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Local Briefs
FDL Spears Walleye in 13 Lakes
Monday, June 09 2014
 
Written by Dan Kraker, Minnesota Public Radio News,
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CLOQUET, Minn. – The Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa has announced plans to spear walleye on 13 lakes in northeastern Minnesota this spring.

In what will be the first time that tribal members spear outside reservation boundaries in the Arrowhead region since a federal court affirmed their treaty rights were affirmed in the 1996, about 60 band members are expected to fish. Most will do so along the North Shore in Lake and Cook counties.

Many of the band's 4,200 members still depend on food they hunt and gather, said Jack Bassett, chair of the Fond du Lac band's ceded territory committee.

"We have many families that rely on this every year," he said. "They get their poundage of fish, it's in the freezer, and they have a lot of meals out of it."

For band members, returning to the lakes validates rights that they were long denied.

Red Lake Voters Take Tribe in A New Direction
Monday, June 09 2014
 
Written by John Enger, Minnesota Public Radio News,
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RED LAKE, Minn. – The Red Lake band of Ojibwe has approved longtime treasurer Darrell Seki, Sr. as the new tribal chairman. The vote held Wednesday ends Floyd "Buck" Jourdain's decade-long administration.

Unofficial tallies show Seki won with 1,907 votes while Jourdain had 1,284. They were followed by Kathryn Beaulieu, who received 292 votes, and Ron Lussier, with 57 votes.

Seki couldn't be reached for comment on his victory, or what he plans to do in his new office. Red Lake spokesman Michael Meuers, a longtime friend of Seki, said the new chairman will take a little time off before taking on the position at the next tribal meeting on June 10.

"Darrel is a traditionalist," Meuers said, "He's a [Ojibwe] first speaker. He follows the old ways, but that doesn't mean he's not progressive."

What's New In the Community: June 2014
Monday, June 09 2014
 
Written by The Circle Staff,
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UND STUDENTS RALLY AGAINST RACISM

By Rachel Eta Hill

GRAND FORKS, N.D. – In reaction to the Spring Fest incident on the University of North Dakota campus where several students posted photos of themselves wearing T-shirts with the school's previous mascot with the words, “Siouxper Drunk,” Native students and others rallied on May 16 at the University of North Dakota in an event dubbed #WALKFORCHANGE.

This was a student demonstration and was comprised of over 200 UND students, community supporters and UND administration members who walked together holding signs to educate their community and others on the adverse race relations occurring at their school.

Dani Miller, a recent UND graduate and Sisseton-Wahpeton citizen, was asked by her fellow student body to give a speech addressing the hostile learning environment at her school, sparked by the offending T-shirts.

“Native students are just trying to go to school and now they are being attacked,” Frank Sage, a Navajo doctoral student said. He attended UND for the last 14 years and said it was important for students not only to work on changing race relations between Native and non-Native students at the school, but that it ultimately comes down to educating others on why this type of behavior is inappropriate in an academic setting. “Treat people the way you want to be treated,” Sage said.

Miller added, “All people, native and non-native, to educate themselves on our histories and on the current state of race relations in the United States. Education is the answer to dismantling oppression and [assists in] … relationship building between all people.”

Native students at UND, like many others across the country are working to educate and inspire others on how to change environments of adversity and racism in their own schools. They are fighting hate with love, unity and education. Racism, after all, poses a great threat to the attainment of post-secondary education for our Indigenous students. We must support and applaud those in our communities who are a positive and motivating force for that change. To learn more, use the twitter hash tag #WALKFORCHANGE.

Rachel Eta Hill is an enrolled member of the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe and present graduate student in the American Indian Studies Interdepartmental Program at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Augsburg College Honors Shakopee Mdewakanton for Generosity
Monday, June 09 2014
 
Written by Bonnie Wallace,
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augsburg college honors smsc.jpg Augsburg College celebrated its 6th Annual Pow Wow on March 29 at the Augsburg campus. This year's event was again hosted by the Augsburg Indigenous Student Association and the Augsburg American Indian Student Support Services Program also receives support from various program offices within the college including the Office of the President.

Approximately 1,500 people attended the event, including dancers, drummers and both local and national vendors. The bleachers were filled with families and community members to participate, not only in the pow wow, but, in two honoring ceremonies. Augsburg undergraduate and graduate students who graduated were honored with a blanket ceremony.

Augsburg College also gave a ceremony of appreciation and gratitude to the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community for its most recent and generous donation of $250,000. The donation was added to the current Shakopee Endowed Scholarship Fund, established in 1991. To date, this fund assisted over 75 Native American students attending Augsburg College.

LaDuke: A Pipeline Runs Through It
Monday, June 09 2014
 
Written by Winona LaDuke,
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“This is land that has been in my family for decades. It is prime Red River valley agriculture land. It was handed down to me by my mother and father when they passed away, and I’m intending to hand it down to my children when I pass away …. My wife and I have … told our children that ww will pass this on. Of course if 225,000 barrels of oil bursts through this thing, that certainly is the end of this family legacy.”

-James Botsford, North Dakota landowner in Enbridge Sandpiper right of way

While the national press has kept a focus on the controversy over the Keystone XL pipeline, something is going in northern Minnesota. This has to do with the Enbridge Company, a Canadian Company who is determined to move oil from places where there is no infrastructure, and is showing its determination in some ways which Northerners may not like. That oil is destined for Superior. Lots of it headed this way. This is far more than a single Keystone pipeline, like four times as much oil.

Here’s a bit on the math and the pipelines. Between Gretna, Manitoba and Clearbrook, Minnesota, there are eight Enbridge Pipelines already in a 160-mile swath. Then we get down to a few less lines but those are all being upscaled and expanded. Enbridge (also known as the North Dakota Pipeline Company and several other DBA aliases) is now proposing three pipeline expansions: Line 3, Line 67, Line 13 AKA the Southern Lights increase (that goes the other way carrying dilutent to the tar sands, but still can leak) and a new line called the Sandpiper. This would be an increase of over one million barrels of oil today, or 42 million gallons of oil per day. “Northern Minnesota is becoming the super highway for oil,” Attorney Paul Blackburn tells me. If all the lines go through, the sum total of oil traveling over northern Minnesota’s lakes and waters could be about four million barrels per day. This is about 200 times more than the amount of oil spilled in the Kalamazoo Enbridge spill in 2010. Not surprisingly, there are a number of increasingly concerned northerners.


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