Past and Present Native American Affairs

After examining the past of Native Americans, their wanting to have a piece of the government pie, and the present affairs under the reservations is different to the living circumstances of Native Americans. It starts with issues such as drug abuse and prevention within the tribes. The next step for them is to ensure they have enough money to support their tribes and encompasses all their needs. Finally, it is how the tribes give back to the states they decide to build casinos in.
In the article, “Drug Czar Urges Tribal Leaders to Focus on Youth Drug Preventions,” posted by the US Newswire on September 6, 2000, discuses about how American Indian youth has the highest percentage of drug abuse in America at this time. The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy Director Barry R. McCaffery has promoted a campaign to prevent the drug use. The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) has invested in over $3 million reaching out to tweens and teens.
Also, McCaffery thinks that if every parent in America along with American Indian parents would talk to their children about drugs, that it would make a huge difference. In the article, “In Shift, Interior Dept. May Allow Tribes to Build Casinos far From Reservations,” talks about the Bush-era rule “allows Indian tribe to build casinos far from the reservations, raising the possibility that new gambling resorts could be built close to New York and elsewhere around the country”. In 2008 tribes couldn’t open beyond their commuting distance, but this led to being rejected from at least 22 applications.

This does not mean the casinos are approved yet though. Nelson Rose, a professor at Whittier Law School in California this there’s to much money involved. Some tribes like the Mississippi Band of Choctaws could benefit from this, since they plan for a $375 million casino/ hotel 175 miles away. It could be a benefit to others as well, considering it could bring thousands of jobs. But only five tribes have been approved for this in the 23 years Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulation Act.
In article one states that American Indians and Alaskan Native children were the highest drug users amongst teens. Since then, the National Drug Policy has invested the time, effort, and money to educate parents as well as their children about drugs and alcohol. In article two they are talking about the revenue they made the state and how much they were able to put into education funds. These casinos are not being built for teens to enjoy. They are meant for adult leisure. Article two showed how much money they are placing into education for the entire state and not just for certain populations.
Both articles discuss education, however article two highlights it and makes it a positive thing for the state the casino is built in. Article one is explaining us that they had to invest money for this certain problem. This is not just an American Indian or Native Alaska problem. It’s our country’s issue. All over our country we are seeing proposals for casinos that are backed by Native American tribes. The government in some states saw it as an advantage and took it, while others still battle with the idea of having a casino in their state.
Casinos are the adult’s version of Disney Land and the chances of the government lowering the age to gamble is non existing. There is no relation between drug use and where the casinos are. These casinos have been built and they are continuously pouring money back into the state and keeping the taxes low and filling the necessary gaps as well as putting in extra money where we need it. Education is one of the toughest battles when it comes to funding and if these casinos are putting money into this fund to allow all children to go to school and be safe, then what is the problem?
I would not change the Columbus Holiday. Columbus is one of our founding fathers and he should be appreciated for that. For if he did not come over here, where would be now? We could still be over in Europe somewhere. A few other reasons why I enjoy Columbus Day are: it’s a day off from school and it gives me an opportunity to spend time with my two little brothers and my mom. I understand what he did to the Native Americans; however like many of our other founding fathers he did what he was right for his people at that time. That is why it is called history so we know not to repeat it.

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