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                       by Rudolph C. Ryser, Chairman
                    Center for World Indigenous Studies

                (c) 1993 Center For World Indigenous Studies

     (This article is adapted from _Anti-Indian Movement on the Tribal 
     Frontier_, Occasional Paper #16 Revised Edition, published by the 
     Center for World Indigenous Studies, in June 1992.)

     Indian nations' lands and resources are under attack. The 
     successful confiscation of Indian lands and removal of Indians 
     from the last remnants of their original homelands will open the 
     door to expansionist exploitation of the western hemisphere's 
     last biologically diverse regions. Indian nations in the Americas 
     from the Arctic North to the rocky tip of South America are under 
     systematic attack. From cold-war-like political conflicts in the 
     northern continent to brutal, violent wars in middle and southern 
     America resulting in thousands of Indian deaths each year, Indian 
     nations face political movements and armies intent on taking 
     lands and resources from their historical owners. In the United 
     States of America an alliance of greed and deception has been 
     formed from private property owners, recreation organizations, 
     rightwing organizations, governments and business. Together they 
     target Indian lands for transfer from Indian control to the 
     control of private, non-Indian U.S. citizens. Domestic and multi-
     national corporations also want access to Indian lands and 
     resources. In Central America, state governments hungry for new 
     raw materials to diversify stagnant and unproductive economies 
     have invaded Indian territories -- in many instances forcibly 
     removing whole populations. Land and resources are the target. 
     Indians are considered expendable. In the states of South America 
     several states tolerate, or actively participate in the invasion 
     of Indian territories. Conducting counter-insurgency sweeps 
     against the Sindero Luminoso (Shining Path), the Peruvian 
     government participates in attacks on Indian villages. Land and 
     resources are at the root of the conflict. Thousands of Indians 
     have been killed. In Brazil, gold-miners invade Indian lands and 
     carry diseases into Indian society. The Brazilian government 
     directly subsidizes invasion of Indian lands for raw materials as 
     a matter of public policy. Nearly without exception, Indians 
     peoples, their culture and their environment are under siege in 
     the western hemisphere. 

     The systematic emphasis on Indian land transfers in the United 
     States continues to grow. Government, business and private 
     citizens are a part of an effort organized Anti-Indian Movement 
     intent on removing Indians from their reserved territories and 
     replacing them with new outside owners. The Anti-Indian Movement 
     also operates within the framework of the Wise Use Movement with 
     the goal to replace Indian land rights with private non-Indian 
     property rights -- public property with private individual and 
     corporate property. These movements wrap their public statements 
     in the protection of the U. S. Constitution and its emphasis on 
     property rights. Underneath, there is a single-minded bigotry 
     which not only threatens the cultural and biological diversity of 
     Indian nations and their territories, but directly challenges 
     U.S. public and private efforts to protect the environment from 
     further degradation. 

     Indian Country is vulnerable to organized efforts aimed at land 
     and natural resource expropriation. Next to the United States of 
     America and all the states, Indian nations combined are the 
     owners of the largest area of land. With more than 135 million 
     acres of wilderness, range, desert, timber, tundra and other 
     types of land Indian nations collectively have sixteen percent of 
     the wild forests, eighty-percent of the uranium, vast quantities 
     of coal, oil, oil-shale, natural gas, strategic metals, water, 
     wildlife, fisheries, range-lands, and wilderness. These are the 
     remaining lands and territories reserved to Indian nations after 
     more than two centuries of land expropriations, treaties, land 
     purchases and wars between the United States and Indian nations. 
     Benefiting from years of U.S. government policy aimed at the 
     dismemberment of Indian tribes, non-Indian U.S. citizens moved 
     into Indian territories in increasingly larger numbers. Many 
     became residents of Indian reservations. They became "on-
     reservation non-Indians." The successful encroachment of non-
     Indian populations on to Indian reservations serves now as the 
     catalyst for growing outside pressures to put Indian lands under 
     the control of state governments, county governments, private 
     individuals and commercial enterprises. The effect of land 
     transfers and in-migration of non-Indian populations to 
     reservations is reflected in the growing "near-reservation" 
     Indian populations -- Indians unable to live on the reservations 
     reserved by their ancestors. Instead of territories reserved for 
     the benefit of Indian peoples, many Indian reservations are 
     rapidly becoming the land and raw material source for the United 


     There was a time when the only people who lived on the American 
     continent were America's original nations, now called Indians. 
     The original nations of North America have names like Ojibaway, 
     Haudenosaunee, Lakota, Hopi, Kiowa, Dene, Cree, and Yakima. Once 
     these nations and scores of other nations lived on virtually all 
     the lands of the Americas, from the highest mountains to the 
     lowest beaches. The culture of each nation developed from the 
     intimate relationship between people and land. Religious, 
     political, legal, economic and social systems within each culture 
     naturally developed from the interaction between the people and 
     the territories to which each had systematically and successfully 
     adapted. Some nations took as many as forty-thousand years to 
     reach the level of sophistication and classical grace only 
     achieved by very old cultures. Typical of all human nations 
     throughout the world, America's original nations reflected the 
     diversity of all the lands' varied ecological conditions. Those 
     nations that balanced human needs with the regenerative 
     capacities of the land, plants and other animals succeeded and 
     developed into complex cultures still able to adapt. Those 
     nations which demanded more of their environments than could be 
     naturally regenerated, either became expansionist -- seeking 
     sustenance and wealth from neighboring nations -- or they simply 
     failed, collapsing into nothing. Either way, the key to any 
     nation's survival is its culture, the land and the wealth of the 
     land. Without a place on the land, a nation becomes spiritually 
     and materially impoverished and dies or it becomes a threat to 
     the peace and security of neighboring nations. Without a place, a 
     nation can only have a culture of poverty. 


     Under the guise of "mainstream non-profit research and education 
     organizations" and the deceptively attractive "equal rights for 
     everyone" slogan, the Anti-Indian Movement signaled the beginning 
     of a growing effort to "privatize property" in reaction to 
     growing Indian tribal government powers and the environmental 
     movement. With its right-wing extremist technical help, the Anti-
     Indian Movement receives support and money from unsuspecting 
     "reservation non-Indians" and off-reservation non-Indians. With 
     their own agenda, the Anti-Indian Movement's reactionaries and 
     extremists employ tactics and slogans calculated to exploit 
     Indian and non-Indian fears of each other. Using the non-Indians' 
     fear of Indians to build a power-base in mainstream politics, 
     right-wing extremists took advantage of fear by encouraging 

     While many transplanted non-Indians now live as residents on 
     Indian reservations, large numbers are absentee landowners -- 
     they don't live on the reservation. Despite their absentee 
     landowner status, the "reservation non-Indian" in the late 1960s 
     became a new and powerful challenge to the peace and stability of 
     Indian nations. Indian people had often heard the refrain, "Why 
     don't you go back to your reservation?' This was heard when 
     Indian and non-Indian conflicts arose outside the reservation. It 
     was a wrenching experience to have conflicts inside the 
     reservation and hear that "Indians should become a part of the 
     greater society and have equal rights with everyone." 

     Larger numbers of non-Indian landowners rejected tribal 
     governmental authority inside the reservation; and they called 
     upon the state to exercise its powers there. Non-Indian rejection 
     of "alien tribal governments" built pressures leading to legal 
     confrontations between tribal and state governments over a 
     widening range of jurisdictional subjects. Increasing numbers of 
     "reservation non-Indians" supplied state governments with the 
     wedge needed to expand state powers into Indian reservations -- 
     defacto annexation of tribal lands. Tribes and states intensified 
     their mutual antagonism and suspicion. 


     Since the General Allotment Act in 1887, limitations on 
     reservation resources forced more and more Indians to fish and 
     hunt for their food in ceded areas near reservations. Indians 
     asserted that treaties with the United States guaranteed 
     continuing tribal access to some off-reservation resources. Not 
     until tribes and states began to battle over control of natural 
     resources outside reservation boundaries did there arise an 
     organized Anti-Indian Movement in the 20th century. "Reservation 
     non-Indians" became the core organizers of what became a highly 
     structured Anti-Indian Movement. By 1991, the activists 
     responsible for starting the Movement in 1976 headed four key 
     organizations in the states of Washington, Montana, and 
     Wisconsin. The United Property Owners of Washington (UPOW) and 
     Protect Americans' Rights and Resources (PARR) in Wisconsin are 
     the main "constituent organizations." 

     Over the decades since the 1960s, the U.S.-based Anti-Indian 
     Movement grew. From a half dozen non-Indian property owner groups 
     in two states in 1968, it became more than fifty organizations in 
     1993. The first organized anti-Indian network formed in 1976 
     under the umbrella of the Interstate Congress for Equal Rights 
     and Responsibilities (ICERR). The ICERR linked on-reservation 
     non-Indian landowner opposition to tribal governments with off-
     reservation non-Indian sport and commercial fishermen opposed to 
     tribal treaty protected fishing rights. The mixture of on-
     reservation and off-reservation conflicts produced a sometimes 
     confused, often distorted, attack on tribal governments, the 
     federal government -- especially the judiciary -- and often 
     bitter attacks on individual Indian people. ICERR formed the 
     Anti-Indian Movement's populist and frequently racist ideology 
     that attracted legitimately distressed non-Indians as-well-as 
     bigoted activists. 

     During the ten years after first forming, the Movement shifted 
     from incipient forms of racism and populism to a more virulent 
     form of reactionary-racism with subtle contours and technical 
     refinements. Right-wing extremists began in 1983 to assume a 
     strong influence in the Anti-Indian Movement through the 
     Washington State based Steelhead & Salmon Protection Action in 
     Washington Now (S/SPAWN) organization. 

     In the years that followed, right-wing and militantly bigoted 
     activists gravitated to the Wisconsin-based Protect Americans' 
     Rights and Resources (PARR). Still later, right-wing 
     personalities assumed positions within the Citizen's Equal Rights 
     Alliance (CERA) and United Property Owners of Washington (UPOW) 

     The Movement evolved into its present structure from two property 
     owners' associations and a single umbrella organization (ICERR) 
     in 1976. Today, the Movement boasts two "national organizations," 
     five "coordinating local organizations" and a consistent network 
     of twenty-three "local organizations" or "local contacts" and a 
     claimed constituency of 450,000 people. Though the Movement 
     frequently targets the Quinault Indian Nation, Suquamish Tribe 
     and Lummi Indian Nation (in the state of Washington), Blackfoot, 
     Salish & Kootenai and the Crow in Montana receive strong emphasis 
     too. Politically active Indian tribes in Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, 
     Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, New 
     York, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin 
     have felt the effects of the network. 

     In fifteen years the organizational and tactical focus of the 
     Movement switched from the state of Washington to Wisconsin and 
     then to Montana, and back to Washington again. Despite 
     maintaining contacts in several states, the Movement conducted 
     major activities in only the three tactical states. Though the 
     organizational focus shifted from one state to another, the 
     ideological influence, tactics and strategy flowed from 
     Washington State based personalities and organizations. Three 
     groups (Quinault Property Owners Association (QPOA - Quinault 
     Reservation), Association of Property Owners and Residents in 
     Port Madison Area (APORPMA - Suquamish Reservation), and the 
     Interstate Congress for Equal Rights and Responsibilities (ICERR) 
     are politically linked to each of the Movement's organizational 
     efforts. While the organizational strategy of the Anti-Indian 
     Movement was to create a new organization for each political or 
     legal challenge to Indian rights, all of the organizations have 
     essentially the same supporting organizations. In other words, 
     though the number of "national or coordinating organizations 
     increased in number, the number of organizers and activists 
     remained virtually the same - all had the same members. 

     Four individuals have been involved in the organization of every 
     coordinating or national organization in the Anti-Indian Movement 
     since 1968: George Garland (QPOA), Pierce and May Davis (APORPMA) 
     and Betty Morris (ICERR, and QPOA). All come from the state of 
     Washington. Garland and Morris are mainly concerned with the 
     Quinault Indian Reservation. The Davises are mainly concerned 
     with the Suquamish Indian Reservation. After 1983, these main 
     anti-Indian activists were joined by more sophisticated 
     organizers from the right-wing elements of American politics. 
     State Senator Jack Metcalf, fund-raiser Alan Gotlieb, political 
     organizer Barbara Lindsay, lawyer David L. Yamashita and National 
     Wildlife Federation activists Carol and Tom Lewis (all from 
     Washington) joined the Movement. These personalities have close 
     connections with the Wise Use Movement. Some, like Alan Gotlieb 
     (a key funder for the Free Enterprise Institute that serves as a 
     major opponent to the environmental movement and a major player 
     the Wise Use Movement) and Senator Jack Metcalf have close 
     connections with the Unification Church and with the Liberty 
     lobby. After organizing the Movement for twenty-three years, its 
     leaders can claim several successes which now contribute to the 
     growing capabilities of the Wise Use Movement: 

       -   Adoption by a slim majority in the state of Washington 
     Initiative 456 intended to create the public impression that 
     Washington's voters opposed Indian rights and the continuation of 
     Indian treaties - 1984. 

       -   U.S. Supreme Court decided a County government could 
     exercise zoning powers inside a reservation where non-Indians 
     make up a substantial portion of the reservation population - 

       -   Through its organization CERA, the Anti-Indian Movement 
     became a direct and active participant in the Wise Use Movement 
     in 1988. 

       -   The total number of consistent anti-Indian activists 
     country-wide is between 80 and 90 persons in sixteen states by 

       -   The number of persons participating in anti-Indian 
     activities (including meetings, protests, conferences and letter-
     writing is an estimated 10,850 persons country-wide by 1991. 

       -   The number of persons who contribute funds or letters of 
     support to anti-Indian groups is an estimated 34,150 by 1991. 

       -   A total of 50 local anti-Indian organizations or contacts, 
     five coordinating organizations and two national organizations 
     have been created by the Movement mainly in the states of 
     Washington, Montana, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. (not including 
     organizations with other agendas which closely identify with the 
     Movement) by 1991. 

     Though the Anti-Indian Movement is held together with a lot of 
     smoke and mirrors there is enough substance to it to seriously 
     threaten the peace and stability of Indian tribes in the United 
     States. Due to its new associations in the "Wise Use Movement" 
     the Anti-Indian Movement increased its reach and broadened its 
     potential constituency. 


     The Anti-Indian Movement has its roots deep in the collective 
     psyche of the United States. The bigotry of right-wing and Far 
     Right political extremes is also deeply rooted in America's 
     politics -especially in connection with Indians. The implied or 
     explicit belief in "white superiority" and "native backwardness 
     and inferiority" permeates American history. In the 1880's, U.S. 
     President Rutherford B. Hayes, Supreme Court Justice Waite and 
     Civil War icon General John Sherman advocated the Doctrine of 
     Manifest Destiny. Senator Dawes of Massachusetts was both an 
     adherent to the Manifest Destiny doctrine and the main sponsor of 
     the General Allotment Act of 1887. It was quite normal in the 
     U.S. Congress to espouse what now would be considered "white 
     supremacist" ideas. In 1899 Senator Albert T. Beveridge rose 
     before the U.S. Senate and announced: 

     God has not been preparing the English-speaking and Teutonic 
     peoples for a thousand years for nothing but vain and idle self-
     admiration. No! He has made us the master organizers of the world 
     to establish system where chaos reigns .... He has made us adepts 
     in government that we may administer government among savages and 
     senile peoples. 

     Theodore Roosevelt, John Cabot Lodge and John Hay, each in turn, 
     endorsed with a strong sense of certainty the view that the 
     Anglo-Saxon was destined to rule the world. Such views expressed 
     in the 19th century and in the early 20th century continue to 
     ring true in the minds of many non-Indian property owners. The 
     superiority of the "white race" is the foundation on which Anti-
     Indian Movement organizers and right-wing helpers rest their 
     efforts to dismember Indian tribes. 

     There victims on all sides of the growing Indian/non-Indian 
     controversy over property ownership inside and near Indian 
     reservations. Only a small number of people can be said to 
     intentionally provoke conflicts and violence between Indians and 
     non-Indians. Due to these conflicts, however, victims of Indian 
     and non-Indian conflicts fear one another - the cycle of fear 
     feeds on itself. The small number of people who either gain 
     politically or economically from Indian and non-Indian conflict 
     use bigotry to promote division and fear. Both contribute to the 
     destabilization of tribal communities and undermine tribal 

     When democratic values are crippled, freedom and liberty become 
     the next victims. Authoritarianism, and terrorized societies 
     replace free societies. The Anti-Indian Movement threatens to 
     produce just such results in Indian Country. It also threatens to 
     intensify rather than relieve conflicts born from historical 
     mistakes, which can be resolved peacefully through mutual 
     government to government negotiations. 


     From the point of view of many Indian leaders and many non-
     ideological participants in the Anti-Indian Movement there is 
     agreement on what are some of the mistakes that should be 

       -   The forced division of tribally reserved territories under 
     the 1887 General Allotment Act and the failure of the U.S. 
     government to fully repudiate this disgraceful act creates the 
     popular impression that acts of land confiscation and relocation 
     of tribal populations is morally acceptable and justified. 

       -   The United States government violated treaty and other 
     agreements when it unilaterally manipulated the sale of tribally 
     reserved lands to non-Indians without the consent of tribal 
     governments. This mistake was subsequently compounded when states 
     governments and the United States government unlawfully expanded 
     their civil and criminal jurisdiction (following non-Indian 
     reservation residents) into Indian reservations without the 
     consent of tribal governments. Finally, the mistake caused injury 
     to both tribal members and non-Indian land-owners when Indians 
     were displaced, and impoverished; and non-Indians were not 
     advised that as a practical matter they had consented to place 
     themselves under the jurisdiction of an Indian nation's 

       -   State governments have mistaken Indian nations as a threat 
     to their sovereignty. States governments and their subordinate 
     governments agreed as a price for statehood that they would not 
     attempt to extend their powers into Indian Country. To do so in 
     fact undercuts the state's legitimacy, thus weakening the state, 
     and encourages citizens to sabotage the rule of law. 

       -   As a result of distraction or a mistaken belief in 
     "historical inevitability," the United States and the various 
     states failed to recognize that relations with Indian tribes have 
     always been political in character. And to ensure the healthy 
     cooperation between Indian tribes and the United States, 
     relations must be dynamically adjusted over time through treaties 
     and agreements and not through neglect or brute force. The basic 
     premise of mutual respect and sovereign equality between the 
     United States and Indian nations must be repeatedly incorporated 
     in each agreement. 

       -   The failure of governments (tribal, state and federal) to 
     insist on the free and open negotiation of disputes, (always 
     taking into consideration the effect intergovernmental agreements 
     have on tribal members or non-Indians) has contributed to a 
     feeling of "being wronged" among many non-ideological citizens in 
     the United States. These persons may suffer economic or social 
     hardships as a result of these failures. As a result, persons who 
     may live on or near Indian reservations, have become prime 
     candidates for incitement to harassment or violence against 
     Indian people by militant bigots and Far Right activists who seek 
     to provoke conflict as a way of advancing their ideas of "white 
     supremacy." Furthermore, failure to encourage open negotiations 
     fosters wider public participation and encouragement of the Wise 
     Use Movement - the ultimate trap which catches the United States 
     in its own historical inconsistencies. 

The Tribal government ought to sponsor and support 
     the formation and continued operation of a "Human Rights 
     Commission" which includes tribal and non-tribal membership. The 
     Commission ought to document incidents of bigoted harassment, 
     intimidation, property damage, and violence aimed at tribal 
     members and non-tribal members within the territorial 
     jurisdiction of the Tribe. The Commission should be responsible 
     for conducting public meetings to ensure public awareness of 
     human rights norms. The Commission ought to have the capacity to 
     provide assistance to victims of hate-crime, or refer victims to 
     an appropriate tribal agency. 

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