How the Boldt decision 50 years ago remade Pacific Northwest fishing

Louie Ungaro waited out the turn of the tide, when chum salmon — he hoped — would hit his net. Fishing here is his tradition, a practice and a way of life as old as his people, the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe.“Elliott Bay ain’t going nowhere, and neither are we,” said Ungaro, a member of the tribe’s council and lifelong hunter and fisher. Yet it took violent protests and a decision appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court to affirm their right to fish, explicitly stated in treaties signed by their ancestors nearly 170 years ago as settlers colonized the Pacific Northwest. The decision handed down by U.S. District Court Judge George Boldt 50 years ago next month was the result of sacrifices made by Native fishers and their families jailed and beaten while defending these rights. And yet now another threat looms over all they fought for: scarcity of the fish themselves. Photos, more, >>click to read< 08:53

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