By David E. Wilkins
"Like the miner's canary, the Indian marks the shift from clean air to poison fuel in our political surroundings; and our therapy of Indians, much more than our remedy of alternative minorities, displays the increase and fall in our democratic faith," wrote Felix S. Cohen, an early professional in Indian criminal affairs. during this publication, David Wilkins charts the "fall in our democratic religion" via fifteen landmark circumstances within which the ultimate courtroom considerably curtailed Indian rights. He bargains compelling facts that superb court docket justices selectively used precedents and evidence, either old and modern, to reach at judgements that experience undermined tribal sovereignty, legitimated sizeable tribal land losses, sanctioned the diminishment of Indian non secular rights, and curtailed different rights to boot. those case studies--and their implications for all minority groups--make vital and troubling analyzing at a time whilst the splendid court docket is on the vortex of political and ethical advancements which are redefining the character of yank govt, reworking the connection among the criminal and political branches, and changing the very that means of federalism.
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Extra resources for American Indian Sovereignty and the U.S. Supreme Court: The Masking of Justice
3 Indigenous nations, in short, fall easily within the purview of the Court as ‘‘discrete and insular’’ groups which sometimes require special protection from discrimination. To deﬁne their status, it is important to identify certain characteristics of tribal nations. First, and most obvious, tribal nations are indigenous to the United States, while all other individuals and groups are immigrants. 5 In Standing Bear v. Crook (1879), for example, a federal court held that Indians had the right to withdraw from their tribe—to expatriate from their nation and live apart—if they so desired.
Christian missionaries funded by the federal government, boarding schools, reservations, and the individualization of tribal lands and funds) were developed by the Congress and sanctioned by the Supreme Court to impose this cultural transformation. Civilizing/paternalistic consciousness generally employed three types of masks for the parties involved and the legal process. Two sets of masks were applied to tribal nations. ). ’’ Gradations of ‘‘savagery’’ were applied to the various tribes, and the Court vacillated in the manner in which it employed these masks.
Name /T5723/T5723_CH01 12 05/24/01 06:03AM Plate # 0-Composite american indian sovereignty and the supreme court v. Clapox (1888). This decision involved a determination of the status of the federally created Courts of Indian Offenses (referred to by the acronym COF for the Code of Federal Regulations from which they sprang) that had been developed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs in 1883. These courts, manned by agent-appointed Indian judges, were charged with enforcing a Code of Federal Regulations designed to ‘‘civilize’’ and assimilate Indians by punishing tribal members who engaged in tribal dances, polygamy, traditional healing ceremonies, or any activity deemed ‘‘heathenish’’ by the local agent and the commissioner of Indian affairs.