The Tiquas: The mighty press hides again

Here is another issue which will definitely be part of the governor's race next year. And again here is an issue in which Perry and WorldPeace are on opposite sides of the fence.

Perry wants to continue keeping the Native Americans in Texas in poverty even as the citizens gamble at many other White establishments in the state and leave the state with Texas dollars to go and spend them in Louisiana casinos.

WorldPeace wants to liberate the Native Americans and allow them to become self sufficient and therefore advocates legalizing gambling on the reservations. All Perry is doing is protecting the White business interest while keeping alive the war against the Indian Nations. I think the Gov watched too many White produced cowboy and Indian movies when he was a kid and now that he is the King of the Coca Cola Cowboys he is determined to protect the frontier from those pesky Indians.

Don't bother to wake up Tony Sanchez.

Is the press going to report the news or sleep through this election cycle? By the way, are there any Native Americans reporters or writers on the major newspapers in this state?

John WorldPeace

The next governor of Texas

November 29, 2001

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Perry offers job aid to Tiguas

Tribe is committed to saving casino from shutdown by state

11/29/2001

Associated Press

AUSTIN Gov. Rick Perry said Wednesday that he wants to help Tigua Indians and other El Pasoians find new jobs if the tribe's Speaking Rock Casino is shut down as the state wants.

"Those are Texas citizens who could be out of work, and we've got a lot of different ideas at different agencies," Mr. Perry said.

The tribe is appealing a shutdown order by Texas Attorney General John Cornyn. He believes it violates Texas laws that prohibit casino-style gambling.

Mr. Perry and a federal court agreed with Mr. Cornyn, but on Tuesday the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals allowed the casino to remain open while the tribe appeals.

Lawyers for the Tiguas have argued that the tribe is a sovereign nation, meaning it can do anything the state of Texas is allowed to do. They say the casino is structured so that it meets the requirements of the state Lottery Act, which would mean the casino is legal as long as the state lottery is legal.

The Tiguas say they would be forced back into poverty if denied the $60 million the casino pulls in annually. The tribe has more than 1,200 members, and the casino employs about 850 people, 800 of whom are not tribal members.

"Governor Perry has finally recognized the economic devastation El Paso and the Tigua Indians will suffer due to the unwarranted action the state of Texas took against our Pueblo," said Tigua Gov. Albert Alvidrez, head of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo tribe, which operates the casino.

Mr. Alvidrez said he welcomed state help with the tribe's efforts to diversify economically but criticized Mr. Perry for not doing more.

"It is unfortunate that Governor Perry did not take a more proactive approach and familiarize himself with Native American issues, which might have prevented the situation as it currently exists in Texas," Mr. Alvidrez said.

Mr. Perry said he met with Rep. Norma Chavez, D-El Paso, on Tuesday and has discussed alternatives to casino gambling with the Texas Department of Economic Development.

"We're working closely with the Tiguas, trying to work with the tribe on issues of how the state of Texas can work with them, being innovative," said Mr. Perry, a gambling opponent.

Ms. Chavez said she requested the meeting with Mr. Perry before the court granted the stay allowing the casino to remain open.

She wanted the state to be ready to quickly respond to unemployment and other economic effects the closing would have on employees and El Paso, which also had recent layoffs at a clothing manufacturer, Ms. Chavez said.

"It doesn't mean we're conceding. We're not," Ms. Chavez said.

The governor's attention to the issue is appreciated, Ms. Chavez said. But "I don't like seeing the governor dance with the issue of Indian gaming."

Mr. Perry said his administration's ideas for the gaming facility include continuing the operation of legal games such as bingo, or using the facility as a music venue.

Ms. Chavez and Mr. Alvidrez said that Mr. Perry's ideas did not change their strong opposition to closing the casino.

Mr. Alvidrez invited Mr. Perry to visit the tribe while attending a governors' conference in El Paso this weekend. "All lands of the Pueblo have multiple entrances including access from the front and rear, whichever would be more convenient for Gov. Perry," he said.

Said Mr. Perry, "I don't imagine that I'll be going out to the local casino."