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Federal Recognition
Opinion: Mashpee Wampanoags paid for recognition


"The Mashpee Wampanoag, a Massachusetts tribe recently recognized by the federal government, didn�t earn that status

It was purchased.

Fifteen million dollars, Jack Abramoff�s old lobbying firm, and a future casino deal guaranteed their approval through the Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Federal Acknowledgment.

That�s why I say the Mashpee Wampanoag didn�t earn federal recognition. It was bought and paid for.

The question is bound to come up: Were they worthy of such recognition? Worthy seems such an odd question in relation to this sort of thing, as the term "worthy" certainly has nothing to do with the process. Petty little things like historical realities, cultural characteristics, language retention and traditional governance have nothing to do with achievement of such status. Who you know, where you fell in line and how many politicians, lobbyists and dollars you bring to the table have everything to do with the results.

Recognition was not earned."

Get the Story:
Cedric Sunray: Why federal recognition isn't recognition at all (The Native American Times 6/7)

BIA Decision
Summary under the Criteria for the Proposed Finding on the Mashpee Wampanoag Indian Tribal Council, Inc. (March 31, 2006)

Relevant Documents:
Summary of Acknowledgment Cases | R. Lee Fleming Declaration

Only on Indianz.Com:
Federal Recognition Database V2.0 (May 2005)

Relevant Links:
Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe - http://mashpeewampanoagtribe.com

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