From: Gary Hunt at the Outpost of Freedom in Phoenix, Arizona
Date: June 15, 1994 Phone: (602) xxx-xxxx
Last October I spent two weeks on the Onondaga Reservation just South of Syracuse, New York. The circumstances were of merchants, who had opened their businesses with permission of the Tribal Government. Once the businesses became successful, the permission was revoked. It seemed that the Tribal Government wanted a larger "tax" after they saw the success of the smoke shops. Of course, like the United States government, they did not want to account for their extravagant expenditures. Instead they were known to travel, drive nice cars and otherwise enjoy a higher life style than the Indians they were to represent enjoy. In fact, they were contrary to what traditional values the Indians held, but, then, they operated on a structure predicated by the federal government.
Anyway, Last Wednesday (June 8) there was a mysterious fire in Smoke Signals Smoke Shop, which is also a restaurant, gas station and was my home when I stayed on the Reservation. The papers reported the fire as "suspicious." There was, fortunately, only one injury. One of the law enforcement officers received a heavy dose of "mace" from a fellow officer while "controlling" the crowd, which was composed of both factions.
I might mention here that the same building was burned down while under construction back in 1984. The cause then, as is probably true now, was arson.
Well, more interesting news is coming out of New York now. Members of the Tonawanda, Tuscarora and Onondaga tribes composed of traditional people have formed an alliance. Freedom Alliance for Iroquois Rights (FAIR) is working to achieve recognition from Ada Deer, Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs, to assist in returning traditional values (not the government sponsored values) to the Nations. The Mohawk, Oneida and Cayuga tribes have committed support to the FAIR efforts.
It also appears that the Sheriff, who had supported the Chiefs in the past, has backed off now. While I was there the Sheriffs deputies would turn their backs when the lackeys of the Chiefs committed vandalism or random acts of violence, but never failed to go after the merchants who were just protecting their property. Because of this, the Chiefs have sought outside help in continuing their "terror" campaign toward the merchants. Perhaps this fire was a result of the desperation on the part of the Chiefs who are trying to bend tradition to suit their needs.
I expect to hear more from Syracuse in the near future, and will be reporting these events.
Note: Some have wondered why I am willing to cover Indian issues rather than sticking to stories involving patriots. To clarity my position, I cover stories where the government is pointing their guns in the wrong direction. While working with the Indians I have also realized that they are protected by the same document that we are -- the Constitution for the United States of America. Just think about it, the government has broken their treaty with us, just as they have the Indians.
Government's irresponsibility is all of our problem.
Return to Onondaga Nation page