Buffalohair, Council of American Indian Organizations, “GIVE US BACK OUR ANCESTORS!”After talking with Joseph Allen Ruanto-Ramirez of the Council of American Indian Organizations I am most compelled to forward a letter they sent to the president of the University of California, Mark Yudof. The world needs to know what is happening within the good ole USA since this is far from the conduct of a civil society and it borders on barbarism. Apparently the University of California has continued to stall the return of Native Americans remains (CA-SDI-4669) for at least 35 years. From what I’ve gathered Native remains are scattered around the universities and used for “research”. Now what are they researching anyway? Are they still trying to prove we are not human like the US did at the turn of the 20th century? What gives these anthropologists licenses to grave rob?? If I went to George Washington’s resting place for “research” I would be tossed in the poky for such an egregious act of desecration. Why is it OK to ravage our sacred sites in the name of science in the first place? But to stall in the return of our ancestors is just plain criminal. And they called us savages.
Anthropologists poke around sacred burial sites and dig up our dead, in the name of science of course through out Indian Country already. But what right do these alchemists have tossing our ancestors bones around their labs and playing with their skulls? The ultimate slap in the face is that these researchers act as if the hallowed remains are theirs to do as they wish in perpetuity. The fact they failed to return the remains for 35 years hints at the possibility the remains are scattered throughout the University of California system and they don’t really know where everything is. I shudder to think the remains are in some collection or trophy in a secret society like Geronimo’s skull. In any event it is time for the world to know what is happening within the University of California since it is likened to a B-Rated horror flick and a slap in the face to everything that is sacred in a civil society. Frankly I find it patently offensive our ancestors are being used for a collegic show and tell in the first place. And no, we are not sub-human but I am beginning to question the moral and ethical reasoning of the University of California.
In any event, I am forwarding the Council of American Indian Organizations letter requesting the return of the sacred remains of our brothers and sister. And I would suggest that everyone around the world inform the University of California, President Mark Yudof and the board of directors that the world is watching. I would also suggest you contact the Council of American Indian Organizations and offer your support as well.
The aforementioned opinions are mine, lock stock and tomahawk, capice?
A letter to UC President Yudof from the Native American community of San Diego County
The following was sent to UC President Yudof by the Council of American Indian Organizations. The University of California Office of the President will be doing a meeting on this issue today and tomorrow.
COUNCIL OF AMERICAN INDIAN ORGANIZATIONS
OF SAN DIEGO COUNTY
4265 FAIRMOUNT AVE. STE. 140 SAN DIEGO CA 92105 619 281-5964 ext. 104
March 7, 2011
President Mark Yudof
University of California
Dear President Yudof,
The Council of American Indian Organizations of San Diego County adds our voices to the many that are requesting that the Native American remains CA-SDI-4669 be returned to their people.
These remains are long overdue (35 years!) to be repatriated. The local 13 Kumeyaay Bands in this County have come together to support their return to the La Posta Band of Mission Indians, a federally recognized Band of the Kumeyaay Nation. It amazes us that the UC system is so resistant to this very human request that their ancestors’ graves not be tampered with and returned when they are disturbed. The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act clearly states that this is the only recourse for these remains. Why – instead of building communication, bridges and reconciliation – are the Kumeyaay people and American Indians being denied this fair and moral path by an institution that sits on Indian land and is supported by Indian taxpayers?
It is no wonder that American Indians do not want to attend UCSD and other UC schools due to this injustice. Now this matter is in your hands to correct and we know you will not continue this insult and affront to the 55,000 Native Americans in San Diego County.
Indian Human Resource Center
American Indian Studies – SDSU, Indian Training Trust Fund, UCSD American Indian Faculty and Staff Association
Southern California Tribal Chairmen’s Association Tribal TANF, American Indian Warriors Association, Peace and Dignity Project
California Indian Environmentalists, Explorers Club, Grossmont College Cross Cultural Studies, MS Choctaw of California
Tribal Indian Nurses Association, Hummingbird Consulting, Indian Education Program – SDUSD, Indian Human Resource Center
American Indian Chamber of Commerce of CA, American Indian Movement, Sycuan Intertribal Vocational Rehabilitation,Taspan Group
Tonkawa Seniors, American Indian Health Center, Indian Voices, Kid Korps Native American Chapter, Southern Indian Health Council
Kumeyaay Community College, Leonard Peltier Defense Committee, Native Americans Council, UCSD Native American Alumni Chapter Native American Women’s Intertribal Circle, Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel, American Indian Recruitment Program, American Indian Source
Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science – Mesa College, Citizen Potawatomi Nation – So. Ca. Region Office
Joseph Allen Ruanto-Ramirez IS NOT A MEMBER OF THE COUNCIL OF AMERICAN INDIAN ORGANIZATION