Native American Traditions

Alaska Tribe Reclaims Children's Bones from Museum

June 13, 2001

Source: Los Angeles Times

On June 13, 2001, the Los Angeles Times reported that in Nulato, "a remote native village on the Yukon River, each death sets off a series of elaborate rituals involving dance and copious quantities of food. People here believe that without song and ceremony no member of the tribe can enter the afterlife... So when the elders here learned that the bodies of two village children had turned up in a Fairbanks museum--deposited there by anthropologists in the 1940s--everyone agreed there was only one thing to do. They had to bring the...

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Native Americans Use Federal Law to Reclaim Remains of Ancestors

June 13, 2001

Source: Los Angeles Times

On June 13, 2001, the Los Angeles Times reported that "residents in Nulato [Alaska] are hoping to rebury the remains [of two children] in a village cemetery." Their bodies have been in a museum since 1948. "Such 'repatriations' of native artifacts and remains have become common in rural Alaska in recent years, the product of a 1990 federal law that gives tribes the right to reclaim the bodies of their ancestors from universities and other institutions." In Nulato, "the sense of community obligation is a strong one...'Our belief is...

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University of Illinois Backs Down on Requirements for Opponents of School Mascot

June 7, 2001

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

On June 7, 2001, St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that "the University of Illinois has rescinded an earlier requirement that faculty and students get permission from the athletic department before talking with athletic recruits about their opposition to the Chief Illiniwek mascot...With the backing of the American Civil Liberties Union, seven faculty members and students [had] sued the university in federal court" for violating their right to free speech.

Senator Daschle Can Help Sioux Resolve Land Dispute

June 6, 2001

Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press

On June 6, 2001, St. Paul Pioneer Press published an opinion piece by Tim Giago, an Oglala Lakota, about Senator Tom Daschle and the issue of the Black Hills settlement in South Dakota. "The one issue at the top of the agenda of all tribal leaders in this region is the Black Hills settlement." For decades, the tribes of the Great Sioux Nation have refused monetary compensation in the place of the land. "As one of the most powerful politicians in America, perhaps it is finally time Daschle helped to resolve this...most serious...

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The Past Few Decades Have Been Come-Back Years for Native Americans

June 6, 2001

Source: The Denver Post

On June 6, 2001, The Denver Post reported that in the past 30 years Native Americans "made their return from near annihilation to revival and renaissance...During the late 1960s, the civil rights movement and the peace movement led to a general awakening of American society that in turn inspired Indian people toward self-determination." American Indians increasingly became "lawyers, educators and activists," who got a lot of legislation passed in the '70s. "This tremendous resurgence of Indian culture is also due, in large part, to...

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Indian Reservations Become Popular Tourist Destinations

June 3, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On June 3, 2001, The New York Times reported that Indian reservations are attracting large numbers of gamblers, eco-tourists, "as well as...visitors interested in heritage tourism or just something different." A Denver Sioux Indian said, "'As many as 75 percent of the tribes recognized by the federal government are already involved in tourism r are planning to be soon.'... Powwows in the eastern United States are also drawing visitors."

Sacred Dance Part of Many Different Religions

May 30, 2001

Source: The Denver Post

On May 30, 2001, The Denver Post reported on "sacred dancers [who] praise God through movement...Some dance for their congregations, others as a private form of prayer...They share a conviction that movement deepens the spiritual experience...Sacred dance...has a place in many religions and was part of the early Jewish and Christian church."

Corporation Allowed to Drill Despite Native American Protests

May 23, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On May 23, 2001, The New York Times reported that "despite protests by environmentalists and American Indians, the Bureau of Land Management ruled this week to allow exploratory drilling of one oil well in southern Montana...The drilling site is a quarter-mile from ancient rock art or other historic places. Tribal leaders from Oklahoma and Montana...continue to hold religious ceremonies in the area they consider sacred."

Seminary's Centennial Celebration Includes Indian Blessing Ceremony

April 21, 2001

Source: The Kansas City Star

On April 21, 2001, The Kansas City Star reported that a sacred Indian Blessing Ceremony will be a highlight of the centennial celebration of Central Baptist Seminary in Kansas City. The seminary is "on a site once occupied by the Delaware Indian Nation."

Census Reveals Sizeable American Indian Population in Queens

April 8, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On April 8, 2001, The New York Times reported that "nearly 6,300 American Indians and Alaskans called Queens home on the 2000 Census, more than in any other county in the state...Many of these New Yorkers... ramble from apartments in Flushing to powwows in Connecticut to families in South Dakota. The city has 17,300 Indians, about 650 less than in 1990."

American Indians Complain of Racism in Annual Florida Pageant

March 13, 2001

Source: The Tampa Tribune

On March 13, 2001, The Tampa Tribune reported that "members of the American Indian Movement plan to stage protests at [March's] Chasco Fiesta pageant and parade [in Pasco County, Florida], saying the annual celebration is racist and promotes stereotypes...References to American Indians as 'heathens' and 'savages' were deleted from the pageant [a few years ago]. But no more changes are anticipated to deal with AIM's complaints...Last year AIM filed civil-rights complaints with the state Attorney General's Office and the U.S....

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Native American Tribe Tries to Make Comeback in Kansas

March 11, 2001

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

On March 11, 2001, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that "the American Indian tribe that the state of Kansas gets its name from is slowly working its way back home. The Kanza last year bought 170 acres in eastern Kansas with hopes of turning it into a heritage park" and has plans for another park and a child-care health center in the state. The Kanza were forcibly removed from Kansas 127 years ago. Today there are about 2,300 members nationwide.

Dancing Indian Sparks Controversy at the University of Illinois

March 10, 2001

Source: Chicago Sun-Times

On March 10, 2001, the Chicago Sun-Times reported that, at a recent basketball game, "40 American Indians chanted and pounded a drum on the sidewalk [outside] to protest the University of Illinois' decision to retain Chief Illiniwek...Demonstrators from several local American Indian groups said the dancing Indian who performs at halftime during football games is historically inaccurate as well as demeaning and insulting." Many people disagree that the use of the Chief is racist.

Indian School Symbols Are Center of Controversy at Indiana University

March 4, 2001

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

On March 4, 2001, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on the Indiana University of Pennsylvania, whose sports teams are called Indians. Now the university is "knee-deep in controversy over whether the nickname 'Indians' is appropriate for a university." Some students are offended by the reference to Indians, others "think it's an honorable symbol" or "are sick of political correctness... Nationwide, nearly 1,000 public schools and universities have replaced Indian nicknames and mascots during the past 30 years."

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