Cherokee Indians: We Are Free to Oust Blacks

MSNBC, September 14, 2011

The nation’s second-largest Indian tribe said on Tuesday that it would not be dictated to by the U.S. government over its move to banish 2,800 African Americans from its citizenship rolls.

“The Cherokee Nation will not be governed by the BIA,” Joe Crittenden, the tribe’s acting principal chief, said in a statement responding to the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs.

{snip}

The reaction follows a letter the tribe received on Monday from BIA Assistant Secretary Larry Echo Hawk, who warned that the results of the September 24 Cherokee election for principal chief will not be recognized by the U.S. government if the ousted members, known to some as “Cherokee Freedmen,” are not allowed to vote.

{snip}

After the Civil War, in which the Cherokee fought for the South, a treaty was signed in 1866 guaranteeing tribal citizenship for the freed slaves.

The U.S. government said that the 1866 treaty between the Cherokee tribe and the U.S. government guaranteed that the slaves were tribal citizens, whether or not they had a Cherokee blood relation.

{snip}

Besides pressure from the BIA to accept the 1866 Treaty as the law of the land, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is withholding a $33 million disbursement to the tribe over the Freedmen controversy.

{snip}

[Editor’s Note: Here is a video the Cherokees produced explaining their position.]

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  • Bill R

    Wouldn’t that be like the federal government telling me that because my family once owned slaves, descendants of those slaves have all the familial rights to my property, name and social security as my own blood family today? What a load. The Cherokee are probably evicting them for the same reasons that blacks get evicted from anywhere. Contentious, demanding, unlawful, disrespectful, crime ridden, violent.

  • je suis paganisme

    They took the whole Cherokee nation

    Put us on this reservation

    Took away our way of life–

    The tomahawk and the Bowie knife

    And now they say we got to obey

    The orders they give us every day

    We got to take back every Black

    Or get another knife in our back

    We say “Go to Hell”, BIA

    Have been wanting ‘Round 2’ anyway

    We will beat you this time around

    Get the hell off our sacred ground.

  • Jeddermann.

    “the 1866 Treaty as the law of the land,”

    It is not so much the law of the land but a treaty between two sovereign nations. The United States and the sovereign Cherokee nation. That nation has the right as a sovereign power to decide who is a citizen and who is not. Plain pure and simple.

  • SoCal LoCal

    I wish whites had the same nerve. Really, who gave anyone permission to permit resident non-whites to become citizens of the US. Right, the fourteenth amendment. But the constitution, as originally written, declares only whites may be citizens, and only white men with property may vote.

  • Wayne Engle

    Ironic that a federal government which broke all its treaties with the Indians, is now telling a tribe that a treaty signed in 1866 still has to be honored.

    Actually, I see no reason why blacks who can’t prove any Cherokee ancestry should be allowed membership in the tribe. Caucasians who can’t prove any Native American ancestry aren’t allowed such membership. As a matter of fact, I believe I am about one-eighth Cherokee, but I doubt if that would be enough to qualify me as a member of the Cherokee Nation.

    This is just another example of blacks being allowed to ride their “You kept us in slavery” claims, for special favors, in perpetuity.

  • Anonymous

    This is a very informative video. This story is even in the mainstream media. Sort of amazing that the US government broke so many treaties with the Indians and now expect a tribe to follow the US interpretation of a treaty.

  • Anonymous

    5 — Wayne Engle wrote at 8:00 PM on September 14:

    As a matter of fact, I believe I am about one-eighth Cherokee, but I doubt if that would be enough to qualify me as a member of the Cherokee Nation.

    ______________________________________________________________

    Actually you likely would qualify. The standard is not very demanding.

    From the Cherokee Nation website section about the issue:

    http://goo.gl/tBdFX

    Citizens voted on March 3, 2007 to amend the Cherokee Nation Constitution to clarify eligibility for Cherokee citizenship. An overwhelming majority voted that to be a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, you must be able to trace your lineage to one Indian ancestor listed on the base roll of our people, a document known as the Dawes Roll.

    ______________________________________________________________

    BTW, we already know that some already free blacks in the slave states owned slaves and now we learn that American Indians did too. Kind of puts a crimp in the meme that the White folks are uniquely evil.

    Here’s the official Cherokee video about the issue.

    http://goo.gl/dL5aN

  • SKIP

    “The U.S. government said that the 1866 treaty between the Cherokee tribe and the U.S. government”

    And we all KNOW how well the U.S. government honors its’ treaties, right all??? I side with the Cherokee Nation of which my former wife and my two sons by her are members, give the $33 million to those expelled blacks and let them build their own ghetto.

  • LOUDMOUTH57

    This is an indicator of what is coming down the pike in the future. Those loving,caring and sharing minorities of color are going to eat each other alive as they fight over the crumbs left by whitey after they get their wish of living in a world without white people.

  • Alexandra

    I am, at most, 1/32 Cherokee (if oral family history is to be believed–plus my husband said you can tell by my eyes that I have Amerind ancestry), and since that is such a small amount, I don’t think I have any business trying to become a member of the Cherokee Nation. I am predominantly white, and I consider myself white, and I’m happy to be white. I think to focus greatly on such a small part of my heritage would be a kind of white guilt on my part.

    That being said, good on the Cherokee. They have every right to determine who’s part of their tribe and who isn’t.

    “the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is withholding a $33 million disbursement to the tribe over the Freedmen controversy.”

    And this, people, is why you NEVER rely on the government for anything. Otherwise you’ll have to play their game and jump through their hoops.

  • Anonymous

    Some of those so-called ‘Cherokees’ in the video look about as black as Obama’s children, who have a fraction of white lineage.

    When drawing divisions about who belongs, sometimes the eye is the best arbitrary judge.

  • white advocate – Canada

    As part of my white research I learned about “authority” as a personality trait as well as a method of leadership. So as an exercise I always try to see an authoritarian angle; obeying leaders for example. David Yeagley is an Indian who nevertheless participates with AR. He is now leading a legal action that is hugely important for whites. We owe him something. What does he think about the Cherokee expulsion of blacks? How about we just obey what he says.

  • Anonymous

    What is the big deal with the food aid?? So many plump Indians in the video sure look like they can afford to lose some weight. It appears they have a lot of cases of diabetes in the making. They ought to know better and stay away from the White man’s junk food.

    Hey, if the Feds are gonna cut ’em off, they ought to make a deal, get back their traditional lands they were driven off of by the government, then they’ll take the Freedmen back. The Feds have a lot of gall, what with all the Indian treaties they broke or failed to enforce on the Indians’ behalf.

  • Anonymous

    Really now? The same liberal government that wants us to be so multicultural and nice to minorities, and goes on and on about how cruel and intrusive we were to the Indians, goes ahead and does this kind of crap to them just so their precious blacks’ feelings aren’t hurt?

  • Istvan

    They do have blacks in their tribe, unfortunately for them, they are just trying to weed out the scammers. What is scary, however, is the number of Indians who look Mexican as opposed to classically American Indian, white or black.

  • Seek

    My ex-wife is 1/32 Seminole. Does that qualify her for a tribal bonanza? By the logic of black activists, it should.

  • Sardonicus

    Native Americans have suffered at the hands of “our” government, and the Cherokee are no exception. The government has broken countless treaties with Native Americans and reduced whole tribes to a drunken welfare dependency. I say let the Cherokee decide who is a Cherokee. I think the United States government should back off their typical condescending paternalism.

  • Anonymous

    Where would Blacks be without big government? Where would big government be without Blacks?

  • Anonymous

    Just curious, but I’ve spoken with a lot of whites in my life time who claim to have Cherokee blood, with 1/8 almost always being the fraction of Cherokee heritage they have. Is this true, or do some whites just hop on the “Cherokee bandwagon” the same as the blacks do? Again, no offense, but more a point of curiosity.

  • Luke

    Amazing.

    When I saw the headline of this article on the main AmRen page, I said to myself – let’s watch the flood of ‘supposedly racial healthy & aware’ whites making comments, who’ll be falling over triple-butt backwards to declare that they’ve got a tiny seed of some flavor of Indian DNA somewhere in their genes.

    Sure enough, that’s exactly what I see.

    Listen, my fellow AR community members. This is a programmed response – and to show you just how effective the enemy controlled, virulently anti-white media influence has been on you during your entire lifetimes – even those whites who appear to be waking up and recapturing their racial pride and racial awareness react like programmed zombies when any opportunity presents itself whereby they can gush forth with all their secret tales of ancestral miscegenation with non-whites.

    These tales are not some kind of badge of honor, because are we not all in full agreement that miscegenation between whites and non-whites is equivalent to auto-genocide? So, why do whites robotically leap at every opportunity to proclaim that somewhere deep in their ancestry, they’ve got 1/16th or 1/32nd or whatever amount of Indian blood in them?

    News Flash: Let’s see some exuberant pride being proclaimed about having EUROPEAN derived genes inside us, because those are the genes we are supposed to be trying to preserve. Right?

    Oh, and kill that TV. It is brainwashing you and your kids.

    It is responsible for this kind of reaction, whereby a magical string in your neck is pulled and you parrot back all these tales of miscegenation, which were the unfortunate consequences of probably having a male relative in your distant past who succumbed to a case of the frontier hornies.

  • Sy

    It’s almost miraculous that in 2011, due to a twist of historical fate, we have the Amerinds to keep alive the idea of “Tribe” which would otherwise have vanished due to political correctness.

    We all belong to a tribe, whether we know it or not.

  • ProudtobeWhite

    #2, I remember that song from the 60s, too…

    “And all the beads we made my hand,

    are nowadays made in Japan [China].”

    “And maybe someday when we learn,

    the Cherokee nation will return,

    will return…

    will return…

    The Cherokee have every right to kick out blacks from their tribe, and no devil-tongued gubmint agency can prevent them.

  • Charles Hastings

    This sets a precedent. How wonderful it will be when we can all expel blacks. The “civil rights” movement actually succeeded in removing the right of whites to freely associate, which means the right to exclude as well as include.

  • Blaak Obongo

    Luke wrote:

    “When I saw the headline of this article on the main AmRen page, I said to myself – let’s watch the flood of ‘supposedly racial healthy & aware’ whites making comments, who’ll be falling over triple-butt backwards to declare that they’ve got a tiny seed of some flavor of Indian DNA somewhere in their genes.

    Sure enough, that’s exactly what I see.”

    You are absolutely right–I noticed it, too. I wonder how many Cherokee go out of their way to brag that they’re one-sixty-fourth White.

  • OBSERVER

    The Native Indian Tribes should ALL demand separate, equal nations.

    Don’t live with the white tribe. We brought you down in the past and now we will bring you down further by forcing Blacks and Mexicans and Haitians on you.

    Resist. Even stop using English. Make the gov’ment officials speak to you in YOUR language.

    Start your own schools. Go and visit the Amish and Mennonites and learn how they do it. Home school (Tepee School?).

    Get away from the white man or we will dump our blacks on you.

  • Anonymous

    I say “Go Cherokees, Go Cherokees!” As I have said classically Native Americans are America’s true allies as they have the same enemies in the blacks, Mexicans,etc. We must keepthispartnershipgoing asthey have shown amore ballsy committment tothe the United States than regular Americans have such as David Yeagley. They have been America’s best warriors and honorable enemies in America’s past. Now they are our best hope for allies as they are clear about who they are, they are strong, tough, athletic, and honorable warriors at their best. At their worst, they are debacharous, drunken fools, but I think the former American Indians have potential that are not the latter for us that carry the banner of American nationalism.

  • Anonymous

    “So, why do whites robotically leap at every opportunity to proclaim that somewhere deep in their ancestry, they’ve got 1/16th or 1/32nd or whatever amount of Indian blood in them?”

    Because so many of us whose English, Irish, Scots, Scots Irish German, Dutch and French ancestors arrived before 1800 do have Indian blood.

    I think Pocahantus and John Rolfe have about 200,000 documented descendants from just 3 children. That is just 1 couple.

    I understand what you mean about bragging about the Indian ancestors

  • Justin

    Stuff like this upsets me. Why do the Blacks want to hijack another race’s identity? The ‘Freedmen’ are obviously NOT ethnic Cherokees. They are simply Africans claiming to be Cherokee.

  • Anonymous

    First – I’m glad the Cherokee did what they did (especially since the family story says we have a Cherokee “princess” in our lineage – – several years ago an Apache acquaintance nearly floored me when he said he bet I had such royalty in my family. It seems every White he ever met had the same in theirs. I guess simply “indian” wasn’t good enough for those who strayed that way.)

    That being said, I passed a van on the highway a couple weeks ago – since this first became news. The van was bearing a United States government license tag. On the van windows was the name of some Cherokee tribe transportation agency.

    The parking lot of every tribal medical or other type facility I drive past in Oklahoma is also full of vehicles tagged with US Government plates.

    They are not sovereign.

  • SKIP

    I’ve already described my visit to the Pequot Indian museum in/near Groton, Conn and the museum display of everyday life with this tribe is clearly sun tanned, attractive caucasians whereas, the contemporary photos of the tribe now is a bunch of afro headed blacks in front of a mobile home built up on cinder blocks with the omnipresent car on blocks in front of them….Go see for yourself, photos look like they would be at home in the disgusting MLK “museum” at the Smithsonian, WHICH itself is becoming nothing more that a feel good display for blacks.

  • Deniz

    I’m quite good at anthropology and genetics but I’ve got some questions about Native Americans that I cannot answer myself.

    – Why are they almost without exceptions overweight? Were they overweight in the past or did they simply start eating junk food like blacks or underclass whites? I guess their warrior ancestors should have been very fit..?

    – Although NE Asians, i.e. Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, etc… are known for their high IQs, the same is not true for their North American cousins even they could resist systematically against white settlement. What’s the reason? They are alleged to have crossed the Bering street and came to an harsh continent so only the fittest should have been survived, according to the logic in Europe?

    – I’ve watched the videos of the Cherokee nation and some of these “would-be” Cherokees look completely white and even with excessive Nordic traits, blond hair with light eyes… Does somebody know after what generations the “Native” traits disappear? Is the same true for Black genes?

  • Ann Onymous

    The urban legend about the ‘Cherokee ancestry’ or the ‘Indian princess’ great-(great)-grandmother is very widespread. All over this country I have met people (including blacks) who claim this ancestry. If the claims were all correct, the Cherokee must have been one of the most prolific peoples ever, what with so many descendants everywhere.

    The fact is most genealogist will testify that often, such ancestry is not found in the family trees of those who claim it so proudly. The New York Times a few years ago, writing about DNA testing, mentioned the many disappointed whites who found they had no ‘Native American’ ancestry as they had believed.

    Unless it’s proven, it’s probably a myth.

  • Anonymous

    Big mistake BIA. I’ve worked with the tribes before in the past and they will stand up together and tell Uncle Sam to shove it. And they can get away from it, especially since the Oklahoma tribes are politically very powerful and are recognized collectively as a sovereign government under U.S. law. Obama’s BIA can try to bully them, but will get its head handed back on a platter.

  • Anonymous

    It’s all about $$$$ and federal resources. Indian affairs is a zero sum game, with haves and have-nots. When those $$$$ and resources start drying up, then the tribes start squabbling internally and with each other. I guess the Oklahoma Cherokees got tired of sending out checks to black who are not Indian by blood. Eligibility is an enormous issue for the tribes, and they will push back hard against outside attempts to interfere with their ability to decide who is and Indian and who is not.

  • Anonymous

    Oklahoma Indians are somewhat different. There are no reservations in Oklahoma, but hundreds, perhaps thousands of individual Indian communities, which were thrown together as a result the 1830s-1840s Indian removal policy. In fact, the old Oklahoma Territory was uncle Sam’s dumping ground for uprooted Eastern Indians (from the so-called Five Civilized tribes), and although they maintain their original tribal identities, they still band together to exert tremendous political power, and Oklahoma’s congressional delegation fiercely protects them. BIA has started a fight it can’t win by involving itself in this internal eligibility issue.

  • Anonymous

    This is not a race issue. There are plenty of African-Cherokee mixed blood full Cherokee citizens, as well as Delaware and Shawnee citizens. This is about a group that never mixed with the Cherokee and have (except in extremely rare circumstances) not been a part of the tribe for an entire century.

    Then there are the Delawares and Shawnee. Add to that the United Keetoowah Band issue, and the thing gets complicated quickly.

    The other issue is that there are tribal benefits. This could open up a load of “services” to 45,000 people. The tribe has worked hard to become financially secure, and that would basically put a huge strain on their finances.

    Will these 45,000 rush to Tahlequah to learn the language, play stickball and marbles, pick wild onions and go to work for Cherokee National Industries, or will they show up for a handout? Are these people going to dramatically change who is elected chief when they are given the right to vote?

    Diane Watson (D) of Calfornia introduced a bill to strip the Cherokee Nation of its status as a federally recognized tribe if they didn’t reinstate citizenship to non-Cherokee freedmen. The freedmen care about the tribe sooooooooo much, that if they can’t be members, they’ll destroy it. That must be because they care about the welfare of the Cherokee Nation.

    I would like to emphasize that the freedmen received compensation from the federal government and the tribe. That’s right, they agreed with the federal government and the Cherokee nation to walk away, and this was well after the treaty of 1866.

    They were paid off. They took their land and money and almost all (with extremely rare exceptions) walked away from the tribe. It is perceived that, now that the money is all gone, they’ve come back for more.

    I’m not saying they shouldn’t be citizens. I’m saying that is an issue left for the tribe. If a large number of the freedmen had been coming to Tahlequah, learning the language and participating in tribal affairs (and a teeny-tiny minority have), this wouldn’t be an issue.

  • Anonymous

    The tribal nations are always drawing lines as to “how much blood” is required to be considered members of the tribe. Chances are good that most of these 280,000 have even less blood of the freedmen in their veins.

    None of this would matter much if it weren’t for the gambling revenues.

    The Cherokee are still trying to re-acquire the Delaware who left the tribe of their own volition taking their assets with them. Those gambling assets are top priority.

  • Anonymous

    “- Why are they almost without exceptions overweight? Were they overweight in the past or did they simply start eating junk food like blacks or underclass whites? I guess their warrior ancestors should have been very fit..?”

    Their genetics give them a metabolism that demands very lean game meat, lots of vegetables, and only a rare bit of starch. Even whole wheat bread is bad for them; something like alcohol or sugar is poison. American Indians can have spectacular physical health if they can afford to eat properly.

    The cheap welfare food the government gives to them is borderline genocide. It’s horrible what it does to someone who lacks 2000+ years of agriculture in his genetic history.

  • ghw

    “The fact is most genealogist[s] will testify that often such ancestry is not found in the family trees of those who claim it so proudly.”

    It is not limited to the Cherokee. I have met people who claim to be Blackfoot, Sioux, Iroquois and others. But some tribes are definitely more “popular” than others. It seems that the successful warrior tribes are the most popular. I have been told, btw, that Blackfeet often have naturally green/grey eyes; same with the Cherokee, being distinct from the tribes around them. I don’t know if that is true.

    I once knew a woman with darkish skin and high cheekbones. She had beautiful green/blue eyes. She said she was Blackfoot Indian and made it very clear that nobody had better call her Black!

    Even Winston Churchill liked to brag about his remote Mohawk ancestor. In fact, his mother was an American, with an ancestor from near Syracuse, so there was some possibility of truth in this claim. But it remains completely undocumented; and after exhaustive geneological research it remains unproven.

    But Central New York was not Mohawk territory, so even if she was Indian, she was probably not Mohawk.

    It is understandable that the Mohawks would be popular in England, due to their long historical alliance with the British. They remained loyal to the British side even through the American Revolution, and many moved to Canada afterwards. The Seneca did also. Many also (especially the ruling class) intermarried with the British. It is amazing to read about the various Indian chieftains (even in the South) who were predominantly white but considered themselves Indian.

    Miscegenation seems to have been popular among the Indians. I have read that they encouraged their daughters to have children by white men. The early French explorers and trappers very often had Indian wives.

  • Sureesh

    Why is it considered soooo much cooler to be an American Indian than an Indian from India? I mean we share the same name as them but we can’t get all the goodies they get. We have to work and pay taxes. I want to trade my turban for a feather and get some welfare!!!!!