Friday, May 15, 2009

NARF Executive Director Suggested as a Possible U.S. Supreme Court Nominee

From an editorial in The Nation's online magazine:

"It goes without saying that President Obama's nominee to replace Justice
David Souter on the Supreme Court should be a person of extraordinary
intelligence, integrity and moral vision. And since archconservative
justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito are in their 50s, it wouldn't
hurt if the first Democratic appointee in fifteen years is relatively
young and in good health. It should also go without saying that the
president has the prerogative and political capital to nominate a
justice who agrees broadly with his interpretation of the Constitution
as a document that protects "people who may be vulnerable in the political process, the outsider, the minority...those who don't have a lot of clout" and grants a right to privacy. Luckily, there is no shortage of candidates who meet these criteria. "

To read the full article click here. John Echohawk is discussed on page two in the section regarding Garrett Epps.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

NARF Establishes Working Group on Native American Eagle Feather Use


The Native American Rights Fund is initiating a working group to address government intervention in the lives of Native people who work with or use eagle feathers in traditional ways, and tribes are speaking out on the issue. See the Indian Country Today story published May 11, 2009.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Environmental sustainability in our work and at our office

A scientific consensus has emerged in recent decades that human activities are causing significant changes to our climate and environment. Among the documented changes are higher temperatures, rising sea levels, warming oceans and melting polar ice sheets. Climate change is a global phenomenon and will affect everyone under even the most conservative scientific projections. However, climate change will not affect everyone equally. Native peoples find themselves already at ground zero in a fight that will ultimately determine the survival of their tribal nations. Native communities are exceptionally vulnerable to the effects of climate change and the devastating results have already begun to fall disproportionately on tribes. Despite the fact that Native peoples have historically left a negligible carbon footprint, they are suffering and will suffer disproportionately from the effects of climate change. Read more here.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

SLA Honors NILL Librarian as a "Green Champion" With Special Presidential Citation

Individuals and Organizations Planting the Seeds of Change by Providing "Knowledge to Go Green"

In recognition of Earth Day, April 22, 2009, Special Libraries Association (SLA) announced 12 recipients of the 2008 SLA Presidential Citation honoring SLA "Knowledge to Go Green" Champions. The 2008 Green Citation, presented in early 2009, was a special one-year citation created by Past President of SLA Stephen Abram in recognition of the association's commitment to green practices through the "Knowledge to Go Green" initiative. Read more here.

Supreme Court continues to rule against tribes and Indian country

On April 6, 2009, the Court decided United States v. Navajo Nation (Navajo II), part of the ongoing litigation between the Navajo Nation, Peabody Coal and the United States (as trustee) which reached the Supreme Court in 2003. In Navajo I, the Court had held that the Indian Mineral Leasing Act of 1938 (IMLA) and its regulations did not constitute the substantive source of law necessary to establish specific trust duties which mandate compensation for breach of those duties by the Government, and remanded the case for further proceedings consistent with its opinion. On remand the Federal Circuit held that provisions of the Navajo-Hopi Rehabilitation Act of 1950 and the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA) create specific trust duties which the Government had violated, as well as their violation of the “common law trust duties of care, candor, and loyalty” that arise from the comprehensive control exercised by the Government over tribal coal. Justice Scalia, writing for the Court, found that the IMLA governed the coal lease at issue here and, as the Court held in Navajo I, the IMLA does not constitute the requisite substantive source of law. Click here to read more.