Requests for the new Colville Business Council
Last updated 7/19/2017 at 10:41am
I have written you, the Colville Business Council, through this approach to let everyone know what I am saying to you. Now that we have a new Business Council seated, I respectfully ask that each of you take these three things into consideration, now.
First, to change our name to reflect our history. We are bands of Indians that spoke one language, N Syilxn, not three languages. We are Salmon People. We are not a scattered group of hunter gatherers. We are a strong and vibrant People that other Tribes feared. Let the name reflect us, the sqilx-w.
Second, to stop living in constant fear of re-election, as the U.S. Government said to, with our continual bickering annually for a seat at the table. It must stop! Change their way of governing us, and make our tenure in office long enough to judge your work. Not what you put in the paper, but what you try to accomplish in four years. Then we can come to judge whether you were living or just another dead-head in office. Make your work worthy of our vote.
Third, and last, is the hunting issue. I read “we won hunting rights” in our traditional lands to the north. From the way our chairman talked, they were from another country; they were Okanagans that lived by a lake, whom you called Lake Indians. If you have “won” hunting there, it is only right that you allow the brothers and sisters that are Okanagans to hunt and fish in our land, because it was once all our land of the Syilx People. You must stop this infernal idea that we are from another world. We are one People; we should have equal rights in our land; we are the same.
Try to learn your history. Some of the “bands” that are here now were only here since 1885, a hundred and thirty-odd years ago. The Syilx People have been here since the beginning, many thousands of years.
an Okanagan Indian
and member of the
Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation