Life, Liberty and Pursuits Never Ending

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Our school taught us Indians that July 4th was a special day celebrating our peripatetic revolution that ALL MEN WERE CREATED EQUAL with certain unalienable rights.

Back then Indians could not vote in “important” elections, could not buy spirits of any kind, and just 50 years before that poisoning Indians with strychnine was still a solution to the Indian problem. My grandmother was buried far over in a vacant corner of the cemetery in order to keep her from contaminating the cemetary.

We had two code talkers come back alive in our little community. President Truman signed an Executive Order to integrate the entire armed forces. Ranchers began hiring Indian cowboys and pay went up to $6 per day. Don’t laugh. Back then everybody paid a little more work for their money. These days people let me sit in any vacant seat on the bus. Of course, I look just like any other blue eyed blond haired white man and always have.  The chief of the Eastern Cherokee tribe once was 1/16 Cherokee – as blue eyed blond haired white men measure the important differences in life.

Things are looking up for Native Americans.

Wikipedia declares: Larry J. Echo Hawk is an attorney, legal scholar and politician. In 2012, he was named as a general authority of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). On May 20, 2009, Echo Hawk joined the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama as the United States Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Indian Affairs. He previously served as the elected Attorney General of Idaho from 1991 to 1995, being the first Native American elected to that position. He also served two terms in the State House of Idaho.

Echo Hawk has served on the American Indian Services National Advisory Board and Board of Trustees. He was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice, a leading group on justice policy development. He has also served on the board of the American Indian Community Resource Center. John Echo Hawk, director of the Native American Rights Fund, is his brother.
Echo Hawk was appointed by President Obama as the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Indian Affairs in 2009. During his tenure, the government increased the amount of land held in trust for federally recognized Native American tribes by 158,000 acres, supporting their efforts to be self-supportive and to reconnect fragmented reservations. He also oversaw several water agreements made with Native American tribes. He directed implementation of the Tribal Law and Order Act. While leading Indian Affairs, he oversaw the formation of the Tribal Leadership Conference, which provides for an annual meeting between leaders or other representatives of the 566 federally recognized tribes, the U.S. President and all members of the Cabinet. He resigned his position at Interior on April 27, 2012.

One of my granddaughters insists she will become the first woman president. So far she is still in the running. She said the major competition fielded by the blue eyed blond haired white men is Elizabeth Warren.


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