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Native Issues in the Halls of Government
Tuesday, March 12 2013
Written by by Mordecai Specktor,
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Sulfide Mining Update
It's time to take another look at the grand plans to ravage northern Minnesota and kill off the remaining wild rice. Yes, I'm talking about sulfide mining, brought to you by a host of multinational corporations that are promising jobs, economic vitality and concern for the environment.
On this latter point, readers should know that Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) assured the Japanese public that the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station would operate safely, before there was an earthquake two years ago and equipment failed, the nukes melted down and radioactive materials were released into the atmosphere. This was the worst nuclear disaster since the Chernobyl nuclear plant in Ukraine exploded, in 1986.
Likewise BP and its contractors satisfied the environmental regulators, prior to the explosion and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig three years ago. The BP oil disaster released an estimated 4.9 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Louisiana.
Fond du Lac Follies
Tuesday, March 12 2013
Written by by Jim Northrup,
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The Fond du Lac Reservation's language camp will be held on June 13, 14, 15, and 16. Once again the location will be Kiwenz Campground on the north shore of Big Lake in Sawyer, Minnesota.
For those who never heard of our language camp I will offer this history.† The first year we had 189 people registered, the second year we had 400 people, third was 500 and last year we had 765 people registered.
Planning is underway for this year's schedule of activities.
At the language camp in June, Charles Nahganub will be showing people how to smoke food to preserve it.
If you want to learn how to make moccasins then Winnie LaPrairie's class is the one to attend.
Theresa Morrison will teach some of what she knows about beadwork.
Tuesday, March 12 2013
Written by The Circle Staff,
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March 1,† 8,† 15,† 22,† 29
Native Foster Parents Needed!
Volunteers of America-MN is looking for skilled parents who appreciate the difficulties of childhood! Youth ages 12-17 need a stable home. Volunteers of America-MN provides quality foster parents with training, 24-hour support, and monthly stipend. Call 952-945-4064 to learn more or attend an information meeting. Foster Parent Info Meetings held every Friday: 10:00-11:30 am (or by appointment) 7625 Metro Blvd., Edina, MN. †

It ainít easy being indian
Tuesday, March 12 2013
Written by by Ricey Wild,
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Four years ago this past month I chopped my hair off with rusty scissors and the result was horribly hilarious. I wrote that I looked like Kim Jong-Il, a now decomposed dictator whom I thought was haunting my mirror beady eyes and all. Thatís one thing. I did it with full knowledge that I canít even cut coupons evenly but I hacked up my own hair. Eventually it grew out but I was vainly aware that my head is too big and round to pull off short, short hair styles.
Fast forward to now, my last hair trim was cute, angled under my chins and shorter in back. Well, as hair has the tendency to do it grew longer but added some odd little curls I never had before and didnít know what to do with. Yes, this world is on a crazy train going off the tracks, and I get so tired and depressed about it that I have to yell ďSTOP!Ē soís I donít completely lose my mind for good. Thus, I focused on my hair cuz well, no one else will, right?

Off-Rez Enrollees Fight For Salazar Payments
Thursday, January 31 2013
Written by By Jamie Keith,
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cover_story_off_rez_enrollees_standing_rock.jpgA group of Standing Rock Sioux Tribal members known as Active Citizens for Tribal Truth (ACTT) are fighting for the equal dispersal of funds from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe v. Salazar settlement. The tribe received $48.9 million in funds from the federal government in early 2012. This payout was the result of a group of lawsuits filed against the United States by 41 tribes nationwide, which found that the Department of the Interior had mismanaged tribal funds held in federal trust.
Members of ACTT say that their tribal government has not followed due process in making decisions about how to allocate the settlement funds. They claim that the tribal council has discriminated against off-reservation tribal enrollees by only offering payments to reservation residents.
"This is why we're here - fighting for our people who are living off the reservation," said Doreen Foote, a member of ACTT who lives in the Twin Cities.
According to journalist Deborah LaVallie, who has covered† tribal council meetings since the beginning of the conflict, an estimated 8,600 people enrolled in the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe live outside of the reservation. This accounts for about 60% of the tribe's total enrollees.
ACTT members believe that misconceptions about off-reservation tribal members may have led to the tribal council's initial decision to exclude them from payments. They refute the assumption that there are more resources available to Native Americans in urban areas than on reservations. Although many tribes maintain urban offices in Minneapolis and Saint Paul that provide resources to off-reservation enrollees, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe does not. †
"We found out that [the tribal government] was using our enrollment status as consensus for federal funding," said† Velma Little Eagle Balderas, a member of ACTT who lives in Minneapolis. "We're entitled to the same amount as the on-reservation enrollees."
Family of murder victim still looking for justice
Thursday, January 31 2013
Written by By Jamie Keith,
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family_of_murder_victim_richard_brown_sr.jpgThis month marks the third anniversary of the violent assault and murder of Saint Paul resident and Native American community member Richard Vincent Brown Senior. The case is still under investigation by the Saint Paul Police Department, leaving Brown's family with more questions than answers.
"I don't just want to sit here and guess about it," said Emma Geyer, Brown's mother, in regards to the case. "It's driving me crazy."
Brown's family members feel that they have been neglected by the Saint Paul Police Department and are not kept adequately informed as to new developments with the case.
"What are the police doing? Why aren't they at least keeping us informed?" said Chris Paul, Brown's adoptive brother. "I understand it can take years to figure out the who and what, but just let us know what's going on in the meantime. To me that would be a huge courtesy, so that we're not sitting here thinking that you're absolutely not doing anything at all."
Geyer and Paul say that neither they nor other families members they know of have been interviewed by the police in connection with the case. They also say that they have never received a written report of any kind from the police. They speculate that the case is not a priority because Brown was Native American and homeless.
"That's happened to a lot of Indian people, though. They don't investigate anyone. I know how people think - 'oh, we don't care. He's just a nobody,'" said Geyer.
John Wright, the officer investigating Brown's murder, was unable to comment on the case because it is still open. However, Sergeant Paul Paulos, a Public Information Officer with the Saint Paul Police Department, was able to speak generally about the homicide investigation process.
"In certain cases like this, we really need to keep the integrity strong in the process leading up to charges," said Paulos.
Because of his limited ability to share information specific to the case, Paulos could neither confirm nor deny Brown's family's claims. While families do not have access to detailed† police reports, they may request a public narrative which contains very limited information about the crime. According to Paulos, there is no formalized process whereby investigators notify families about an ongoing homicide investigation.
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