ABA Journal

Tribal Law/Courts

70 ABA Journal Tribal Law/Courts articles.

Aug. 15, 1876: Congress passes the ‘Sell or Starve’ Act

Despite their historic victory at Little Bighorn in June 1876, the Sioux found little relief from the white onslaught. Accepting defeat, they returned to their reservations—unarmed and newly dependent on government rations. And on Aug. 15, 1876, Congress passed legislation that became known as the “Sell or Starve” Act, halting any aid to the Sioux until they relinquished both their hunting rights and their claim to the Black Hills.

Supreme Court tribal decision ‘has upended Oklahoma’s criminal justice system;’ will ruling be curtailed?

Oklahoma’s criminal justice system is grappling with the impact of a U.S. Supreme Court decision last year ruling that a large part of eastern central Oklahoma is an American Indian reservation.

Oklahoma attorney general abruptly announces resignation; his office is sorting out tribal case decision

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter announced his resignation Wednesday—a day after the Oklahoman submitted questions to him about an affair with a state employee.

Meet 14 ABA members who inspired us in 2020

Throughout the year, the ABA Journal profiles exceptional ABA members in its Members Who Inspire series. In 2020, we featured attorneys from across the country whose important and influential work includes using visual storytelling for legal advocacy, bringing attention to the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous women, and combating racial injustice and inequity.

California law school gets donation that’s said to be ‘one of the biggest in history’ from tribe to university

The Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, a California tribe, has donated $15 million to the University of California at Los Angeles School of Law to create full tuition scholarships for students interested in careers as tribal legal advocates.

A look at Netflix’s ‘Longmire,’ Indian Country and the battle for jurisdiction

Being born and reared in western Oklahoma, I was always fairly familiar with the tribes in that area. Even though I don’t have any American Indian blood, plenty of my friends do, and I have had the opportunity to grow up experiencing the wealth of history and culture they offer.

After SCOTUS tribal decision, inmates file appeals, prosecutors hand off cases

Oklahoma’s criminal justice system has been roiled by a U.S. Supreme Court decision last month that found that Tulsa and other parts of eastern Oklahoma are a reservation for the Muscogee (Creek) Nation.

Two young Native American lawyers call for action on missing and murdered indigenous women

Lauren van Schilfgaarde and Heather Torres introduced the ABA to the missing and murdered indigenous women crisis in February by first sharing the stories of those who suffered. Those stories resonated with the ABA House of Delegates.

Afternoon Briefs: Governor sues over mask mandate; court openings paused

Georgia governor sues Atlanta to block mask mandate

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp has filed a lawsuit seeking to block a mask mandate by the city of Atlanta. The July 16…

Voting access and protection against violence for Native Americans should be top priorities, ABA House says

Robert Saunooke champions Native American issues in his career and in the ABA

The universe unfolds as it is intended. That’s the mantra Robert Saunooke has called on for motivation through much of his life. It guided the citizen and enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians through challenges he encountered during his childhood and opportunities he embraced as he built a practice focused on representing Native American tribes and their members.

This Alaska lawyer blends life and law as a tribal court judge and an Orthodox Jew

How does a Jewish kid from Philly become a tribal court judge in Alaska? Just ask Judge David Avraham Voluck.

Afternoon Briefs: Pelosi prepares impeachment articles for Senate; lawyer faces charges over deceased father’s pension

Pelosi plans to send impeachment articles to Senate next week

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a letter to House Democrats on Friday that she is preparing to send the…

Attorney balances his firm’s demands with duties as a judge in local, federal and tribal courts

To borrow an analogy from Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., if lawyers are baseball players and judges are umpires, then Greg Smith not only calls balls and strikes, he also throws them and tries to hit them. Smith is a family lawyer in Tennessee. When he’s not practicing law, he’s interpreting it—serving as a judge at three different levels of government.

Gorsuch joins with liberal justices in Supreme Court ruling for Indian tribe’s hunting rights

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Neil M. Gorsuch joined with four liberal justices on Monday in a ruling for a member of the Crow Tribe who was arrested for offseason hunting.

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