For many years Native Americans life has been a struggle. The government at the time was trying to encourage them into the white world and ultimately lose their cultural beliefs but Indians themselves at the time fought bitterly against the policies by the US government and also for their tribal lands.
Their major concern was that if they chose to live away from tribal land they experienced discrimination and if they lived in tribal land the US constitution did not apply to them. In 1961 tribes gathered for a meeting in Chicago where they issued declaration of Indian purpose that stressed responsibility of preserving their native land and the right to choose their own way of life.
Due to the activism the congress passed the Indian Civil Rights Act of 1968 which granted Native Americans full access to the United States Bill of Rights and protection for their tribal lands. This means that the Native Americans can govern themselves in sovereignty. Even though civil right gave tribes legal rights and protection there were conflicts that arose between respecting Native American sovereignty and practicing the United States bill of rights.
Robert, Ericson and D. Rebecca Snow, “The Indian Battle for Self-Determination”, 1970 this additional source was an article written by two scholars who explained the battle for self-determination for the Indians. The article provides new information about the controversy in American courtrooms and legal halls.
The article stated, “Federal courts have traditionally viewed the tribe as a dependent or “tributary” nation possessed of limited elements of sovereignty and requiring federal protection;’ the Congress has alternately viewed the tribe as a substantially independent political unit or as an anachronism which must be phased out consequent to a policy of Indian assimilation” (Erickson and Snow).
This quote shows us that the tribal sovereignty has often been conflicted. Another important information I learned from the article was what a tribe cannot do when it comes to certain situations. The article claimed, “Moreover, a tribal Indian cannot claim protection from illegal search and seizure, or from interference with freedom of speech, press, or assembly. In addition, a tribe can impose a tax, or revoke tribal membership rights without complying with due process requirements” (Erickson and Snow).
This quote explains the limitations of being a tribal Indian. This was an important information to learn because it showed the struggles of many Indians back then. Lastly, this quote explains one of the positive aspect of the civil rights act of the government. The quote states, “Perhaps the most encouraging aspect of the proposals is that they represent an attempt to respond to Indian grievances.
This is a refreshing departure from past policy. Too often, Indian preference has been ignored” (Erickson and Snow). All of the examples provide new outside information about the Indian civil right Act of 1968. Finally, this source could be consider trustworthy and biased because even though it is written by a scholar but it is not like a newspaper from during that time of the event.
I think that both of the authors agreed on the Indian civil right act but they states that there were conflicts and controversy in American courtrooms and legal halls. Both of the scholars liked how the government took an attempt to respond to the Indians because they often get ignored.
The article was well balanced when providing information because not only it talked about the rights act but it also provide information about the government and how the Indian civil right act movement started. I think this was a good source to use because it gave me new insight about Indians and I learned more information about the civil right Act Itself.