The Struggle And Persistence For Identity And Sovereignty Essay

1271 Words Oct 6th, 2015 null Page
The struggle and persistence for identity and sovereignty by the Seminoles from the 1820s to the 1850s served as an early example of the evolutionary process by way of legal channels and treaty language and negotiation to attain them. Their defiance against removal and Creek integration emerged during an era that defined Native American sovereign status and nationhood in relation to American constitutional interpretation. Their struggle was an early example of a civil rights movement that took place within the constraints of three Supreme Court decisions and six federal treaties. These treaties would help shape their relationship with the federal government and other Native tribes. Representation through the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and as defined through the Supreme Court decisions, was a federal obligation (or rationalization) to protect their lands, grant them the ability to self-govern, and provide the means for their survival and advancement. Although achieving federal recognition as a Nation did not arrive until 1856, the early treaties, especially the Capitulation of 1836, set the groundwork for the eventual status of nationhood that established a government-to-government relationship between the United States and the Seminoles. Seminole defiance of the federal government and Creek tribal pressures was critical to their right to self-governing; each treaty helped define their own membership and property, and to regulate their business and domestic relations.

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