Gus Pina: Dry Creek Rancheria takes membership role seriously

"The U.S. Constitution recognizes Indian tribes as sovereign governments along with states and foreign governments. One hundred and eighty years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court acknowledged our political independence and sovereign status. The ability to determine our membership, as with the United States' ability to determine its citizens, is the core principal of self-governance.

Many Indian tribes do not have Western-style constitutions, but that does not mean our rules are “unclear and loosely applied,” as the editorial board claims. The courts of this land are filled with citizens seeking clarification of the law.

The Dry Creek Band of Pomo Indians identifies its members in accordance with its founding Articles of Association, its written ordinances, its customs and traditions. The tribe makes these decisions with care and respect for the individuals and families affected and for the preservation of the culture and traditions of the tribe."

Get the Story:
Gus Pina: Tribe responds to PD editorial on 'disenrolling' members (The Santa Rosa Press-Democrat 12/5)

The Editorial:
Editorial: Power, abuse in determining tribal roots (The Santa Rosa Press-Democrat 11/21)

Related Stories:
Dry Creek Rancheria calls off election amid enrollment dispute (11/19)

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