This COULD be a serious problem, on some reserves. BUT, on many, the council is elected, and they work at the whim of their voters, just as any other political body does.
This is a letter to the EDITOR. Has anyone verified that the charges made are true? Has anyone made any attempt to contact the band, and find out what is going on?
Hell no, it's so much easier to just believe whatever fits YOUR prejudices (as CDN Bear has done on this, and so many other topics), and never bother to verify anything at all.
It's about time that the Federal government get out of running the lives of Indians. Let them self-govern to the maximum extent possible, and let them do simple things such as:
1. Determine who is, and who is NOT an Indian
2. Determine who is, and who is NOT a Member of their Tribe and/or Band.
3. Take the money provided by the government, and utilize it for the betterment of the entire tribe/band, instead of following whatever policies the government decides are necessary.
4. Take charge of the educational system on the reserves, with the ability to hire and fire teachers (with NO Unions allowed) for failure to teach, for inability to know the subjects they are teaching, and for failure to pass periodic competency tests.
5. Set up tribal/band constitutions, that spell out who is/is not allowed to vote in any tribal/band election; who is/is not allowed to hold office; what procedures must be utilized to recall any elected official; strict anti-nepotism rules; and placing all pay and benefits improvements subject to approval of the voters at the next election before any such raise, etc. can take effect.
6. The Federal government should provide that all Reserves are Sovereign lands, with the right to police themselves, and anyone else that comes onto tribal lands. This includes traffic regulation, criminal offenses, etc.
7. That reserves are exempt from ALL Provincial laws, only falling under the Federal laws that specifically impact them. That only Courts of Appeal may hear any case decided in a tribal court, and ONLY can rule on matters of law, never on jurisdiction.
8. That any contracts signed with NON-Reserve entities shall be governed by Federal Contract Law (this eliminates the concept of them making contracts, and then interpreting them in the light most favorable to themselves). But, all such contracts that meet Federal standards are enforceable (which helps to limit those who want to rip off the Indians). ALL Federal Pollution Laws/Controls are MANDATORY!
9. Any gambling that is allowed on a reserve WILL be subject to specific Federal gambling taxes (but NOT Provincial ones), but those taxes can never be more than 20% of the NET proceeds. Any dispute between a gambler and the tribe/band must be settled by arbitration, with one arbitrator selected by each party to the dispute, and one from a pool of Federally approved arbitrators. (That way, if someone is denied a huge payout, an independent body that is NOT beholden to anyone can resolve the dispute. Or, if someone gambles a lot of money on a "Marker", and then refuses to pay up, the tribe/band can get their money.)
Set up such a system, and in about 25-35 years, you will have largely self-sustaining Indian Reserves. You would have much better educated Natives, as they would see to it that their schools did the job, or they would fire a lot of the substandard crap teachers they currently have.
In about 35-50 years, the Reserves would become economic powerhouses. They would help drive prosperity in every area where they are located. They would be hiring a LOT of people from outside the reserves, which would benefit the local areas a lot (and bring people into some sparsely settled areas too.
So CDNBear, how about backing something like this?
They CAN manage alcohol sales, etc. Let them police their own, and with the rights would also come the responsibility. I would be willing to bet that under such a system