S.E. Ruckman: Native American Rights Fund celebrates 40 years
"The other day, I received some photos from the Native American Rights Fund (NARF) that I had asked for to go with a story on their 40th Anniversary. I particularly wanted black and white photos as my own personal preference. There's something fascinating about telling a story in two toned images. The imagination seems to fill in blanks and hues.

The photos are fascinating. They hold an instance in time (bell-bottom britches through out) of the awakening of a particular genre: When Indians became lawyers and simultaneously our modern day warriors. What struck me is that while in black and white, the images still looked familiar, like pictures of Indians.

The era was the 1970s. I was barely school age when the Native legal advocacy group, NARF, searched for a place to hang its shingle. Moved from Berkeley, CA to Boulder CO, the group began thanks to start-up grants from respectable corporations. One of the founders, attorney John Echohawk, told me that the 1970s was a unique era. To me it was the decade when the American Indian Movement (AIM) and Soul Train were born.

We had come out of the assimilation holocaust only to swallowed up in the jaws of the failed U.S. policy of Termination. This was the period when the U.S. government decreed some of the tribes no longer qualified for sovereign nation status. One can only imagine."

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S.E. Ruckman: Native American Rights Fund turns 40 (The Native American Times 10/20)