First page of New Mexican story

Next page of New Mexican story

Picture page of New Mexican story

Cathy Robbins Thinking Aloud

Dissing American Indians, Part III: Send the cops away

January 15, 2013

Tags: American Indians, American Indian crime, American Indian police, U.S. Dept. of Justice, Indian law, Indian sovereignty, American Indian self-determination


What happens when American Indians call the federal cops to investigate a rape or a murder? Too often, nobody answers. On reservations, when the feds drop the ball, understaffed tribal police departments are unable to cope with the resulting mayhem.

Step back about a 150 years. At that time, white America was mopping up. Settlers, developers, mining and timber interests, and railroad companies were chewing up much of Indian country not just stealing land but also slaughtering bison and destroying other sources of Native sustenance. To stop Indians’ understandable resistance to this wholesale grab, the U.S. government sent the cavalry and finally entered into treaties to end the Indian wars. Indians laid down their arms and gave up much of their lands and resources. In exchange, the federal government set aside some lands for reservations in exchange for food, education, health, and policing for reservations. (more…)