Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Cherokees say Ward Churchill's dog pedigree is phony

The first line on Churchill's current resume, following his name, personal contact information and date of birth, reads: "Tribal enrollment: United Keetoowah Band Cherokee (Roll No. R7627).
Tribal leader, Chief George Wickliffe, however, says otherwise. In a scathing statement issued on May 9, Chief Wickliffe said,
that all of Churchill's "past, present and future claims or assertions of Keetoowah 'enrollment,' written or spoken, including but not limited to; biographies, curriculum vitae, lectures, applications for employment, or any other reference not listed herein, are deemed fraudulent by the United Keetoowah Band.

The United Keetoowah Band would like to make it clear that Mr. Churchill IS NOT a member of the Keetoowah Band and was only given an honorary 'associate membership' in the early 1990s because he could not prove any Cherokee ancestry.

According to the report, Churchill and his lawyer presented a 50 page response to the University of Colorado's investigation of Churchill and included his tribal membership card as well as a videotape of Churchill's induction ceremony into the Keetoowah band. The Keetoowah say that the honorary or associate membership is the same as those given to people such as former President Clinton and that such memberships are no longer granted after a change in the band's bylaws. The band agreed to grant Churchill his associate membership because, Chief Wickliffe says,
his band had decided to honor Churchill with the associate membership because Church-ill had promised to write the tribe's history and had pledged "to help and honor the UKB."

"To date Mr. Churchill has done nothing in regards to his promise and pledge."

"Any record of past affiliations with the UKB are non-existent, and Churchill does not appear anywhere on our membership rolls," the statement said.
The band had this to say about Churchill's controversial political comments,
His remarks in no way reflect the true compassion for the victims of the World Trade Center and their families that is felt by the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians."
A visit to the Keetoowah Band's website reveals that they had a few more choice words for Mr. Churchill:
The United Keetoowah Band, a sovereign Nation, has the sole right to determine our membership and interpret our laws. The term "Indian" refers not only to an ethnic category, but it is also a political determination based on our unique relationship with the Federal Government. Mr. Churchill mocks the basic fundamental principles of Tribal Sovereignty when he consistently refers to enrollment as a "pedigree" and compares enrollment to "dogs" and "Nazi policies." Additionally, his rhetoric did not prevent him from approaching the UKB and seek a so-called "dog pedigree."

One other point. The report quoted above from the Rocky Mountain News consistently refers to the Keetoowah Band as a "tribe". This is not correct. It is a "band", not a tribe. Can't these guys get anything right? Most native American or Indian tribes are made up of bands. In many cases these bands are completely independent of the tribe. In some cases, various bands within a tribe maintain an adversarial relationship with one another that stretches back many years.

A good example of which I have personal knowledge would be the Miami Indian Tribe. Where are they located? Well, that depends on which band you are talking about. The Meshingomesia band still resides in Indiana. I hold an honorary membership in that band granted to me by Chief William F. Hale (Mon-gon-zah). My Indian name is Keokuk (like the city in Iowa, which, according to Chief Hale, means "Smart Fox".) The Meshingomesia don't get along at all with the Little Turtle Band. Chief Little Turtle was a hero to the Miami because he refused to give up their lands to the white settlers, so he and his people, his band, were moved to Oklahoma. The Meshingomesia Band gave up its territory and was therefore allowed to stay in Indiana. The two bands still do not see eye-to-eye on much and the federal and state governments maintain unique relationships with each band.

Some bands are quite large. Various bands of the Sioux Nation, as well as the Cherokee, have their own reservations completely separate from the others band's reservations.

Did you notice anything else unusual in the statement on the Keetoowah Band's website? I'll quote again, "...United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians." and "The term "Indian"...". Hmmm. No mention of "Native American". I think that "Native American" is a PC term cooked up somewhere by PC liberals that holds little import to the, er, Indians.

Er, linked to Huffington's Toast, Protein Wisdom, Michelle Malkin and probably some others whom I have forgotten. There's gotta be an easier way to do this.

1 comment:

The Arianna said...

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