Stupid White Man of the Week: William Perry Pendley

William Perry Pendley (and what a precious little name that is, too! Could he possibly sound any whiter?) of the “Mountain States Legal Foundation” argues that tribes shouldn’t have any jurisdiction whatsoever over non-Indians because…wait for it…Indians are too stupid and savage to understand the brilliance that is the white man’s law. Oh, you think I’m exagerrating? Read this drivel for yourselves. Note that his brilliant legal reasoning utterly ignores tribal sovereignty, or rather treats it as something that Congress and the Federal Courts can wipe effortlessly away lest it inconvenience any white people in the slightest.

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Published in: on March 4, 2008 at 10:49 am  Comments (3)  

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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. He’s trying to be fair, but yes it’s quite insulting for him to imply that there should be no Tribal jurisdiction over non-members because the tribal legal system is backwards in its understanding of American law. And secondly, he implies that the decision rested on made-up tribal law, when in fact it did not. If you read the Court of Appeals decision, the question is whether what happened in this particular case supports tribal jurisdiction by virtue of the defendant’s contacts with tribal members, or under federal law. I find that to be quite reasonable, as opposed to being completely made-up “Indian” law.

  2. I didn’t get that he was trying to be fair at all; I got that he was being condescending and patronizing and that his whole thesis could be boiled down to: White men should have extraterritoriality in Indian Country because Indians are all a bunch of grunting semi-literate savages.

  3. scarier still — he’s offered to come to my town, pro bono, to take on the ACLU if Beaufort County, NC gets sued over immigrant rights. Specifically, our county commissioners want to remove Spanish from the county’s automated phone system. God help us all, literally.


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