Advertise:   712.224.5420

Tribes faced with debate over identity, blood quantum

"Only Indians, horses and dogs have pedigrees," Paul DeMain, publisher of News From Indian Country, says.

Pedigrees are an important factor in determining Indian identity. It determines whether one is enrolled in a tribe or not. "You don't have to be enrolled to be African American," Melissa Meyer, a professor at University of California, Los Angeles, tells The Salt Lake Tribune.

Some tribes have debated whether to use blood quantum to define membership. Last month, the Navajo Nation considering lowering its blood standard, a move that would have doubled the tribal rolls. Other tribes ignore blood altogether and allow lineal descendants to enroll.

Get the Story:
Defining 'Indianness' a double-edged sword (The Salt Lake Tribune 5/10)