By Anna Von Reitz
"Tribe" is a word related to "Tribute" and once upon a time referred to all those who owed tribute -- money, taxes, allegiance -- to Rome.
It still does.
"Tribal sovereignty" is another oxymoron like "sovereign citizen", because you can't be a tribe and a sovereign nation at the same time.
I was recently asked where in US CODE or Geneva Convention, etc., are "indigenous people" defined?
My first response is that we are all indigenous.
Please hear me: all labels are traps, so please don't trap yourself or anyone else.
My second response is that living people are never defined in US CODE because US CODE is about corporations.
So far as the Geneva Conventions go, we are all civilians living in a militarily occupied country, so that's the only definition -- civilian or military? There is no special "other" status for Indians.
Tribal members get lumped into the Municipal citizenry as wards of the Pope and are civilians of that kind, called "citizens of the United States" within the meaning of the corporate 14th Amendment.
Members of Tribal Nations get lumped into the U.S. Citizenry as wards of the King and are civilians of that kind--- U.S. Citizen dependents and wards of the State (of State).
What about the rest of us, who aren't "citizens" or "tribal members"?
We belong to non-Tribal, non-citizen nations.
We don't owe any allegiance to Rome (non-Tribal) and we don't owe any service to the government (non-citizen).
That defines what are aren't. We are not any closer to defining what we are.
All these other characters are attached to the Pope or the King. We're not.
We are attached to our States of the Union, established 1776.
So what is the optimum political status for American Indians in the middle of this confusing morass of names, labels, and political allegiances?
Dual National status.
Not Dual Citizen status.
Many nations can occupy the same land and soil and live happily together.
As Dual Nationals, American Indians can enjoy the benefit of their State sovereignty and their national sovereignty, too.
Thus, a Lakota Sioux born in South Dakota is best served by claiming Dual National status, both as a South Dakotan and as a Lakota --- not as a tribe, but as a nation on the land and soil.
So, can someone claim "benefits" from the Tribe and act as Federal citizens at the same time they claim sovereign status via their State?
Yes, this is possible, because Federal Employees and Dependents can also be American State Nationals.
Just as someone can work for the Post Office, and at the same time be owed their Constitutional Guarantees, an American Indian can be a member of a Federally-recognized Tribe and through their State National status can also claim their Constitutional Guarantees.
In that case, they would be Municipal citizens of the United States and also State Nationals.
What if a Tribal member went to work for the United States Military?
Then they would be acting as Dual Citizens and would have no access to Constitutional Guarantees.
For most people who have made the transition to living off the Reservation successfully, the ideal choice is Dual National: member of the Lakota nation and a South Dakotan, as per the example.
For those still on the Reservation and/or still dependent on Federal benefits, the next best choice is: citizen of the United States / State National.
The citizenship status lacks sovereignty, but is protected by the sovereign State, as in our American Postal worker example.