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----- Original Message -----
From: Forrest Cuch
To: Char Cam
Cc: Gayle McKeachnie ; Richard Bradford
Sent: Tuesday, April 18, 2006 11:12 AM
Subject: Re: Greetings
Dear Ms. Murdock-Ezelle,
First of all, I agree with you that the Ute Partition Act was a wrongful injustice. My half sisters and brother were victims of this harmful law. I witnessed their suffering and the divisiveness that occurred among so many families. Regardless of the dreadful harm it caused, it is doubtful this matter will never be corrected. There was a tremendous amount of politics and injustices committed by both the full bloods and the mixed bloods. Both groups were guilty of injustices and no one came way entirely clean. I think one of the greatest injustices that occurred was that most of the dark skinned mixed bloods sold most or all of their shares and most of the people who now own the shares are non-Indian or Anglo people.
Secondly, I would like you to know that 'no one can take away your American Indian heritage.' P.L. 671 did take away certain rights but it did not, nor can it ever, take away your heritage. I, for one, can vouch that you have Ute Indian heritage through your maternal grandmother.
Thirdly, you are asking some very personal questions about a very complex issue. I do not wish to be a foe but know there are answers to your questions. This is not, however, the best forum for them. I will say that the Ute Indian Tribe did lower the blood quantum requirement to one half Ute blood back in the 1980s (long enough for us to enroll both our sons), but they closed it back up within a few years thereafter. Now, the blood quantum is back to 5/8s Ute blood.
Lastly, I consider this matter closed. I do not have the time to devote to this very complex issue. Further, I do not see any value in continuing this discussion beyond this point. I think I understand some of your pain, but there is very little that can be done at this time. If you continue to pursue this issue, you might try talking with Dr. Floyd O' Neil of the American West Center at 581-7911. Again, I would like to remind you that you are and will continue to have Ute Indian ancestry, as long as you wish to cherish it.
Forrest S. Cuch
Division of Indian Affairs
324 South State Street, Suite 500
Salt Lake City, Utah 84114
(801) 538-8808 Fax: (801) 538-8803
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