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Native Sun News Today: Nation building through food sovereignty






A garden on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Photo: Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation

Building Indian Country through food-sovereignty
By Aly Duncan Neely
Native Sun News Today Correspondent
nativesunnews.today

RAPID CITY –– The effects of treaties and the Indian Relocation Act (IRA) of 1934 on Native American tribes in the United States have long contributed to the ongoing struggle of Native nations for self-determination.

Nowhere is this struggle as evident as in controlling the resources of tribal lands. The most recent push toward self-determination is marked by renewed effort in tribal governance to devolve the stranglehold that state and federal governments have on the ability to develop effective methods and outcomes of their own governing actions.

Through collaborative, tradition-based approaches toward community research, development, and governance, fostering inclusive methods of making decisions, and encouraging cooperative tribal, state, and federal planning, some Native nations have been revitalized economically and culturally.

Reorganized government infrastructures have opened pathways toward more resilient communities, allowing those communities to create systems that support the well-being of tribal members and implement actions that will outlast variances in political climate. Nation building and self-determination rely heavily on tribal legal codification and how those laws are affected, or not affected, by state and federal authorities. For the purpose of increasing land, water, and other resource sovereignty, as well as food sovereignty, these codes and laws must reflect nation-building principles.

Native American resource sovereignty in the US is deeply embedded in the development of tribal governing systems and how state and federal authorities and agencies are connected to those systems. In the nation-building approach, Native nations move from prior methods of tribal development to an approach centered on the foundational building blocks of nation building.

Sociologist Stephen Cornell and Economist Joseph P. Kalt, co-founders of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development at the Kennedy School of Government, describe five key components of the nation building process.


Read the rest of the story on the Native Sun News Today website: Building Indian Country through food-sovereignty

(For more information on food sovereignty issues, please contact Aly Duncan Neely via the Native Sun News Today.)

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