Let me be a free man—free to travel, free to work, free to follow the religion of my forefathers, and I will obey every law or submit to the penalty.
-- Chief Joseph, Nez Perce.
Indigenous rights are never freely given—they must be demanded, wrested away, then vigilantly protected. That is the essence of freedom.
-- Walter Echo-Hawk, Pawnee.
NAWA! Walter Echo-Hawk (Pawnee) is a Native American speaker, author, and attorney. Throughout his distinguished legal career, he has worked to protect the legal, political, property, cultural, and human rights of Indian tribes and Native peoples. An articulate and versed indigenous rights activist, Echo-Hawk delivers keynote speeches and lectures on a wide variety of indigenous topics, involving Native arts and cultures, indigenous history, federal Indian law, religious freedom, environmental protection, Native American cosmology, and human rights.
He makes keynote appearances at important events throughout Indian Country and around the world. Over the years, he has offered major speeches in South Africa, Turkey, Egypt, Philippines, Canada, and throughout the United States. He is currently on a book lecture tour for his groundbreaking book, In the Courts of the Conqueror: The 10 Worst Indian Law Cases Ever Decided (2010). In June, his new book,¬† "IN THE LIGHT OF JUSTICE," will be available on this website. This Site introduces this Native American Speaker, profiles his unique career, and provides Contact Information for your event. WELCOME!
Valley?s First TŁbatulabal ?Mayor? Wants to Make His Term Count
Rocky Stone was elected mayor of Whiskey Flat, California in February. But he doesn?t have a town budget to manage, he doesn?t have to preside over council meetings, he doesn?t have to tend to important municipal matters.
The post is honorary, the election part of the lower Sierra Nevada town of Kernville?s annual Whiskey Flat Days celebration February 14-17. ?Whiskey Flat? was the name of the community during the mid-19th century Gold Rush. You win by raising the most money; past Whiskey Flat mayors have had names like Dog Ear Dave, Moonshine Mike, Calamity Carrie, Tenderfoot Tony, and Mean River Gene.
But Stone is taking his election seriously. He is the first member of the Tbatulabal Tribe elected Whiskey Flat mayor in the 42-year history of the event. Running as ?Rango Rocky? ? a reference to the current drought ? he out-fundraised his opponent Nicole Kent (aka ?Nickel & Dime Nicole?) to win the mayoralty and raise $30,188 for the tribe, 4-H, and the local chamber of commerce, which sponsors Whiskey Flat Days.
Stone, 61, is a utility technician for a mineral company. He?s also an elected member of the Tbatulabal Tribal Council; he said the tribe will use the money he raised for office supplies and ?to keep the office open.?
His goal for the year of his honorary mayoralty: To raise awareness in the Kern Valley about the Tbatulabal Tribe, its history in the valley, and its efforts to establish a formal relationship with the U.S. government.
The Tbatulabals signed one of 18 treaties in 1851 that the U.S. Congress failed to ratify. Many Tbatulabals live on land allotted to them by the U.S., and the council has worked with IHS to accomplish clean-water and wastewater improvements on the allotments, which are considered ?Indian country? under 18 U.S. Code 1151. But the relationship with the U.S. only goes so far. In 2011, then-chairwoman Donna Miranda-Begay received a rejection letter from the White House when she asked to attend the annual White House Tribal Nations Conference.
The Week That Was: The Big Stories in Indian Country, March 9, 2014
It's our roundup of the stories that mattered most in Indian country:...
To Book Walter Echo-Hawk
Tuesday March 11th, 2014
Unviersity of Michigan, Henderson Room in the Michigan League, Ann Arbor, MI
04:00pm to 05:00pm
BOOK LECTURE: "In The Light of Justice"
Thursday March 13th, 2014
Michigan State University College of Law, East Lansing, MI
02:00pm to 03:00pm
BOOK LECTURE, "In The Light of Justice"
Wednesday March 26th, 2014
Humboldt State University, Kate Buchanan Room, Arcata, CA
06:00pm to 07:00pm
Public Lecture, Native Pathways Speaker Series.
"How the UNDRIP can provide a stronger foundation for Indian rights in the United States"
By Walter Echo-Hawk
Posted: 06 Mar 2011
INDIAN RIGHTS IN THE U.S. ARISE from a foundation¬†fashioned in the 19th Century. Much of that foundation remains sound today and should be retained, especially the "inherent tribal sovereignty" doctrine of Worcester v. Georgia (1833) and its "protectorate framework" for protecting Indian nations that exist in the Republic as "domestic dependant...
"Why We Need The UN DECLARATION ON THE RIGHTS OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES"
By Walter Echo-Hawk
Posted: 27 Feb 2011
MANY IN INDIAN COUNTRY fail to see how international law can help solve tribal problems at home on Indian reservations. That is short-sighted. By contrast, the leading Indian Country organizations fought hard for many years to develop the UNDRIP and obtain UN and US approval. Those advocates include the National Congress of American Indians, Na...