Here on the Crow Reservation a guy was charged with taking an elk out of season and off reservation! Throw him in jail! Fine him! Seize his weapons of elk destruction! Hold on now – wait wait wait….something about a pesky Indian Treaty? Are those still valid? Come on this is the 21st Century – The Crow Rez, where I proudly live, jive and survive, was originally – get this – 38 million acres! (Fort Laramie Treaty 1851) Way to much land for one tribe! Sarcasm aside – it was reduced in 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty to a mere 8 million acres. Oh, but it does not stop – over the next years through “Congressional Acts” the reservation was reduced to a mere 2.3 million acres! So – 38 million minus 2.3 million equals ? Theft in the first degree! The Crow Elders were wise in respect to hunting and fishing and they slipped in this pesky little clause into the 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty that states – Article 4 gives the Crow tribe “the right to hunt on the unoccupied lands of the United States so long as game may be found thereon, and as long as peace subsists among the whites and Indians on the borders of the hunting districts.”
Nice move Crow Elders! Clayvin Herrera, a friend and Captain of Crow Fish and Game was cited with fulfilling the wishes of the Crow Elders that wrote this clause into the Fort Laramie Treaty! He took an elk off the reservation but still within tribal hunting grounds. So, explain to me how this is a crime? The United States took 35.7 million acres from the Crow and now we are worried about elk? Or are we worried about Indians leaving the reservation to hunt? I say case dismissed! Don’t waste more tax dollars when native education, drug education, hunting education, and a myriad of other concerns need addressed. Or, to quote Ted Nugent – “Take your kids hunting so you don’t have to hunt for your kids” I encourage everyone to cruise on over to support Clayvin- and buy one of his cool t-shirts! He created this design to raise money and awareness for his fight to uphold the 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty.
My birthday is coming up – the big five oh – 50! I am growing my hair and goatee long to celebrate and it will all commence on April 15th! One of my buddies asked me what if ya got $50k for your birthday – what would you do?
I thought about that all weekend long – the truck broke down again and looks like a water pump needs replaced. But wow, $50k kinda like lottery winner time. I know what I would do –
I would buy/mount an old Alaskan Camper to my old diesel truck – pack up my meager possessions and go out on the road. Chloe would ride shotgun and I would plot my course all over these backroads USA. I would visit Facebook friends, friends that supported me when I was down and almost out, one Hell’s Angel that saved my life, a Mormon kid that I owe, my old classmates, my old students, Curns, Hank Will – and my cuzins far and wide, my favorite medicine man in Arizona, not my ex-wife (cause I wanna live to 51) ! I would travel and say thank you to all the great people that created me and keep a log of all of it! Then publish that log in what is called a book!
Then I would come back to Lodge Grass, Montana and settle – because really this is my home. I love this rundown, poor community. Real people live here – good people – even tweekers with good hearts.
A man can dream….