Three hundred years ago most of California was pristine. There were no man made chemicals in the water, the land and in the air. There was an abundance of food, lots of land and the indigenous people roamed freely. The indigenous people did not believe in maps and what is more they did not believe in written treaties that were never kept.
When the Russians and the Spanish first laid their eyes on the indigenous people of the extended Bay Area the Ohlone they marveled how well they were organized. The Spanish padres and the Russian artists gave a very good rendition of the First People the ancestors we call the Muwekma Ohlone today.
Again and again the early strangers deeply acknowledge the hospitality of the Ohlone. The Russian artists painted the indigenous people and left us all for prosperity the finest sketches for the entire world to see.
In these paintings and sketches one does not see fat ugly obese bums much like the strangers of whom we have paintings and sketches too. The First People were lean, of very good physical structure, and most of them beautiful and handsome. The fine feathers they wore and the skirts of grass suited the way they lived and was closer to Mother Earth and far away from the material world that the strangers brought with them.
The Franciscan Friars thought they were doing much good by converting the Ohlone to Christians. They Christian Friars decimated the Ohlone by introducing them to small pox and venereal diseases, which were, inflicted on the Ohlone women by the Spanish soldiers.
When Mexico ruled California and this was much before the United States bought California from Mexico - the Ohlone and other native people were treated better. Those that had their allegiance to the United States were prone to greed and killed the indigenous people for their scalps. These went for as little as $5. Even in 1924 which is not long ago this cruel and inhuman practice was common in California.
The United States Government forced many Native Peoples to give up their land. I have traveled to many an area and seen the state of affairs for myself. Here in this part of California we call the Bay Area the United States promised the Ohlone land, which they stole from them. 18 treaties were signed and none of them kept. In other words the United States made a promise, signed it and did not keep it.
The Muwekma Ohlone are a force to reckon with and will not give up without a fight. The Muwekma Ohlone have gone to Court and again and again the Department of Interior, the Bureau of Indian Affairs bring obstacles and deprive them of their status as a Tribe.
The Muwekma Ohlone were recognized till 1927 and then illegally removed by a Bureau of Indian Affairs agent L.A. Dorrington. This man with INTENT removed the Muwekma Ohlone tribe from the register and cause untold pain and suffering to this noble tribe.
The evil agent also deprived many other Tribes of their right to own land and enjoy rights and privileges accorded to many other Federally Recognized Tribes. It is a shame that in the year 2003 that the Muwekma Ohlone tribe has to plead with the corrupt Department of Interior and the Bureau of Indian Affairs to regain their Federal Status which was illegally taken from them in 1927.
We are in the year 2003 and here in San Francisco we have had the Human Rights Commission acknowledge the Muwekma Ohlone in the 1990s in a Resolution. We have had the San Francisco Mayor and the Board of Supervisors acknowledges the Muwekma Ohlone and supports the Muwekma as Tribe worthy to be given back their Federal Recognition. We here in San Francisco have done everything to exert the rights for the Muwekma Ohlone to regain their right to live and own land, which was all stolen from them.
For the record the Department of Interior through the Bureau of Indian Affairs have promised some aid thereby acknowledging the Muwekma Tribe after 1927 on certain occasions. The Department of Interior acknowledges the Verona Band of Ohlone whose ancestors have a direct link with the Muwekma Ohlone of today.
This fight will not stop and we will not give up and the world knows that they love and support the Muwekma Ohlone. The thousands of petition signatures testify to this very important fact. We have supporters from all over the world.
Here at home the Tribal Chairperson Rosemary Cambra, the Tribal Administrator Norma Sanchez, the Liaison for San Francisco Espanola Jackson, the Muwekma web master Joel Skidmore, the Muwekma historian and archeologist Alan Levental, and the over 500 living members of the Muwekma Tribe will stand up for what is RIGHT.
History has not been kind to the indigenous people of California. It is wrong to deprive them of land, which rightfully belongs to them. It is wrong to participate in this genocide which has been going on for many years. It is RIGHT that the land that belongs to them and which was agreed upon to be given to them in the 18 treaties signed be ratified and the right action be taken.
Today we are fighting as a Nation in other countries far across the ocean blue trying to right what we perceive to be wrong.
Right in our back yard we have the First People put on Reservations. Others deprived of their land. Still others robbed of their Trust Money in the billions by the Department of Interior.
Time is running out and justice has to be served. It should have a long time ago. Those of us who have a conscience should do all in our power to right what is wrong. In the first place this land we call America belongs to the First People - here in the Bay Area the Muwekma Ohlone.
Link to Muwekma Lawsuit
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