Nurses administer medicine. They do not prescribe medicine nor do they create it. A doctor makes an order and then there are people who administer it for the patient. That’s the way it works.
In the same way, Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC) is an administrative body. It says Administration right on the front of the building for crying out loud, take a look for yourself.
They are supposed to administer our funds for us and to a certain extent they do. Unfortunately, Canada mismanaged the Indian Trust Fund in 1867 by amalgamating it with their General Trust Fund and we lost all accounting (or so they say). That was Canada’s fault. Now who do we trust?
Now, instead of being paid from our own funds, the Indian Act has apparently replaced everything including our old treaties and we are being swept under the rug with all of the other 500-plus oppressed indigenous nations.
Today, the Elected Council administers those funds on behalf of each Six Nations band member and it signs a lot of pay cheques.
Only, the Elected Council shouldn’t be making national decisions for the Haudenosaunee, especially decisions that negatively affect our lives — just as a nurse shouldn’t be prescribing medicines without a doctor. SNEC is an administration system without direction, which isn’t even their fault.
Much blame has been cast upon the notorious 1924 RCMP raid. The thing is, we don’t really know much about what happened back then. Some say there was corruption in the Confederacy, others say the Mohawk workers were behind the overthrow. There’s even a story about a destroyed fence being the tipping point. We just don’t know.
We do know there has been these same types of problems since colonization began. In the June 21st issue of the Two Row Times, in an article by Dr. Michael Doxtater, we published a photograph showing 23 names of condoled Confederacy Chiefs who signed in favour of the 1880 Indian Act.
“On April 7, 1880 the chiefs voted. A total of 23 Cayugas, Oneidas, and several Onondagas voted “In Favour of the Indian Act.” The Mohawks, Senecas, and Onondagas numbered 11 “Against the Whole of the Indian Act.” Mohawk chief Moses Martin didn’t vote. The chiefs asked Indian Agent Jasper T. Gilkison to prepare a frame of bylaws for the reserve. On June 21, 1885, the chiefs confirmed the acceptance of the Indian Act.”
So we can’t say the people of Six Nations enjoyed total autonomy right up until 1923 when the “Band Council” ruined everything.
We have been under duress for hundreds of years with our entire existence on the line. Our people have been divided so many times we are just fractions of what we used to be.
The Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs Council is split again just like it was in 1880 and instead of discussing solutions like they are supposed to, condoled Hoyane and entire families are being railroaded. Just look at what they are doing to Sam General and the Cayuga Wolf Clan.
Being a regular person on Six Nations who is affected by HCCC vs SNEC tension feels like having two dysfunctional parents in a strange way.