Thursday, September 1, 2011

23 Days Until the New Election: Judge Not the Judges

More thoughts tonight on the recent Freedmen decision. We’ve seen a lot of comments from people online saying that the court which made the decision, did so to impact Chad Smith’s chances of re-election.  Like we mentioned yesterday, the perception seems to be that 1) the Supreme Court Justices knew that Freedmen were all Baker supporters; 2) that the Supreme Court wants to help Smith get re-elected; and 3) that the Court kicked the Freedmen out so that they couldn’t vote for Baker, thus making it easier for Smith to win.

This line of reasoning really does a HUGE injustice to our Supreme Court.  Whatever you think of them and their decisions, you do need to look at the public record.  Trivia time:  What is the only court in the whole United States to say that people who aren’t Indian at all (at least according to the Dawes Rolls) can be citizens of the Cherokee Nation?  

If you guessed the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court, you are right!

Federal courts have upheld the right of Cherokee nation to decide who its citizens are.  And we have, through our courts in the Allen case and through our 2007 Constitutional amendment.

Whatever your stance on the Freedmen citizenship issue, it’s easy for any Cherokee to be a little upset by the idea that the Cherokee courts are brilliant, infallible, legal minds when they rule in your favor, like they did in 2006 and again in Cherokee Nation district court in January.  But when the court rules against you, they are political hatchetmen?  Neither of those things is the CHEROKEE TRUTH.

The TRUTH is that if the Supreme Court wanted to make it easy for Smith to be Chief, they could’ve made him Chief back in July.  He asked them to, after all.  They counted the votes with their own hands and saw that Smith had more than Baker.  Most times, the person with the most votes wins an election, but the court said there were too many irregularities on behalf of the election commission and ordered a new vote.

Our point is, if the Supreme Court were going to do everything in their power to make Smith the Chief, he would’ve been sworn in a couple of weeks ago and he’d be front and center at the Cherokee National Holiday this weekend. 

To say anything about our court besides the fact that they are qualified, accomplished Cherokee attorneys who can impartially adjudicate the law is a disservice to them, and to some degree the Cherokee Nation as a whole.

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