Friday, April 20, 2012

Draft of Native American mascot ban presented to education board

Draft of Native American mascot ban presented to education board


A draft resolution presented to the state Board of Education on Thursday would require Oregon schools to retire their Native American mascots within five years or risk losing state funding. If approved as early as May, the rule would be one of the nation's strongest, and require 15 high schools, mostly in small towns, to erase Native American mascots from uniforms, sports fields, websites, trophy cases and even school stationery by July 1, 2017. Moreover, schools identified as the Braves, Indians and Chieftains would have to adopt a new nickname. Schools called the Warriors would be allowed to retain their nickname if they alter their mascot.


Tribes want voice on UND nickname debate


An attorney for an American Indian group suing the NCAA in hopes of saving the University of North Dakota's Fighting Sioux nickname said Thursday that a 2007 settlement should be thrown out so namesake tribes can be heard. Reed Soderstrom, a Minot lawyer, argued in federal court that the Spirit Lake and Standing Rock Sioux tribes were not included in the discussions when the NCAA and the state of North Dakota negotiated the agreement.


Brazil celebrates indigenous heritage


Brazil marks the "National Indigenous People's Day" to celebrate the country's cultural heritage and warn people about Brazil's increasingly threatened natural environment.


Indigenous town temporarily holds 16 officers


Residents of an indigenous town in western Mexico where eight townsfolk were killed temporarily locked 16 police officers in an office to demand an investigation, authorities said Thursday. Michoacan state secretary of government Jesus Reyna said the officers were held late Wednesday in the town of Cheran after arriving to check on an attack hours earlier that killed eight and wounded two. A statement from Reyna's office said 13 officers were released late Thursday. The other three were freed earlier in the day.


House Republican Vows To Halt Fracking Rules Amid Tribal Concerns


A prominent House Republican is vowing to try to suspend rules aimed at regulating hydraulic fracturing on public lands after Native American tribes said they were excluded from early efforts to develop the regulations. Rep. Don Young (R., Alaska), speaking at a congressional hearing Thursday, said the Interior Department had ignored an obligation to consult with the tribes before moving forward with the rules even though the standards will affect oil and natural gas drilling on tribal lands. A deputy assistant director for the Interior Department, Tim Spisak, said his agency conducted meetings with tribal leaders in January and asked them to weigh in at that time.

SC Supreme Court to hear American Indian child custody case


Their 2-year-old adopted daughter was taken from them and given back to her birth father in Oklahoma. But a James Island couple is not giving up. Tuesday, they will appeal that decision to the state's highest court. The South Carolina Supreme Court will hear arguments over the Indian Child Welfare Act. This law is the basis for why the toddler was taken from the home where she spent the first two years of her life. The hearing will be closed to the public, just the families and their attorneys will be inside. Months of benefits, vigils and petitions will culminate in what could be a hearing lasting only half an hour.


Britain destroyed records of colonial crimes


Thousands of documents detailing some of the most shameful acts and crimes committed during the final years of the British empire were systematically destroyed to prevent them falling into the hands of post-independence governments, an official review has concluded. Those papers that survived the purge were flown discreetly to Britain where they were hidden for 50 years in a secret Foreign Office archive, beyond the reach of historians and members of the public, and in breach of legal obligations for them to be transferred into the public domain.


Native Americans Who Won Olympic Gold


As preparations for the 2012 London Olympics continue, we remember those who excelled in past games. Three Native Americans stood out as individual gold medal winners, and by their efforts, represented the very best of the American nation. The first recorded participation of Native Americans in Olympic games was in 1904 in St. Louis, Missouri. In the lacrosse competition, the Canadian team won the gold medal, and the Americans had to settle for the silver. Some of the names of the participating athletes give evidence of players' origins: Black Eagle, Spotted Tail, Snake Eater and Rain in Face.


Illegal Logging Takes Its Toll in the Amazon


The timber industry in Peru is rife with corruption and illegality, and international buyers are complicit in a “well-oiled machine” that is plundering the Peruvian rain forest, endangering its rich biodiversity and undermining the welfare of indigenous communities, according to a major new study by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). Despite an ongoing overhaul of institutions charged with managing and protecting Peru’s sprawling forests, the system remains plagued by deception, cronyism, and weak enforcement, says the EIA report, The Laundering Machine: How Fraud and Corruption in Peru’s Concession System are Destroying the Future of Its Forests. Though Peru holds the fourth-largest tropical forest land in the world, administrators in Lima have long regarded the country’s Amazonian region as a hinterland to be exploited for its gold, timber, and oil. The Peruvian jungles also harbor more than a dozen uncontacted indigenous tribes, many under mounting pressure from incursions by illegal logging crews into the deep backwoods in search of valuable timber.


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