The polity that is Oklahoma

The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that nearly half of Oklahoma falls within an Indian reservation, a decision that could reshape the criminal-justice system by preventing state authorities from prosecuting offenses there that involve Native Americans.

The 5-to-4 decision, potentially one of the most consequential legal victories for Native Americans in decades, could have far-reaching implications for the 1.8 million people who live across what is now deemed “Indian Country” by the high court. The lands include much of Tulsa, Oklahoma’s second-biggest city.

The case was steeped in the United States government’s long history of brutal removals and broken treaties with Indigenous tribes, and grappled with whether lands of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation had remained a reservation after Oklahoma became a state.

Here is the full NYT article.  Do those people now live under some kind of joint sovereignty?

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Go to google maps and click on the reservations in the west. It’s astounding how much of western states are tribal lands. Those on the east coast are usually unaware of just how large the reservations are.

So the Indians who live on the reservations are immune from non-reservation law enforcement. Will they give up their welfare, free medical, schools, tax exemption, etc. too?

Will they get back their treaty granted tribal lands in the (mostly south) East?

The treaties giving them wasteland in exchange for fertile land promised them the welfare as well as the land. They have never gotten the full benefits promised, not the welfare, not the benefit of the land when the oil was found or Federal Big Government central planners provide free water to white men who took the tribal land by fraud and murder.

The white men in the West railing against the Federal government not giving them "their" land constantly tin cup DC to get money to support them on the land they own. Mount Rushmore was built on tribal land with money tin cupped from DC to get tourists to come spend money in a wasteland that couldn't support white men on their own.

To be clear, the court ruled that this situation exists only until the federal government says otherwise. They haven't, so far, that's why the Court decided the way they did.

sounds like scotus just jabbed congress in the nads

""Today we are asked whether the land these treaties promised remains an Indian reservation for purposes of fed­eral criminal law. Because Congress has not said otherwise, we hold the government to its word," Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in the majority opinion."

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Congress. The Trump Admin can't do anything about this.

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The Indians believed that ONLY those who were present for a treaty were obligated by it. No one is alive today that was present at any of those treaties so by Indian rule they no longer apply.

Where can I read more about this? Never heard of it before.

There are many different Native Americans, and hard as this might be to imagine, they do not speak the same language or even share a single culture.

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It heavily depended on the specific tribe/tribal grouping. It was common for certain Plains Tribes to believe such.

We should end the reservation system. Give all of those who live on reservations their own land in fee simple. Keep the larger portion of land under a corporation run by the Indians with each of those Indians from the reservation having an equal 'share' in that corporation. Give them equality not a reservation life. Give them the freedom to choose what they want to do.

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Be careful what you wish for, troll.

I'm sure they'd give up their "welfare"... in exchange for re-setting the boundaries to, say, 1492.

I don’t even think his premise is correct.

AFAIK they’re still subject to federal law enforcement jurisdiction

Tribes are sovereign nations. OneGuy lacks OneBrain needs to read TwoBooks.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tribal_sovereignty_in_the_United_States

-1, No they are not sovereign nations. Your own link says otherwise.

"Tribal sovereignty in the United States is the concept of the inherent authority of indigenous tribes to govern themselves within the borders of the United States. The U.S. federal government recognizes tribal nations as "domestic dependent nations"["

Follow your references, friend: "The Department of Justice Policy on Indian Sovereignty and Government-to-Government Relations with Indian Tribes reaffirms the Justice Department's recognition of the sovereign status of federally recognized Indian tribes as domestic dependent nations and reaffirms adherence to the principles of government-to-government relations"

Your own quote seems to be saying JWatts is exactly right?? "sovereign status...as domestic dependent nation" is not the same thing as "sovereign nations".

Friend.

Depends on the specific issue. They are not sovereign in all respects, obviously. And even within the domain of criminal justice issues, it is a complicated web. Applicability of federal law and jurisdiction depends on the particular crime, whether the suspect is Native American and other factors.

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Not only are they NOT sovereign nations but all American Indians are American citizens subject to American laws.

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The upshot of today's decision is that every Native American convicted of a crime by the state of Oklahoma is going to have that conviction overturned. That includes over 2000 current state prisoners. Some of them might get retried by the tribe, but I'm guessing not many.

This doesn't affect federal law enforcement, but it's also not something that Congress can change retroactively.

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In Arizona, the city politely outlined Indian country by building massive freeways around the land. They must love the views!

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Those tribes were given land in the West that was considered wasteland in exchange for the land taken from them in the East, mostly south east, considered more fertile needed to replace the once fertile land depleted growing cotton and tobacco.

Of course, once it was discovered the wasteland had oil, the tribes were defrauded and killed, along with any blacks allowed to own wasteland which turned out to sit on oil.

Note, the land in the West stayed in Federal hands because it cost too much to give it to white men, eg, the Dust Bowl welfare state, the Big Government central planning to provide more water than existed for free, etc.

shhhh.... don't start talking about western white welfare.

All the Bundy patriots will get their feelings hurt.

Don’t feed the Mulp, dude. It lowers you and everyone.

So you feed the George, instead ....

mmmmm shark fin soup

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Will the Native Americans who have now won the land back in US courts be forced to pay restitution or reparations to the descendants of the tribes they displaced centuries ago, or is that not needed because 1) Non-white people are held to a lower standard of morality, and/or 2) The previous peoples were completely eliminated/absorbed, leaving no one to claim the torch of victimhood?

Choice 1 is pretty racist.
Choice 2 provides an interesting incentive for future conquerors.

It's a court of laws not morals.

If you want moral judgements ask your bishop. Or, even wiser, don't.

By Forced, I don't mean by law. I meant by the justice seekers now occupying all levels of academia and media.

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I'm no expert, but has a US court ever asserted jurisdiction over events that took place before the Constitution that gives them authority was adopted?

A good question: I don't know the answer. The remark about "steeped in", however, sounds like vacuous journalistic blather.

The important bit is probably "Justice Neil M. Gorsuch ... said that Congress had granted the Creek a reservation, and that the United States needed to abide by its promises." So it's an ordinary question about US Statute Law, apparently.

It's a matter of whether article V trumps article I which grants Trump supreme power over man, nature, and god.

Take your meds. Your TDS is taking over your feeble mind again.

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They don't need to abide by their promises, but they would have to pass a new law to replace the old treaty agreement.

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Choice 2 is de facto how the world is and has always been. The biggest beneficiary of that moral principle are countries like the US, Canada, and Australia where native populations were almost completely wiped out before there was a concept of human rights.

I’d prefer a Choice 3, where land is bought and sold by individuals who develop it instead of being treated as the collective and inalienable property of the people whose ancestors conquered it.

"The biggest beneficiary of that moral principle" is every resident who isn't preponderantly a direct descendant of those humans who were the first to live wherever that resident resides. Which is probably all of us save for a tiny few e.g. Polynesians.

No, settler colonies like the US, Canada, and Australia got an enormous amount of land and natural resources relative to population and have built extremely prosperous societies based on the conquered land. That makes it very different from other people who may also be living on conquered land.

By analogy (hypothetical of course), if your grandfather and my grandfather were both brutal mafia dons, but yours left you a fortune while mine squandered his fortune and I did not get any money from his criminal activities, I’d say that you are a beneficiary of your grandfather’s criminal activities in a way that I am not.

Comparing the US to China is perhaps more like...

The US as third generation Jewish mafiso descencent who mainly benefitted from his dad becoming a dentist and making tons more money from his own intelligence and education that mafia guy ever made.

China is the seventh generation mafioso descendent, whose ancestors all had huge families and neglected their education.

In neither case, not much of where either is has much to do with mafia guy. In neither case it is really justified for seventh generation mafia B to steal from the son of the dentist.

No, the US really did hit a jackpot from conquering a super-abundance of arable land and natural resources. Why is the US so much wealthier even than say Western Europe?

China hit absolute rock bottom by the end of World War II. Any gains from historical conquests were completely lost and its modest wealth in modern times is not based on said conquests.

And of course there are many countries in the world that received even less from historical wrongdoing than China. Many countries were basically only created in the last 60 years with all borders defined by outsiders and cannot be said to have received any benefit whatsoever from their ancestors.

Of course no one should steal from anyone else today, but the people who are still enjoying some wealth generated by their ancestors’ activities which would be considered gross violations of human rights today ought not to pretend they are morally superior to others today so long as they are still willing to enjoy said wealth, nor take actions to coercively perpetuate the inequalities that resulted such from gross violations yet persist today.

"Why is the US so much wealthier even than say Western Europe?"

The first possibility that jumps out at me isn't "it obtained its land more recently". I'm not sure what mechanism you are postulating here whereby acquiring land more recently makes you more wealthy. Also a country like Germany only came into existence more recently than the U.S., so I'm not sure exactly what distinction you are trying to draw.

"China hit absolute rock bottom by the end of World War II. Any gains from historical conquests were completely lost and its modest wealth in modern times is not based on said conquests."

Nonsense. It still has all the land it conquered. I find it odd that you would say that, should left-wing fascists institute a cultural revolution in the U.S. and murder some tens of millions and bring the U.S. economy to its knees, the supposed benefits of U.S. "conquest" would then be extinguished.

"Many countries were basically only created in the last 60 years with all borders defined by outsiders and cannot be said to have received any benefit whatsoever from their ancestors."

Nonsense. Those borders were not defined arbitrarily, but based on the lands their ancestors conquered.

" the people who are still enjoying some wealth generated by their ancestors’ activities which would be considered gross violations of human rights today ought not to pretend they are morally superior to others today so long as they are still willing to enjoy said wealth"

What about the people "enjoying that wealth" whose ancestors had nothing to do with it (i.e. the bulk of the population of this country)? Are they somehow morally superior because we don't know what their ancestors were doing any maybe their ancestors were more morally meritorious? Is this a blood libel situation?

"nor take actions to coercively perpetuate the inequalities that resulted such from gross violations yet persist today"

Such as?

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The US hit the jackpot due to a confluence of events. The previous inhabitants were decimated, quite literally, by disease around a generation before the English started settling. Most likely this was one of those accidental spreads from a fishing resupply run (e.g. the Grand Bank) but whatever sparked it, the Eastern US was heavily depopulated by disease before the colonies even started.

Another thing that helped dramatically is that the US was settled in much greater degree by permanent settlers rather than fortune seekers. The Pilgrims, the Puritans, and even the Cavaliers of Virginia had basically given up on the mother country as opposed to France or Spain where such populations (e.g. the Huguenots and Conversos) were much smaller in number.

China's actual rock bottom was at the end of the Great Leap Forward when the folly of the CCP's planning manifested itself through dramatic falls in industrial output, massive crop failures, and of course mass starvation with a doubling of the gross death rate.

At the end of the day, the US land while valuable was not appreciably more so in the 19th century than Argentina or Russia. It became astoundingly wealthy by having an open society with strong protections on property rights coupled with a strong culture of association and mutual aid.

Thanks. One of the smartest posts I've read on here.

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The USA probably had systematically better literacy and policies on business than even Great Britain, and avoided a lot of warfare, and a number of other advantages in civic society. Some of those advantages have eroded, some remain. But it's probably not just land.

For an American, you surprisingly don't believe much in the idea that the US could have had better policy...

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The other vastly underappreciated factor in the development of the US and its wealth is that the US has more miles of navigable inland waterways than the entire rest of the world combined and the east coast of the US has more deep water ports than the entire rest of the hemisphere: https://worldview.stratfor.com/article/geopolitics-united-states-part-1-inevitable-empire

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Not the analogy really makes sense in the first place. If large surpluses of land relative to population made nations rich, then Russia and Africa really should be in the money, right? Ultimately the wealth of nations is determined by the other factors - if you have a lot of people relative to land, no problem if you're Netherlands or Japan, as it simply means more opportunity for specialisation and trade.

Lots of arable land, natural resources and access to the sea probably make it easier to become a developed country. Of course, you can screw things up even if you have all three (Argentina and Ukraine) and you can succeed with none of them (Switzerland?) but there is evidence they provide a nice head start.

I don't think there's any way to test that which is robust to the much greater effects of history on human capital formation and institutions.

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Where you live today was formerly owned by someone that had it taken from them without compensation. But I'll bet you are happy to keep "owning" your home.

I've never understood these jackass university administrators that begin every speech by acknowledging how the university land was "taken" from someone. How can you live with yourself knowing you are benefiting from something stolen? Give it back if you feel strongly about it. And then shut up.

No no no--Peter Minuit bought the island where I live. There is an unbroken chain of consensual transfers from 1626 until today. (Well, unless you count the British taking it from the Dutch, but that's not the injustice most people get exercised about today.)

The British didn't take it from the Dutch: they traded for one of the Spice Islands.

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The concept of real estate ownership that the Europeans brought with them to the New World were incomprehensible to the natives. They probably thought that Peter Minuit was a fool for trading his beads to someone that didn't have the authority to trade the island to anyone. Of course, neither Czar Alexander II nor Seward had seen Alaska before the Russian empire pawned it off on the US. Nobody ever asked the Aleuts, Tlingits, Yupiks or Inupiats their opinion of the matter. The Republic of Hawaii was simply taken over by the US, the kindly conqueror.

"The concept of real estate ownership that the Europeans brought with them to the New World were incomprehensible to the natives." Really, even to agricultural tribes? How did they decide who hoed what then?

Community gardens. All over the world to this day.

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That's where all that Elinor Ostrom type of stuff comes into play. Certainly not some sort of primitive egalitarian communism and sharing tho, but lots of hierarchy about who gets to do what on what land.

But also NAs were pretty slashy-burny right? Long term land tenures are not really such a priority in those conditions. Matters more when you have stable states and tools and means for continuous soil enrichment (manuring, fertilisers, ploughs, etc).

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Yes, and those virtue signalling admins will take their cushy state funded retirement and enjoy it in comfy mcmansions in all white gated communities.

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Just to be clear, you're saying the assistant underdean for global relations is supposed to decide to "give back" university lands?

Not assistant underdean. The president of Evergreen College has published the following: "I’m George Bridges, I use he/him pronouns. I begin our time together today by acknowledging the indigenous people of the Medicine Creek Treaty, whose land was stolen and on which the college stands. I would like to acknowledge the Squaxin people who are the traditional custodians of this land and pay respect to elders past and present of the Squaxin Island Tribe. I extend that respect to other Native people present."

See that? The president of the university acknowledges the land was stolen and a college was built on that stolen land. And he doesn't care. He'll pay you lip service, but nothing else.

Let's try it on for size: "My name is Patrick Hinton and I am driving a car which I stole 3 weeks ago, and I hearby recognize my neighbor Jimmy Kelvin as the rightful owner and was the custodian of that car until 3 weeks ago. I pay him enormous respect."

Sounds stupid, yeah? that's how the university president sounds to 99% of the population.

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The position of saying that effectively 'colonial landtheft is unjust when it collectively belongs to a conquering nation.... but when private individuals then own it, it having been conquered, hey that's just, so fill your boots' is a very strange one.

If anything, replacing collective with private ownership of conquered land seems *less* legimate; at least the conquerors "spilled their blood" in warfare (if unjust warfare) to take and hold it. what sacrifice di the purchasers make?

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Red Lives Matter.

What about Cromwell?

Irish Lives Matter

Cromwell looked upon himself as putting down a Roman Catholic rebellion that had started with a slaughter of Protestants. Whether he overreacted is open to argument.

Ten thousand dead. Maybe arguably would have been arguably an overreaction. Twenty thousand. Getting closer to simply an overreaction now. Fifty, one hundred thousand, now we're talking, or perhaps arguing.

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Yeah, Cromwell, neat guy.

Bring back the Black and Tans and the B Specials.

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I'm an Oklahoman and worked for the OK Department of Commerce; the significance of this ruling is huge, and the implications will all have to be worked out one ruling at a time. But the entire financial and legal structure of half of Oklahoma will change enormously. In the past, tribes were considered very much like corporations, with tribes ranking as some of the largest corporations in the state - corporations that provided healthcare and other social services for the tens of thousands of members each one could count. But like corporations, tribal legal and administrative authority was often considered to hold less weight than that of even municipal governments.

I don't know how to say it other than to restate that this will be huge, though how huge will be decided on a case-by-case basis.

Potentially every property tax assessment and every private real estate transaction in the affected areas has been declared illegal. I also wonder whether every state marriage license and divorce decree issued to a Native American is now invalid.

Real estate transaction, certainly not. The key facts are:

- Congress set aside a certain portion of land as a permanent Creek homeland
- Congress later passed a law allotting law to individual tribe members and explicitly granting them the right to hold the land as private property and sell and transfer it after a certain number of years passed.

So there is no dispute over the private property rights of anyone who owns land in this part of Oklahoma any more than there would be over the property rights of a foreign national who owns a vacation home in Florida. That person owns the land but the state of Florida exercises sovereignty over an area that includes that land. Congress scored an own goal on this one.

Got it, thanks.

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Re joint sovereignty - yes, they do. The captive Indian nations are still nations unto themselves. They have their own tribal law justice system. Crimes on a reservation are typically tried in local Indian courts. Individual Indians are also US citizens and no longer confined to living on the reservation, but can choose to do so. Native American Indians are caught in a precarious balance between preserving native heritage and being assimilated into the mainstream. Not all of the tribes have oil money or casinos, and conditions on most reservations can be pretty dismal. As a young pup lawyer 50 years ago, I did a small amount of work through Department of Interior for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. I have not kept up with changes in the law over the last 50 years, but know that the tribes maintain their status as separate nations within our nation. Their status is largely overlooked and misunderstood. Hopefully people with more current knowledge will share in these comments.

If they are sovereign nations,been can declare war on them and steal their land again.

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I have no insight into this particular case, but I do wonder how many native lawyers in other parts of the country are getting excited right now..

"I have no insight into this particular case ..."

Or any others ...

Oh, you are so manly. I swoon.

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Looking at this and other Supreme Court decisions from the last few weeks, it is very reasssuring to see that:
- at a time when confidence in legislative and administrative bodies has declined to the point of sarcasm, the highest court continues to function with high integrity and intellectual rigor; and
- at a time when the entire country is bipolar and even the coronavirus crisis is phrased in Republican and Democratic terms, concerns that the Supreme Court would be equally bipolar, particularly after Trump’s appointments, have been unfounded.

This was a 5-4 vote with the core liberal and core conservative wings opposing each other but the earlier 7-2 vote on Trump's financial documents was bipartisan!

People forget that the ruling for Trump will apply to future Democrats.

This is likely an own goal for the state of NY/Democratic Party. Imagine how dirty Biden and future Dem records are, this could be fun.

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Maybe Elizabeth Warren will become a turncoat and claim to be a Creek.

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"Do those people now live under some kind of joint sovereignty?"

If you mean non-Indians, no. Certain Indians, yes.

If you are an enrolled member of one of the tribes exiled to Oklahoma from the SE, you cannot be prosecuted in state courts for crimes.

For instance, the Creek tribe has its own "court" system that can try the member. The US government can prosecute serious crimes as defined in the " Major Crimes Act " in federal court. Crimes outside the scope of the Major Crimes
Act can only be tried in tribal courts, never state courts.

The worrisome part is some other laws use the same definitions of "Indian country" as the Major Crimes Act so the tribes may eventually be free of a lot of state law.

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"these people" could be interpreted as a slam. I dislike the name "Native American" because I am a native American and it's hard to see whether the N is upper or lower case in speech. I'm ok with the Canadian term "First Nations" person/people but I've abandoned (when I'm being careful) the term "indian/Indian" completely. I wonder if TC will get some flak for using it... As far as jurisdiction, it's complicated. We in the US are already subject to several sovereigns: State and Federal, and a couple other jurisdictions; County and City. Some Reservations are Federal but some are State created. And of course there's criminal vs civil law, property law, not to mention cut-outs in certain laws and regulations. It's a mess. Let me be first to say the word: water. We live in interesting times.

At least when and where I was raised the preferred term was Amerindian and I will always use it.

From Amerindia... what?

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I think it's a good word on its merits, but it doesn't seem to have gained much popularity.

"American Indian" might be making a bit of a comeback, and if it does then "Amerindian" might gain some traction.

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BfO is more knowledgeable than I. I'm sure the case law makes it complex. In most crimes there's victim's jurisdiction, accused's jurisdiction, and the jurisdiction of the location of the crime. I believe he meant that to apply crimes happening ON Reservation land, not elsewhere.

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It appears that most people who are American Indians prefer that over Native American, if they have to, while naturally preferring the name of their own nation or tribe name.

That there are Native Americans who have never considered themselves Indians - welcome to Alaska.

"In the United States, the term "Eskimo" is still commonly used, because it includes Inuit and Yupik peoples whilst distinguishing them from American Indians. The Yupik do not speak an Inuit language nor consider themselves to be Inuit. However, the term is probably a Montagnais exonym as well as being widely used in folk etymology as meaning "eater of raw meat" in the Cree language. It is now considered pejorative or even a racial slur amongst the Canadian and English-speaking Greenlandic Inuit."

The Canadians now use the eminently more reasonable First Nations, but even then, the Inuit are considered distinct. Of course there is an article about it - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Native_American_name_controversy

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Property rights are as weak as the first land theft. It was not too long ago we were stealing native land and Antificants quite justified to steal from wealthy Americans.

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The lawsuit involved an Indian raping a 4 year old.

I expect Indians to continue to sexually assault people at their disproportionately high rates with little consequence.

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The polity that has been the United States of America:

“None of this is warranted,” (Chief Justice) Roberts added. “What has gone unquestioned for a century remains true today: A huge portion of Oklahoma is not a Creek Indian reservation. Congress disestablished any reservation in a series of statutes leading up to Oklahoma statehood at the turn of the 19th century. The Court reaches the opposite conclusion only by disregarding the ‘well settled’ approach required by our precedents.”

Congress did indeed disestablish the Creek Indian Reservation, as Chief Justice Roberts claims (by or upon accepting Oklahoman territorial application for US statehood, if that was the actual mechanism in place at the time), or did Congress not at all disestablish the Creek Indian Reservation with the Federal government's acceptance of Oklahoma's petition for US statehood, as Justice Gorsuch argues? I don't know yet from available reporting how the two reached such startlingly different views on the basis of the single sequence of historical events and judicial rulings transpiring since 1866.

Congressional response will NEED to be forthcoming in this matter, correct? (Could Congressional inability or unwillingness to respond decisively one way or another in a timely manner provoke an authentic Constitutional crisis?)

How many pending cases alone of pipeline right-of-way disputes with plains tribes await resolution? How will or could this Oklahoma decision impact those cases? I hear courts and judges and attorneys staying in business for years to come.

When might Manhattan be returned (with gratitude and with interest)?

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts will be vacated as of what date?

Will the Sioux return to Minnesota to reclaim lands they were invited to vacate following the 1862 Sioux uprising? (Along with dismantling MPD, Minnesotans can consent to dismantling the rest of Minneapolis with it?)

How much of Florida is properly Seminole Nation territory?

How much of California belongs to displaced tribes?

Does Alaska qualify as a US state?

Hawai'i?

I think it's a great decision the only people who live in Oklahoma are c-----ucks!

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Jurisdiction in Indian Country is a mess. The link in my username takes you to a useful primer.

Criminal jurisdiction is determined on an Indian/Non-Indian basis. If an Indian commits a crime against an Indian, it is either tribal or federal jurisdiction; if against a non-Indian, it is a federal matter. If a non-Indian commits a crime against an Indian, it is a federal matter. So you have the federal government (the FBI in particular) with jurisdiction over every little crime (spoiler: they do a bad job, particularly with respect to domestic violence).

If a non-Indian commits a crime against a non-Indian, the state has jurisdiction.

Now it gets even better. In civil matters, jurisdiction is determined by tribal membership. So if you are a Bannock on Cree land, you are under their criminal jurisdiction but are treated as a non-Indian for civil matters.

Also, for 10 years the Federal government let some states take some criminal jurisdiction, making the question of jurisdiction vary state-to-state.

It's fascinating. Lots of tribes/counties do some cross-deputization so e.g., any officer can arrest any drunk driver. But others do not. It's a great mine for research. The reality is often bleak.

Here's the report: https://legislature.idaho.gov/ope/reports/r1702/

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This is dumb. I'm beginning to not like Gorsuch. And it has nothing to do with the fact that he voted extremely conservative at times or extremely liberal at other times ... its the fact that he uses textualism to draw completely absurd results.

Sure, congress didn't use the word "disestablishment." And he may have been right from just looking at the treaty that was signed, but ...

Ok, everyone knows the treaty was bullshit. Are we now going to force tribes to abide by the terms they agreed to as well? Because if so, the "victory" isn't really one, because at least until now there is an understanding that common sense prevails.

1.8 million people live there, maybe 10% or less are formally native american. Are they all subject to tribal law? If a native harms an american, what then? Can Tulsa outlaw casinos? How does environmental law work there? Everything is thrown into confusion, all because some native American wanted to get away with sexual assault. He is not a sympathetic victim of "the white man".

Literally no one benefits from this. Maybe certain tribal groups but ... like it's just common sense right? It's an obsession with the text to the point where one rapist can throw half a state in chaos because he proposed a different reading of a 100 year old statute no one today was alive to see signed. Its dumb.

You can ask what is the status quo today, what are tribal lands, what do people today expect. And that might mean giving the tribes more freedom to do things. I have zero issue with more favorable rulings for tribes. I do have a problem with those rulings being, reread a 100 year old statute and based on that upend the current status of 2 million people. And if it is only going to come in the form of gambling rights and protecting truly awful people ... then defending native american culture as a concept becomes less valid as the hypocrisy of it all reveals itself.

"treaty was bullshit" does not work in court!

Which is why lawyers in faggy clothes are going to be less and less decisions for us. Guys with guns will make more and more. Bismarck had a term for the coming age.

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It seems to work whenever the federal government tries to get natives to follow the treaty terms. As it should, they are often forced on the natives when they spoke little english.

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Gorsuch addresses your arguments: "Mustering the broad social consensus required to pass new legislation is a deliberately hard business under our Constitution. Faced with this daunting task, Congress sometimes might wish an inconvenient reservation would simply disappear. Short of that, legislators might seek to pass laws that tiptoe to the edge of disestablishment and hope that judges—facing no possibility of electoral consequences themselves—will deliver the final push. But wishes don’t make for laws, and saving the political branches the embarrassment of disestablishing a reservation is not one of our constitutionally assigned prerogatives."

The opinion also addresses the relevant history and precedent. Although Creek lands were subject to allotment, the Supreme Court has apparently repeatedly held that allotment does not equal disestablishment. Congress failed to do its job and Gorsuch is saying it is not the job of the courts to clean up Congress' mess.

Forcing tribes to adhere to treaties also is not at issue. Congress can abrogate a treaty with a Native American tribe whenever it wants to. It simply failed to do in this case.

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Oddly enough, maybe this is only anecdotal, but I have known Indians from Oklahoma to be touchy (Indians are hella touchy at the best of times) at the mention of reservations: "We do not live on reservations." I think maybe there is or was one exception to that.

The more I think of it, the odder it seems: Indians in Oklahoma can own property and many are quite wealthy, whereas reservations are some of the poorest places in the Western hemisphere ... so we want to make more of them? And on land with which the tribes have little or no ancestral connection?

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Do non-Indian Oklahomans born on what is now considered tribal land gain birthright tribal membership?

Exactly!

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Let's give everything back to the cave people!!! On the other hand, taxes there are probably cheaper. Wait till the tribe has to pay all that welfare! And build schools. And give a cut of the casino money.

Hi! I'm confused, which cave people are you referring to?

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Kudos to Tyler that this case involved the rape of a 4-year-old child.

We wouldn't want that information ruining the narrative.

What is the narrative? "America did not in fact renege on a treaty"?

You really don't know? Are you 12?

The narrative demands that the headline be "Massive Victory for Oppressed People," and certainly not "Child Rapist Now Roaming Free Because a Lawyer Sued Over a Technicality Regarding a 160-Year Old Document."

A narrative in your head, sure. And the Supreme Court deals with a 230-year old document all the time, they're so out of date!

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Sure, Gorsuch gave the child molester half of Oklahoma, but maybe he'll be MeTooed.

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oh my God that is so ridiculously ignorant I am literally unable to think of anything snarky enough to say

Wait you are trying to be snarky? I thought you were just doing a hilarious impression of a retarded person.

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It appears that the only newspaper delivered to the Cowen front door this morning was the NYT.

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One thing not mentioned. If this is a legal ruling and Natives were the plaintiff, then their win is essentially a consent agreement, the property rights have no prior claims.

Thus, this strengthens property rights every where because it leads to a Coasian resolution, a finality.

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Does this mean Native Americans cannot write enforceable contracts? And private security will replace police in Oklahoma? Tribal justice systems are not equipped to enforce all state laws.

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It's incredible that "reservations" are still a thing as of 2020. All these lands should be transferred into fully private ownership of Native Americans and then turned into regular parts of the corresponding states. Stop treating people any differently based on who their ancestors were. All US citizens should have the exact same rights everywhere in the country.

"Stop treating people any differently based on who their ancestors were. All US citizens should have the exact same rights everywhere in the country."

It is true that policy on Native Americans takes account of who one's ancestors were. On the other hand, Native Americans who live on tribal land are in a situation somewhat comparable to residents of D.C., Puerto Rico or Guam. In all three cases, people born and raised there are U.S. citizens with full citizenship rights but they are not citizens of one of the 50 states and have no regular voting-member representation in Congress. Surely, "All US citizens should have the exact same rights everywhere in the country" implies we should look askance at this situation.

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The natives themselves are treated differently by the Great White Father. In Alaska some natives have opted for reservations, others not. In order for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline to be built natives were placated by shares in "regional corporations" and corresponding local ones created by the government, the ANCSA.

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>Stop treating people any differently based on who their ancestors were.

I can tell you're not a Democrat.

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Practically, you can't have two sovereigns on the same territory. If we want to continue down this road the end result is post-Yugoslavia. Not that there's anything wrong with that per se.

The reservations are government grifts at best and human zoos at worst. Their legal and administrative status should be revoked.

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Depending on where they go with the implications of this, there are consequences for equal treatment under the law.

Is it even *possible* for a state to give its citizens equal protection under the law if a minority is above the law?

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