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Say Brother; Federal Laws and the Native American: Patterns of Paper Politics

Part of Say Brother.


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Say Brother
Federal Laws and the Native American: Patterns of Paper Politics
Program Number


Series Description

Say Brother is WGBH's longest running public affairs television program by, for and about African Americans, and is now known as Basic Black. Since its inception in 1968, Say Brother has featured the voices of both locally and nationally known African American artists, athletes, performers, politicians, professionals, and writers including: Muhammad Ali, Maya Angelou, Thomas Atkins, Amiri Baraka, Doris Bunte, Julian Bond, Stokely Carmichael, Louis Farrakhan, Nikki Giovanni, Odetta Gordon, Henry Hampton, Benjamin Hooks, Jesse Jackson, Hubie Jones, Mel King, Eartha Kitt, Elma Lewis, Haki Madhubuti, Wallace D. Muhammad, Charles Ogletree, Babatunde Olatunji, Byron Rushing, Owusu Sadaukai, and Sonia Sanchez. Series release date: 7/15/1968

Program Description

Program focuses on the August, 1976 lawsuit filed by the the Wampanoag Indians of Massachusetts against the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, in an effort to reclaim lands sold from 1763 to 1870 without Congressional approval. Host Barbara Barrow speaks with guest Russell Peters, President of the Mashpee Tribal Council, about the problems the council is having regaining tribal lands, when was the lands were taken, when the council decided to file suit, how Peters feels about the claim that Wampanoag marriages with Black and white Americans has diluted their culture and claim to lands, if Mashpee becoming a town gave Native Americans the power to sell their own land (as they did willingly, according to Barrow), and what will happen to the people who are living in Mashpee who feel they own their land and houses. Additional segments include the "Say Brother News" with reporters Leah Fletcher, Eric Sampedro, Justina Chu, and WNAC TV arts critic Tanya Hart, the "Third World Connection" (which discusses the intermarriage of African Americans and Native Americans, and their historical bond, is discussed), and the "Community Calendar."



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Indians of North America--Land tenure
Television broadcasting of news
African Americans--Relations with Indians
African Americans in television broadcasting
Indians of North America--Massachusetts
Danny Sloan and Friends
Mashpee Wampanoag Indian Tribal Council, Inc.
Indigenous peoples
Civil rights
Peters, Russell
Race and Ethnicity
White, Conrad (Director)
Barbara Barrow (Producer)
Moore, Melvin (Associate Producer)
Fletcher, Leah (Reporter)
Cross, June (Production Assistant)
Chigas, Basil (Switcher)
Merhar, Milan (Videotape Recordist)
Chu, Justina (Reporter)
Smith, Lee (Camera)
Wareham, Skip (Camera)
Tomaselli, Robert (Lighting Assistant)
Sullivan, John L. (Lighting)
Songai, Jahid (Intern)
Johnson, Nat (Audio)
Yang, Eileen (Researcher)
Buccheri, Ron (Switcher)
Johnson, Lenita (Intern)
MacKnight, John (Videotape Assembly)
St. Onge, David (Videotape Recordist)
Horne, Danny (Intern)
Barrow-Murray, Barbara (Host)
Portilla, Alfred (Assistant Stage Manager)
DeVitt, Doug (Videotape Assembly)
Hill, Rebecca (Fashion Consultant)
Balhatchet, Tom (Audio Editor)
Sampedro, Eric (Reporter)
Fairweather, Bill (Video)
Holden, Dick (Camera)
Hart, Tanya (Reporter)
Morton, Wil (Audio)
Wilson, Bob (Stage Manager)
Marshall, Carolyn (Production Secretary)
Mahard, Fran (Scenic Design)
Mackles, Gene (Graphic Designer)
Clarke, Brian (Assistant To The Producer)
Floyd, Mike (Stage Manager)
Plausse, John (Lighting)
Chicago: “Say Brother; Federal Laws and the Native American: Patterns of Paper Politics,” 01/14/1977, GBH Archives, accessed October 3, 2023,
MLA: “Say Brother; Federal Laws and the Native American: Patterns of Paper Politics.” 01/14/1977. GBH Archives. Web. October 3, 2023. <>.
APA: Say Brother; Federal Laws and the Native American: Patterns of Paper Politics. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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