Developing: Supreme Court vacates Freedmen ruling

Posted in Articles, Law, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, United States on 2011-08-24 18:47Z by Steven

Developing: Supreme Court vacates Freedmen ruling

Cherokee Phoenix

Christina Good Voice, Senior Reporter

Tahlequah, Okla. – The Cherokee Nation Supreme Court issued a 16-page ruling Aug. 22 that reversed and vacated the decision of the CN District Court regarding the Cherokee Freedmen, stating that the Cherokee people had the right to amend the CN constitution and set citizenship requirements.

Acting Principal Chief Joe Crittenden addressed the ruling at the Aug. 22 council meeting in his State of the Nation.

“All of us, the council, the staff and myself got copies (of the ruling,)” he said. “I’m going to defer to our attorney general for some comments concerning this. I know there are a lot of questions on people’s minds.”

Hammons said the ruling, which was filed at 5 p.m. Monday evening, reverses the decision of the District Court…

…The court also found that the Treaty of 1866 only granted to Freedmen the rights of native Cherokees but that it was the constitution of the Cherokee people that granted them citizenship, she said.

“The freedmen at the time gained citizenship status in the Cherokee Nation by the Cherokee people’s sovereign expression in the 1866 constitutional amendment to the 1839 Cherokee Nation constitution,” according to the ruling. “It stands to reason that if the Cherokee People had the right to define the Cherokee Nation citizenship in the above mentioned 1866 Constitutional Amendment they would have the sovereign right to change the definition of the Cherokee Nation citizenship in their sovereign expression in the March 3, 2007 Constitutional Amendment.”…

Read the entire article here.

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