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Opinion
Tim Giago: States looking for ways to take from tribes


"Now I read that Indian casinos brought in $23 billion dollars in revenues last year. Delving into the minds of state officials I would surmise that they are not only considering more and better ways to skim off some of these revenues for themselves, but are also looking at ways to drastically reduce aid to needy Indian families. Lord knows the federal government is already hatching secret schemes about how to reduce federal funding to Indian tribes. As is often muttered in the dungeons of the Secretary of the Interior�s office, �Hey, since those Indians are all so damned rich, let�s start cutting their budgets. A nip here and a tuck there and we will soon be able to wean them from federal money entirely.�

Of course, that would leave more money for the Interior Department�s land, water, trees and natural resources agencies. Interior�s thinking is that Indians still have a lot of control over these things and the budget cuts will give them the money to allow the federal government to take more land, water, trees and natural resources from them. Hey, their rich now and really don�t need all of that land, water, trees and natural resources anyhow. They�re too busy buying 5,000 square foot homes, Cadillac cars, yachts, video games and 52-inch television sets. And, of course, many of them are much too busy putting their casino money back into their own casinos. In fact, the Indian nations are getting so rich that they will hardly miss the things the government is about to take from them. Let them rest on their casinos. That�s poetic justice. What the Church has chosen to look at approvingly, the crimes and sins of gambling, has found a home in Indian country and Atlantic City. Or as Vice President Cheney would add, �Big time.�

But, of course, the Church is much too busy worrying about abortion, gay marriage, flag burning and stem cell research to give any time or thought to the sin of gambling. Hell, if you will pardon the expression, they would probably build casinos of their own if they could find a way to do it. If Oral Roberts could build a casino in Oklahoma he wouldn�t have to worry so much about dying prematurely if church going people don�t send him their hard earned dollars. And just think how much more Pat Robertson could do with his Christian Broadcasting Network if he had his own casino. Sin does pay handily."

Get the Story:
Tim Giago: Living in a nation of hypocrites (The Native American Times 7/31)

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