Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

June 15, 2012

Northern Paiute hunter gatherer arrested again in Nevada

Kwassuh and children/Photo Kwassuh
Wildlife officials arrest and jail Northern Paiute hunter/gatherer

By Kwassuh, Wesley Dick
Censored News

June 15, 2012
Breaking news updated: Nevada wildlife officers disrespect Native laws and lifeways

I'm faced with multiple state charges by wildlife officials who ignored my documents protecting my right to hunt for my family and my people seven days ago.
I had my papers concerning my Native rights on me and even handed them to game officer who ignored them, arrested me and took my vehicle/gun/and traditional food, antelope.
I spent 5 days in a county jail.
I am charged with felony state charges and $20,000 fines. If  our native rights are acknowledged we will succeed. A Native just won a hunting case recently in Washington.
I advised the state wildlife officer that I'm no sportsman/recreationalist. I'm a traditional man. I am a provider for my family and my people. I know how to use everything from the tip of horn, to the hoof, to tip of the tail.
Kwassuh's daughter in buckskin dress.
My daughter Nefsa's new dress can't be bought at Walmart or Tandy leather, only to be made by her father in our own peoples way that I know and was taught by my own people.
The meat was for many ceremonies and our own meals, antelope meat is not for sale at Walmart either, or anywhere else.
We use the real things in ceremony.
We don't provide bologna for mourning meal, chicken strips or fries. We don't use turkey with paint instead of eagle feathers. We shouldn't use chemically-treated hides for our dress, when we have the laws that protect our sovereignty, and our traditional lifeways unique and only for us.
I also told several officers they were ignoring national and international laws.
They interrupted my ceremony, how I pray and tend to the antelope and my area.
I also told all officers our Indian People are known worldwide for hunting and gathering, such as I was doing to feed my family, and my people and many laws protect us. So the state wildlife officer stepped over the line, just as the federal wildlife officer did last year.
They all will be held accountable for their choice to disrespect the law, and laws.
We all stood up. I told all the world's peoples now.
Spiritual lifeways
Kwassuh/photo Kwassuh
Our lifeways are passed down and taught by our own people from thousands of years, from the past to today, for our younger generation to take that special place and enter the circle of life of our four legged. All our traditional lifeways should be respected and acknowledged such as the many laws that protect and preserve these lifeways to be passed down as I, Kwassuh, was taught by good traditional men/spiritual men and the stories I heard from my elders of the ways our people are known for worldwide.My children and my people deserve the truths that I, Kwassuh, have learned. We honor our ancestors greatly by keeping our lifeways alive and strong.
Traditional foods
Our traditional foods such as this four legged has provided my people with food, spiritual materials, tools and nutrients from the plant life of our surroundings.  Our sacred connection with all living creations shall never be interfered with or prohibited as my people, the NUMA people, have lived out these ways of life for thousands of years along with our related Red Nations from across and throughout. Indigenous People are world known for living out our lifeways and being what we are. National and international laws protect these ways of life to be lived by us and continued and passed from one to another.

--Kwassuh's struggle in 2011 against tule gathering charges:
--July 2011: Northern Paiute traditional gathering case could set precedent for future
Censored News
"Northern Paiute traditional gatherer and craftsman Wesley Dick was cited by a Nevada game warden and fined $800 while gathering tules. Dick said Native American gatherers and craftsmen should pay close attention to what is happening in the state of Nevada."
--July 2011: Kuiu Kwaan Tribal Court issues declaratory judgment upholding gathering rights of Northern Paiute 'Kwassuh' Wesley Dick
Censored News
TACOMA, Wash. -- "The Kuiu Kwaan Tribal Court in Tacoma, Washington, issued a declaratory judgment in the case of Northern Paiute traditional gatherer Wesley Dick vs. the United States. The combined court of judges from across Indian country issued the judgment upholding the right of Wesley Dick, Kwassuh, to gather tules in the traditional way, after he was cited and fined $800 by US Fish and Wildlife in Nevada."
--November 2011: Charges dropped against traditional Paiute gatherer
Censored News
RENO, Nevada -- "On Wednesday, November 2, 2011, the trespassing charges against Wesley Dick (Kwassuh) were dropped. Kwassuh is standing up for all of our Inherent Rights, Indigenous Rights, and Cultural Rights as Native People."

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