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Guest Opinion. This past week was significant with the first Presidential Proclamation establishing Indigenous Peoples’ Day on Monday ~ October 11, 2021. This news unfortunately eclipsed another major policy announcement by President Biden in the form of an Executive Order on Indian Education which is framed as follows:

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Indigenous Peoples' Day is an important acknowledgment of the trauma suffered by our people, and it’s a time for us to address the ongoing injustices we face. We are witnessing the rape of our land, the murder of Indigenous women, the killing of our brothers and sisters – the grizzly bear and the wolf. 

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Guest Opinion. There’s a lot to celebrate this Indigenous People’s Day. After centuries of concerted efforts, we’re seeing promising signs that the federal government will work on a government-to-government basis with Native Nations and respect our Nations’ sovereignty. Though the federal government has often failed in its treaty and trust responsibilities to engage in meaningful consultation with Indian Country, President Biden has signaled that he will give our Nations a seat at the table. Not only did he appoint Deb Haaland as Interior Secretary, making her the first Native American cabinet member, but President Biden also reauthorized Executive Order 13175, mandating that federal agencies engage in meaningful consultation with Native Nations. In doing so, he has promised to include us in decision-making, and support our self-governance to control our lands, preserve our culture, and educate our youth.

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Guest Opinion. The United States federal government still honors the genocidal maniac that brought the wrath of evil to the Americas. It is time to get rid of Columbus Day forever!

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Opinion. Last week, President Joe Biden issued the first-ever White House proclamation designating Monday, October 11 as Indigenous Peoples’ Day across the United States. In his proclamation, the president recognized the obligation the United States government has to live up to fulfill its trust and treaty responsibilities and admitted centuries of failure. 

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Opinion If you slip on your boots and take a walk through the remote village of Brevig Mission, you’ll notice 20 homes built by the Bering Straits Regional Housing Authority in the 1990s. A few blocks away stand ten more from the early 2000s. The newest subdivision, built in the last decade, is also the smallest: five modest homes, engineered for maximum economy, around a neat stub of gravel road.

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OPINION. As the first Native American to ever serve as Secretary of the Interior, Deb Haaland (Laguna Pueblo) has a deep understanding of the realities and ongoing ramifications of our Indigenous history within the context of American history. 

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For two decades, the opioid epidemic has plagued the Cherokee Nation. In recent years, hundreds of millions of prescription opioids were sold at the wholesale or retail level within the Cherokee Nation Reservation. The epidemic affects even our youngest citizens with many Cherokee babies being born addicted to opioids and, all too often, needing placement in our foster system. Cherokee families were torn apart before they even had a chance to be whole, putting the very future of the Cherokee Nation at risk.

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OPINION. In July, Gabby Petito, 22, began a four-month trip across the country with her fiancé to visit national parks along the way.  By September 1, something had obviously gone amiss when Petito’s fiancé returned to his home in Florida without her. Ten days later, Petito’s mother filed a missing person report.

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Opinion. The cornerstone of our democracy is the right to vote. However, for most of our country’s history, Native Americans were denied that right. The Indian Citizenship Act of 1924 finally granted citizenship to all Native Americans born in the U.S., but even after that law, states could restrict Native voting rights. It was not until 1962 that Utah became the final state to allow Natives the right to vote. For much of the 20th century, until federal Indian law reforms of the 1970s, Cherokees were not allowed to elect leaders of our own tribe.