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snopes
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Comment: My roommate insists that all Native Americans get a free truck, a
free trailer, and five hundred dollars a year from the federal government,
all of it tax free. I find this to be highly dubious, since the
government I know has never seemed interested in giving anything to the
Native Americans. I did a little bit of research on this (20 minutes on
the internet) and came up empty handed. Can you help?

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Cobra4J
Jingle Bell Hock


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I have visited a few indian reservations in my day- I saw some trucks and trailers, but I don't think everybody had one.

When it comes to money from the government, I know a lot of Native Americans on these reservations are on some type of government assistance, but I don't think it has anything to do with them being Native Americans, I think it has to do with them being poor as church mice because there are no decent jobs on many of these reservations, unless they have a casino, and even then that does more harm than good.

Posts: 479 | From: Owosso, MI | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
CynthiaAnn4900
The Red and the Green Stamps


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As far as I know the Federal government provides free health care and free education to tribal members. But trust me the health care isn't all that great, you're limited on what they can treat you for and where you can get help. My brother had to go all the way to Claremore OK to have gall bladder removed. Also there are free reservation schools and two post secondary schools; one in New Mexico and one here in Kansas. There may be other programs in place, such as economic development, but I don't think anyone is getting any free trucks or trailers or 500 dollars a year. At least I'm not and I'm a Lakota tribal member.

Cynthia "I want my damn truck" Ann4900

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Moosedog
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Some Native Americans get payments for mineral leases and/or money that was put in trust from 'surplus' tribal land sales. (There are more who SHOULD be getting them, but are not, and many who do get them should be getting more.) The Oklahoma Osage were at one time one of the richest tribes because there was so much OIL under their land.

I'm interested in Cobra4J's contention that the casinos 'do more harm than good.' I've heard conflicting reports on that score.

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CynthiaAnn4900
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I sent my brother, who knows more about this than I, this topic and here's his take.

"Seems to be a typical attitude that many Americans have toward us, I have
been asked similar questions; like do you get a check from the government,
etc. I think some of these misconceptions come from the fact many Indians
receive payments for lease of allotment lands for grazing, mining and
recreational purposes. I was asked once why Indians got a "Free Education",
at Haskell or other government schools; I tell people that my ancestors
traded their homelands and way of life for the promise of ending hostilities
and support for their children and their children's children, in the form of
education and healthcare, etc. These schools are the result of treaties,
executive orders and congressional actions, with all of these things being
interpreted by the courts, bureaucrats and politicians for many decades. My
take on this is that given human nature it upsets people that some other
group is getting something they can't get when in reality it's a matter of
law and the principle of contracts established between parties. Yes, I'm an
Indian and the government is obligated to discharge its end of the bargain
(treaties) because my people continue to honor our end of it."
In regard to the casinos I think their impact depends in large part on the economy of the surrounding area. Some Indian based casinos do well because they're located in high population areas where the economy is reasonably good and they can attract non reservation people.
Cindy

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Jason Threadslayer
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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The Bureau of Indian Affairs is in charge of maintaining Native-US government relations and managing Reservation land (held in trust by the US government). They run the schools and make the treaty payments to Native nations.

Unfortunately, the BIA is one of the more corrupt offices in the US government and the US government is behind in many BIA payments. Much of the money from land leases, mineral leases, etc, is missing. Thus, the Cobell litigation.

Some Indian casinos make money for Indians, others don't. In those that do make money, the money either goes to the tribal services, such as clinics, while in others the money is divided up among all the members. I recall reading that individuals in one band with a casino got 3 000$ a year from the casino. In other casinos, the band contracts casino management to a casino chain. In those cases, much of the money goes to the casino chain.

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Sara at home
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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The various Alaska Native Organizations handle their finances differently. Their websites list the business ventures which provide income for the members of the various regional corportations.

I think the roommate's ideas are based on a sterotype of who Native Americans are, as though they all live on reservations in the Southwest. It's not that simple.

I had good friends who were both full Native though mixed tribes. They didn't have even one pickup, let alone two. They lived in a condo, not a trailer. Their kids were in the same public school system as my son. They did go to the Native Health Services for medical treatment.

I wonder how often the roommate thinks Natives are given pickups and trailer? Is it a one shot deal or every ten years or when they turn 21 or 18? How much Native blood does one need to qualify for these alleged benefits? My ex SIL was 1/4 Native -- and my neice was 1/8th. Wonder if the roommate thinks they would qualify? They were considered members of their tribe; is that all takes to get the truck and the trailer?

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Assume that all my posts will be edited at least once. Dyslexic -- can't spell, can't type, can't proofread.

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Jason Threadslayer
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara at home:
How much Native blood does one need to qualify for these alleged benefits?

For real benefits, you have to be a member of a recognised Indian nation. Membership depends upon the nation (and sometimes band). Each nation (or band) sets rules about who qualifies. Cherokee rules.

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Kathy B
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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I recently looked this up for other purposes. The Bureau of Indain Affairs says:
quote:
To be eligible for Bureau of Indian Affairs services, an Indian must
(1) be a member of a tribe recognized by the federal government,
(2) be of one-half or more Indian blood of tribes indigenous to the United States; or
(3) must, for some purposes, be of one-fourth or more Indian ancestry.
By legislative and administrative decision, the Aleuts, Eskimos and Indians of Alaska are eligible for BIA services. Most of the BIA's services and programs, however, are limited to Indians living on or near Indian reservations.

The Indian Health Service provides services to anyone who
quote:
A. Is of Indian and/or Alaska Native descent as evidenced by one or more of the following factors:

(1) Is regarded by the community in which he lives as an Indian or Alaska Native;

(2) Is a member, enrolled or otherwise, or an Indian or Alaska Native Tribe or Group under Federal supervision;

(3) Resides on tax-exempt land or owns restricted property;

(4) Actively participates in tribal affairs;

(5) Any other reasonable factor indicative of Indian descent, or

B. Is an Indian of Canadian or Mexican origin recognized by any Indian tribe or group as a member of an Indian community served by the Indian Health program; or

C. Is a non-Indian woman pregnant with an eligible Indian's child for the duration of her pregnancy through post partum (usually 6 weeks); or

D. Is a non-Indian member of an eligible Indian's household and the medical officer in charge determines that services are necessary to control a public health hazard or an acute infectious disease which constitutes a public health hazard.



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Dotsie
Billy, Don't Be a Hero Sandwich


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My cousins live in MI. There is an indian reservation near erm.. the middle bit (Mt Pleasent?) . Anyway my cousins were telling from friends they have on the reservation that if the Indians can prove they are decendant from the tribe that is there (don't ask me, I can barely remember this as it is) then they are given a grant from the Casino there. Quite a nice one too although the amount escapes me.

Don't recall anything about government grants though.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Hiya, Dotsie, and welcome to the board.

The reservation in Mt. Pleasant is for the Chippewa tribe. The casino is Soaring Eagle.

I used to live on property that now abuts the Casino, and an aunt and uncle actually sold their land to the casino.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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Horse Chestnut
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Jason Threadshochet:
Some Indian casinos make money for Indians, others don't. In those that do make money, the money either goes to the tribal services, such as clinics, while in others the money is divided up among all the members. I recall reading that individuals in one band with a casino got 3 000$ a year from the casino. In other casinos, the band contracts casino management to a casino chain. In those cases, much of the money goes to the casino chain.

I recently read this article about the Chumach casino, where the tribal members seem to get considerably more than $3000 a year.

As noted above, the casino money can cause problems as well as solving them, but I think that is just due to some people not being able to handle wealth.

Horse "Way to go, Chumach!" Chestnut

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Rhiandmoi
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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Ahhh, Chumash Casino, I plan on making a large(for me) contribution to the tribe via blackjack on friday. That is a very successful tribal casino which now has a resort and spa. I think they manage themselves and they are also a very small tribe so that is why their payments are so large.

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I think that hyperbole is the single greatest factor contributing to the decline of society. - My friend Pat.

What is .02 worth?

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nailbunny
Oh Tanning Bomb


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Lots of Chumash live in/visit Santa Barbara, which happens to be where i lived my teenage years. And although i look Native American, i have no pedigree to back it up [Razz] . So when i applied to the unemployment office to help me find a job, they asked if i had any "lot" numbers (but you know, they probably had a better name for it lol) to make me eligible for these benefits that everyone is talking about. Of course, i had none, so i got nothing....and i really have no idea what the amount would have been.

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i'm not mean, you're just a sissy.

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