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A gag order on White Earth's Chairwoman on talking about reform efforts leads her to tell her side of the story.

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For Minnesota's American Indian Month, columnist and recent TEDx presenter Nick Metcalf writes about the realities of being Native in today's society.

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The Art of Resistance

Twin Cities Native community members come together for an evening of defining the Native experience through art.

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Powow Calendar April-November 2012
Friday, April 13 2012
Written by The Circle Staff,
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powwow_calendar.jpgApril 5 - 7
Cherokee of Georgia Spring Powwow
Tribal Grounds, St George, GA. Thurs and Fri 9 am: flag raising and school field trips. 1 pm: Intertribal dancing. 7 pm Fri: Grand Entry, Intertribal dancing. Sat 9 am: flag raising. 12 pm: lunch at camp. 1 pm: Gourd Dance. 1 - 5 pm: Intertribal dancing, Princess competition, storytelling and more. 5:30 pm: supper at camp. 7 pm: Grand Entry, invocation, veteran's songs, memorial song, evening dancing. FMI: 912-843-2230 or 912-285-2738; email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

April 6 - 8
31st Annual Chambers Farm Spring Gathering
22400 NW Hwy 315, Ft McCoy, FL. Host Drum: Billy Evans Horse. Guest Drums: Birdchopper and Lords of the Plains. Free and open to the public. Drumming, singing, dancing, displays of jewelry, beadwork, leatherwork, flutes, natural soaps and other handmade products. FMI: Michael Brill at 513-464-1746 or 352-546-3237; email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it   Website:

Community Calendar April 2012
Friday, April 13 2012
Written by The Circle staff,
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Through June 30
Mni Sota: Reflections of
Time and Place
"Mni Sota: Reflections of Time and Place" features works by 17 Native American artists from the Minnesota region. All exhibits are free and open to the public. Sites and dates are:
o Thru March 15: Katherine E. Nash Gallery, Minneapolis, MN.
o April 1-May 18: Mille Lacs Indian Museum, Onamia, MN.
o May 28-June 30: Tweed Museum, Duluth, MN.
Powwow For Hope
Friday, April 13 2012
Written by Jamie Keith,
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cover_story_powow_for_hope.jpgThe American Indian Cancer Foundation (AICAF) is sponsoring the first annual Powwow for Hope to provide vital funding for cancer treatment and caregiver support in Native communities. The event is also an opportunity for community members to celebrate the lives of cancer survivors, honor the lives of cancer victims, and share resources and information about the disease.
"Everyone in our Native communities has a story about how cancer has touched them," said Kris Rhodes (Bad River Ojibwe), Executive Director of AICAF. "Cancer doesn't just impact the individual - it hurts families and the community."
AICAF was founded in January 2011 in Minneapolis to combat the immense burden of cancer in Indian Country. Although Native communities have long been plagued with cancer, comprehensive research on its pervasiveness and impact has been all but nonexistent. The first national study of cancer among Native people was published in the American Cancer Society's journal Cancer in September 2008.
The study revealed that cancer is the #1 cause of death among Northern Plains tribal members and Alaska Natives. According to the article, written by David Perdue, M.D., the first Native American (Chickasaw Nation) gastroenterologist and Medical Director of AICAF, the Native American population in the Northern Plains region has a 39 percent higher rate of colorectal cancer, 197 percent higher rate of liver cancer, 135 percent higher rate of stomach cancer, and 148 percent higher rate of gallbladder cancer than the white population in the same region. Rhodes asserts that the American Indian population is the only group nationwide for whom cancer rates are actually on the rise.
The wolf and wild rice face threats from mining companies
Friday, April 13 2012
Written by Winona LaDuke,
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ild rice, or Manoomin, is the only grain endemic to North America and is a part of the Anishinaabeg migration story. There are few other places in the world where such a bountiful gift is delivered to those who live there, whether they have wings or hands. The lakes and rivers, owing to the unique nature and adaptability of the manoomin, each year offer a wild rice crop. This is a sacred food and a keystone of the ecosystem of the Great Lakes region, or Anishinaabe Akiing.  
Related as well, to the most spiritual of all traditions and history is also the Anishinaabeg relationship to the Ma'iingan, the wolf. It is said in Anishinaabeg prophecies that which befalls the wolf will befall the Anishinaabeg. The decimation of the Anishinaabeg by plagues, starvation and federal policies closely mirrored the destruction of the ma'iingan. The limiting of territories to reservations for the Anishinaabeg, and the wolves to a few sparse patches of the north woods, occurred for both.
Today, both the wolf and the wild rice face dire threats of devastation, as mining interests loom on the edges of the territory, or seek to re-open old scarred mines of the past hundred years in a renewed fervor of an inefficient  minerals based material economy.
It is ironic that the two largest barriers to the wholesale mining of the north, may be manoomin, or wild rice and the ma'iingan. Proposals in northern Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota would eviscerate water quality laws with severe impacts on the wild rice of the north. In turn, the recent delisting by the US Fish and Wildlife of the wolf seems suspiciously synchronized with the interests of new mining companies in the region. Losing an endangered species is the removal of a big stumbling block to mining.  
Tribal communities, joined increasingly by northern residents, have opposed the threats to water and wild rice throughout the north country. And, while the wolf has been delisted by federal agencies, with moves to state regulation, tribal governments and inter-government agencies in the north pledge to retain their relationship and responsibility to the ma'iingan .
Whats New In The Community
Friday, April 13 2012
Written by The Circle Staff,
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whats_new_in_community_lyle_iron_moccasin.jpgLyle H. Iron Moccasin honored at the Multicultural Forum on Workplace Diversity Lyle H. Iron Moccasin was one of four champions of workplace diversity that were honored during the 24th annual Multicultural Forum on Workplace Diversity, a conference on diversity and inclusion, which took place March 20-22 at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Lyle H. Iron Moccasin was given the Friend of the Forum Award. He is an enrolled member of the Cheyenne River Lakota of South Dakota. After growing up in Minnesota and New York City, serving in the U.S. Navy and the New York City police force, he returned to Minneapolis to work for the American Indian Opportunities Industrialization Center. During his employment at AIOIC, he has worked in juvenile justice, ex-offender, employment and education programs addressing the issues the American Indian community faces. Since 2003, Iron Moccasin has been the Multicultural Forum's guide for addressing the issues of displaced communities, the Native community and youth education and employment. The forum, presented by the Opus College of Business at the University of St. Thomas, is designed for professionals who manage a diverse workforce, are responsible for diversity within their organization, or work with a multicultural clientele. The diversity awards are given to individuals or organizations that show exemplary effort in addressing workplace diversity issues.
Some Ojibwe tribal members object to wolf hunting and trapping
Friday, April 13 2012
Written by By Tom Robertson Minnesota Public Radio,
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some_ojibwe_tribal_members_object.jpgSome Ojibwe in Minnesota are worried about the fate of the state's wolf population as state lawmakers consider a hunting and trapping season for the animals.
Wolves were removed from the federal endangered species list last year, and that upsets some tribal members. For many Ojibwe, wolves are important to traditional culture. Some believe wolves are sacred, and they want to see protections continue.
A painting of two wolves hangs prominently on the living room wall in Mary Favorite's home in Wauben on the White Earth Indian Reservation.
Favorite is a tribal elder and a member of the wolf clan. That means many in her large, extended family associate themselves very closely with the animal. Favorite considers wolves among her relatives.
"It's very special to me. When I read that in the paper that they were thinking about... passing a law about killing the wolves," Favorite said. "It broke my heart."
Favorite remembers decades ago when gray wolves nearly disappeared. Now there are an estimated 3,000 gray wolves in Minnesota.
The Department of Natural resources proposes to let hunters and trappers kill 400 wolves this fall. Favorite hates the idea.
"I thought, 'Oh my God,'" she said. "It's like they want to come in here and they want to shoot my brothers and my sisters."
It's not just members of the wolf clan who are upset about a possible wolf hunting season. Favorite's husband, Andy, is a historian and retired tribal college teacher. For traditional Ojibwe across the upper Midwest, wolves are sacred, Andy Favorite said.
"In our creation stories and a lot of our other legends, the wolf is very prominent. A lot of our spirits come in the form of these creatures, so it's a very spiritual thing," he said. "If the tribes have the spiritual moxie, they will step in and do something to protect the wolves."
Some Minnesota tribes have already done that. In 2010, the Red Lake Band of Ojibwe was the first to adopt a wolf management plan. They designated the band's 843,000 acres of land as a wolf sanctuary.
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