Legislation Legacy

CheckPoint : Legislation Legacy
Resources: National Congress of American Indians Web site
http://www.ncai.org and The Indian Country Newspaper at http://www.indiancountry.com

Current issue Between Native Americans and the Federal Government.

      A current issue between Native Americans and the Federal Government is the issue whether or not oil exploration should commence in the Northern Slope of Alaska.   Although allowing companies to drill in the Northern Slope would significantly increase the volume of oil mines in the United States therefore, decreasing dependency of oil from foreign countries, and increase job opportunities in the area, it would also interrupt the thousand-year old culture of Gwich’in Indians who reside in that area.   Gwich’in Indians fear that mining oil in the Northern Slope of Alaska will inevitably affect Porcupine caribou, which is big part of their culture and way of life.
    The legislation that is linked to this issue is the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971, which was signed by President Nixon on December 18th of that year.   Under this act, Alaska’s native Indians were given control of the land on which they have lived for generations.   In addition, oil exploration was banned in those areas.   With oil prices soaring in today’s world we are forced to find other means of supplying our country with the much need oil.   As a result, President Bush was pushing to lift the ban and open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil exploration when he was in office.
  In today’s society President Obama on May 13, 2011,   “Obama Oil Policy Threatens Alaska Pipeline’s Existence”   that a remedy to help fix this precious resource is available but overzealous environmentalists and over- regulatory politicians are standing in the way.   The ever-decreasing amount of oil flowing through the pipeline is disrupting its effective operation-and threatening its very existence.   This problem could easily...