Empowering tribes

Hoping to protect rural Alaska women from violence, the U.S. House of Representatives wants to establish “Indian Country” in the 49th state and grant Native tribes police powers over non-Natives on what could be millions of acres of land.


Indian Country has long been a controversial subject in Alaska, but the House action has gone unnoticed and undiscussed in the state.

When the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971 was enacted into law, it avoided the creation of Indian Country and set off on a new path toward resolving the inherent conflict between the descendants of the Native people who first moved into Alaska to claim the land and the descendants of  the white people who came later to push the original inhabitants aside and take over.

With U.S. Indian reservations then viewed as little more than ghettos for Native Americans, ANCSA rejected creation of new reservations in favor of  establishing 12 regional Native corporations and 226 village corporations to be seeded with 44 million acres of land and nearly $1 billion to build an economic future for Alaska Natives.

“Congress finds and declares that,” ANCSA said “the settlement should be accomplished rapidly, with certainty, in conformity with the real economic and social needs of Natives, without litigation, with maximum participation by Natives in decisions affecting their rights and property, without establishing any permanent racially defined institutions, rights, privileges, or obligations, without creating a reservation system or lengthy wardship or trusteeship, and without adding to the categories of property and institutions enjoying special tax privileges or to the legislation establishing special relationships between the United States Government and the State of Alaska.”

Abandoning the old model of reservations with their economic deprivation and Indian Country governed by tribal laws at the time seemed like a good idea to most Alaskans – both Native and white – but some Natives have since concluded it left them powerless.

Among their biggest complaints is the inability to enforce their own laws and a lack of state support in enforcing any laws. Law enforcement in rural areas is left to unarmed Village Public Safety Officers (VPSOs) and Alaska State Troopers who are present in only a few regional hubs.

Most villages lack a trooper, and usually see one only when he or she arrives to arrest someone. A House bill (H.R. 1585) to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 would change that by creating “a pilot project to allow up to five Indian tribes in Alaska to implement special tribal criminal jurisdiction” in rural areas.

The legislation goes on to define the area of enforcement:

“Indian Country Defined – For purposes of the pilot project…the definition of ‘Indian Country’ shall include Alaska Native-owned townsites, allotments and former reservations lands acquired in fee by Alaska Native Village Corporations pursuant to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act and other lands transferred in fee to Native villages.”

The bill would nullify a 1998 U.S. Supreme Court decision which went against the Native Village of Venetie on the south slope of the Brooks Range north of Fairbanks, and it could set the stage for expansion of other Indian-Country powers.

“In (the Venetie) decision the U.S. Supreme Court concluded that former reservation land transferred to an ANCSA village corporation and then subsequently transferred in fee to the tribe did not qualify as a ‘dependent Indian community’ and the land was therefore not Indian country,” former Alaska Attorney General Jahna Lindemuth wrote in an October 2017 legal opinion prepared for then-Gov. Bill Walker.

Lindemuth added, however, that “there remain open questions about Indian country in Alaska. Throughout Alaska, there are currently scattered non-ANCSA Alaska Native lands with federal interests: it is estimated that there are close to one million acres of restricted fee land granted under the Alaska Native Allotment Act of 1906 and the Alaska Native Townsite Act of 1926.”

She concluded the state’s 229 tribes – almost every village in Alaska has been designated a tribe – remain sovereign nations occupying a place within the state of Alaska, but there are issues with “the extent of that jurisdiction.”

The House bill, which appears to be moving rapidly toward passage, would significantly expand that jurisdiction.

Good intentions

Almost 50 years after passage of ANCSA, the well-intentioned plan to settle aboriginal land claims and bring all Alaskans together as economic equals struggling together toward the lofty goal of a colorblind society seems to have run headlong into the state’s rural-urban divide.

At the urban level, the legislation has arguably been a success. Based on annual revenues, Alaska Business ranked Native corporations among 15 of the top 20 businesses in the state. But that success, much of it built on contracting business outside of Alaska, in largely focused in the state’s largest city and has not trickled down to Natives living in more than 200 villages scattered across rural Alaska.

Anchorage got multi-story office buildings and good-paying jobs. Rural Alaska got not much. The disparities have only served to raise resentments and a feeling of powerlessness.

ProPublica took a look at the situation in 2011 and reported that for corporation shareholders in rural areas “unemployment remains a chronic problem.” 

“Most Alaska Native Corporations (ANCs) do not make their hiring data public,” the report said. “But in 2009, (Sen. Claire) McCaskill’s Senate contracting subcommittee surveyed 19 ANCs and found that only 5 percent of their 45,000 employees were shareholders or relatives.”

“The unemployment in rural villages contributes to high levels of alcohol and drug abuse—historic problems in Alaska,” the report added. “ANCs contend that the lives of villagers have improved over time. But many of those improvements have come from federal or state programs, not ANCs.”

Frustrations with the lack of economic success and a widely held view that the state hasn’t done enough to help villages has led some to call for empowering rural residents by extending tribal sovereignty to large areas of rural Alaska.

In her opinion, Lindemuth noted that a U.S. Supreme Court in 1978 found that all U.S. tribes lacked “criminal jurisdiction to prosecute non-Indians, finding that such jurisdiction was ‘inconsistent with their status’ as sovereigns subordinate to the federal government.”

When the Violence Against Women Act was reauthorized in 2013, however, tribal polices and courts in the lower 48 were granted authority over non-Natives who assaulted women on reservations.

An Alaska attorney intimately familiar with Indian law said that Congress granting Alaska tribes the authority “to implement special tribal criminal jurisdiction” extends that authority northward.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, took some heat for failing to amend the law in 2013 to extend to Alaska tribes the authority to arrest and try non-tribal members.

“It’s the state’s position that anyone who moves through the villages who’s not a tribal member should not be handled by a local tribal court,”  Myron Naneng, the president of the Bethel-based Association of Village Council Presidents told the Alaska Public Radio Network at the time. “But we move into urban areas ourselves, and we’re subject to state courts.”

Naneng and some other rural Native leaders think that unfair. The House would remedy this with the pilot program to empower tribes to prosecute non-tribal members who commit violent acts against women.

46 replies »

  1. Many of the Native women killed in Alaska are killed in Anchorage. I don’t see the sense of establishing “Indian Woman Country.” It smacks of racism rather than protection.
    Ann Chandonnet

  2. (Controversy)Considering our constitution is set up to help with uniformity and fairness, perhaps other ethnic groups should be allowed to have tribal areas also. Otherwise the situation could be considered pretty questionable. ; )

    • Boy, I just don’t know of any other ethnic group with something on the order of Indian Country. I’m not privy to what occurred in the Southwest where Mexicans were taken advantage of, similar to removing Indians from their land, so this group may have a legit gripe.

      • So is Indian country some form of compensation for gripes ? I think a lot of people could fall under that umbrella. I doubt it’s technically uniform with our constitution. At least on federal level . States ( states rights ) might argue they have right to alow discrimination against all other ethnic groups with favoritism to “ natives” /earlier migrants. Just saying might be a bit of incongruity. Just throwing that out for kicks : ) I would like to have my own tribal area . Especially if I could police and ban other people. Just an interesting thought.

      • I wasn’t referring to gripes at all. What I was mentioning was an argument for some sort of “sovereignty,” for groups who were here first. This would not be any argument for Irish, blacks, etc. trying to settle gripes IMO.

      • I think I understand where you were coming from and what you meant and basically agree with you ,though there is incongruity as to ethnic fairness. Is it right to give someone who was there first special rights ? Huge can of worms. Uniformity and equal fairness of laws is more important otherwise the same logic could be used on other concepts such as I was here first and this legal/ illegal thing I’ve been doing has been being done for 10 k years therefore it holds legitimacy and should be allowed similar to hunting whales – ( a mess – for conservation in some areas ) ,rather than judged on its merits. ( personally I think extreme local government with policing power could be functional-and good idea . Locals are in the loop . tribal government/ local law enforcement might be better and more balanced also they have local skin in the game and could do better job protecting locals and even the environment- best case scenario,though that may not be historically accurate as far as what has historically occurred- think tongass,also sending people to a big prison and having them judged by non pears is very questionable .(so I’m not exactly arguing against it ) but it shouldn’t be ethnic based . Aught to be extendable to all ethnic groups in remote areas or folks under similar circumstances for ethical fairness . Using native or first immigrant is distinctly questionable and Supreme Court should more closely consider it . As to the gripes concept – Dang I was hoping it could be gripe based so I could get my own tribe set up 🙂

      • Just as long as you and I are on the committee that hands out the “gripes.”

    • Native American Indian law is complex and doesn’t always make a lot of sense. But most is affirmed by the SCOTUS.
      Look up Indian country on Wikipedia. It is a status that has been around for a century — commonly as Lower 48 Indian reservations. Most folks thought the 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, or ANCSA, disallowed Indian country in Alaska because it used the corporation design rather than Indian reservations in the settlement. However Alaskan Indian country activists continue to attempt, with near success, to get Congress to allow Indian country in Alaska.
      Tribal nations in Alaska do enjoy certain aspects of sovereignty— but they have no territory or land base over which to govern, i.e. Indian country. The land base would allow them tax and regulation authority, and exemption from State and municipal tax and regulatory authority for the tribal members and businesses on that land. Think competing businesses in tourism, marijuana, tobacco, booze, gas, gambling, and groceries, etc… not to mention fish and game regs, zoning, etc, etc, etc.
      Contact your Congressional delegation.

      • Mary, I remember a big argument for ANILCA was that Alaska Natives would get simple title to their lands and Alaska would be able to tax those lands. Right!!!! There have been numerous ways for them to avoid that taxation-we were duped it seems.
        Anyway, I don’t see this push for their attempt to be able to try whites who assault women on their lands as anything like total “sovereignty.”
        Just my opinion.

      • Yes, it was ANCSA rather than ANILCA. And ANCSA lands that are developed are taxed. Undeveloped are not taxed. If you read the language in the federal bill, HB1585, you will find that it allows land to be classified as Indian country. That classification allows lots and lots more than just addressing violence against women. “The devil’s in the details” as they say.

      • Mary the concept of something having been done( alowed ) for a long time isn’t a great argument. Think of all the immoral and questionable practices America no longer allows . Also you pretty well summed it up pretty well by saying American Indian law doesn’t make a lot of sense . That’s why Supreme Court should revisit and see if treating one ethnic group differently from others meets uniform law as pertains to feds and constitution. So if we are created equal why are we treated unequal? Needs to be considered more carefully. I truly love the diversity in our country ! Might be a very important cultural asset on many levels. My dad spent a lot of time on an Indian reservation in the states and we have several different tribal bloods in our background. His life on the reservation has given him an ability to pass on many different ways of seeing things. I love hearing about what he did or expierenced on the reservation. Separately One thing I see is incongruity for better or worse it’s there . It would be nice if all people who wanted tribal protection and benefits could get it . Every one is treated as an American with certain rights. Why are certain groups treated differently. It’s a bit of corundum. All groups have been through one vicious trial or travail or another. So it can’t be based on that .

      • Sorry Mary but you are correct about it’s ANCSA. I intend to pay more attention to HR 1585, too. Thanks.

  3. The best article written on this was by Parnell’s AG, Michael Geraghty, in his response opposing the report written by Troy Eide of the Indian Law and Order Commission. Maybe 5 years ago. It was published in the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. The John decision by the State Supreme Court found that Alaskan tribal courts have a lot of authority even without Indian country. They should use it. They don’t need Indian country. With Indian country that the tribal members cannot be taxed or regulated by the state or its municipalities. Think marijuana, tobacco, gaming, fish and game harvest, business competition in tourism, etc , zoning, etc., etc.

  4. I guess the constitution should be consulted as to legality of non uniform enforcement. Might be that these issues need taken to Supreme Court for a viable answer.

  5. Seems like some think ignoring the well known and documented problems will make them disappear. Let’s just keep doing what we’ve been doing since it works so well. Look up where our state ranks in rape and domestic violence, look up where in state these crimes happen disproportionately to population size, look up who the rapists is and who they rape, look up who the abuser is and who they abuse. These statistics are out there, pretending they aren’t does not help better the situation at all.

    Putting the fox in charge of the hen house might not be the best idea. The Lt Governor under Walker resigned in disgrace for a reason, anyone know what it was? Or are we going to pretend that didn’t happen too?

    • Trying to build a “strawman” there with Mallott, Steve-O?
      I’ll say that you sure could use one.

      • Not a strawman at all, Bill. Mallot is an example of a Native leader who became the second in command of the entire state and misused his position of authority and resigned in disgrace right before a major election.

        Have you had a chance to look up those well documented statistics I previously mentioned or are you going to continue to ignore the facts?

      • You are hilarious Steve-O. The issue of this post has to do with Alaska Natives wanting legal authority over white men committing assaults (and rape) of Native women and you insist on muddying the waters with Mallott abusing his authority. Perhaps you can give us a tutorial on how these two things fit together?? Maybe even a side note on how an election fits into it, as well.
        You and a few others on here are wanting to divert our attention from the issue to something else entirely for what reason? It may be that allowing such authority may be unnecessary but is hardly allowing the fox to guard the henhouse. Their arguments of only allowing white mens law to punish white men is more of a fox guarding the henhouse.
        Nobody is saying they don’t have other issues with their own people but that has nothing to do with this issue. This is specific and has not a thing to do with Mallott or your alluded statistics.

      • Bill,

        See “fox in charge of the hen house” in regards to what Mallott has to do with this conversation. Another Native leader who took advantage of his position around the same time was Dean Westlake. Both abused their positions of authority and resigned in shame because of it, both spent a liftetime abusing their positions of power and got away with it until they no longer did…years and years later. There is a huge problem filling VSPO positions, you have already alluded to the reason why. How do you expect people who will not police themselves and hold the rapists and child molesters in their community to police the “white men”, as you put it? We all live in the United States and are all subject to the laws of the United States, tribal governments can be sovereign but they are still subordinate.

        As you said in another comment, this is a solution in search of a problem. The statistics show that the biggest problem with rape in villages has nothing to do with “white men” raping natives. Does it need to be addressed, absolutely it does but if your house is burning down you don’t stop on the way out to water the plants.

        From KTOO

        Fifty-four percent of Alaska’s sexual assault victims are Alaska Native, the report says, even though Alaska Native people comprise only 20 percent of the state’s population.

        It also found that 47 percent of the suspected attackers are Alaska Native as well, and that Western Alaska has higher rates of sexual abuse than any other region.

        “I wasn’t surprised at all at these statistics,” said Monica Charles, a Tundra Women’s Coalition board member. “If anything, I’m surprised by how long it takes to come up with these numbers to shock people into action.”

        If anything, she said, the numbers in the study seem low.

        According to the report, the most common victim of a sex crime is a 14-year-old girl. She almost is always attacked by someone she knows.

        Let’s stop pretending this isn’t a problem, shall we.

      • Steve-O, you just can’t help altering the conversation to make it something that you can successfully attack-which is precisely what building a strawman is and that is because you don’t have an argument for the issue at hand.
        That’s fine but doesn’t get you any brownie points, from me. That’s not to say what you are saying is not it’s own issue, just that it doesn’t have a thing to do with this article of Craig’s.

      • Oh please Bill, if you are so concerned with staying on point with the article 95% of what you write here would not be posted. Further why are you admonishing me when Steve is talking about Wasilla and child molesters in schools? At least I am talking about native leadership issues and VSPO recruitment issues and how these villages do not police themselves, you know issues that are pertinent to the actual conversation. You seem to want to ignore all of these issues and hand over, carte blanche, policing to tribes who can’t, won’t, and aren’t doing anything about it currently. What do you think will happen in these villages if that were to happen? Or do you think about that at all? A corrupt leader, like Mallott or Westlake decides he doesn’t like a guy so he frames him and banishes him…case solved…no problemo in Bill’s world?

        You don’t want to address the issues with handing policing duties to villages who have repeatedly shown the inability to police their own. Some Native leaders are part of the problem and that is not addressed. The culture of rape is endemic in some villages. The lack of self policing is not addressed. And you are trying to tell me I’m making a strawman argument? Get real Bill, start addressing the issues. Or just keep your head buried in the sand and trying to change the subject at hand.

        For the record, what you are doing by attacking my posts that dare question the idea of handing policing powers to tribes is the definition of a strawman.

      • Steve-O, you may have some arguments for your listed issues, just not what Craig’s article is about and is clearly an attempt to build a strawman. Whine about my calling you on it but that’s all it is. Also, bringing up that others on here are getting off topic doesn’t help your argument, either IMO. Tough noogies!
        I’ll give you the argument that because they (Alaska Natives) haven’t been successful at policing their own they (perhaps) shouldn’t be given the authority to police whites in their villages but you did not make that argument till just now. Go ahead and read your original posts on here and see that you did not make that case and only whined about Mallott and not much else. The Mallott thing has nothing to do with anything, even this latest argument of yours.

      • You’re absolutely right Bill. In the future I will see to it that all my comments spell out every last detail of every point I could ever try and make regarding only the information contained in each individual article. I’m sorry that I assumed that some people reading here have the ability to comprehend anything less than that.

        Please forgive me for so thoughtlessly typing out a few paragraphs, when I should have known how it would completely devolve into a conversation that has nothing to do with the original article with those who do not have the sense to understand what it is they are writing about.

        Just to be clear and so there is no further misunderstanding, you are right about everything you think you are right about Bill and I am wrong about everything you think I am wrong about. You are now in a safe place where no one and nothing challenges your thoughts or dares make you think outside of the tiny box you’ve put yourself into.

  6. How is that whole “sovereign nation” thing working out for you?? There is utter disregard and outright hostility towards law enforcement sent to assist in these rapes, domestic assaults, alcohol and drug related offenses and other crimes. Rrminds me of any city ghetto “victim” mentality. They need to shut all those “Tribal Nations” down.

    • Bryan, I’m aware of two large cases of serious crimes without “outright hostility towards law enforcement” 1) the drunk from Nulato who killed one of Jeff King’s dogs and 2) the kid who killed the two troopers in Tanana. Now the kid and his father in Tanana were hostile towards law enforcement, which caused the serious crime of murder, but they were not the norm and you sound like you believe it’s the norm. That father and one other person in Tanana were banished from that village.
      I recall back in the 80s a white guy, when asked if he was interested in being a VPSO in Minto, saying that he might as well put a target on his back. I believe, for this reason, most VPSOs tend to be native.
      Where are you getting your feelings that this is any kind of normal in the villages?

      • Bill, I suggest you head on down to your local AST office and ask them in person if their receptions aren’t chilled and cooperation lacking in a lot of outlying villages. As you know, many Alaska villages are remote and not connected to the state’s road system. 75 have no law enforcement presence, and only one has a domestic violence shelter. Thus resulting in Third World conditions and high rates of domestic violence, suicide, alcohol abuse and other crimes. You said it yourself ” a white guy, when asked if he was interested in being a VPSO in Minto, saying that he might as well put a target on his back. I believe, for this reason, most VPSOs tend to be native.” Seems the majority of AST’s going into these villages are “white guys”.
        In these remote villages there is a “police our own” mentality and outsiders, including law enforement, aren’t welcome.

      • Bryan, and you know this how?? You’ve put your wet finger into the air and it’s given you this?

      • Bryan appears to have a far right “white supremist” mentality on many issues.
        Who else would continue to spew hatred on so many topics from: Homosexuals, Liberals, Journalists, Environmentalists, Native Cultures, Scientists, anyone that is not on his “side”.
        His selective memory of Alaskan cases also leads me to believe that he has little time with “boots on the ground” in AK.
        Currently there is a case against a white man who was a popular school teacher in Wasilla for many years….before this a white man who had driven buses for the school district was arrest and sentenced for sexual assault.
        “A popular Wasilla fourth-grade teacher faces felony charges of sexually abusing minors after three students said he touched them inappropriately over a period of years.”
        “They also moved to terminate Lukis Nighswonger, the 36-year-old Wasilla man known as “Mr. Nigh” who’s taught at Iditarod Elementary School since 2005.”
        Prior to this case, we had the assault on a Native American woman in Anchorage by a white male who was an air traffic controller….this case has gotten world coverage for the lack of justice received.
        “Married Alaska air traffic controller, 34, who kidnapped a hitchhiker, choked her until she was unconscious and then masturbated on her is given ‘a pass’ by judge and will not even have to register as a sex offender”
        Somehow Bryan likes to paint the picture of sexual assault as a problem only occurring in the villages, but any research of facts will show that this is a huge concern throughout the state and many perpetrators have good jobs and live in suburban homes throughout the state….
        Let’s not forget the most famous white rapist in this state’s history was very affluent and even owned his own plane that assisted him in his horrible crimes…
        “Robert Christian Hansen (February 15, 1939 – August 21, 2014), known in the media as the “Butcher Baker”, was an American serial killer. Between 1971 and 1983, Hansen abducted, raped, and murdered at least 17, and possibly more than 30 women in and around Anchorage, Alaska, hunting them down in the woods with a Ruger Mini-14 and a knife.”
        The facts speak for themselves….Alaska is plagued with sexual assault, but this is in NO way just limited to residents would live in the bush.

      • Steve, I get the Democrat thing, label everybody based on “race, class, gender”. Racist, racist, racist… ya, whatever. I am white and proud to be white. Who cares and why wouldn’t I be proud? I merely pointed out the chilled and aggressive attitudes towards law enforcement at times when they are sent into these villages to investigate crimes. A huge number of villagers protect these offenders. You disagree? Bill brought-up about a white guy.

      • Bryan, you seem to think it’s like the 7th cavalry heading into indian country. That’s a crock and you know it.
        When those two troopers were killed in Tanana it shocked many and a lot of heads were put together to make sure such doesn’t happen again. The kid (perp) was a special case of someone being brainwashed by his father and is not conducive to how Law Enforcement is seen in the villages. I will say about 10 years ago running into a trooper on the Elliot Highway who had just been to Minto on a case and he was by himself-at the time I wondered what he had done to get such duty. Heheh! Anyway, I wouldn’t be surprised that the protocol is to take along some back-up. Hell, police departments elsewhere utilize back-up when disturbances occur around bars at night.

      • Ok, Bill, now you’re just messing with me. 🙂 On one hand you are saying these are peace loving villages and on the other you say take the “7th Calvary –
        “Running into a trooper on the Elliot Highway who had just been to Minto on a case and he was by himself-at the time I wondered what he had done to get such duty. Heheh! Anyway, I wouldn’t be surprised that the protocol is to take along some back-up.”
        Now pass the home brew. I am confused. Haha

      • Bryan, first I haven’t mentioned them as peace loving villages and my quotes were specifically mentioned as to the aftermath from the two troopers killed in Tanana. That a trooper seemed to be without a backup surprise me because police departments use backup when policing bar issues. And he very well may have had another trooper with another vehicle that I didn’t observe. I also remember going to a photo shoot with Governor Palin @ Cope Park in Juneau and she, to my eyes, didn’t seem to have anyone protecting her and when I asked about it her handler mentioned that they (her protectors) were in the background, which made sense to me.
        All that said, I’m sure that things have changed since that Tanana incident and I suspect the villagers have been privy to these changes. I believe Tanana was successful at getting a couple of “sovereignty” natives banished (including father of perp).
        I believe that one of their own main issues is their not being able to banish a white man. Probably more complex than that but they have their reasons that may not be unreasonable. I think we (whites) have our own issues with banishments-undesirables used to be given one-way tickets but I think that went out with button shoes.

  7. In the ’70s or early ’80s Mary Katzke produced a film called “No Word for Rape” about rape and sexual abuse of Native women in both rural and urban Alaska. It was shown on public TV here and received considerable critical acclaim. You’d be hard pressed to find a copy today except perhaps in some dusty archive and it simply isn’t a conversation Alaskans can have today.

    • A culture saturated in pedophilia and incest probably doesnt need to run its own legal system.

      • Are we required to take your word for this Mongo? Not that you would bullchit us, of course.

      • OK Mongo, we will assume you believe everything you read.
        It’s that “saturated in pedophilia” that’s a problem, for me. Further, there is no doubt that alcohol is behind much of these issues but what’s the issue here is rape (or assaults of women) by white men. And this is from your link: “The suspect for a recent rape in southwest hub community of Dillingham, for instance, was a white man who’d just arrived from somewhere in the Lower 48 to take a job at the Wells Fargo in town.”
        By the way, I’ve spent much time in bush Alaska and have to say the subject you speak of never came up. My family lived for about 15 winters outside of Minto, AK and we left our truck in the village during that time-I visited the village regularly hauling supplies and speaking much with elders in their lodge. For whatever reason nobody felt the need to enlighten me to what you say is common knowledge.

  8. The dirty little secret: The rape of native women is done by native men, usually from within their own family. Its been that way for centuries. There I said the dirty little secret everyone knows but no one dare say.

    • OK Burt, you say “the rape of native women” as in 100%. That of course has nothing to do with Craig’s article which assumes that it’s not 100% by native men.
      So……………………………….are you saying the solution is looking for a problem to solve??

    • Burt,
      Maybe you should do some research on the topic of Sexual Abuse before typing comments like these…
      The truth is most Sexual Assaults are committed by a family member or someone close to the family…
      “Sexual abuse by an immediate, extended family member, or someone known to the family is by far the most common type of abuse to occur (, 2007).”
      Evidence of this is proven in the ongoing case of a school teacher in Wasilla who was caught after abusing children for years that were trusted in his care.

    • The main issue here, is the alcohol/sexual assault combo. Majority of sexual assaults against any AK native male or female, have a common denominator: alcohol.
      Less for AK Caucasians. Loss of inhibitions from both sides, plus Nov-Feb, which are always dark, cold and wet months. More inside time, more depression and self medication going on.
      This is reality now, since the Feds & AK went a different way from how the lower 48 handled the “sovereign nations” issue.
      The CA tribal casinos are doing very well. It has given a historically downtrodden people, hope, faith & money.
      Good combinations!

      • James,
        You hit the nail on the head brother…
        Alaskan winters and Alcohol Do Not Mix…
        All races and cultures appear to have the same abuse and assault issues if folks stay inside and get drunk…especially those already suffering with mental illness and PTSD.
        Better to stay sober and get out and play…

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