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American History - Book Report/Review Example

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In this article, Fergus Bordewich addresses the confusing and lingering nature of lands owned by Native Americans. The essence of the article is a question of legal status; more specifically, are these lands to be treated as belonging to sovereign nations (the Indian tribes), as constituting a territory more akin to a state, or some hybrid type of territory which possesses less independence than a sovereign nation but more independence than a state…
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Download file "American History Book Report/Review" to see previous pages... The people that suffer, in the final analysis, are the Indians and the non-Indians that occupy these lands. The main problems arise, as demonstrated in the Micki Hutchinson case, because it is not clear who has legal authority to regulate the lands; for instance, questions of taxation, environmental regulation,
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and police jurisdiction are all dependent on a resolution of the precise legal status of these lands. Absent such a resolution, the people living there are subject to conflicting laws and regulations. The author suggests that the tribes ought to integrate fully into the American system rather than persisting as "isolated islands." His solution, in short, would eliminate these legal and social conflicts by eliminating the dual systems of governance and existence.
The author's suggestions seem reasonable enough; on the other hand, the problem is that promises have been made, though frequently broken, and that any integration ought to include a free vote by the Indian people. To compel them to integrate and to give up their "isolated islands", whether directly or through indirect and intrusive legislation, would be immoral. A more troubling issue is how to reconcile the often conflicting interests between Indians and their non-Indian neighbors; perhaps the federal government should buy back the lands of people like Micki Hutchinson, compensating them for their land and businesses, and reallocate all of the lands to the Indian tribes pending a more precise determination of the status of the Indian lands. Though a difficult issue, the federal government ought to more clearly define the precise nature of Indian lands, the legal status and powers that are attached to such status, and the limitations. This is because the individuals are incapable of resolving these issues through anything more substantial than piecemeal litigation whereas the federal government has the authority and the resources to solve the issues more completely.
B. Can we all get along
This article addresses how America treats immigrants; more particularly, it uses four immigrant families to California as a sort of case study for describing and assessing our treatment of immigrants. In the first case, Michael Dunn and his family were simple non-residents from Oklahoma whom were denied medical treatment for being non-residents and now live as accepted citizens; in the second case, Martha Escutia assimilated rather well, became a politician, and is worried about the hostility of certain anti-immigration advocates; in the third case, Donald Northcross is a transplant from Arkansas working with poor black youth and some Latinos in Sacramento where he is attempting to create mentoring programs in order to more effectively integrate these minority youth in mainstream California society; and, in the fourth case, Maria Ha is a Chinese immigrant struggling with racial diversity at the University of California Berkeley. The article, most notably, describes how outsiders, whether from different countries or from different states, often are compelled to struggle in order to be accepted.
The most interesting thing about this article is the hypocrisy; in the case of Maria Ha, for instance, she notes that ...Download file "American History Book Report/Review" to see next pagesRead More
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