Cowards Of Our Own Destiny
By Don Hoff Jr.
July 31, 2006
The State of Alaska and the federal government like to blame
the subsistence users for the exploitation and near extinction
of our herring fisheries. Meanwhile, they allow the commercial
fishing industry to over-harvest our fish. Picking seaweed is
unlawful anywhere in Alaska except a few places in Southeast.
How absurd is that?
Herring row fisheries are all but gone in the Ketchikan area,
and don't blame the subsistence users. Blame it on bad management
of all our natural resources by the State of Alaska and federal
government; these people have regulated to near extinction our
abalone, king crab, sea urchins, herring and sea cumbers, and
have allowed the Ooligan runs to disappear in the Unuk River.
We, as Alaskan Native People, have to take part of the blame
for allowing the Caucasians to take from us in the first place.
Let's face the facts, the Native leadership we have today is
doing nothing. We have become cowards of our own destiny. We
have our own I.R.A. Council governments, Alaska Native Brotherhood
and Sisterhood Camps and Tlingit and Haida Central Councils
but what are they doing? Our leadership is doing nothing to
protect our inherent right to subsist off the land and sea.
For inspiration, let's look at Metlakatla, Alaska. They control
their own destiny. They have their own fisheries, and have told
the State of Alaska and Federal Government what they are going
to do and have done it. What is the lesson? We, as real owners
of Alaska, have to be aggressive to get what belongs to us, and
take control of our natural resources. We will pick seaweed
in April. We will dig up clams for fundraisers. We will shoot
a seal and a deer for a Potlatch.
It is time to fight for what is ours. Remember, it is the Caucasian
people that are raping tribal members of all our natural resources
and killing our tribes in the process. Just like taking the
herring from the King Salmon. It is our food, and we as Native
People are part of the food chain. What is the difference?
Learn your language, history and get your tribe moving.
This is my own opinion.
Aan Kadax Tseen aka Don Hoff Jr.
Gaanax adi Clan
Taan ta Kwaan
Hixson, TN - USA
About: Aan Kadax Tseen aka Don Hoff Jr., Past City Councilman
and Vice Mayor - City of Ketchikan; Past Board of Director -
Ketchikan Public Utilities; Past O.S.H.A. Review Boardmember
- State of Alaska; Past I.R.A. Councilman - Ketchikan Indian
Community. Tongass Tribe member of the Gaanax adi Clan, Yei l
Hit (Raven House).
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