Editorial: It’s about time
They were the first people Virginia’s English settlers saw after months of sailing … but for centuries, in the eyes of the federal government, they were not recognized.
Legislation working its way through Congress holds out the hope that six Indian tribes in Virginia, the Monacan, Upper Mattaponi, Chickahominy, Chickahominy—Eastern Division, Rappahannock, and Nansemond, will receive that recognition. The status, it is said, would qualify the tribes for certain benefits provided through the Bureau of Indian Affairs and other federal agencies.
Space does not permit a list of place names, foods, artifacts and language words adopted by the colonists in recognition of that earlier culture. Nor does space permit a list of the atrocities committed against these people in the name of a king, or eminent domain, or expanding the frontier, or grabbing their resources.
But space does permit us to say (on the assumption that the federal recognition will finally get through both houses of Congress): it’s about time.