Back in January, I blogged “Sexual Minorities Uganda v. Scott Lively – why you should care, why you should go!” The case is ongoing and heating up. Until now Scott Lively and his defense team have been mustering up every tactical move than can to avoid this trial. But they have run out of moves to try to get out from under the Crimes Against Humanity charges brought against him. The proceedings continue with a discovery scheduling meeting before the magistrate on November 6th at 11am in the Springfield MA Federal Courthouse.
So, now again we are saying again – “Sexual Minorities Uganda v. Scott Lively – you should still care and mustattend!”
After being charged with Crimes Against Humanity and eve after the Court refused to dismiss the case against him, Scott Lively has not slowed down from his life’s work of persecuting the LGBT community worldwide. In fact, he has stepped it up.
This past week Lively was in Russia, again, where he has been so many times. So proud of his work in Russia, and what he perceives as the resulting anti-gay legislation, he told Bryan Fischer of The American Family Association: “I indirectly assisted in that and it’s one of the proudest achievements of my career.”
Lively even has a campaign going, supposedly supported by the Russian Orthodox Church, to take back the rainbow for the Christians so the nasty gays can’t use it to protest their persecution at the Sochi Olympic Games.
He’s been busy here in the U.S. as well fanning the flames of anti-gay hate. This year he has visited Oklahoma, Nebraska and Missouri on his First Amendment Supremacy Clause tour, signing up foot soldiers in the war against The Gay Agenda, specifically Human Rights Ordinances and the First Amendment liberty of individuals to refuse public accommodation to the gay community.
“I have just returned from a nine-stop speaking tour in Nebraska, which is now on-board with the First Amendment strategy, along with Oklahoma and Missouri. I am looking for more invitations to conservative states where we can put these in place as a roadblock to the homosexualization of those states and perhaps build some momentum in the other direction.” Scottlively.net July 2, 2013
In September, after their last appeal of the dismissal ruling was denied, Lively even issued a hit list of sorts complete with names, photos and places of employment of those he felt were responsible for the lawsuit brought against him. Not his persecution of the Ugandan LGBTI community, of course, but local activists supporting the case complete with ridiculous charges such as “especially aggressive against me and against our church”.
So yes, Lively is still at his bullying and bragging. As much as ever. He is still persecuting the LGBT community near and far. With nothing much stopping him, we need your help and your presence will show Lively that his behavior is abhorred by our community.
It will also help create opposition against his crazy notion that he is worthy of being the Governor of MA.
Sexual Minorities Uganda is proceeding with their lawsuit. It’s time for everyone opposed to American Evangelicals exporting hate and homophobia to come out and support SMUG.
See you in front of the Federal Courthouse in Springfield on November 6th at 10:30 am.
GetEQUAL/MA and Stop The Hate and Homophobia Coalition Springfield
A Historical Journey by - Doug George-Kanentiio
For the past few years the Onyata, aka “People of the Standing Stone” or Oneidas of Madison County have played
an increasingly large role in the economic affairs of central New York.
While much has been reported about the Oneidas in the newspapers, the
following information should give readers a better understanding of the
Oneidas. We are told the Oneidas were part of a larger Iroquois family
which originated in the American southwest thousands of years ago. The
migration to the northeast took many hundreds of years to complete but
ended when the Iroquois entered present day New York at the confluence
of the Oswego River and Lake Ontario.
From there the Iroquois separated into six distinct groups settling
throughout the region. The Mohawks created a homeland along the Mohawk
Valley followed, east to west, by the Oneidas, Onondagas, Cayugas and
Senecas. The sixth group journeyed far to the south, finally ending up
in the North Carolina area. These were the Tuscaroras, a native nation
which retraced its s teps to their ancient homelands in the year 1712
after losing a bitter war with English colonists. Oneidas refer to
themselves as the “Standing Stone” because they had, in each of their
villages, a large rock they would gather around to hold their ceremonial
activities. The Mohawks are referred to as “People of the Flint”, the
Onondagas are “People of the Hills”, the Cayugas are “People of the
Swamp”, the Senecas call themselves “People of the Great Hill” and the
Tuscaroras are the “Shirt Wearing People”.
Originally, the Oneidas lived in an area which stretched from the St.
Lawrence River to northern Pennsylvania and from the Chittenango
Creek-Tioughnioga River on the west to the Unadilla River-West Canada
Creek on the east. Total area for the aboriginal homeland of the Oneida
Nation is estimated to be about 3,600,000 acres. Oneida life in
pre-European times was centered around their villages. They were
primarily agricultural with crops such as corn, beans and squash forming
the greater part of their diet. They enjoyed a rich spiritual life with
a major ceremonial gathering during each lunar month.
Clans were essential to the orderly flow of Oneida culture. All social,
political and religious functions were dependent upon the clans, as was
the distribution of material goods. There were three clans: Bear, Wolf
and Turtle. Each clan appointed three female leaders (clanmothers) and
three male leaders (rotiiane or “chiefs”) to the national government.
Also, each clan selected a man and a woman to serve as advisors on
spiritual matters. These were/are the faithkeepers.
All leaders were nominated by the clanmothers and were subject to
ratification by their respective clan. They served for life unless
impeached by their clans for such violations as insanity, greed,
assault, rape, treason and incompetence, among others. The clan might
also indicate they have no confidence in a leader or he/she might by
their own actions commit crimes which violate their oath of office
thereby removing themselves from office.
With regards to a rotiiane his clanmother would give him three cautions
to rectify his behavior. At the third such ‘warning’ she was accompanied
by a young man who would, upon her instructions, remove the rotiiane’s
deer antler headress, which was his symbol of office.
Once removed, such a person was considered as “walking dead”, without
voice in the people’s affairs or ever to be entrusted with any type of
influence or power. They might also be banished from Iroquois territory
either permanently or for a set period of time.
In order to function as a qualified leader the candidate had to have a
secure and stable home life, a solid marriage, be willing to accept the
criticisms of the people (his skin was to be “seven spans thick”), live
simply and without thought of personal enrichment, have considerable
knowledge as to the traditional spiritual values of the community and be
an active participant in all of the ancient rituals. Once selected as a
candidate by the clan the prospective leader had to be endorsed by the
Oneida national government (but not each individual member) then by the
Grand Council of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy at a
ceremonial called “Condolence” which the Council might elect not to do
if they disapproved of the candidacy thereby sending the entire process
back to the respective nation for a repeat of the selection process.
For many generations the Oneidas prospered in their ancestral lands but
with the arrival of the colonists in t he northeast they endured
considerable cultural stress. Devastating epidemics of European borne
smallpox and influenza killed hundreds of thousands of Native people in
the east and the Iroquois suffered periodic plagues resulting in
displacement, disorganization and chaos. In the 1600’s the Iroquois
endured a century of warfare as the native nations in the northeast
fought to reestablish political and economic power. The Confederacy
engaged in brutal struggles with the Eries, Susqeuhannas, Algonquins,
Crees, Chippewas, Illinois, Hurons, Mahicans, Abenkais and others until a
general peace was secured in 1701. Also enveloped in this war were
Dutch, English and French settlers who, in some instances, adopted a
policy of playing one native nation against the other as the Europeans
sought to expand their seacoast land base. The Oneidas were quick to
adopt the new technologies brought to the region from across the sea.
Firearms, tools and ornaments found a ready market in Oneida as the
natives brought their furs for exchange to markets in Montreal and
Albany. The Iroquois derived great political power by controlling the
fur trade along with material prosperity.
But the Oneidas were feeling the pressure of expanding European
settlement; they watched with growing alarm as the Mohawks were driven
north to the St. Lawrence River to escape the colonists. Likewise, small
groups of Oneidas also went north but to seek easier access to the
Catholic church since many of them had converted to Christianity.
Oneidas settled across the river from Montreal in 1660 and in the 1730’s
established a community called Oswegatchie near present day Ogdensburg,
NY. During the American Revolution the Oneidas desired neutrality but
were drawn into the conflict when their homelands were invaded by both
American and British forces. In addition, the Rev. Samuel Kirkland was
an influential advocate for the rebels and used his authority to divide
the Oneidas, many of whom actively fought for the US. After the war, the
Oneidas believed they would, because of their loyalty, have their lands
secured but New York State adopted a policy of alienating Iroquois land
by intimidation, threats, bribery and outright fraud.
Through a series of highly controversial, and illegal, transactions New
York assumed control over most of Oneida territory resulting in the
displacement of the Oneida people. When US President Thomas Jefferson
sought to remove all Natives west of the Mississippi, the Oneidas felt
they had no choice but to secure their survival by finding refuge far
from the settlers. Led by a Mohawk preacher named Eleazer Williams, most
of the Oneidas left their homelands beginning in 1820 for territory
among the Menominee Nation in eastern Wisconsin. This group was
primarily Christian while another so-called “pagan” faction elected to
form a community on the Thames River near London, Ontario. Another group
chose to live on the Onondaga Reservation south of Syracuse while a
fourth, the Marble Hill Oneidas, refused to leave and held on to their
few acres outside of Sherrill, NY.
Throughout the 19th century the Oneida lands in New York were gradually
whittled away by New York in violation of federal law. Although the
Oneidas complained vigorously not until 1985 would the merits of their
case be upheld by the US Supreme Court. During those dark years the idea
of the Oneidas returning home to live on an expanded land area was kept
alive by a few individuals.
In the 20th century patriots such as Mary Winder and her sister Delia
Waterman filed numerous petitions to the US government to seek justice
for their cause. While Mary Winder died in 1952, her sister continued to
press the government. In 1972 the Oneidas remaining in New York filed
legal action in the US courts before finally prevailing 13 years later.
With the arrival of commercial gambling in Indian country in the late
1970’s the Oneidas sought to create an economic base by opening a small
bingo hall which was later expanded. Throughout the 1980’s, however,
intense internal struggles for control of the Oneidas resulted in
violent clashes, recriminations and arson.
In 1977 the Grand Council of the Haudenosaunee acknowledged three
individuals, Lyman Johns, Richard Chrisjohn and Arthur Raymond
Halbritter, as messengers for the Oneida people residing in Central New
York. With the death of Johns and Chrisjohn, Halbritter assumed
unilateral powers and created an organization called the “Men’s
Council”; a decision made without the approval of the Oneida people and
condemned by the Grand Council.
In April, 1993 Halbritter concluded secret negotiations with New York
Governor Mario Cuomo resulting in a gaming compact to open a casino on
disputed territory. The Grand Council of the Haudenosaunee stripped
Halbritter of his status as an Oneida spokesperson which then ratified
by the US Department of the Interior on August 10 then rescinded a day
later after the intervention of US Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) a
sponsor of Halbritter and gambling advocate
Halbritter moved to create a 54 member, completely non-Native police
force to consolidate his power on Oneida territory. Using US government
funds, Halbritter built a housing project and offered expanded social
services to gain support. In August 1993 the Turning Stone Casino opened
to quickly become the largest single employer in Oneida County. The
Halbritter regime refused to comply with the 1988 Indian Gaming Act by
supplying the National Indian Gaming Commission with audits from
1993-1996. Not until the Commission threatened to close the casino did
the Halbritter regime acquiesce and submit a report, yet despite efforts
by the Oneidas to obtain a financial accounting of the casino
operations they have yet, as of May, 1999, to see such a document.
On March 20th, 1995 the Wolf Clan members of the Oneida Nation gathered
to meet at their Longhouse to find the locks had been changed. The
non-Native police officers were instructed to arrest anyone trying to
enter. They moved the meeting to the Wolf Clan Mother’s log cabin
(Maisie Shenandoah) where the Wolf Clan members decided to remove Ray
Halbritter as their Representative due to the numerous injustices done
against the Oneida people.
The Halbritter regime responded by stripping the “dissidents” of their
status as Oneidas resulting in a loss of employment, health insurance,
educational allowances, quarterly stipends and all other Oneida Nation
In 1996 the traditional Oneidas, or the Onyota’a:ka, initiated suit in
US federal court to have Halbritter, deemed a US citizen, removed as
Oneida representative. The complaint was dismissed at the District level
but appealed at the Second Circuit which found sufficient evidence to
order a hearing in the US Department of the Interior to determine
Halbritter’s status. The Federal Court dismissed this case without
prejudice and now it is up to the people to exhaust all remedies. This
is impossible due to the structure of the current leadership.