Seattle police given high marks for woodcarver shooting investigation
The Seattle Police Department did a thorough and unbiased investigation into the fatal shooting of woodcarver John T. Williams by Seattle officer Ian Birk, according to a review conducted by a San Diego Police Department homicide commander, according to a Seattle Time’s story.
Northern Alberta first nation loses oil sands appeal From News 880 AM:
The Alberta Court of Appeal has sided with the Alberta government and against the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation in a case involving oil and gas rights.
The Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation argued that the Alberta Government through the Energy Minister can not grant resource rights in the form of long term oil sands leases without consultation. The Crown countered that the First Nation challenge was not filed within six months of a decision awarding a lease to Shell.
At issue was when did the clock start to count down…from the date of the government decision or from the date the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation was notified of the decision? A lower court agreed with the government that the challenge was filed too late. The First Nation launched an appeal
The Court of Appeal considered all of the arguments and Friday morning it dismissed the First Nation’s appeal.
Events to explore contemporary land issue in Indian Country
“Lessons of Our Land: The Indian Land Tenure Foundation Speaker Series” will take place during February and March at The University of Montana. The series will focus on contemporary land issues in Indian Country, casting a light on our relationship to the Earth and the management of Indian trust land.
The Toronto Globe & Mail has Q&A with “Avatar” director James Cameron, who toured the oil sands in Alberta for three days this week and then joined First Nations leaders to ask Canada to protect the area from development.
The aboriginal community of Fort Chipewyan is downstream from the oil sands. The Lubicon Cree First Nation, Mikisew Cree First Nation, Duncan Lake First Nation and the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation are among those directly affecged by development there.
Cameron’s actions weren’t universally welcomed. As the Globe & Mail points out, the Edmonton Sun ran Cameron’s photo under the headline “Dipstick!” and also wrote an editorial calling him a hypocrite.
And Montana’s governor, Brian Schweitzer, took a poke at Cameron, accusing him of “blowing smoke,” according to the Associated Press.
“Any of these people who say they don’t like the oil sands, you ought to ask them if they’ll invite you to their house, and unless they’re living naked in a cave and eating nuts, they are totally dependent on petrol,” Schweitzer said.
American Indian artists participating in a show at Zuni, N.M., last month talk with potential buyers about their jewelry and other arts. The show was held a month after Congress toughened enforcement of the Indian Arts and Crafts Act, designed to fight fake Indian crafts. (AP Photo/Sue Major Holmes) Summary
New regulation takes aim at fake Native American arts and crafts
“Falsely suggesting goods are Indian- or Alaska Native-made could be harder to get away with now that Congress has approved changes to the 1990 Indian Arts and Crafts Act,” Associated Press reporter Sue Major Homes writes. The revisions are part of the Tribal Law and Order Act, and expand the number of agencies that can investigate suspected violations.
First Nations leaders heading for Washington, D.C., to protest tar sands development
Tomorrow, a number of First Nations leaders from Canada will meet with officials in Washington, D.C., “to persuade officials to reject a pipeline project they say would pump more ‘dirty oil’ from Alberta into the United States,” the Canadian Press reports. “Francois Paulette, of the Smith’s Landing Treaty 8 First Nation, says he wants to talk to U.S. politicians about pollutants from the oilsands.”
One of original Navajo Code Talkers dies
Indian Country today has an Associated Press story reporting the death of Allen Dale June, one of the 29 original Navajo code talkers who confounded the Japanese during World War II by transmitting messages in their native language, has died. He was 91, and died of natural causes at a veterans hospital on Sept. 8, according to the story.
Thousands take part in annual Trail of Tears Motorcycle Ride
Actually, make that tens of thousands, according to Trevor Stokes of the Times Daily in Alabama’s Tennessee Valley. The ride memorializes the forced, deadly relocation of Cherokee people who lived east of the Mississippi River in 1838.
Early voting on Pine Ridge Reservation faces roadblocks
The issue actually involves Shannon County, S.D., but of course that’s where the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation is located. The Rapid City Journal reports that voters cannot cast an early ballot without traveling to Hot Springs in Fall River County or applying by mail for an absentee ballot. Voting in Shannon County has been the focus of controversy in recent years, especially after 2002, when Democrat Tim Johnson wrestled a Senate race away from Republican John Thune by just over 500 votes – with Shannon County votes being the last counted, prompting allegations of fraud.
Demonstrators in Scotland are gearing up for Monday’s “day of mass action” in Edinburgh, Scotland, in protest of the Royal Bank of Scotland’s funding of energy projects, including those in the Alberta tar sands in Canada.
Representatives from First Nations who say their health and way of life is threatened by the massive tar sands projects are among those in the so-called Climate Camp in Edinburgh.
Their aim? To keep the bank from doing business Monday.
Jasmine Thomas and Riannon Ball, two members of indigenous First Nations in British Columbia, have been briefing climate activists at the Camp on the impact of Tar Sands and oil pipeline projects on indigenous communities.
Actions against RBS Group over the last few days included mass incursions by up to 150 demonstrators around and into headquarters buildings, street-theatre type protests at bank offices and an RBS-sponsored open air stage at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Protesters also targeted bank branches around the City, letting off stink bombs and super-gluing doors shut.