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Abramoff Scandal
Opinion: Scandal underscores racism Indians face


"A blockbuster Washington, D.C., scandal will produce racial epithets aplenty. Jack Abramoff and an associate currently face charges of conspiracy and fraud, allegedly having lied about assets to secure financing to purchase a fleet of gambling boats. Evidence in Abramoff�s case illustrates the American establishment�s continual condolence of discrimination and will produce congressional corruption and criminal cases against up to 20 lawmakers and staff members.

Annals of Washington politicians contain many grubby chapters of unscrupulous behavior toward Native Americans. But in terms of sheer greed and exploitation, few can match the tale of Jack Abramoff�s and Michael Scanlon�s milking of half a dozen Indian tribes newly enriched by gambling revenues. Tribes were bilked of vast sums to protect the casino gambling operations that are their financial lifeline � in return they got called scandalous names and empty promises of access to corridors of government power.

In late 2001, Abramoff and associates backed a grassroots lobbying campaign that led to closure of the Tigua Casino in El Paso. Then they contacted the tribe and offered to use their influence on Capitol Hill to get the same casino reopened. All the while they were in that business, they heaped scorn on the Indians, referring to tribal officials as �morons,� �troglodytes� and �idiots.�"

Get the Story:
William Reed: Defamation of Indians on trial (The San Francisco Bay View 1/6)

Relevant Links:
Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians - http://www.choctaw.org

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