March 7, 2008

Book Review - Indian Gaming and Tribal Sovereignty

Indian Gaming and Tribal Sovereignty: The Casino Compromise
Steven Andrew Light and Kathryn R. L. Rand
E 98 .G18 L54 2005

Light and Rand investigate the laws and political controversies surrounding Native American-run casinos. The Indian gaming community is often accused of corruption, criminal ties, or using the name of the tribe to shelter an unrelated business. Some tribes, however, argue that gaming has strengthened tribal governments by uniting them behind a single venture and improved life on reservations by bringing money into the communities. Light and Rand stress that tribal sovereignty is the very notion that allows Indian casinos to exist. This sovereignty, however, is subjected to close congressional authority and gaming on reservations is even more strictly regulated through the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988. This book explores the varied experiences of different tribes relative to gaming--some wildly successful, others who chose not to pursue gaming at all--discussing this in the framework of a unique opportunity for Native Americans to exercise their tribal self-determination.