The Week That Was: The Big Stories in Indian Country, November 10, 2013


It's our weekly roundup of the stories that mattered most in Indian country:

MASCOT FIGHT GOES ON: On Thursday night, hundreds of protesters calling for an end to the use of Redskins as a name and mascot rallied outside the Mall of America Field ahead of the team's game against the Minnesota Vikings. Among the participants was Olympic gold medalist Billy Mills, who afterward shared his feelings on the issue with ICTMN. Another of Indian country's favorite athletes, college basketball star Shoni Schimmel, also came forward this week in support of a name change.

THE COUNCIL HAS SPOKEN: The Washington, D.C. City Council voted unanimously to approve a resolution Tuesday urging the Washington Redskins to change their name. This is the second time in history that the D.C. Council has called on the team to abandon its name.

IT'S NOT JUST INDIANS: Another racially questionable mascot, Coachella Velley High School's "Arab," came under scrutiny. 

FUNDS FOR REINTEGRATION: The Muscogee Creek Nation has received $3.78 million from the U.S. Department of Justice for the tribe’s Reintegration Program (RIP), which assists tribal citizens who have served time in a correctional facility and are ready to be welcomed back into society.

HOPE FOR THE FAIRBANKS FOUR: The convictions of four Native men in the 1997 fatal beating of a 15-year-old boy are being reviewed by the Alaska attorney general’s office, also known as the Department of Law. Families and other supporters of the so-called Fairbanks Four have long contended that the men are innocent.

FIGHTING FOR NATIVE LIT: Chad Falls Down, a Crow/Gros Ventre student in Billings, Montana, has been fighting to keep Sherman Alexie's Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian on the 10th grade reading list at Skyview High School.

A BIG PLEDGE: In attempt to gain approval for its proposed $808 million Hard Rock Casino in Kenosha, Wisconsin, the Menominee Indian Tribe has pledged to offset any losses incurred by nearby Indian gaming facilities and the state with up to $250 million over the first five years of the casino's operations.

A NATIVE HEROINE: DC Comics author Jeff Lemire is working on a new superhero team, Justice League Canada, and as he develops a female First Nations character he's looking to the late activist Shannen Koostachin for inspiration.

FINALLY RUNNING: A year after Superstorm Sandy scuttled their plans of running in the New York City Marathon, five Lakota runners calling themselves Team One Spirit returned to NYC to finish what they started.


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