Native America Action Attends Women In Tribal Gaming Symposium

Pictured above is Native America Action’s Raven Morgan, LaRenda Morgan, and Kristen McCormick attending this event.

The Tribal Gaming Protection Network’s second annual Women In Tribal Gaming Symposium was held on February 13th and 14th at the Morongo Casino Resort and Spa in Cabazon, California. Native America Action’s Kristen McCormick, LaRenda Morgan, and Raven Morgan attended this year’s event. Kristen McCormick is the Director of Legislative Affairs; LaRenda Morgan is the Director of Native Candidate Relations and Outreach; and Raven Morgan is a Native America Action Outreach volunteer. Their attendance of this important event signifies Native America Action and the Native America SuperPAC’s focus on Native Sovereignty, which has an important intersection with Tribal Gaming. Tribal Gaming faces significant challenges currently in various states across the country, and as such this is a high priority for the Native America SuperPAC.

LaRenda Morgan (middle) with the Chairman of the Tribal Gaming Protection Network, Andrew Hofstetter (left), and Forest County Potawatomi Gaming Commission Compliance Officer Jamie Kellicut (right).

The Tribal Gaming Protection Network (TPGN) promotes and facilitates diverse topics in education, training, and networking amongst tribes for the purpose of protecting tribal sovereignty, governments, and gaming entities against internal and external threats. The Women in Tribal Gaming Symposium focuses on professional and social enrichment with breakout sessions topics on professional development as well as TPGN’s initiative on Human Trafficking. The Tribal Gaming Protection Network can be found at www.tgpnglobal.com.

Pictured above are Native America Action Directors Kristen McCormick (Left) and LaRenda Morgan (Right) at the Morongo Casino, Resort, and Spa for the Women In Tribal Gaming Symposium

Native America Action and the Native America SuperPAC is NON-partisan and Native First, focused on protecting Native Sovereignty, and Native Culture by holding Federal and State elected officials of all political parties accountable for the legislative decisions they make that impact Tribal Governments, Native Communities, and Native Families. Funding for Native America Action and the Native America SuperPAC comes from concerned citizens and organizations.

Your generous donation will assist in continuing our efforts and adds your voice to our voice for all of Native America.


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On The Subject Of Sovereignty – A Word From The Executive Director

Sovereignty.  It is, perhaps, the foundational element of any people’s existence.  Self-determination and self-government, and the formal recognition of such is essential for any group of people whether they be a nation, a state, or even a county or a city.  For the majority of America, each day progresses into the next without any thought or even concern about this because such things have been in place generation after generation.

For Native Americans however, this has been a very different experience.  Treaties established so many generations ago aren’t known by most people in our modern United States, including those who may hold office within our government.  History, as often is the case, isn’t the foremost on anyone’s mind which is why there is always a present danger of repeating it.

While the Native America SuperPAC and its outreach, Native America Action, continue to focus on protecting Native Sovereignty in the activities and actions within our Legislative or the Executive branches of Federal and State Governments, there is something occurring right now on the Judicial side that has our full attention.  It is about Sovereignty.  …and it is a compelling and intriguing situation.

The State of Oklahoma is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review an “Indian Country” ruling that would create the requirement for a “new” kind of federal recognition.  This request comes because the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in a decision of a murder case in favor of a Creek Nation citizen.  This murder case became unique due to the assertion by the defense that United States Congress never went through the proper process to eliminate or dissolve the treaty established boundaries of the Creek Nation as set in 1866, and as such the State of Oklahoma was wrong to prosecute his case.  Pausing the many questions that spring to mind regarding the specifics of the case, it is clear the State of Oklahoma has grave concerns about their State Sovereignty.

Keep in mind, Native Nation’s treaty rights, and treaty recognition, is a sharp thorn that Native Americans feel nearly daily for many different reasons in many different locations across the United States. It also cannot be said that these treaties are truly forgotten as many remain today “on the books” with the Federal government.  Yet, their very existence is often forgotten or an inconvenience for State and Federal agencies, if they are known at all.  Perhaps it is better said in our modern day that treaties are simply ignored.  That may be a strong word, but it is nonetheless true.  A less strong description would be that long-established treaties are not known or understood today…  Not by those working within State and Federal agencies, and not by elected members of our U.S. Congress.

In its petition to the U.S. Supreme Court, the State of Oklahoma’s Attorney General makes the case for State Sovereignty.  From Oklahoma’s perspective, this is a valid concern.  The decision as it stands would formally recognize the Creek Nation’s boundaries, which have simply been ignored by the growth of the State of Oklahoma with the passage of time.  The reestablishment of these boundaries where law enforcement of Creek Nation citizens is concerned puts the 11 Oklahoma counties suddenly within and under the jurisdiction of the Creek Nation.  As a sovereign nation with a standing treaty made between them and the United States Congress, the Creek Nation’s laws and enforcement would be applied to these counties instead of State and Local law enforcement.

Naturally, this concerns State officials.  It is an understandable position.  For many generations the State of Oklahoma has grown and these 11 counties are Oklahoma counties.  Yet perspective here helps.  This ruling creates an inconvenience for the State of Oklahoma in reality because it is “re-recognizing” the Creek Nation… …as it was originally recognized by the United States when they so inconveniently forced the Creek Nation’s removal to Indian Territory.  It wasn’t convenient for the Creek Nation then, and the established boundaries as recognized were hung on the promise that the United States would respect them.  As generations seemingly passed, the treaty and promises went from ignored to forgotten to possibly even unknown by people today.  The perceived and or actual loss of Sovereignty is scary.

Oklahoma’s Attorney General asserts in its petition that stripping Oklahoma of criminal jurisdiction over all Indians in this densely populated area – would render Oklahoma a fractured, second-class State.  Further, their assertion is that federal agents would be required to enforce the laws within the Creek Nation boundaries.  This premise of this assertion stems from the original established treaties with Native Nations.  Only U.S. Congress can ratify a treaty with a sovereign nation, and as such only the Federal government can interact with a federally recognized Native Nation.  However, the Attorney General’s assertion goes too far.  The Creek Nation today works with Local and State law enforcement agencies. It would and should be up to the Creek Nation as to how law enforcement is to proceed if this ruling stands.  Should the Creek Nation be interested, no doubt it could come to agreements with the State of Oklahoma as to how law enforcement should work going forward.  Perhaps everything continues as it does today with the exception that the Creek Nation has jurisdiction and enforces them with establishing new agreements with Local and State law enforcement agencies.  Of course, this could depend on how strong a relationship the State of Oklahoma has fostered with the Creek Nation.  If it is healthy, with the appropriate earned trust on both sides, this need not be an issue.  If the State doesn’t have a healthy relationship, perhaps the Creek Nation would instead engage and hire its own law enforcement to cover the area.  In any case, the assertion that the FBI somehow would now provide Local and State enforcement for the Creek Nation may well be an overreaching assertion on the Attorney General’s part.

Then there is a matter of history.  Oklahoma became a state in 1907.  It is possible that most Oklahomans aren’t even aware of how difficult a process this was.  In reality, the “state” at the time was very fractured and in fact was two very different territories, Indian Territory and Oklahoma Territory. But Indian Territory existed first and was originally established to be the home for relocated Native communities and nations.  Certainly the Five Civilized Tribes, upon relocation, provided a strong leadership role for the region.  The land rush, authorized by Congress in spite of previous promises, opened up new land within the territory for settlement in 1889 and eventually the Oklahoma Territory would be carved out of what had been provided for Natives.  Yet, it was the Five Civilized tribes who first submitted a petition to U.S. Congress for statehood in 1905, with proposed State of Sequoyah.  Because there are too many (yet historically interesting) reasons at the time to describe, Congress did not grant this request.  Eventually Congress did act upon taking both the Oklahoma territory and the Indian Territory and making them a state – but not without a struggle and a fight between the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives.  In reality, the State of Oklahoma began its very existence fractured.  Such is the state’s history – unique perhaps from which it was born, but that uniqueness continues today whether it is fully recognized by the State that contains 39 federally recognized Native tribes or not.

The U.S. Department of Justice provided a filing that underscored its concern that this matter could have significant and wide-ranging implications for law enforcement if allowed to stand, echoing perhaps the concern of Oklahoma’s Attorney General.  To this, it is easy to agree while disagreeing about the outcome.  The 10th Circuit Court has (finally) brought to light the inconvenient truth that has always existed – it was originally ignored, then forgotten, then it was as if it never had been – the Creek Nation’s boundaries have been intruded upon and its Sovereignty has been disregarded by both the Federal Government of the United States as well as the State Government of Oklahoma.  In truth, so many citizens of the great State of Oklahoma and the Creek Nation have been living fractured, burdened by this lack of recognition, this lack of understanding, and this lack of respect… …for Sovereignty.

It is unknown what the U.S. Supreme Court will see fit to do, but let us not pretend that the State of Oklahoma isn’t already fractured.  Depending on the census year, Oklahoma is home to the second largest population of Native Americans.  Yes, it is the great State of Oklahoma, and there is no reason that this cannot continue.  If anything, should this ruling stand, the Creek Nation will be in a position to work with the United States and the State of Oklahoma to help chart Oklahoma’s future.  They will add their voice to the voice of the State, and we will all be stronger for it because – we are stronger together.

 

Scott Carr

Executive Director

Native America SuperPAC

 

About Native America SuperPAC and Native America Action:

Native America Action is a non-partisan and Native First outreach organization to provide voter registration and Native participation throughout Native communities. The Native America Super PAC, is unaffiliated and non-partisan, and intends to make independent expenditures to wholly serve the needs and concerns of Native Nations, Native communities, and Native families.  Native America SuperPAC and Native America Action is funded by organizations and concerned citizens.


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Or you can mail a check made out to Native America Action to:

Native America Action
1611 S Utica Ave
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Tulsa, Ok, 74104


Native America Action Welcomes And Meets Oklahoma State Legislators And Their Staff

Native America Action Directors and Volunteers visited the Oklahoma State Capitol on February 1st, 2018. Oklahoma State Senators, Representatives and their staff returned to their offices in preparation for their new session kicking off in February. Native America Action arranged the tour and visit with Oklahoma legislators for volunteers who are interested in being active and present in 2018.

Among those who were seen was newly sworn in Oklahoma State Senator Allison Ickley-Freeman. State Senator Ickley-Freeman was kind enough to spend a portion of her first day visiting with Native America Action and listening to the needs of Native communities within Oklahoma. Senator Ickley-Freeman’s story is unique, and Native America Action was pleased to be able to spend time with her on her first day.

Oklahoma State Representative Mickey Dollens also invested a great deal of his time with Native America Action, providing not just a tour of his office but also providing a tour of the Oklahoma House of Representatives Gallery. Representative Dollens also generously invested time to hear about the needs of Native Oklahoma and Native concerns.

Native America Action Director Kristen McCormick (Director, Legislative Affairs) looks on in the gallery as Oklahoma State Representative Mickey Dollens describes the activities of the Oklahoma House of Representatives to Native America Action volunteers.

Oklahoma State Representative Mickey Dollens is pictured above with Native America Action’s LaRenda Morgan, Director of Native Candidate Relations and Outreach.

Native America Action’s event at the Oklahoma State Capitol is just the first of many this year and is necessary to stay in front of legislators during this very important year. Working at the state level is just one area of focus for Native America Action, there will also be a great deal of concentration at the federal level. If you are interested in volunteering, feel free to join our mailing list here, and if you’d like to donate to the Native America SuperPAC, your generous donation can be provided online here!

Join Us To Meet Your Oklahoma State Representatives

Welcome to 2018.

No matter who you are, at one point or another you’ve no doubt wondered exactly how we arrived in this place. The answer may never be clear, but most certainly a catalyst has been our political system.

…and actually, that’s why WE are here.

Native America Action is a NON-PARTISAN Native First organization.

We’re not focused on being Republican or Democrat, Green, Libertarian or Independent – we are focused on being NATIVE FIRST …together, no matter the party.

Our intent is to directly influence our representatives themselves, and hold them accountable when it means the most to them – election time.

Legislation gets proposed, laws are enacted, and maybe it helps our Native relatives, perhaps it harms them, or possibly there is no impact at all. No matter which party introduced legislation, one thing remains clear – it is rare for Native needs to be truly and fully considered.

That needs to change. Now.

Oklahoma’s State Representatives will be returning to their offices during this event to start a fresh new year. Let’s meet them as they come in, and before they get distracted. Let’s introduce ourselves, let them know we are watching this next session closely, and let them know we’ll be back – at election time.

If you have been wanting to make a difference, THIS event is your opportunity.

Join your voice to our voice, and together during this event we can speak for Native needs here in Oklahoma. We will be heard.

We are #NativeAmerica and we are #StrongerTogether.

You do NOT have to be Native to join us!

Join up TODAY on our Facebook Event:

https://www.facebook.com/events/992976737534759/


Donate – Native America Action
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Or you can mail a check made out to Native America Action to:

Native America Action
1611 S Utica Ave
#519
Tulsa, Ok, 74104


Come March with Native America Action at the 2018 Women’s March

Native America Action will be participating in the 2018 Women’s March at the Oklahoma State Capitol on Saturday January 20, 2018.  The event begins at 11am and everyone wanting to walk with Native America Action will meet at the west side of the front of the Capital and walk together as a sign of Native solidarity.

Please join us – and connect with us on the Facebook event for updates and further information!  Click the link below:

https://www.facebook.com/events/215487875687967/

 

Native America Action’s Executive Director Speaks On Red State Revolt’s Radio Program

Scott Carr, Executive Director of Native America Action and the Native America SuperPAC, was a guest on the radio program Red State Revolt on December 14, 2017, hosted by Mark Faulk.  Scott spoke about the issues most important to Native communities and Native families as part of Native America Action’s most recent survey, as well as took time to speak about the survey results and answer questions.

Click HERE to listen to the program.

Native America Action is a Non-Partisan, Native First organization and the Native America SuperPAC is unaffiliated, focused on the needs and concerns of Native communities and Tribal governments and how they are being effected by legislative efforts at the State and Federal level.

The Native America SuperPAC and Native America Action receive funding from organizations and concerned citizens interested in bringing about positive answers for the needs of all Native American families.  Through donations, Native America SuperPAC intends to be a strong voice for all of Native America.  Please consider donating today!

Native America Action First Tribal Elder Winter Coat Delivery To Otoe Missouria Tribe

In our cover picture from Right to Left – Consuela (Elder Program worker from Otoe Missouria Tribe), Karen Kanaitobe (Comanche Nation Outreach Director who volunteered as a Winter Coat Drive drop off site), Native America Action Director LaRenda Morgan, Jeanie (Elder Program worker from Otoe Missouria Tribe), and Native America Action Outreach Coordinator Joley Singer.

Native America Action’s Tribal Elder Winter Coat Drive has seen its first delivery of coats to the Elder Program at the Otoe Missouria Tribe. These coat donations were provided by donors who dropped off at the Comanche Nation Outreach Center in Oklahoma City. For the Winter Coat Drive, there are still other donation drop off points in Tulsa and Muskogee and coats will can still be collected in the Oklahoma City area which will be handed out to Tribal Elders in upcoming distributions.

Pictured above, Consuela and Jeanie from the Otoe Missouria Tribe’s Elder Program receives the coats collected by Native America Action Director LaRenda Morgan, and Outreach Coordinator Joley Singer. Pictured below, LaRenda and Joley are with the coat donations for Tribal Elders that were collected at the Comanche Nation Outreach Center in Oklahoma City.

Native America Action will continue reaching out for additional Coat donations for the upcoming distributions. You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

About Native America Action…

Native America Action is the outreach arm of the Native America Super PAC and is a 501(c)4 and an Oklahoma Not-For-Profit organization. As a political action group, Native America Action is a Non-Partisan and Native First organization that provides outreach to Native communities including voter registration, information for Native involvement in State and Federal elections, and encouragement of Native candidates to run for office. In this context, political parties are secondary – Native efforts within all political parties is encouraged equally, and Native America Action and the Native America Super PAC positions Native needs and issues to all candidates and members of Congress without regard for political standing. Funding for Native America Action comes from concerned individuals and organizations who support a stronger Native America.

Otoe Missouria Tribe’s Intertribal Veteran’s Stand Down

The Native America Action Outreach Team LaRenda Morgan & Joley Singer set up at the Otoe Missouria Tribe Intertribal Veterans Stand Down on Friday October 6, 2017 in Red Rock Oklahoma. The Intertribal Stand Down assisted more than 100 veterans and three homeless veterans were placed in housing! The event was sponsored by the Otoe Missouria Tribe, 7 Clans Paradise Casino, OMDA and the Otoe Missouria Tribal Council. The organizer of the event was Mr. Eugene BigSoldier (orange shirt) pictured with LaRenda Morgan , Native America Action and David EchoHawk, Army Veteran.

Native America Action on site for the Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribes Governor and Lieutenant Governor Debates