Category Archives: Culture

Natives Reclaiming (and Receiving) Tribal Land In 2021

“From Washington state to Ohio, creativity and strategy are getting land back for tribal nations.” S. Sneve, ICT January 15, 2021

The Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation has purchased farmland. Photo- R. Matamoros

Excerpt: Tribes reclaiming lands ‘actually happening’ By Shirley Sneve, ICT January 15, 2021

“Land is one of the greatest resources for tribal nations across the country. Some 56 million acres are held in trust by the federal government for tribes. That’s approximately 2 percent of the country. However, 90 million acres were taken by the United States between 1887 and 1934 tribes through the Allotment Act, termination and, sometimes, illegal actions.

The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe in Minnesota saw land returned in December 2020. The Leech Lake Reservation Restoration Act was sponsored by Sen. Tina Smith and Rep. Betty McCollum, and signed by the president.

The bill directs the Chippewa National Forest to transfer 11,760 acres of forest service lands to the Department of the Interior to be held in trust for the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe as part of the reservation… Across the country, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Oregon have developed a comprehensive land reclamation strategy as well.”


~Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ~

January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968

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Native Tribe Prioritizes Covid-19 Vaccines for those who Speak Native Languages

“The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota is prioritizing the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to those who speak Dakota and Lakota languages. Standing Rock Tribal Chairman Mike Faith tells KXMB-TV it’s about keeping customs alive.” Associated Press, Time Magazine, January 1, 2021

Jesse Jay Taken Alive died on Monday, Dec. 14, after contracting the coronavirus in October. [He taught Lakota culture and language at a school in his hometown of McLaughlin, South Dakota.] Lakota Language Consortium

“It’s something we have to pass on to our loved ones, our history, our culture our language. We don’t have it in black and white, we tell stories. That’s why it’s so important,” Faith said.

The Standing Rock reservation straddles the North Dakota and South Dakota border and is home to about 8,000 people, more than half of whom live in North Dakota. Faith said only about 300 people on the reservation are fluent in the language.

Frontline health care workers already have begun receiving he vaccine at the Fort Yates hospital, but starting next week priority will be for those who speak their native language.”

In Response to the Attack on Our Capitol By Cowards:

“My message to my fellow Americans and friends around the world following this week’s attack on the Capitol.” ~ Arnold Schwarzenegger~ January 6, 2021

Times Square Goes Virtual New Year’s Eve 2020

“There will be no massive crowds, but plenty of music will still be on tap for New Year’s Eve in Times Square. Using a combination of television and streaming, the show will go on despite the pandemic restrictions against huge gatherings.” Bruce Haring, Deadline, 12/26/20

Times Square, NYC December 21, 2020

New Year’s Eve 2021: Details on Times Square, and other virtual events Chris Jordon, Iohud, 12/28/20

“While the big crowds will be absent, there’s still going to be plenty of New Year’s Eve broadcasts: Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest on ABC…New Year’s Eve Live with Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen on CNN…New Year’s Eve Toast and Roast of 2021 on FOX;  New Year’s Eve with Carson Daly on NBC; and Feliz 2021! on Univision.”

Have A Prosperous And SAFE NEW YEAR! ~ Talking-Feather~

Category: Culture

Alaska Tribe Wins to Continue Emergency Hunts During Covid-19

“Kake is a village of 550 people on Kupreanof Island in Southeast Alaska. About two thirds of the population is Tlingit Indian. The village has received permission to hunt two moose and two deer to ensure the health of its elders and provide culturally nourishing food during the pandemic.”J. Estus, Indian Country Today

Kake is a village of 550 people on Kupreanof Island in Southeast Alaska.File photo- Creative Commons)

Excerpt:Emergency hunts in Alaska can continue,  By Joaqlin Estus, ICT

In August, the state of Alaska sued to stop federal agencies from allowing emergency hunts. The U.S. District Court for Alaska last week sided with the federal agencies and dismissed the state’s motion for a preliminary injunction.The state has been fighting federal land managers over fish and game management off and on for decades.

This latest bout stems from COVID-related food shortages.

Moose at Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska (Photo by Barbara Miers, courtesy of Creative Commons)

Last summer, store shelves in the Tlingit village of Kake, in southeast Alaska, were getting bare. COVID-19 outbreaks had slowed production at Washington state meat processors, Kake’s main source of non-game meat.

The state had mandated travel restrictions. And state budget cuts had all but shut down the low-cost ferry system used to ship food to island communities.

The Organized Village of Kake was one of three tribes that requested emergency hunts. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game denied their request. The village wrote to the Federal Subsistence Board, which manages subsistence on federal lands in Alaska.

A home in Kake, a village in Southeast Alaska. (Photo by Joseph Umnak, Courtesy of Creative Commons)

The letter said vendors were having a difficult time meeting the needs of Kake’s stores…Kake tribal President Joel Jackson, Tlingit and Haida, also testified to the board. He said Kake tribal citizens, especially elders, needed the best nutrition they could get to be in the best health to fight COVID if they came into contact with it… The board authorized the emergency hunt and delegated details to the local U.S. Forest Service ranger.

The village ended up being approved to take two bull moose and five male deer…the village is using some of its COVID relief money to get a community walk-in refrigerator/freezer to safely store deer, fish and moose for the community.”


The Indian Health Service continues to work closely with our tribal partners and state and local public health officials to coordinate a comprehensive public health response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The federal government is working closely with state, local, tribal, and territorial partners, as well as public health partners, to respond to this public health threat.” IHS – November 2020

Native Santa Helps 40 Animals That Need Homes

“Nearly 50 animals are now staying in Calvin Red Owl III’s home. Calvin Red Owl III was advocating for animal welfare rights in a district meeting when he heard dogs barking, alerting him to the fire that broke out at the White Owl Sanctuary. He’s Oglala Lakota and the founder and operator of the first and only animal shelter on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.”  J.  Estus, ICT 

Kevin Red Owl, III, caring for a few of the nearly 40 animals he’s caring for in his home. (Photo courtesy of Kevin Red Owl)

Excerpt: Saving the sanctuary for Pine Ridge’s four-legged relatives, By Joaqlin Estus, Indian Country Today 

“He’s now caring for 49 animals in his three bedroom home, where he lives with his three sons. Red Owl III has an autoimmune disease and is only working with one volunteer to care for the animals, to limit his chances of contracting COVID-19.

Homeless animals on Pine Ridge

“Well, now what’s next for the shelter is we’re trying to find homes for all 47 animals that we have. And we are trying to rebuild as quickly as possible because the winter months are here and there’s lots of animals that need rehoming here on the reservation.”

For additional information about the White Owl Sanctuary click here.


The Indian Health Service continues to work closely with our tribal partners and state and local public health officials to coordinate a comprehensive public health response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The federal government is working closely with state, local, tribal, and territorial partners, as well as public health partners, to respond to this public health threat.” IHS – November 2020

In 1929 The First U.S. Vice President was Native!

Note: For those who gather with family this year, please remember to be safe. For more guidelines visit Celebrating Thanksgiving  CDC (Center for Disease Control)  


“Charles Curtis, who served as Vice President from 1929 to 1933, grew up in part on Kanza land and spoke proudly of his Native American ancestry.”C. Hauser, The New York Times (11/10/20)

Vice President Charles Curtis meeting with chiefs of the Rosebud Reservation, who promised their support during a presidential election.Credit: Pacific & Atlantic Photos

Excerpt: Before Harris, This Vice President Broke a Racial Barrier, By Christine Hauser, The New York Times

Kamala Harris broke gender and racial barriers this year as the first woman [ of mixed race] to be elected vice president.

But historians and Native Americans are also revisiting the legacy of Charles Curtis, whose Kaw Nation ancestry gives him a claim as the first ‘person of color’ to serve as vice president, though the term’s current usage emerged decades later. Mr. Curtis, who served under President Herbert Hoover from 1929 to 1933, often referred to the novelty of his background while in public office, speaking of his rise ‘from Kaw tepee to Capitol’ as his Senate biography notes…His embrace of his heritage, however, also came with a legacy that some historians and advocates say undermined Native land rights…Mr. Hoover chose him as a running mate in 1928, possibly because of his popularity in the pastoral Midwest…He learned the language and excelled at horsemanship, according to the Senate. And he pursued his early education in Topeka, shuttling back and forth between the city and the reservation, said Crystal Douglas, who runs the Kanza Museum in Kaw City, Oklahoma…Many Native leaders thought a man who grew up with a tribe would look out for their interests.

But parts of his legacy, historians say, are overshadowed by his role as the original author of the Curtis Act of 1898,which orchestrated allotment of Native lands and curtailed tribal leadership…Ms. Douglas, the Kanza Museum director, said that Mr. Curtis “did some wonderful things” for his people, and introduced bills backing women’s voting rights and child labor laws..She said that Mr. Curtis’s personal papers show he was “disappointed” with how the Curtis Act ultimately harmed tribal identity…Then he faded into relative obscurity, until this year, as Ms. Harris’s selection on a major party ticket renewed interest in his stature as the highest-ranking person of Native descent in the federal government.”  Find out more about Charles Curtis at wikipedia


Black Hills Woman Painting By Maxine Noel- Canadian First Nations artist