Urgent: week of September 10

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Messages which absolutely need to be seen today due to time constraints or breaking news. Remember to check the"new answers" link for the most active topics. This topic will run for a week, and then we will start a new dated "urgent" file.

-- Anonymous, September 10, 2000


From experience lug nuts are not difficult to remove to remove, I knew a police officer who has some of his lug nuts removed when he was in a truck stop getting coffee, and I know several people who had lug nuts removed or loosened during a heated political race, same during a strike in the late 70's or early 80's, from these I know it is possible to remove, or loosen lug nuts and with windows on most houses today most seal out sound as a byproduct of sealing out outside air. From my experience it is completely possible to remove or loosen lug nuts. As far the accounts being true as related, it is anyone's guess. On a personal note, if I am going to loosen note I have found AAA is best, watching someone change a tire is as close as I want to a tire tool.

-- Anonymous, September 10, 2000

Aw, I remember a period when I was much younger when I had about 5 flats one year (none with nails or screws), and got so practiced that by the last one I was just sitting there crosslegged on an old bathmat loosening the lugs at the side of an Interstate, singing as I did it.

But yeah, I'd want verification from the FBI on that, since this never came up before, you'd thinkn they would have wanted to capitalize on it.

It was mentioned that there were 5 native families in the district. Where's that statistic from, BIA, Census, other? I think I remember Nashoba Hidoka (now a 6th grader at Bennett?) telling me he was part Native American when I had him in a workshop I was doing at school.

-- Anonymous, September 10, 2000

Does anyone know: Native Ameican Warrior's Society. Chief Blackhawk (from New York)

Charles Yow

-- Anonymous, September 10, 2000

Oh, that spelling's actually Hidaka. And no, I'm not familiar with the group or name, Charles.

The red and white cheer. I thought that they had been told last year to leave off the Indian associations. Yes, those are the school colors. In fact when casting about for thoughts on a new mascot months ago I was trying to come up with things that were red on the inside and white on the outside to express some of the dynamics they were trying to express, the opposite of the derogatory term "apple" ("red on the outside, white on the inside") that is the Native American analog to Uncle Tom. (Couldn't find anything)."When we say Red, you say White" actually encapsulates in some ways the issue here.

Cheerleading is a conscious effort to create a group mind with a common goal, with repetitions of chants to a rhythmic background. It's a classic technique for achieving an altered state of consciousness, and, of course, programming or reprogramming conceptual frameworks. When we do those same sort of things in my coven, we call it by its other name: witchcraft.

Let's not forget that, my dears. We've got some subliminal programming here, whether it is in service of winning The Game on Saturday, or winning the game of hearts and minds. It's not just about little girls with ponytails and gorgeous legs.

But when expressing it in public, so as not to muddy the waters, I think we'll have to just say that those little cheerleaders and football players are not Indians, so why are they saying they are?

-- Anonymous, September 10, 2000

Remember the films of the Nuremburg before any of you discount the affect of good cheerleading.

-- Anonymous, September 10, 2000

Several comments on a committee to decide on appropriate images:

1)A non-partisan criteria for judging, planning and administering the educational curriculum in future years. As this is a national issue, I feel that nationally accredited Native groups should be permitted to have input. Oren Lyons was mentioned earlier on, in this issue, to help educate the students but was never brought forward for reasons unknown.

2) A concrete plan for a recourse of action for either party if there is a disagreement as to the terms of the agreement being met.

3) I would like to see a creative method for the issue of the Indian mascot name to be brought up again in a positive, student or community dialogue at some point in time after the educational process is implemented. Personally, I would like to see the name phased out over time but if that's impossible then at the least properly addressed again in the future.

4)The idea of the images being decided by Native people is fair but I wonder if there are enough Native people in the district, with enough credibility and impartiality, to decide which images are offensive to most Native peoples. No disrespect to Irwin Gordon but I can't help but find irony in the fact that a Native whose opinion seems to be so highly regarded in this issue, is legally blind. As a visual artist, I have professionally studied the use of imagery and the effects for which it can be used (as a cinematographer, I shoot national TV commercials/children's TV /and theatrical films for a living) and carefully consider visual references everyday in my work. I think it is preferable to have a non-partisan, credible group like the American Indian Psychologists or such to have input in this critical decision-making process. I don't feel it is in anyones best interest to try to do this locally for I doubt that the credentials are locally available.

With the distribution of the recent "Smoke Signals" newsletter containing a logo of a Native American caricature on the cover, I agree with Tobe as to be very non-trusting of CARE members and frankly, smany of the current BOE members. I find it offensive that in the middle of negotiations for a compromise agreement that they flagrantly and publicly send such an offensive image out as their logo. This has been their modus operandi throughout this process which may be of help for Charles in understanding our difficult feelings of compromise and any trust of word with this group.

I do feel that you've hit the nail on the head with the issue of COLOR and agree with you on many of your observations as well as your criticisms. I got involved with the mascot issue only after hearing both sides at the BOE meetings. But because I had previously met the Shumways, I went to an early COLOR meeting regarding this issue and their plans where I met Dennis, Donna and Jane as well as the other COLOR-only members. My issue with them was with their methods and the alienation they were causing in the community. I was afraid their tactics would jeopardize the elections as well as budget.So I spoke to them at the meeting and presented my concerns as a sympathetic community member but further along it became apparent that their agenda was far broader and much more aggressive than I felt would help in the mascot matter and Onteora School district matters. STAND was born out of a realization that the two groups had different goals and methods of problem solving. Some people are involved with both groups. But there is a big difference.

I don't agree with Charles's analysis of the First Amendment synopsis you suggest. The idea of freedom of speech in a public educational environment is very limited. Isn't this the Law 101 case, of your freedom to yell FIRE in a crowded theatre in which there is no fire. Freedom of speech has many responsibilities tied to it and the use of freedom of speech in school-sanctioned educational activities which receive state and federal funding is something which I feel is limited, at best. An individual has the right to wear Indian garb and yell offensive Indian cheers at a football game but the school system doesn't have the same rights as the individual. This is most obvious in the recent public school prayer decision by the Supreme Court at assemblies for football games. Religious prayer cannot be sanctioned by the school but the school cannot stop the individuals from public prayer. I don't see much difference in our situation.

This was from a recent e-mail to Charles regarding the current issues before us as I seem to be getting various e-mails as well as the posts from this BBS.

-- Anonymous, September 10, 2000

Check this OUT! Shhhhh! seee you on Thursday when we'll get the deatisl.


Subject: Date: Mon, 11 Sep 2000 14:16:47 -0500 From: "Charles E. Yow, Esq." To:

American Indian Movement Massachusetts Chapter Charles E. Yow Legal Counsel 56 Chestnut Hill Avenue Brighton, MA 02135 617-782-2795 413-793-2993 mediate@goldinc.com September 11, 2000 BY E-MAIL AND FIRST CLASS MAIL Mr. John Donoghue Donoghue, Thomas, Auslander & Drohan 2517 Route 52 Hopewell Junction, New York 12533 Mr. Donoghue; Early Friday evening we learned Onteora Board President Martin Millman made an unexpected decision to expedite the vote repealing the districts anti-racial discrimination policy from the announced date of September 25, 2000 to Monday, September 11, 2000. Millmans actions are particularly curious given the action comes at a time when the New York Attorney Generals office has invested significant time in trying to reach an agreement between opposing parties. In good faith we agreed to take no legal action and cooperated in seeking a community based negotiated or mediated agreement because this is what we see is in the best interest of the district and all people concerned. We have been greatly encouraged and impressed with Assistant A.G. Tanya Washington's success in developing dialogue where hostility and distrust was rampant. It seems to us, Millmans decision to expedite the vote is a textbook example of bad faith. Especially when Millmans action comes at a time when both Assistant A.G. Tanya Washington and I see resolution at hand. Given the timing of the decision to expedite the vote to repeal the districts anti-racial discrimination policy I wonder if there are other reasons for the decision, the most likely scenario is this action is aimed to divert public attention from the financial and other pending disasters the Millman administration has created for the district. In any event, the timing is suspect and Millmans actions are not in the best interest of the district, its children and the communities. I trust you are familiar with Federal non-discrimination policy requirements that follow all Federal funding. It is our position that revoking the Onteora anti-racial discrimination policy is violative of these specific requirements. If Millman and his board expedite the action to repeal the districts anti-racial discrimination policy we will immediately start the process to challenge all Federal funding received by the Onteora District, regardless if the monies were provided through direct or indirect payments. Further we will seek repayment of all monies received since the adoption of the applicable sections of the Civil Rights acts. In the alternative we will see repayment of all Federal monies received by the district, through direct or indirect funding since the original complaint was brought to the boards attention by Mr. Yeary. I trust you understand the process. We will seek the involvement of the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Justice, and they will take the necessary legal action against the State of New York. Suffice it to say I seriously question if Commissioner Mills and his staff will be overly pleased to be in the position of defending the actions of the only entity in the United States and Canada to adopt, then repeal an anti-racial discrimination policy. So there is no question, when I hear Millman or his followers on the board assert they are only "doing what the people want" I am reminded Hitler received over 13,400,000 votes and at the end of the war the Nuremberg trials found numerous German leaders guilty, executed a good number, and not a single one of German leaders used the defense "the people wanted us to do this because they elected us," because they understood such statements were absurd, the same is true in Onteora. All leaders have an obligation to do what is legally, morally and ethically proper, no exceptions. In the interest of the communities of the Onteora district the board should be more interested in bridge building than derailing community based negotiations, especially when the people they are claiming to bring the vote forward are parties to the negotiations. Expediting this matter is a mistake. Please feel free to contact us at the above numbers. Respectfully, Charles Yow

-- Anonymous, September 12, 2000

What was the atmosphere last night when the vote went through? Who spoke in the Public Be Damned...er, Be Heard...segment, and on what?

This morning reading of the vote I find it hard to feel anything else but "so what else is new?", that sense that the vote was as inevitable as the sun coming up in the East every morning. I'm patient. It ain't over til it's over. We haven't exhausted all our options.

Wrote to Alan and Mario on WAMC to see about getting them to discuss it on "Me and Mario," and suggested to Glenn Busby that the educational aspects might be worth discussing on "The Best of Our Knowledge." Sent them all a little background info, the 9/9 press release from Charles, and some links. If anyone has someone they want to contact and wants to use those emails I've written as a template to add to or subtract from, just let me know, it may make more sense than having to start from scratch.

-- Anonymous, September 12, 2000

I have a question which I would like to ask the folks who were at the BOE meeting last night when the discussion came up about appropriating funds for a new lawyer at $150/hr as well as an auditor. The discussion proceeded with Marino questioning what the need of a new attorney was for and Doan replied made some vague innuendo about inproprieties with the retirment of Brian Lane. Did at one point, in this discussion, Vanacore talk unmiked to Marino and say "it's about the Indian"? That's what I thought I heard and was curious if others heard that statement and can verify it. It was very late and getting old quick. Any takers?

-- Anonymous, September 12, 2000


 September 13, 2000

Charles E. Yow Legal Counsel 56 Chestnut Hill Avenue Brighton, MA 02135

Re: Indian Logo

Dear Mr. Yow:

I have received your letter sent to me on September 12. The Districts anti-discrimination policy which has existed since December 1983 provides:

Subject: Nondiscrimination

The Board of Education supports the principal of quality of educational opportunity for persons of all social, economic, and cultural backgrounds.

It reaffirms its commitment that no person in the district shall, on the basis of race, sex, color, religion, creed, age, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity sponsored, administered, or funded by the Board of Education.

The policy has not been revoked.

I hope that your reference to Hitler was merely rhetorical. Even if it was, it is unfortunate.

I have forwarded your comments to the Board.

Very truly yours,

John M. Donoghue


cc: Hal Rowe Superintendent of Schools

W:\DOCUMENT\Client\ONTEORA\Yow-IndianLogo.Sept.13,00.wpd Draft #1, lal, 4:30 p.m.

-- Anonymous, September 13, 2000


Mr. John Donoghue Donoghue, Thomas, Auslander & Drohan 2517 Route 52 Hopewell Junction, New York 12533 Mr. Donoghue; I appreciate your letter of this date. Please understand the board did in fact repeal the districts anti-racial discrimination/harassment policy, this is not a matter of semantics, this is legal reality. Prior to the board meeting Monday night the boards policy regarding racial discrimination/racial harassment included: It shall be the policy of the Onteora Central School District that a race of people shall not be used as the schools nickname, logo, mascot or symbol Following the board meeting the policy containing the above language was deleted. Which is an affirmation that the new board policy is in a position contrary to the prior policy. By revoking the prior policy the current board policy and position, regardless if it is in writing or not, is now: It shall be the policy of the Onteora Central School District that a race of people shall be used as the schools nickname, logo, mascot or symbol The new Onteora board has indicated their support for use of Native Americans, and other peoples of color in forced roles to entertain other segments of society. This is a textbook example of dissimilar treatment. So there is no misunderstanding regarding the history of the Catskills, it is important to remember the Catskills were native free by the late 1700s. The denativization of the Catskills involved forcing natives from their ancestral lands and often involving bloodshed. It has been said the crops of the colonists were fertilized by the blood of Indians. With the denativisation of the Catskills a reality, today, as natives we are supposed to believe using our traditions, religion and culture to entertain people residing on land one soaked with the blood of natives is somehow honoring? Consider the historical reality and similarities. Is Onteora calling itself Indians really any different than Hitler succeeding in murder the last Jewish person and then naming the Berlin soccer team the Berlin Jews in honor of the Jewish contributions to Germany? I think not. So there is no misunderstanding I use analogies when appropriate, I agree the reference to Hitler is unfortunate, as are the similarities. I realize the board in Onteora believes they have a mandate to do many things (I still wonder if that includes failing to pass a budget?). The board swore an oath to uphold the constitutions of the State of New York and the Constitution of the United States, and suffice it to say, Federal law and the U.S. Constitution applies, even in Ulster County. Respectfully, Charles Yow

-- Anonymous, September 13, 2000

Computer answers not something I can do, I'm a moron at techie stuff.

Given that the Indian mascot-huggers got most of their ideas about Indians from TV, maybe we ought to check into a hotel suite (jacuzzi mandatory) for a week and not come out until we've written a screenplay about a little town that has an Indian mascot controversy. That way we get to write the ending we want, and take bets on whether they'll cast Lou Diamond Phillips as Dennis or Charles. Probably take less time to get through the process than a lawsuit. ;)

-- Anonymous, September 13, 2000

I ran across SHAMANTALK: A MEDICINE WAY OF LANGUAGE by Dan Moonhawk Alford today, one of several articles on Native American linguistics on his site. I'm looking forward to exploring these further. I was thinking of Dennis's mention of a mascot-supporter as referring to "our Indian," that ownership implied, and how we need to make sure that, as Alford says, our "speaking matters--another way of saying words create realities."

Dan Moonhawk Alford

-- Anonymous, September 15, 2000

Note that the kingston Freeman sports section had a short piece on Onteora's volleyball team, which reads, "Onteora 3, Walkill 0 At Walkill, the Indians scalped the Panthers 15-0, 15-1, 15-1. Karina Kaminski (seven piints, two aces, two kills), Kate Kosareck (11 points) and Juliet Keenan (15 points) led Onteora. Jen Heinsman of Walkill (o-3) supplied one point and three digs."

Pretty shabby, and is to be expected as long as the school district continues to use the nickname 'Indians." I've sent the clipping by fax to Charles, and we should add it to our "packet."

Also letters to Brian Hollander, sports editor are in order, asking him to stop calling any teams by these offensive nicknames...that goes for the pros as well as the local schools...others have stopped, why won't the Freeman. Just call it Onteora's volleyball team...etc. Tobe

-- Anonymous, September 15, 2000

Maine mascot news

The article copied below says that only eight people made a comment concerning this district's use of the loathsome "r-word" nickname.

Can we send a few comments to the superintendent for the school board's consideration?

Robert Eurich (by way of Tobe)

wrichar@scarborough.k12.me.us. William H. Richards Ed.D Superintendent of Schools (207) 883-4315


Scarborough School Department P. O. Box 370 Scarborough, Maine 04070-0370

Board members

Deborah Jackson - Chair, 151 Holmes Rd.

Victor Berardelli, 149 Pine Point Rd. Charlotte Bates, 17 Partridge Lane Jack Buckley, 6 Bird's Nest Lane Dennis Leighton, 21 New Road Jacquelyn Perry, P. O. Box 1225 Carol Rancourt, P. O. Box 248

Here also is the Maine Commissioner of Education's contact info. J. Duke Albanese, Commissioner duke.albanese@state.me.us


Friday, September 15, 2000

Hearing wraps up team-name debate

By DAVID CONNERTY-MARIN, Portland Press Herald Writer

Copyright ) 2000 Blethen Maine Newspapers Inc.

SCARBOROUGH - Only eight residents took advantage Thursday night of the last public opportunity to tell the School Board how they feel about changing the controversial name for the high school's sports teams.

The board, which met at Town Hall, will vote Thursday whether to replace Redskins with another name. Some see the name as offensive to American Indians; others view it as a tradition-filled tribute.

"I feel that it's insensitive to continue to have a name that's bothersome to the people involved," said Ellie Ward. Harvey Warren agreed.

But Aaron Atkinson, a junior at the high school, said any name could be found offensive by some group. If the Washington, D.C., professional football team can use the same nickname, then Scarborough changing it would have little impact, he told School Board members.

Karie Kennedy, a senior at the high school, said she did not realize until last spring - when the nickname and mascot became a hotly debated issue - that the word Redskins was offensive to American Indians.

"I used to go to football games all dressed in red and with war paint," she said. "I couldn't bring myself to do it when I realized it was offensive."

Carol Turner said she was a cheerleader at Scarborough High School 45 years ago.

"We had nothing but honor for the name," she said, noting that Indians played a significant role in the town's history. She asked the board not to remove the name "arbitrarily because it's not PC (politically correct)."

Critics of the name say it refers to the bloody scalps of Indians that were turned in as bounty to the British, but others say the name refers to war paint or skin color. They say the nickname was meant to honor Indians and qualities that were admired in Indians, but detractors say it shouldn't matter what was meant if the name hurts people now.

Board members did not debate the issue, but will next week before voting. The meeting, attended by fewer than 15 people, was the last bit of public input. No one attended a similar meeting in June.

The community discussion began early in the spring. At that time the school's student civil-rights team was pushing for a change in the name in response to a letter from an American Indian group complaining about it and hinting at a lawsuit against the school.

The student group held a Native American Awareness Day in the spring, and conducted a survey, which showed that 52 percent of the students who responded wanted to keep the name, 25 percent wanted to change it, and 23 percent were undecided.

School districts throughout the country have been pressed by American Indian groups to change team names such as Redskins, Braves, Chiefs and others that refer to American Indians.

Redskins is considered the most offensive of the nicknames, and some groups have threatened lawsuits against school districts that don't change voluntarily.

Scarborough is one of three high schools in Maine with the team name and mascot. The other two, Wiscasset and Sanford, have rejected proposals to drop the name.

Staff Writer David Connerty-Marin can be contacted at 791-6325 or at: dconnerty-marin@pressherald.com

-- Anonymous, September 15, 2000

If we send letters to Millman/Doan (is it possible they are the same people?) reagarding the damage to tires I would remind them their actions have inflamed the public and a court in the Aryan Nations case recently held the leaders of the inflaming organization personally liable I would refer them to http://www.splcenter.org/cgi- bin/goframe.pl?dirname=/whatsnew&pagename=index.html The site is from the Southern Pverty Law Center which will make Doan break out in hives

-- Anonymous, September 16, 2000

I suggest that before ANY letters are sent, we let each other and Charles know what's in them, and figure out how best to coordinate them.

I am planning on sending a letter to the Board, attorney, etc etc demanding an "Equal Opportunity" mascot. Note that the existing District anti-discrimination policy states:

Onteora Non-discrimination Policy

The Board of Education supports the principle of quality of educational opportunity for persons of all social, economic, and cultural backgrounds.

It reaffirms its commitment that no person in the district shall, on the basis of race, sex, color, religion, creed. Age. Or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity sponsored, administered, or funded by the Board of Education.

It is my intent to claim discrimination, since I as a "Caucasian" am denied the benefts of the Board sponsored school district symbol, logo and nickname. In fact I can't even be considered for any of these "honors", since I am not an "Indian."

Until there is an "equal opportunity mascot" available equally to all residents of the district I will demand that all uses of the name, logo, symbols and pictures of the "Onteora Indian" cease immediately and that all depictions on calendars, publications, walls, floors, sports uniforms, and anyplace else throughout the district or in any of its sponsored activites or programs be halted immediately. No one race of people may be allowed preferential treatment in these matters.

I urge EVERYONE we know of all races to demand the same equal treatment.

Any changes in language or appreach are welcome. I'd like to get this in the mail before thge next board meeting, so i can read it aloud! he he he! Let the fun begin!!


-- Anonymous, September 16, 2000

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