More on the casino in Jamul

A reader has to contain her disgust

“This is not like anything they told us they were going to build."
  • “This is not like anything they told us they were going to build."
  • Image by Matthew Suárez

Re: “The casino’s been built — Jamul is still fighting it,” cover story.

As I was reading the article about the Jamul Indian Village, I had to contain my disgust at the statement that Erica Pinto has an “overwhelming attention to the needs of others.”

"Our improvements will go all the way down to TGIFriday’s in Rancho San Diego."

"Our improvements will go all the way down to TGIFriday’s in Rancho San Diego."

I would imagine her uncle, an Elder of the tribe, whom she “unseated as tribal chair,” might disagree. And certainly Walter Rosales, a Jamul Kumeyaay, raised by his grandmother on the property, would disagree.

The tribe disenrolled Walter, a Purple Heart decorated Marine wounded while serving two tours of duty in Vietnam, when he disagreed with the vision of a casino on the tribal land. In addition, when he refused to vacate his home there, the tribe had it bulldozed.

Is it any wonder, as Erica states, “the tribal council, seven of us, we are all young”? A study by VOA [Voice of America News] concludes, “Native American Tribal disenrollment is at epidemic levels” and is caused by greed. So when Erica states, “We have always taken the high road,” I don’t think that she is even close to the truth.

  • Vicki Jones-Pittman
  • Jamul/North Par

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Ms. Pittman,

I absolutely must correct you on all of the statements that you've written above. I cannot take the misinformation and mistruth any longer. It is positively correct that as a Tribal Leader, I, along with my Tribal Council have taken the high road over the last 20+ years, even after all that we have been put through at the hands of a tiny, vocal, volatile group of community members. Granted we are a young Tribal Council, we are tasked to watch out for our people, which we do so with great honor. I was not demeaning anyone or taking any shots at any Tribal elders when I mentioned that I was elected. I was elected in 2015 by the Jamul Tribal membership in a democratic process, similar to the election of the President of the United States. I am extremely proud and honored to be the first woman elected to such a position in my Tribe. My Tribe is who I represent. My Tribal Council and I make decisions based on what is in the best interest of our Tribe, as do all Tribal Councils through-out California and the United States. Our member's welfare and well-being is imperative to us.

Walter Rosales and Karen Toggery were not and never have been enrolled members of the Jamul Indian Village. Please save your disgust for another time, for you speak on an issue which you know nothing about.

Erica M. Pinto Chairwoman Jamul Indian Village of California

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