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Native American tribal lands are treated as separate legal areas from the rest of the state. The reason they are treated differently is, in part, to make up for the land European settlers took. Many Native Americans were forcibly moved out of their traditional territories. One notorious example of this policy of relocation was the Trail of Tears.
There are not very many Americans of European descent who have some “Indian” (Native American) blood. According to my family histories, I am related to two tribes: Iroquois and Cherokee, both a few generations back on my father’s side. My grandfather told me stories about what happened to some of his relatives. My parts of the family were already integrated — living among the white and mixed-blood communities in the eastern United States — when that happened, but they lost some relatives to the march west.
This was around the same time as when slavery was reaching its peak. Americans are not proud of that period in our history.