Vine Deloria


Our Brother's Keeper purports to be the story of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. It is not. It is the story of the Bureau as the Citizen's Advocate Center wishes you to see it. It is a series of unrelated incidents and events that make a gruesome tale when strung together on a theory-of-colonialistoppression clothesline. Yet the deliberate structuring of these incidents-so as to support an abstract interpretation of a government agency and its role in the lives of its constituent service group-pre-empts the contemporary Indian dilemma as surely as if every Indian were struck dumb and unable to speak at all.

The upshot of the report is that whit3w are very, very bad and Indians are very, very helpless and that Something should be done; but the authors would not presume to offer any suggestions. It is just as well that Cahn and company do not, since if their solution were as bizarre as their presentation, it would truly be the most tragic thing ever to happen to Indian people.

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