Tribal politics aside the situation in Concho is a very human crisis. On one side there is a tribal governor who consistently ignored many of his own constituents. On the other side are the elderly who took a major hit by Darrel Flyingman over the course of his tenure. In the case of my village the elderly were left to fend for themselves since funding for their only hot meal a day stopped. Other types of aid were also canceled with little or no notice as well. I personally know this for a fact since I was supporting some of my people in the interim on the assumption assistance would eventually come to my relations. I also funded meals for my elders with the same assumption. The only response to our needy from Flyingman was the sound of Gary Owen echoing across the grasslands.
Eventually the proverbial well went dry as the economy assisted in draining my finances. Sadly no assistance ever came to my relations. Homes that were scheduled for repair were simply stopped. Tarps remained on roofs to keep the rain and snow out during the harsh Oklahoma winters. I’ve witnessed with my own eyes as my family struggled to find the basics to feed our nieces and nephews while trying to make ends meet. I would do all I could to ease the suffering but the magnitude of neglect my people had to endure was overwhelming and beyond my financial capability. I still felt guilty for not being able to contribute more especially when I look into the faces those chubby cheek babies.
Why did these human beings have to endure such ambivalence while others lived in the lap of luxury? How could anyone be so callous as to simply ignore people from their own tribe? At the very least the US Cavalry gave the people flour and grease to weather the winter months. It boggles the imagination to think that someone could be so cruel to their own people. The politics behind such tyranny simply does not fit into this equation for we all are descendants of survivors of genocide. But what is most striking about this event is the over riding fact the US government has encroached on the sovereignty of this nation. Flyingman managed to side with outsiders in an attempt to regain control so he could finish robbing the coffers of the tribe. In a correction to the previous news report it was not the US Supreme Court Justice who granted Flyingman access to tribal funds and business. It was other usual government entities who willfully ignored the will and the traditions of the people by their obvious support of Flyingman. Is Flyingman a traitor to his people? That is up to the folks back in Oklahoma to decide but it is obvious he chose to use the power of the US Government to force his will on these humble people at the expense of tribal sovereignty. Invoking the powers of the federal government over tribal law can be viewed as treason in many opinions. My relations call him Veho.
The issue that needs addressing is this nation’s sovereignty as well as the sovereignty of all tribes. Flyingman opened up a can of worms with his total disregard for the will of his people. Are we to expect the feds to march into any rez when there is an election that booted a corrupt politician? Frankly the USA has shown itself to be poor stewards of the ballot box with the Iraq’s hopelessly corrupt politicians which the US backed. President Zelaya of Honduras was ousted from power with little more than an impotent condemnation. It should be noted he was a favorite of the Indigenous people over industrialists who robbed land from the natives and murdered their chiefs. Burma is another classic failure of the US to recognize the duly elected officials in the case of Daw Aung Suu Kyi. Now this beleaguered nation is about to have another election regardless of the fact the people voted for democracy overwhelmingly. The US simply became an enabler of a corrupt military dictator (Gen. Than Shwe) who continues to murder the ethnic minorities within his nation. Gen. Than Shwe is Asia’s version of Gen. George Armstrong Custer for his soldiers rape and murder ethnics at their leisure while the free world looks on. Dare I mention that these villagers are being murdered for the natural resources that lay on their tribal land? To the joy of international corporations I might add. Sounds familiar eh.
With a multitude of articles promoting a new policy dealing with the Indigenous population of America I fear that ultimately sovereignty will be on the chopping block in the near future. Just so you know, with the arrival of the new world order we all will loose our sovereignty regardless of treaties and national boundaries. Under the guidelines of these economic unions that are popping up around the world there is a clause that allows any nation or industry to go into sovereign soil and glean natural resources. The European Union and our NAFTA are to the benefit of international corporations not the nations who subscribe to this global initiative. The Indigenous populations are of absolutely no concern. Globalization is colonization and as we all know the Indigenous populations of the America’s were colonized hundreds of years ago. We are told that we must forgive the history of the past and to move forward but it is hard to forgive when we are still under siege.
Flyingman is only a microcosm of the cancer that is raging around the America’s and the world. Traditional people are placed in a position of ridicule in some cases while others are simply overlooked and live in abject poverty. Tribal officials drive around in Town Cars and Navigators while their electorates scrounge for spare change to buy Duct Tape. Those are the lucky ones since throughout Central and South America tribal people are murdered if they stand in the way of corrupt politicians. Africa is another holocaust in motion. It’s a pandemic of greed that has changed the landscape not only in Indian Country but around the world. And if for one second you believe that world politics is of no concern to Indian Country you are sorely mistaken. The culture of greed is a global initiative and we as Indigenous people and our sovereignty are on the chopping block.
Your Devil’s Advocate