Wednesday, December 16, 2009

SWF Rewind- Wintu Band Unity- If The Pit River Can Do It, We Can Do It

(map) Pit River Bands and Ancestral Territory

As seen in other tribal petitions where the tribal membership is either duplicate or representative of the same prehistoric tribal group recognition has been denied repeatedly thru the BAR process of recognition at BIA. As recently at November 2007 the Juaneno tribe had a negative determination handed down on their petition because several years previous to the final review as a result of tribal matters the tribe split, much like the Wintu Bands Today, into sepreate organizations claiming "control" of the membership rolls, and future administration of the tribal government. Around 1997 the Juaneno, a tribe from southern california that also have been on the list waiting for a descision on their application for recognition thru Interior's BAR process for over 20 years, split into two groups that became knows as Juaneno 1 and Juaneno 2. The Interior dep't declared a "NO" descision after the membership rolls were found to be duplicate, and the membership criteria innacurate and differing from interior historical documents, and the tribal governments not following proceedures outlined in tribal governance documents. All Wintu elders know that the band members are scattered throughout the modern tribal poltical entities that all claim the same thing, governance of the Wintu People.

In 1984 the Pit River Tribe (constitution) was recognised under the Reagan (R, CA)administration, and at that time were able to consoldate inter-bands interests for the good of the members to gain federal recognition, I'm not saying everything is smooth up in Burney, or Bieber, or Alturas, but they did it, now they have housing, they have a gaming facility, while we have spent the last 30 years watching with Toyon closed, no federal funding, no community and no guarentee for education for our children or jobs for our members, and without a land base members are found in substandard housing without any response whatsoever from the BIA.

Lets get together for the Elections 2008 and vote in members to the tribal council that will take steps tward, what the CILS attourneys have told us five years ago was the only was to a BAR final detirmination, to resolve the intertribal disputes between the seperate bands of Wintu, and move foreward for recognition for the entire tribe! Cuz if the Pit River can do it, So Can We!

* article written for SWF by Matt Root (Wintun) in February 2008.


Hewise said...

Don't fool your self! The so called Pit River Tribe has been struggling ever since that dam constitution was adopted. We can never agree on anything. Down river's want everything built down river and us up rivers, well we get nothing. The only way we can be succesfull is if we seperate. Each band or I should say each of the 11 Pit River Tribes should be federally recognized seperatly. Right now were set up like a federation not a tribe! Trust me don't make the same mistake we did. Get federally recognized seperatly!

Enrollen Wintu Tribal Member said...

Ok, I hear you. But what sucks is that you can't have a "Tribe" for every family.

The Curl's Have Toyon/Nor Cal Wintu Now, everyone knows that, the Nor Muks are going to stay the Nor Muks, No doubt about it. And now caleen has her whack jobs. And The United Bands rep about 400 people, most of whom left the Curl/Malone board because they were violating everyones rights, and no one has ever broke their strangle-hold on power, YET.

Being several bands of Wintu is certainly a lucritive (if your daunom, or elpom), but not so much, if your winnemem, nomtipom, or Nom sus. Its still a hellovan idea, all 9 bands. But some are gone altogether, like Maybe caleen should be Puisus, so the real winnemem families can rep the mccloud area, that should be. Or maybe frank la pena will finally move home and do what he shoulda been doing for the last 40 years up here in shasta county rather than in sacramento?

Some areas I seriously doubt would have the membership to represent themselves, much akin to Buena Vista rancheria, with about 7adult members. I think we can agree that this should not be happening to the wintu, or to other groups. And perhaps a consolodation of bands is the answer the the smaller groups weaknesses. I would like to think so.

Because the one thing thats for sure here is that the members want trad. in their lives, and if identifying as a trad. band of Wintu helps to accomplish this then the tribal councils (nor muk, toyon/norcal/curl, caleens wwo, and the united bands; shoulda' done it a LONG TIME AGO.

There is another issue of unravelling members lineage, multiple or several band descent, and village location. Remember we're talking 1840 Reading and Bidwell started working the tribe, so like caleen said, there are people from the maidu all the way to covelo and beyond that deserve to be given an equal opportunity to enroll, and be involved in their trib, as we continue to try to strive toward unity and federal acknowlegement.

good morning tribal council members.