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Be careful

In response to the article “Blood quantum is no measure,” by Kenn Mitchell of Cass Lake [Vol. 28 No. 37], here in Alyeshka (Alaska) there used to be a great number of Dene which are now depleted to a very few. I do not believe this was just the result of happenstance. If anything happens in their political arena you can bet it was planned that way.

In Ward Churchill’s book “Struggle for the Land,” he states, “All this suspension of treaty making, extension of federal jurisdiction, plenary power and ‘trust’ prerogatives, blood quantum and allotment, and the imposition of citizenship was bound up in an officially designated as being the compulsory assimilation of American Indians into dominant (Euro-American) society. Put another way, United States Indian policy was carefully (and openly) designed to bring about the disappearance of all recognizable Indian groups.”

He then goes on to list the methods used to bring about this demise of our peoples and nations. Also historian Patrick Nelsion Limerick’s statement, “Set the blood quantum at one-quarter, hold to it as a rigid definition of Indians, let intermarriage proceed as it has for centuries, and eventually Indians will be defined out of existence,” implies knowing intent.

We are being defined out of existence in other ways too, the giving of Christian names, labels such as “domestic dependence,” and renaming of our lands and waters. If you want to claim something, you rename it, or name it. Even the word “Native” can mean different things such as “Nativus,” (see Black’s Law dictionary 6th edition) which means slave, bondsman, villain.

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By setting criteria, redefining our nations so that we are within their corporate U.S. instead of the other way around; actually their United States was originally established as a government for the District of Columbia only. Be careful; their words are designed to entrap, enslave and define us out of existence.

– Sharon C. Smyth

Kasilof, Alaska