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GOING NATIVE IN AMERICA - The Benefits of Becoming Indian
DER SPIEGEL (German magazine) ^ | ---- January 16, 2006 | Jörg Blech

Posted on 01/18/2006 5:43:33 AM PST by Atlantic Bridge

In the United States a growing number of white people are discovering their Native American roots. Some are doing so for financial gain, but most are just looking for the meaning of life.

A few weeks, Betty Baker was still just a white housewife. But now the woman, with her piercing blue eyes, goes by the name "Little Dove" --and has jettisoned her apron for an elaborate deerskin dress.

"I am an Indian and I've sensed this my whole life," says the 48-year-old Baker, who lives in a wooden house on the edge of the small town of Pinson, Alabama.

Five years ago, after her parents told her that her family probably had some Native American ancestry, she assembled documents and birth certificates and last September was accepted into the Cherokee Tribe of northeast Alabama. The cultural neophyte is now zealously learning the rituals and dances of her newly discovered ancestors.

(Excerpt) Read more at service.spiegel.de ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: americanindians; cherokees; indians; nativeamericans; sioux; spiritualjourney
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A funny Article from the European point of view.

Although I have great respect of America I have to say that some (not all!) Americans are really strange people.

A short question: Are casinos only allowed in reservations??! Or is that a matter that is regulated by each state (Las Vegas is -as far as I know- no reservation)?

1 posted on 01/18/2006 5:43:35 AM PST by Atlantic Bridge
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To: Atlantic Bridge

Your profile is awesome!


2 posted on 01/18/2006 5:45:14 AM PST by rightwinggoth
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To: Atlantic Bridge
Betty Baker was still just a white housewife. But now the woman, with her piercing blue eyes, goes by the name "Little Dove" --and has jettisoned her apron for an elaborate deerskin dress.

Welcome to FR. Learn the picture rule.

3 posted on 01/18/2006 5:46:43 AM PST by neodad (Rule Number 1: Be Armed)
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To: rightwinggoth

That ME is the one that flew out of Klosterwald near Kitzingen, right?!


4 posted on 01/18/2006 5:48:02 AM PST by muawiyah (-)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
A few weeks, Betty Baker was still just a white housewife. But now the woman, with her piercing blue eyes, goes by the name "Little Dove" --and has jettisoned her apron for an elaborate deerskin dress.

"I am an Indian and I've sensed this my whole life," says the 48-year-old Baker, who lives in a wooden house on the edge of the small town of Pinson, Alabama.

I.e., "I'm going through my midlife crisis."

5 posted on 01/18/2006 5:48:30 AM PST by Hemingway's Ghost (Spirit of '75)
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To: Atlantic Bridge

Tell your uncle he we would love to meet both of you. You guys sound like interesting people. Welcome and God Bless.


6 posted on 01/18/2006 5:50:58 AM PST by bmwcyle (As the left takes to the streets the too many lazy Freeper sleep)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
We have a lot of weirdos here, it's a big country.

Maybe she's really got Cherokee roots, maybe not. I can't begin to tell you how many white poseurs I've met in my life who claim to be "Cherokee". I once had a Lakota Sioux lady tell me that "all the wannabes claim to be Cherokees, because they let anybody in".

But it seems to be sort of a popular New Age fad, so go figure.

One thing I've noticed - all the real Indians I've ever known all looked like Indians. Not like white people. Not like Ward Churchill, for example.

7 posted on 01/18/2006 5:51:11 AM PST by Kenton
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To: Atlantic Bridge
Reminds me of the story of the Indian brave who asked the tribe's chief about the methods used to name each papoose.

"I look to the Great Spirit," replied the chief.

"When I see big cloud, I name papoose Big Cloud.

When I see running deer, I name papoose Running Deer.

So, Two Dogs F**king, why do you ask?"

8 posted on 01/18/2006 5:52:07 AM PST by peyton randolph (As long is it does me no harm, I don't care if one worships Elmer Fudd.)
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To: Hemingway's Ghost

My maternal grandmother was half Native American - some tribe from upstate New York as I recall. I've never had the inclination to research or document it, though.


9 posted on 01/18/2006 5:52:18 AM PST by COBOL2Java (Freedom isn't free, but the men and women of the military will pay most of your share)
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To: Atlantic Bridge

1) Gambling is regulated by the states. So Nevada and New Jersey allow casino gambling, other states allow parimutuel betting, other states allow slot machines, other states allow no gambling.

2) Indian reservations are considered sovereign territory under administration of the federal government. They are not considered part of the state that surrounds the reservation. The Supremem Court is the only court that can try issues related to Indian affairs, and it has held that gambling is an issue for each reservation to decide.

So, states in which gambling is illegal may have a reservation in them that decides to open a casino. The state government can't stop them from doing so.


10 posted on 01/18/2006 5:52:40 AM PST by oblomov (Join the FR Folding@Home Team (#36120) keyword: folding@home)
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To: Atlantic Bridge

Federally recognized Indian nations are permitted under federal statute to set up a casino within federally recognized traditional tribal lands. States are permitted to have some say in this, but cannot block it.

This leads to several serious issues. Approaches to "the Indian problem" over the last 300 years have ranged from open warfare, extermination programs, and - after the last Indian wars - focused upon assimilation. Consequently, many of the reservation programs have attempted to assimilate Indian cultures by making each tribe member an owner of an individual parcel of traditional tribal lands. Of course, most of these new owners immediately sold off their lands to non-indians, resulting in the disappearance or vast shrinkage of many traditional nations.

Where we didn't do assimilation, the federal and state governments just abrogated the Indian treaties pretty much whenever they wanted to and shrunk the reservations. The cherokee (originally from Georgia), for example, supposedly voted to give up their traditional lands in exchange for a block of land out in Oklahoma. Turns out that "election" was rigged and that only a very small percentage of the tribe was permitted to vote. Nonetheless, they are now in Oklahoma.

Now, many Indian nations are attempting to reclaim their original reservations guaranteed under treaties, largely because they can now use those lands for casinos. The SCOTUS has held that in general, even if a tribe buys back land that was originally within its reservation, that land is no longer tribal land and cannot be used for a casino.

So the federal government steps in with a new law a few years back that says that states can enter compacts with their indian nations to open casinos outside of traditional tribal lands. This has made the whole enterprise very fluid.


11 posted on 01/18/2006 5:54:45 AM PST by FateAmenableToChange
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To: Atlantic Bridge
A short question: Are casinos only allowed in reservations??! Or is that a matter that is regulated by each state (Las Vegas is -as far as I know- no reservation)

The casinos on reservations thing came about because the tribes figured out in the past 30 years that they were not subject to the authority of the state governments (which, for the most part have been responsible for making gambling illegal in the US). That is because of the treaties that created the indian reservations--they are strictly federal jurisdiction and have a good deal of self-rule. For political reasons, the feds don't want to get involved in stopping them.

So every indian reservation that is near urban centers (one reservation, eg, extends right into Palm Springs, CA) has become a casino and indian tribes have become one of the largest cash cows for political contributions as they recycle some of their cash to the politicians that let the casinos happen.

The sad thing about this is that, while it brings badly needed money into the reservations, it is like oil money--for the most part it goes to the governing authorities on the reservation and a few very wealthy indians. Most of it never gets into circulation on the reservation to kick-start a local economy. And, it tends to stick the reservation economy in a parasitical mode, subsisting off of money from drunk white guys who gamble instead of a wealth creation mode.

12 posted on 01/18/2006 5:54:57 AM PST by ModelBreaker
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To: Atlantic Bridge
Casino gaming is determined by each state, then usually each municipality under the state.

For American Indian tribes, whatever is legal within the state is legal on the reservation.

As to the article - someone took three separate articles, tossed them into the blender, and put it on puree. If tomorrow you found out that you were a blood relative to someone in a gaming tribe, odds are you would get nothing. Not even tribal membership.

Free health care? Yes, at a scattering of BIA health clinics, and again, only if you have tribal membership.

College scholarships? A lot of tribes have great scholarships for their members, but if you're not a member, no benefits.

What about these mock tribes, like the Cherokees of Alabama? They have nothing to do with actual tribes, nor the BIA, the government agency that handles the nation to nation relationship between the US government and the tribal government. Hobbyists playing at fantasies, for the most part, is what that is all about. Though it would hardly shock me if they have applied to be recognized as a tribe, their chances of success are minimal.

But there are other tribes that are in the application process that have a much higher chance of success. Some are tribes that were 'terminated' or no longer recognized by the US government, others were declared 'extinct', and still others are splinters off of other already recognized tribes.
13 posted on 01/18/2006 5:55:32 AM PST by kingu (Liberalism: The art of sticking your fingers in your ears and going NANANANA..)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
"I am an Indian and I've sensed this my whole life," says the 48-year-old Baker...

And I can just imagine her family standing behind her, with much eye-rolling and smirking, caused by yet another of mama's silly forays into idiocy and stupidity.

Somebody needs to check this womans hormones or something.

14 posted on 01/18/2006 5:55:46 AM PST by OldSmaj (Hey Islam...I flushed a koran today and I let my dog pp on it first. Come get me, moon bats!)
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To: oblomov

"Supremem Court" should be "Supreme Court".


15 posted on 01/18/2006 5:56:45 AM PST by oblomov (Join the FR Folding@Home Team (#36120) keyword: folding@home)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
But the benefits of racial identity aren't the only ones Indian converts are after. The Indian identity has attracted some poor Americans for the access to university scholarships or free health insurance that comes with it. Potential income from casinos. Indian tribes are allowed to have gambling on their reservations, as long as the tribe is recognized by the US government. A loophole that was originally intended to help many Native Americans out of poverty and deprivation has developed into a huge business. The gambling income nationwide amounts to over $18 billion annually and much of it is distributed among the members of the tribes.

Plus all those government set asides, minority only scholarship, bonuses for hiring and promotion in civil service jobs - yeah - I'd join up to!

16 posted on 01/18/2006 5:56:47 AM PST by 2banana (My common ground with terrorists - They want to die for Islam, and we want to kill them.)
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To: COBOL2Java

Funny, I am in the exact same position. My maternal grandmother was half Cree. Just found out about that recently.


17 posted on 01/18/2006 5:58:32 AM PST by irishtenor (At 270 pounds, I am twice the bike rider Lance is.)
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To: Atlantic Bridge

Sicilian descendant Espera DeCorti

18 posted on 01/18/2006 5:59:02 AM PST by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
A funny Article from the European point of view.

Funny from an American point of view, too.

Most everyone I know knows someone who claims to be part Indian.  The Cherokee of yore seem to have been exceedingly attractive to non-Indians in search of intimate companionship.  :-)

Most of these new Indians have pale skin, some are even blond, and almost all were considered white before. Others point to high cheek bones, brown eyes and straight, glossy hair in their families as unmistakable signs of Indian ancestry. The self-described 'half bloods' may still live in their old homes, but their free time is now taken up by organizing powwows and walking around in costumes like those straight out of old Western movies.

Yep.  We do have our strange quirks.  Some more than others.

The Indian identity has attracted some poor Americans for the access to university scholarships or free health insurance that comes with it. Potential income from casinos.

And some of us just want the cash . . .  Probably a universal inclination among homo sapiens, though.  :-)

 

19 posted on 01/18/2006 6:03:38 AM PST by Racehorse (Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.)
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To: martin_fierro

wow, you sicilians really get around.


20 posted on 01/18/2006 6:04:32 AM PST by son of caesar (son of caesar)
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To: Atlantic Bridge

My great grandmother was a Pawnee squaw. That makes me 1/8 Indian. I have never felt an inclination to cast aside my other 7/8. To each his own I guess.


21 posted on 01/18/2006 6:04:47 AM PST by lafroste (gravity is not a force. See my profile to read my novel absolutely free (I know, beyond shameless))
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To: ModelBreaker; Atlantic Bridge
Side tidbit - (I'm in that Palm Springs area, and we have a half dozen Indian casinos close by)...enter at your own risk. If you have a 'slip and fall' or some accident, you can't really just hire a lawyer and sue.

We know a couple who had their car stolen from the Valet Parking over at Fantasy Springs Casino, just two weeks ago - all responsibility was denied.

As well, the Indians do NOT have to live by the local municipality's fire codes, for instance (fire doors, exit lights, etc)....and I don't even know about building codes.

22 posted on 01/18/2006 6:05:38 AM PST by ErnBatavia (I post in slang..live with it or ignore it - reader's choice.)
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To: peyton randolph

Two Comanche chiefs of the early 1800s (Red River valley
of Texas-Okla) were Coyote Droppings and Wolf's Rear End.

Another warrior's name was Buffalo Penis.


23 posted on 01/18/2006 6:07:05 AM PST by rahbert
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To: Atlantic Bridge; All
GOING NATIVE IN AMERICA - The Benefits of Becoming Indian

Discuss.

24 posted on 01/18/2006 6:07:10 AM PST by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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Of all the politically correct names "Native American" is the one that bothers me the most. Anyone born in America is a native American. I come from a long line of native Americans. I even have a drop or two of American Indian blood.


25 posted on 01/18/2006 6:07:16 AM PST by Durus ("Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." JFK)
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To: martin_fierro

26 posted on 01/18/2006 6:09:07 AM PST by Tijeras_Slim ("We're a meat-based society.")
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To: Atlantic Bridge
I think probably most Americans have some Native American ancestry. One of my grandmothers was Lakota Sioux, my grandfather was half Cherokee and half German. Another grandmother was English and her husband was 'God knows what'. So where does that leave me? I'm so confused!

Growing up for me was a potpourri. One grandmother would make me wear a potato charm around my neck to ward off spirits in the morning. Later that afternoon I would have English tea. At age 10 my family moved to Germany. But I guess that's the good thing about being American. You can be whatever you want!
27 posted on 01/18/2006 6:13:00 AM PST by loreldan (Lincoln, Reagan, & G. W. Bush - the cure for Democrat lunacy.)
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To: Tijeras_Slim

28 posted on 01/18/2006 6:13:03 AM PST by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: martin_fierro

Don't forget Espera DeCorti.


29 posted on 01/18/2006 6:17:30 AM PST by Tijeras_Slim ("We're a meat-based society.")
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To: Kenton
LOL!

When people claim to be part indian and I ask, "What tribe?", they ALWAYS answer, "Cherokee". The Cherokee Nation must have been very prolific at reproducing.
30 posted on 01/18/2006 6:19:58 AM PST by ryan71
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To: Atlantic Bridge

A short question: Are casinos only allowed in reservations??!



No. They allow people in also:-). The real answer to the question is that the decision to allow an Indian Casino bypasses the state and goes through the feds; Indian Gaming Commission makes a recommendation to the BIA who then makes a recommendation to the Interior who then issues a ruling(no coffee yet this morning, so I think that's the correct setup). In Oregon, the problem has been that tribes want to set up casinos on leased/recently purchased land and the Governor about had a stroke battling the first one. He lost.
I look at the Indian Casinos as the Indians way of doing to the white man what the white man has done to the Indian over the last 300 years.


31 posted on 01/18/2006 6:20:09 AM PST by crazyhorse691 (Diplomacy doesn't work when seagulls rain on your parade. A shotgun and umbrella does.)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
Five years ago, after her parents told her that her family probably had some Native American ancestry, she assembled documents and birth certificates and last September was accepted into the Cherokee Tribe of northeast Alabama.

Not meaning to be the skunk at the orphans' picnic, but the article says, "...her parents told her that her family probably had some Native American ancestry, she assembled documents and birth certificates and..."

Question: In doing all this research did she find any evidence that she had Amerindian ancestry? The article doesn't say, which makes me wonder. Even more so when - according to the latest census -- the stats say that American Indians make up less than 1% of the population.

FYI:

Pinson, Alabama.

Population (year 2000): 5,033
Males: 2,432 (48.3%), Females: 2,601 (51.7%)

Elevation: 660 feet

County: Jefferson

Land area: 7.0 square miles

Zip code: 35126

Median resident age: 33.0 years

Median household income: $39,583 (year 2000)

Median house value: $90,800 (year 2000)

Races in Pinson:
White Non-Hispanic (88.1%)
Black (8.3%)
Hispanic (2.3%)
Two or more races (0.8%)
American Indian (0.7%)

Ancestries: United States (21.4%), English (11.3%), Irish (11.0%), German (6.9%), Italian (2.4%), Scotch-Irish (2.2%).

32 posted on 01/18/2006 6:20:53 AM PST by yankeedame ("Oh, I can take it but I'd much rather dish it out.")
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To: Atlantic Bridge

grrrr....

It's a racket. The only people who can build a casino in Oklahoma are Indians tribes. Cigs? Tax free. ... AND they can also charge there very own 8% "Gross Production Tax" on oil/gas produced on Indian land ... unless you are an Indian, of course. In that case, the 8% "WhiteMan Tax" is waived.

(Oh, btw, The State of Oklahoma also takes another 8% Gross Production Tax, .... so, oilguys get double-dipped. Add that to a standard 13/16 lease, then pay expenses, deal with the Feds and Rookie Indian Tribes instead of the Pros (Oklahoma Corporation Commission) and ... well, it's not as much fun as it once was.)

LOL ... Hey! Anybody out there know a government-lovin' Dem who might want to buy some stripper wells on Indian land? If you love "government", then have I got a deal for you! Buy 3 wells +Inj, 2400',10 bbl/day and you too can be swimming in "government" ... all kinds of "government".

:)

Mush the Semi-Serious


33 posted on 01/18/2006 6:23:25 AM PST by OkiMusashi (Beware the fury of a patient man. --- John Dryden)
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To: rahbert
Another warrior's name was Buffalo Penis.

Bet he was popular with the ladies.

34 posted on 01/18/2006 6:23:33 AM PST by peyton randolph (As long is it does me no harm, I don't care if one worships Elmer Fudd.)
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To: martin_fierro
GOING NATIVE IN AMERICA - The Benefits of Becoming Indian

Looks like Janet Reno's sister.

35 posted on 01/18/2006 6:24:28 AM PST by peyton randolph (As long is it does me no harm, I don't care if one worships Elmer Fudd.)
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To: Kenton

I guess you haven't been to a Connecticut casino where our Indian Poseurs are Black, this so called tribe is more Zulu than Zuni. Pretty good scam they have got, a made up tribe of made up Indians with a tax free homemade welfare system.


36 posted on 01/18/2006 6:24:34 AM PST by ABN 505
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To: Tijeras_Slim
Don't forget Espera DeCorti.

.. / -.. .. -.. -. .----. - .-.-.-

37 posted on 01/18/2006 6:32:50 AM PST by martin_fierro (You'll thank me later.)
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To: rightwinggoth; muawiyah; bmwcyle
That ME is the one that flew out of Klosterwald near Kitzingen, right?!

For all Messerschmitt fans:

The Me 109 is based at the Degerfeld Airfield near Albstadt in southern Germany. The plane recieved severe damage in a landing accident in July 2005. The pilot (it was not my uncle :-)) who flew the machine then tried to make a "go-around". Since he had not enough experience with this difficult to run plane he was not used to the immense torque of the motor and the machine overturned. Here is a picture of the damaged plane:

Gladly the pilot survived without bigger injury and the motor was not really damaged. Therefore the plane is reassembled in the moment and we are looking forward to see her flying again in summer 2006.

BTW - This crash was about 100.000 to 150.000 Euros... Not funny. Thank God most parts of the machine can be used a second time. As I said: It will be a pleasure to hear the DB 605 roaring in the clear blue sky again.


38 posted on 01/18/2006 6:34:56 AM PST by Atlantic Bridge (O tempora! O mores!)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
I traced my roots also ... seems I'm an indirect, eleventeenth, 4th cousin of chief raging whiskey MaGillicuddy.

No, really ... I am ... just ask my uncle ... brave, swaggering drunkard with lithps

39 posted on 01/18/2006 6:35:13 AM PST by knarf (A place where anyone can learn anything ... especially that which promotes clear thinking.)
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To: Atlantic Bridge

I am glad no one was killed.


40 posted on 01/18/2006 6:38:31 AM PST by bmwcyle (As the left takes to the streets the too many lazy Freeper sleep)
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To: loreldan
But I guess that's the good thing about being American. You can be whatever you want!

LOL! We all are a tricky mixture! It is just perfect to take of everything just the best.

Greetings from Lake Constance!

Andreas

41 posted on 01/18/2006 6:43:54 AM PST by Atlantic Bridge (O tempora! O mores!)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
It will be interesting now that DNA profiling can objectively establish "racial" background to see what standards we set to determine "Native American" status.

See, for example:

http://indiandna.com/

This question could get pretty complicated if someone is from more than one recognized minority group, for example:

http://cacreview.blogspot.com/2005/06/freedmen-descendants-use-dna-to-show.html
42 posted on 01/18/2006 6:46:05 AM PST by M. Dodge Thomas (More of the same, only with more zeros at the end.)
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To: Atlantic Bridge

Good grief

These people should see how Real Indians see them.

This would be laughable if it wasn't so embarassing.


43 posted on 01/18/2006 6:46:05 AM PST by Leatherneck_MT (An honest man can feel no pleasure in the exercise of power over his fellow citizens.)
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To: ryan71
When people claim to be part indian and I ask, "What tribe?", they ALWAYS answer, "Cherokee". The Cherokee Nation must have been very prolific at reproducing.

Well, there are a number of Appalachian people knowns as Melungeons, who are sort of a mixed Scotch-Irish/black/Cherokee strain. This may be the source of a lot of it. But I suspect that a lot of people are just trying to enhance their kharmic resume', if ya get my drift...

44 posted on 01/18/2006 6:47:10 AM PST by Kenton
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To: ABN 505

No, but I did see something on TV about them once. Yeah, pretty good scam.


45 posted on 01/18/2006 6:50:35 AM PST by Kenton
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To: martin_fierro

.--- ..- ... - / -.. .- -- -.


46 posted on 01/18/2006 6:52:18 AM PST by Tijeras_Slim ("We're a meat-based society.")
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To: OldSmaj
And I can just imagine her family standing behind her, with much eye-rolling and smirking, caused by yet another of mama's silly forays into idiocy and stupidity. Some body needs to check this womans hormones or something.

HeHe! That was just what I have been thinking. But if you would have read the article to the end you found out that her husband is calling himself "Running Bear" now. This strange attitude seems to be infective. Maybe you guys have to deal with the "indian flu" just like we Europeans have to face the bird flu.. But do not worry - as long as John Kerry isn't wearing feathers, moccasins and a loin cloth it can not be that severe.

:-))

47 posted on 01/18/2006 6:56:21 AM PST by Atlantic Bridge (O tempora! O mores!)
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To: Atlantic Bridge
Greetings from Lake Constance! Ahh! Beautiful area! I've been to der Bodensee many times. Nice profile page, by the way.
48 posted on 01/18/2006 7:01:20 AM PST by loreldan (Lincoln, Reagan, & G. W. Bush - the cure for Democrat lunacy.)
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To: yankeedame

I'm a bit puzzled about the ancestries figures at the end of your post:
'Ancestries: United States (21.4%), English (11.3%), Irish (11.0%), German (6.9%), Italian (2.4%), Scotch-Irish (2.2%).'

Surely the 21.4% listed as United States ancestry must also be part of the other ancestries (ie English, Irish etc) or they must be native Americans? As far as I know, there are no people in the US whose ancestry is purely from the US and not Native American. Am I missing something here?

Also, be careful if you approach a Scotsman and describe him or his lineage as 'Scotch' - he will probably chin you! People from Scotland are Scots, Scotch is a drink!


49 posted on 01/18/2006 7:03:12 AM PST by PaxBritannica
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To: PaxBritannica
Surely the 21.4% listed as United States ancestry must also be part of the other ancestries (ie English, Irish etc) or they must be native Americans? As far as I know, there are no people in the US whose ancestry is purely from the US and not Native American. Am I missing something here?

Good question. My guess is that they are of French ancestry but don't want to admit it! :~)
50 posted on 01/18/2006 7:15:51 AM PST by loreldan (Lincoln, Reagan, & G. W. Bush - the cure for Democrat lunacy.)
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