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Indigenous comedy in the spotlight

The most famous punchline in comedian Charlie Hill’s stand-up routine is now the title of a new comedy book.

“My people are from Wisconsin,” Hill would say. “We used to be from New York. We had a little real estate problem.”

Hill, in fact, is a central focus of the new book, “We Had a Little Real Estate Problem: The Unheralded Story of Native Americans & Comedy,” by Kliph Nesteroff, a non-Native writer with decades of experience as a stand-up comedian, comedy historian and author.

Nesteroff had been asked to write a book about a broad swath of comedy in the digital age. One of the chapters he pitched was on Native comedy and how groups like The 1491s have become successful by posting comedic sketches online… READ more.


Case against driver who killed Salt River officer dropped

PHOENIX (AP) — Charges have been dropped against a man who told police he was texting while driving when he fatally struck a Salt River police officer.

The Maricopa County Prosecutor’s Office announced it has filed a motion to dismiss a reckless manslaughter charge against 42-year-old Jerry Sanstead without prejudice. Dismissing the case without prejudice means prosecutors can re-file charges again.

Sanstead told law enforcement he must have been texting his wife in January 2019 when his car veered across the lanes of Loop 101 and fatally hit Officer Clayton Townsend, who was conducting a traffic stop. Townsend, 26, was a five-year veteran of the Salt River Police Department on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. He wasn’t a tribal citizen.

Death highlights free-roaming dogs on tribal land

At least six deaths on the Navajo Nation have been blamed on dog packs, including the death of two boys. Other people have lost limbs or had to be treated for dog bites, Animal Control Manager Kevin Gleason recently told a committee of tribal lawmakers.

Tribal lawmakers recently passed a resolution to establish criminal penalties for vicious dog attacks like the one that Lyssa Rose Upshaw's family believes killed her. Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez later vetoed the resolution, saying it didn't go far enough and needed more input.

While residents are prohibited from owning more than four animals and must restrain dogs, those limits seemingly are ignored. Animal Control Officer Gregory Pahe said he has removed up to 32 cats and dogs from a single home... READ more.

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Carey Price is playoff MVP front-runner

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — If the Montreal Canadiens win the Stanley Cup for the first time since 1993, Carey Price, Ulkatcho First Nations, is almost certain to take home the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

Price also stands a good chance at becoming the fifth goaltender and sixth player overall to win it with the runner-up if the Tampa Bay Lightning win back-to-back titles.

Price and the Canadiens fell to the Lightning in Monday’s game 1. Game 2 is set for Wednesday… READ more.

Vegas Golden Knights' Alec Martinez (23) tries to deflect a shot past Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price during the second period in Game 6 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Thursday, June 24, 2021 in Montreal. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press via AP)

Doug Emhoff to visit Bryce Canyon National Park

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Doug Emhoff, the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris, is planning to visit Bryce Canyon National Park in southern Utah this week as part of a tour through southwestern states, the White House announced Monday.

Emhoff will be visiting the park on Friday as part of a Biden administration tour to celebrate the country’s progress against COVID-19. Emhoff’s visit comes as many U.S. states continue to experience lagging vaccination rates.

No additional details about his visit were immediately available.

First lady Jill Biden also announced Monday that she and Emhoff will tour a vaccination site in Houston on Tuesday and another vaccine clinic at a middle school in Phoenix on Wednesday. Biden’s office said the trips are intended to highlight the ease of getting vaccinated and to mobilize outreach efforts.

Interior Secretary Deb Haaland visited southern Utah in early April as she prepared to submit recommendations on whether to reverse President Donald Trump’s decision to downsize the Bears Ears National Monument and Grand Staircase-Escalante.

List: Books on residential schools by Indigenous writers 

Cree author David A. Robertson curated a list of books by Indigenous writers about residential schools and posted it on Twitter.

CBC Books repurposed the list here.


Navajo Nation: No deaths for 3rd day in row

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) - The Navajo Nation on Tuesday reported three new cases of COVID-19 and no additional deaths for the third consecutive day.

Tribal health officials said the sprawling reservation that stretches into New Mexico, Arizona and Utah now has seen 30,993 cases of the coronavirus since the pandemic began more than a year ago.

The known death toll remains at 1,352.

Health officials said last week that the first case of the Delta variant has been identified on the reservation.

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