Tribal Rights

The tribes of Arizona are sometimes foolishly grouped into one culture and mind, but this is far from the truth. Unfortunately, they do have one thing in common: being under the iron thumb of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). Going through the reservations of Arizona’s Second Congressional District there are a lot of problems and a lot of government control. You know where I’m going with this…

Working With the Tribes

The tribes of Arizona are plagued with countless hurdles and roadblocks, from irresponsible nuclear management to little broadband access to a lack of economic opportunities. But there is one common theme in nearly all of the issues that the Tribes face: federal mismanagement has left proud nations smoldering in its wake.

Boarding schools attempted to destroy the language and culture of the tribe. Economic barriers leave tribal leaders with few options to support their communities. These troubles have been around for a long time with no end in sight. What is the common denominator? Democrats promise the world to buy votes and NEVER follow through.

Tom O’Halleran has made a lot of promises to the Tribes but how often does he make the trek to hold council with them? He introduces a lot of bills but how many pass? What has happened is a positive feedback loop in which Rep. O’Halleran has promised broadband but that isn’t up for him to promise. In government the only thing worse than a lazy person is a person with no friends and Tommy O’ is a very lazy man with very little friends in DC.

While it may be hard to see from his perch in Sedona, people are struggling and all they really need is a hand-up, not a hand-out, so they can decide their own fates instead of being treated like children. The Tribes are an invaluable part of this community, and so many of the issues we all face are inextricably linked. I’m not looking to buy votes, or make promises I can’t keep. Because, I’m not promising anything. Anyone who does is disingenuous at best, and at worst, flat-out lying.

There is no fix-all solution to these problems, and it’ll take a collaborative effort at every level to alleviate the most fundamental problems. Rather than promise everything and return nothing, we need leaders who are able to recognize what it takes to make positive lasting change.

America’s Hidden Socialism Experiment.

The BIA is a testament to the powers and consequences of socialism. They have seen a total lack of economic independence, and extreme mismanagement since the agency’s inception. Imagine if you were taken to schools where the instructors taught a false and inflammatory curriculum about their country and culture and you were kept from your parents so they couldn’t influence you. After school, you barely know your family, have no community but you still have the urge to improve your life. So you try to get a job and provide for your family, but there are no jobs and any that were there are now long gone because of federal regulation and EPA crusades. Finally, you find a job in the city, save some money and want to improve your home and community so the people after you have it a little easier. Well the federal government owns all the land and they ain’t selling. It’s virtually impossible to make a lasting impact when you have to rent any land a business is on. Anything you own is not an asset, it’s a liability. And that is a liability not many are interested in contending with. Does this seem like it is progressively happening more in our society? It’s probably because this experiment hasn’t concluded.

It’s up to the federal government to rectify this, provide them Tribes the keys to success, then allow them to make their own way. Only then will the Tribes be independent. It is time to stop acting like Pima are the same as Hopi and that Paiute are as Navajo, and stop placing this diverse group under the purview of a bunch of bureaucrats that don’t care about the tribe’s wellbeing or preserving their unique cultures. To alleviate this culture of dependence, we must stop acting like we are a caretaker and start acting with integrity in mind, not politics. This experiment is still going on and many have already noticed the same problems

“The Navajo Nation spends most of its time jumping through hoops.”

Peter Macdonald

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