, Oglala Sioux President Bryan Brewer was arrested.
SCOTUS RULES: The U.S. Supreme Court, in a decision announced June 17, ruled 7-2 that Arizona's Proposition 200, which would have made it more difficult for people to register to vote by mail, is superseded by federal law.
ROCK OF AGES: At more than 6,000 years old, prehistoric cave and rock art found in what is today Tennessee is easily the oldest discovered yet within the United States.
SUPPORT FOR HARPER: Tribal leaders have written a letter in support of the Administration’s nomination of Keith Harper as the United States Representative to the United Nations Human Rights Council.
HATCHERY OPENS: A First Salmon ceremony on the morning of June 20 launched the new, state-of-the-art Chief Joseph Hatchery on the Colville Reservation. “[This] is a cause for celebration for the tribe and serves as a testament to the important and meaningful work that can be accomplished when federal, tribal and state entities come together,” Tribal chairman John Sirois said.
STILL WARRIORS, MAN: In a Rolling Stone cover story, Johnny Depp, who plays Tonto in the upcoming film The Lone Ranger, says he hopes his portrayal is inspiring to Native youth. "You're still warriors, man," he says.
RAMER'S RELIEF: After nearly a month of not knowing her fate, Chelsey Ramer, of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians, and her family have been informed by Escambia Academy officials that she will receive her diploma and will not have to pay a $1,000 fine for wearing an eagle feather on her cap during her graduation ceremony in May.
TRIBAL AMENDMENT: On June 18 the Senate voted unanimously (94-0) to approve a tribal amendment to the S.744 Immigration reform bill that will add four tribal government officials to the Border Oversight Task Force that was established originally in the bill.