D.C. hearing ‘big step’ for Little Shell recognition
Could the decades of fighting for federal recognition soon be over for the Little Shell Chippewas?
One Department of Interior official who earlier opposed to legislation sealing the recognition has now backed off on his ‘no’ stance, the Great Falls Tribune reports.
Interior Department Deputy Assistant Secretary George Skibine said the slow pace of the Little Shell’s recognition process — a 32-year effort — concerns federal officials.
John Sinclair, one of two opposing chairman of the Little Shell Tribe, said after Thursday’s hearing that he wished the department supported the bill, but the fact that it didn’t oppose the legislation was a “big step.”
“We have an opportunity here that we didn’t have in the past,” Sinclair said.
The Little Shell have petitioned the Interior Department since 1978 for official federal recognition, which would entitle the tribe to federal Indian programs — such as health, public safety and education — and confer a measure of legitimacy that its members have sought for more than a century.
A friendly competition in Ojibwemowin
The Fifth annual Ojibwe Language Quiz Bowl is set up to test the knowledge of its participants. All in the name of language preservation, ICTMN reports.
People naturally assume it’s hard to learn, but it isn’t,” (language instructor Dennis Jones) said. “It’s real easy. (Those who grow up with it) never really consider the complexity of it, they just speak it.”
His theory—and his students from the University of Minnesota Department of American Indian Studies—will be put to the test at the 5th annual Ojibwe Language Quiz Bowl on April 16, hosted this year at Augsburg College in Minneapolis.
It is expected that about nine teams and 150 students from mainly Minnesota and Wisconsin will attend the event, hosted this year by Augsburg Indigenous Student Association.
During the fast-paced, timed tournament, the four-member teams won’t have too much time to get stuck on pondering. They must quickly answer questions about Ojibwe language definitions, pronunciations and translations. “The content is all what we cover in our classes,” Jones said.