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Local Briefs
Columbus Statue Celebrates Genocide and Should Be Removed
Monday, May 04 2015
 
Written by Bill Sorem and Michael Mcintee, The Uptake,
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tcdp-columbus statue celebrates genocide and should be removed-web.jpgNative American activist groups in Minnesota would like people to learn the real history of Christopher Columbus and quit putting him up on a pedestal at the State Capitol.

“We all know in 1492 he sailed the ocean blue. And in 1493 he stole all that he could see,” American Indian Movement-Twin Cities Chair Mike Forcia said at a rally held on April 18 outside the Minnesota capitol building, where the statue of Columbus stands.

For more than 83 years a statue of Columbus has gazed from the Capitol toward Minnesota’s Justice Center. For Forcia, real justice would be removing the statue. “We need to deport Columbus,” he said. “We can’t be celebrating genocide anymore.”

Genocide isn’t a word most history books associate with Columbus, but he enslaved Native Americans. As governor of the large island he called Espanola (today Haiti and the Dominican Republic), Columbus’ programs reduced the native population from as many as eight million at the outset of his regime to about three million in 1496.

Minnesota’s legislature is considering a bill that would change the engraving on the statue from “Discoverer of America” to “Christopher Columbus landed in America.” A co-sponsor of the House bill includes Rep. Dean Urdahl (R-Grove City), who taught high school government classes 35 years.


Passing On: Terri Lynn Oliver
Monday, May 04 2015
 
Written by The Circle Staff,
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Terri Lynn Oliver

Terri Lynn Oliver, 47, of St. Paul, journeyed to the Spirit World on Monday, April 20, 2015 at Regions Hospital in St. Paul, Minn.

She was born on July 23, 1967 in St. Paul, the daughter of Allan F. Oliver and Zelda M. King.

An independent spirit and being, Terri enjoyed crossword puzzles, playing cards, spending time with family and friends, joking and laughing. She could sing a capella. Terri cared and protected her friends and family always, if she couldn’t do it personally, they would always be on her mind and in her heart.

She is survived by special friend: Greg Maurer; sons: Marc Anthony Gozzi, Marc Joseph Gozzi and Marc Michael Gozzi; a daughter: Sarah Gozzi; a granddaughter: Olivia; a brother: Wayne Oliver and by a sister: Jane Anderson; a niece, nephew and by two grand nephews.

Funeral Services for Terri Oliver were held on Saturday, April 25 at Noon at The St. Paul Area Council of Churches/Division of Indian Works.

All night wakes were held on Thursday, April 23 and Friday, April 24 at 6 p.m. at The St. Paul Area Council of Churches/Division of Indian Works.

The Chilson Funeral Home in Winsted, Minnesota is serving the family. Online condolences may be made to www.chilsonfuneralhome.com.


Passing On: Clyde Nelson Philbrick
Monday, May 04 2015
 
Written by The Circle Staff,
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clyde philbrick-web.jpgClyde Nelson Philbrick

Clyde Nelson Philbrick, 77, journeyed to the Spirit World on Sunday, April 19, 2015 at Prairie Lakes Health Care Hospital in Watertown, S.D.

He was born on May 5, 1937 in Santee, Neb., the son of Lawrence Philbrick and Victoria Johnson.

Clyde lived in Minneapolis most of his life and taught at the Little Red School House in Minneapolis.

He honorably served his Country in The United States Navy during the Korean Era.

He was joined in marriage to Emmy.

In 1987, he moved to Newton, Iowa and lived there until 2013.  He then moved to Sisseton. Two months before his death, he moved to Watertown, S.D.

Clyde liked to go to thrift stores, auctions and rummage sales. He was happy to be reunited with his son after 22 years. He loved to ride his motorcycle and was a lifetime member of A.I.M. 

Clyde loved his dogs, especially German Shepherds and Doberman Pinchers. He was a big-hearted person and kind to everyone he met!  Clyde liked to go to the Casino.

Letter to the Editor: Vizenor targets dissent
Monday, May 04 2015
 
Written by Raymond Bellcourt,
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To the editor:

First I would like to thank Tara, Kathy and Punkie for standing up to a dictator. Chairwoman Vizenor stated in the paper that the three new RBC members put a gag order on the tribal newspaper. The truth of the matter is the new members lifted the gag order that Erma, (Gees) and the previous RBC has on the paper. Until now, no one could submit an article if in opposition to her motions. If you did, it was sent to her to scrutinize and decide if it got printed. If that’s not withholding info from the membership, what is?

It is my opinion that the so-called referendum was not constitutionally done. First of all the T.E.C. would have to call for a Secretarial election and second they would have to request the Secretary to hold a Secretarial election. That did not happen. Vizenor keeps saying that the people overwhelmingly voted for her constitution but the people have no way of knowing who voted. There was never a voter list posted anywhere. A voter list is a requirement for this type of election. It is for the membership to review and to see if the people voting were eligible voters. With no list we don’t know who voted. We were told by an employee that there were boxes of ballots sitting around at the RBC office. They were returned for whatever reason. It was said approximately 1,500 ballots that somehow made it to the election office and were counted. If true, that brings her members down considerably.


From the Editor's Desk: Building community investment
Monday, May 04 2015
 
Written by Alfred Walking Bull, The Circle Managing Editor,
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whats_new_-_walfred_walking_bull.jpgRecently, two social media experts came to The Circle office on a walking tour of Franklin Avenue to ask two simple questions: “What kind of community are you trying to build here” and “What are you most excited about in this community”?

If you've followed the Adam Sandler movie controversy, you've come across Vanilla Ice's claims to “Chactaw” [sic] ancestry as a way to defend the “The Ridiculous Six” and its offensive portrayals of Native people. As the reporters of the story eviscerating the erstwhile 90s rap star's claims noted, “Even most tribal members and leaders do not feel comfortable speaking for their entire tribe or for all Native Americans, as Rob tried to do in justifying the inexcusable jokes in The Ridiculous Six.” So when answering those seemingly simple questions, foreshadows of indignant Tweets, Facebook posts and various other reactions run through this editor's head.

Answering as accurately as I could recall, I gave a history of this newspaper, from its inception as a newsletter of the Minneapolis American Indian Center in 1980 to where we sit now, an independent, non-profit chronicle of the community. The second question gave me pause to consider the future of the Urban Indian community and the momentum its built as an economic, cultural and political powerhouse in 40 short years. From police brutality to inaugurating Indigenous Peoples Day at the city level of government and onward, the Native community in the Twin Cities has a great deal to celebrate this American Indian Month. In my short time as managing editor, it's remarkable to see the texture, color and form of this community change over the years; it's truly an honor to record the living history.

That being said, we are constantly aware of where we miss the mark. If breaking news happens, The Circle is not always in the best position to write the story in real time. The Native community deserves better. But pointing out a problem and solving it are two vastly different things, like armchair quarterbacking and calling the play; simply wishing for a solution and doing the work to make it happen require acknowledging the investment we all have in this community.


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