Main Cherokee Phoenix Ad
Keith Harper
Late last week, the Election Commission of the Cherokee Nation in a unanimous decision disqualified David Walkingstick for the upcoming principal chief election because of several seemingly blatant violations of the Cherokee Nation’s election laws. Of greatest concern, the commission’s decision cites overwhelming evidence that in coordination with Walkingstick, a group called Cherokees for Change LLC was a means of utilizing what is commonly referred to as “dark money” in support of Walkingstick. Central to this scheme is reportedly a close associate of Walkingstick, one Rusty Appleton who heads Cherokees for Change LLC.

Walkingstick’s baffling defense seems to be that the U.S. Supreme Court’s heavily-criticized decision in Citizen’s United v. SEC bars the Cherokee Nation from preventing the use of dark money in Cherokee Nation elections. As a matter of settled law, this argument is absurd. Here’s why.
Read More
Native children are removed from their homes at a higher rate than most of their peers. Nonetheless, in the recent Texas v. Bernhardt case, U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor ruled that the Indian Child Welfare Act is unconstitutional because it is race based. The ruling stated that ICWA was unenforceable.

Sadly, this is a blatant attempt to once again strike tribes in our most vulnerable but most vital area by misleading the public about the purpose of this important Federal Act. In reality, ICWA has nothing to do with race but rather was enacted to preserve Native families, protect the unique citizenship rights of Native children and defend the sovereignty of tribal governments. I pray we prevail in the appeal of this legal obstacle course because there is so much at stake.
Read More
WebAd
Every time a tribal citizen registers a vehicle with the Cherokee Nation, they make an investment in public education and our young people. You see, our vehicle tags are more than just a pretty tag. By Cherokee Nation law, 38 percent of the revenues from our tag sales are earmarked specifically for public education. This year, thanks to our flourishing Motor Vehicle Tax program, Cherokee Nation is awarding a record-breaking $5.7 million to more than a hundred school districts in northeast Oklahoma.

Since 2002, Cherokee Nation has contributed more than $56 million to public education. Today, that investment in public education is more important than ever for the Cherokee Nation and the state of Oklahoma.
Read More
Telling the Cherokee story – our history, our heritage – is a skill that our people have passed down from one generation to the next. Storytelling is a cornerstone of our culture. That’s why I am so proud we have launched the Cherokee Nation Film Office. It will promote northeastern Oklahoma while cultivating Native filmmaking. The office will provide much-needed cultural and historical consultation on film projects, ensuring our stories are told with cultural sensitivity and accuracy. And it will serve as a way to develop a database of Cherokee Nation locations for film shoots, resources and talent. It’s a bold new endeavor to enhance an ancient tradition.
Read More
It had been 14 years and 81 days since I turned 18 years old. It had been that long since I became eligible to vote. I didn’t believe it mattered. I kept telling people one opinion would not make a difference.

That’s how I started the column I wrote that was published in our December 2008 issue. I had voted in the presidential election in November of that year for the first time in my life. I was 32 years old. Since my inaugural vote was cast more than 10 years ago, I have taken pride in voting and knowing that my voice was heard. I have voted in every tribal, city, state and national elections since.
Read More
Recent political events from Senator Elizabeth Warren’s DNA results have raised important questions nationally of what it means to be a citizen of a federally recognized tribe. These events—and disparaging statements made by elected leaders and political pundits in response—may cause some to question the value of tribal citizenship.

The right of a tribe to determine its citizenship is the most basic and inherent function of a sovereign government. But citizenship is a concept that many outside tribal governments do not understand.

As I discuss citizenship with non-Native friends, I talk about my family table. During holidays, our family table is shared by my immediate family, and friends we do not get to see that often. They are all welcome and loved as we share food, stories and laughter.
Read More
We recently concluded elections across Oklahoma and the United States. Being able to vote and participate in the electoral process is a critical part of our democracy.
Read More
In case you haven’t seen it, we recently published an eight-page, all-Cherokee section within the September issue of the Cherokee Phoenix.
Read More
Three men I deeply admire – the late Drs. Duane King, Dr. Neil Morton and Dr. Bob Blackburn – collaborated to write an engaging new history book called “Cherokee Nation: A History of Survival, Self Determination and Identity.”
Read More
Most people know of domestic violence as physical violence – pushing, slapping, hitting or strangling – all stirring images of bruises and black eyes. However, people tend to forget the other abuse types, which are difficult to recognize.
Read More
The site is one of the historic endpoints of the Trail of Tears, which is especially significant in 2018 as we commemorate the 180th anniversary of the forced removal of the Cherokee people to Indian Territory, now modern-day Oklahoma.
Read More
PremiumWebAd
Phoenix daily news delivered to your inbox
PremiumWebAd

News Categories