Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Tribes come together to promote Bears Ears National Monument

The Ute Mountain Ute tribe expressed enthusiasm for the proposed Bears Ears National Monument at a community meeting Thursday attended by 50 Ute and Navajo tribal members. Ute Mountain has joined the Bears Ears Inter-tribal Coalition along with the Uintah-Ouray Utes, Navajo, Hopi, and Zuni tribes to lobby for the federal action. They are asking President Obama to declare the national monument on 1.9 million acres in southeast Utah to protect traditional Native American lands and ancient cultural sites. Under the proposal, it would be the first national monument to be co-managed by the BLM and native tribes with current and ancestral ties to the land. “It’s time that our concerns were heard,” said Navajo Albert Holiday. “We’ve been on the land for 500 years.” The meeting was one of a series organized by Utah Dine Bikeyah, a non-profit group who first proposed the monument and is working to educate the public...more 

What is the proper response when a coalition of nations lobbies to create harm to a state? The Utah Congressional Delegation should be carefully reviewing all federal statutes and programs impacting these nations.  Governor Hebert should be doing the same for state programs.  And both should be seeing if any federal or state funds are finding their way to this nonprofit.  That would be a start to a self-defense program by the state.


It would appear Utah state rep. Mike Noel is already doing something and former BLMer Ann Morgan in An Indigenous Vision: The Bears Ears National Monument is not too happy about it:

The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees freedom of speech for individuals and organizations to associate and speak in any way they wish without fear of government retaliation. But you wouldn’t know that by listening to Mike Noel, a Republican representative from Kanab, Utah. Mr. Noel fears a conspiracy of sorts where conniving environmentalists are manipulating Native American tribal leaders into supporting a new national monument in Utah. He recently convinced colleagues on the Utah Constitutional Defense Council to ask the Utah Attorney General to investigate the coalition of groups advocating for the proposed Bears Ears National Monument in Utah...

I'm not familiar with the specifics of the Constitutional Defense Council's request to the state's AG.  However, just because I don't believe the coalition's speech should be abridged, doesn't mean that I or anyone should be forced to subsidize that speech.

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