Pagans in the Promised Land: Decoding the Doctrine of Christian Discovery
Pagans in the Promised Land makes a unique challenge to U.S. federal Indian law and policy, attacking the presumption that American Indian nations are legitimately subject to the plenary power of the United States. Steve Newcomb puts forth a startling theory that U.S. federal Indian law and policy are premised on Old Testament narratives of the chosen people and the promised land, as exemplified in the 1823 Supreme Court ruling Johnson v. McIntosh, that the first "Christian people" to "discover" lands inhabited by "natives, who were heathens," have an ultimate title to and dominion over these lands and peoples. This important addition to legal scholarship asserts there is no separation of church and state in the United States, so long as U.S. federal Indian law and policy are premised on the ancient religious distinctions between "Christians" and "heathens."
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Abram Age of Discovery American Indian American Indian nations asserted basis Canaanites Chosen People-Promised Land Chris Christian discovery Christian European Christian nations civilized claim cognitive theory colonization Columbus conceptual metaphor conceptual system conquer and subdue Conqueror model context continent discovered divine right doctrine of discovery dominating mentality emphasis added empire example existence federal Indian law free and independent George Lakoff grant heathen Hebrews human Ibid idealized cognitive models ideas imaginatively Indian rights Indian title indigenous indigenous perspective Inter Caetera International Law Johnson ruling Lakoff and Johnson land of Canaan law and policy Lord M'Intosh Marshall's means mentality of Christendom monarchs Native non-Christian occupancy Old Testament pagan papal bull People-Promised Land model political Pope promised land referred religious Requerimiento sovereignty Story Tee Hit territory thee tian tion treaty U.S. government officials U.S. Supreme Court ultimate dominion unconsciously United Univ Vine Deloria Jr Winter