Master of Jurisprudence in Indian Law - University of Tulsa College of Law
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National
Opinion: Indians and non-Indians at Tulalip


"Like many people, my parents have a picture on their wall of their wedding day. Recently, one of our kids pulled the picture down for closer examination on a weekend visit to Grandma and Grandpa's and noted a copy of the wedding announcement from The Everett Daily Herald taped to the back of the frame.

'First White Couple Married at Indian Mission' reads the headline, marking an important day in the lives of two young people linked in the ’40s and ’50s by summer cabins on the Tulalip Reservation.

What is unique about this moment in time in 1961 is that being white never was something my mom and dad noticed as being special that day. My dad grew up working for tribal members who owned and operated fishing resorts that have since shut down. His buddies and my mom's friends farther down the beach were white kids and Indian kids alike. No big deal.

Even today, current nontribal residents at Tulalip weave their boats in and around tribal fishing nets on warm summer days, each usually offering a respected wave to the other as they share the water. Nontribal members watch tribal net lines as they serpentine along the water line, hoping to see a bump in a cork to know their tribal friends are having a successful set.

It's a unique environment, for sure. Unique because since its formation, the Tulalip Reservation has been home to tribal and nontribal residents alike.

Recently, though, the Tulalip Tribes have been exerting more control over the land, water and beaches within the reservation borders. That effort is manifesting into something that probably earns more press than it deserves, as there really isn't anything like a quarrel going on at all between those it most directly affects.

It would be better described as a dialogue between mostly friends and neighbors, with tribal members and nontribal members on both sides sharing a linkage to the same land, water and beaches that have been there since the reservation was formed."

Get the Story:
Tom Hoban: Land issues on 'The Rez': a bit of history, hope (The Snohomish County Business Journal February 2007)

Relevant Links:
Tulalip Tribes - http://www.tulaliptribes.com

Related Stories:
Tulalip Tribes assert jurisdiction over beach properties (03/10)
Non-Indians urged to respect Tulalip Tribes police (2/27)
Non-Indians reject authority of Tulalip Tribes police (2/23)
Tulalip Tribes come under attack at meeting (02/09)
Letter: Tulalip Tribes have become greedy (10/28)
Tulalip Tribes see 'no point' in talking to group (10/26)
Letter: Tulalips take advantage of non-Indians (10/26)
Non-Indians question Tulalip Tribes authority (08/04)
Editorial: Tribe deserves share of state taxes (03/30)
County opposes tax bill benefiting Tulalip Tribes (3/29)
Non-Indians want Tulalip Tribes to pay for homes (02/07)
Indian lawmaker challenged over tribal support (10/20)
Non-Indians fight Tulalip Tribes jurisdiction (06/02)
Supreme Court rejects state jurisdiction appeal (03/11)
Indian land case being reviewed (3/3)
Indian fee land free from state control (09/19)