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Debunking of pure BS by David Cornsilk

Sometime back  a letter  sent to the editor Native American times by a thin blood member of the Cherokee Nation who bills herself as a story-teller and descendant of Cherokee chief John Ross. Her attack on Ms. Vann throughout her diatribe is neither unexpected, nor is it anything new. The letter could have been written during the 1960s in Alabama by any number of hood wearing denizens of the old South, all you have to do is replace Ms. Vann's name with that of Martin Luther King and the Cherokee Nation with Alabama and you have a repeat of history.

"Letter to the Editor - issue of Cherokee rolls is Cherokee business"

Author Gayle Ross =(GR)

David Cornsilk response =(DC):

Since the Freedmen are Cherokees, many with blood of the tribe and all having rights of citizenship, it is their and all of our business.


GR said:
My name is Gayle Ross and I am an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation. I want to respond to the remarks made by Marilyn Vann, but first I want to thank you for the opportunity to speak and to thank those who take the time to listen.

DC responds:
At least she got her name right. Or did she? We'll have to check on that. But Ms. Ross is NOT an "enrolled" member of the Cherokee Nation. There is no "roll" of Cherokees. There is a registry of descendants of citizens of the Cherokee Nation and Ms. Ross' name does appear on that list. Since there is NO CHEROKEE NATION ROLL, it is impossible for Ms. Ross or any descendant of a Dawes enrolled citizen to be "enrolled."

GR said:
You may know that Ms Vann has conducted extensive campaigns of both legal and public relations attacks on the Cherokee Nation.

DC responds:
Ms. Vann has never conducted a "campaign" legal, public or otherwise against the Cherokee Nation. Her efforts to secure her and all Cherokee citizens right to vote is against the tyrannical rule of Chad Smith, an avowed racist who seeks to destroy the rights of Cherokee citizens simply because they have ancestry traceable to the continent of Africa. Her campaign is to educate the Cherokee people on the truths of the Freedmen, that they have Cherokee blood, they have treaty rights, they are eligible to vote in the elections for the office of Principal Chief and the efforts to expel them are rooted in racism and fear of their vote.

GR said:
She represents herself as a victim of "racism" and to do that, she finds it necessary to distort our history and the facts. I can no longer listen to her shrill, strident invective smearing the Cherokee Nation in the name of "her rights". There is too much at stake to stand silently by as she continues her attacks.

DC responds:
Ms. Ross is just beginning to hear the shrill and strident voices of the Freedmen of the Cherokee Nation. She better get some really good ear plugs, because the cacophony of their cries for justice and those who support them may cause Ms. Ross to lose what little mind she has left.

GR said:
Ms Vann says Cherokee people were slave owners and signed a Treaty with the Confederacy. What she hasn't told you is the majority of Cherokee wished to be neutral or remain loyal to the Union.

DC replies:
At the time of the signing of the Treaty with the Confederate States of America (CSA), the Cherokee Nation was virtually divided in half. One half, constituted predominately by full bloods and near full bloods supported continued relations with the U.S. The other side, comprised of mixed bloods, mostly slave holders and slavery sympathizers, supported a treaty with the CSA. There was no majority on either side. There is little evidence, except in the words of John Ross himself, that even gives an indication that neutrality was considered an option. The rank and file citizenship of the Cherokee Nation had very strong opinions and the divisions in the Nation were aligned mostly on racial lines.

GR said:
The treaty with the Confederacy was signed under duress while Southern troops occupied our country.

DC replies:
This statement is blatantly false. There were no "southern troops" in the Cherokee Nation. Albert Pike had been sent to the Cherokee Nation to negotiate a treaty. He was rebuffed several times by John Ross and the National Council. But as the deal kept getting sweeter, Ross acquiesced and signed, as did many tribes now resident in Oklahoma. Certainly, the federal troops had abandoned the CN to go where the fighting was, which means that's where the CSA troops were too; not in the Cherokee Nation.

GR said:
It was repudiated in less than a year and many more Cherokees fought and died to end slavery than practiced it.

DC replies:
The CSA treaty was repudiated by followers of John Ross, but was NEVER repudiated by Ross until the end of the war; very convenient. I'd like to see the document that shows where more Cherokees died fighting to end slavery than practiced it. Every Cherokee member of a slave holding household practiced slavery, from the oldest granny to the youngest baby. All profited by the labor and free time afforded by the chattel slavery of human being in the Cherokee Nation. Much of the education attainment possible by Gail Ross' own ancestors, which has provided her with the legacy that instilled a love of books and education in her own family and self. She owes much to the slaves owned by her ancestor John Ross.

GR said:
President Lincoln assured Principal Chief John Ross that he understood the Cherokee situation and that the Cherokees would not be treated harshly, but our hopes of fair treatment died with him.

DC replies:
The Cherokee Nation got fair treatment. The truth of the negotiation process which created the Treaty of 1866 shows an astute negotiating force headed by William Potter Ross, a Princeton educated lawyer and nephew of John Ross. Nine points were offered by the United States and four of those were accepted without reservation. Among those four points was the citizenship of the Freedmen. In fact, the Cherokees responded to the point on Freedmen citizenship by saying to the U.S. negotiators, "Tell us what you wish us to do with them and that we will do."

GR said:
The Treaty of 1866 was a "reconstruction" treaty demanding many concessions Cherokees felt were unfair. The United States responded by threatening to sign a Treaty with the very Confederate Cherokees who actually had taken up arms against them. The Cherokees had been willing to offer land and certain rights to their freed slaves. The United States included the article calling for the "rights of native Cherokees."

DC replies:
"Reconstruction" use to be a code word for federal oversight in the old South. Anyone who reads the Treaty of 1866 and its attendant historic documents can easily see that very little "reconstructionism " went into its wording. Certainly, there were points that were not negotiable. First, slavery had to end. On that issue we can say that the U.S. forced its hand. But even there, the Cherokees came out better than other tribes because we had ended slavery in 1863, a good three years before the end of the Civil War. And Ms. Ross is a wrongheaded historic revisionist when she says that the U.S. included the article giving rights to Freedmen "equal to native Cherokees." That provision was not just presented to the Cherokee delegation, it was actually written by William Potter Ross himself. The evidence is apparent in the words used in the phrase itself. The term "native Cherokee" was one coined by the Cherokees themselves. The negotiators of the time might have been familiar with it, but most likely not.