May 18,2007 00:00
MINOT, N.D. - A man in Minot, N.D., has been banned from the Turtle Mountain Reservation by a Chippewa tribal council for his online article against the reservation system.
Based on the outrage that Rob Port's online blog raised among the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, the tribe's council leaders voted this month to officially ban him from the tribe's reservation, the Minot Daily News said Friday.
The Minot man, who had been to the reservation on a job-related matter, responded to the council's May 10 vote by calling the move unfair and arguing that he was simply exercising his right to free speech.
"If they want to ban me, I guess that's up to them. I think it's pretty shoddy to ban people for political opinions using a law that's meant for drug dealers and sexual predators," Port said.
While tribal leaders have had little to say on the matter, Port took his battle to his personal Web site.
"If the tribe is willing and capable of banning me, someone who isn't even a member of the tribe, from the reservation, just imagine the lengths it would go through to make life hell for people who actually speak out while living on the reservation," he recently wrote online.
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