Saturday, December 9, 2017

Walkingstick steps up, pays a heavy price for trying to defend tribal sovereignty

As reported in the Cherokee Phoenix, Councilor David Walkingstick has proposed legislation to require the Attorney General Todd Hembree to appeal the recent court decision on the Freedmen citizenship issue. The Act is titled "2017 Sovereignty Protection Act" and is on the agenda for the Cherokee Tribal Council Rules Committee meeting, December 11, 2017.

The full text of the proposed Act clearly explains it is in defense of tribal sovereignty, not just for the Cherokee Nation, but all federally recognized tribes. Walkingstick has also explained that each elected official and the appointed Attorney General have taken an oath of office to defend the Constitution of the Cherokee Nation and that the failure to appeal the federal court ruling that is in direct conflict with the Constitution of the Cherokee Nation puts all of the elected officials in an impeachable position.

Though Walkingstick has repeatedly explained his motivation for introducing this Act, some people are willing to overlook the fact all of our elected officials and the AG took an oath to defend the Constitution of the Cherokee Nation. Instead, they are trying to turn this into a racially motivated act. If people were just calling Walkingstick a racist, that would be one thing, but some have started a petition against him, concerning his private job outside of tribal affairs, accusing him of racism and trying to force him to resign. Others have started rumors on social media claiming he's not Cherokee by blood and was only given a Certificate Degree of Indian Blood because of a corrupt BIA, which is not true.

The attacks on social media against Walkingstick have become a witch hunt. In my humble opinion, the people launching these attacks against him are nothing more than bullies who are trying to gain support for their agenda by promoting hate against him. It appears they believe it is easier to play the "chronic victim" and evoke an emotional reaction from people than it is to work to repeal the Constitutional amendment that is at the heart of this legislation.

Every person on the Cherokee Nation Tribal Council took the following Oath of Office:
I do solemnly swear, or affirm, that I will faithfully execute the duties of ___________ of the Cherokee Nation, and will, to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitutions of the Cherokee Nation, and the United States of America. I swear or affirm further, that I will do everything within my power to promote the culture, heritage and traditions of the Cherokee Nation. [emphasis mine]

The Cherokee people voted to require that one must be by blood to be a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. Though AG Hembree could have appealed the federal judge's ruling, he didn't. Instead, he asked the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court to void the 2007 amendment. Additionally, he requested the court allow the Freedmen the right to run for office. That was not part of the 2007 amendment. That was decided in the Constitutional Convention. The framers of the Constitution decided one had to be by blood to run for office.

Is this clear? ONE MAN decided to override the Constitution of the Cherokee Nation and not just on the 2007 amendment, but also on sections that were approved in the 1999 Constitutional Convention by the framers of our Constitution. This is concerning to me. It should be concerning to anyone who is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. If this happens once, what will keep it from happening again? Our Constitution and laws mean nothing if one person can change whatever he deems necessary, without the input of anyone else, especially without the input of our legislative branch, the tribal council.

Your tribal councilors work for you. They are your voice. No matter your stance on this issue, they need to hear from you, but they MUST hear from you if you believe they should stand by their oath of office and defend our Constitution. It never hurts to remind them that you put them in office and you can remove them from it. While impeachment is in the hands of the Tribal Council, the Cherokee people have the right to petition to recall an elected official. With emotions currently running high on this issue, it might not be as difficult to get signatures on a petition or votes in a recall election as it has been in the past.

No matter what happens on Monday, don't expect this to be the end of it. There's a lot more going on concerning the Freedmen descendants and their new demands, but that discussion is for another time.

Click the following link to find your tribal councilor's contact information. LINK

Those are my thoughts for today.
Thanks for reading.

*There are lots of links in this post. Please click on them for more information.

copyright 2017, Polly's Granddaughter - TCB

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