Regulations make us violate our Way of Life

Great post from Aandeiyeen over at The one who watches over the land. She’ll be visiting southeast Alaska communities to “learn about the issues they are facing when it comes to traditional and customary use (“subsistence”) management.”

Aandeiyeen shows us how Federal and State Management of American Indian and Alaska Native resources takes away our means of supporting ourselves.

Some choice quotes:

If subsistence users were truly “number one” the following examples would not occur:

  • Fish & Game officials wouldn’t threaten Yakutat residents that the agency will “shut down the entire Situk River” if setnet fishers didn’t stop bringing home King Salmon by-catch to feed their families -regardless if the fish was already dead yet allow sports fishermen to “catch-n-release” Kings; a practice that has a high mortality rate on fish.
  • the community of Angoon would not have to voluntarily stop subsistence fishing from Kanalku Lake escapements to let the stock repopulate itself while commercial fishermen (who are not residents of the community and probably not even the state) continue to pillage the waters in the area unquestioningly.
  • traditional and customary users would not have to pay nearly $1,000 on annual fees for a subsistence cabin site on Forest Service land (even if the land had been in their family for generations before the Tongass was established as a National Forest) when commercial/sports interests such as outfitter guides- who have a cash based income- pay the same rate, if not less, for their cabin sites.

And one of my new favorites:

We should not be required to apply for permits to be Tlingit and live the way Tlingits do.

Couldn’t have said it better myself!


About Vince

I am a Tlingit, born and raised in Tlingit Country, and a proud member of the Tlingit Nation.
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