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In Oklahoma, a Battle Between Tribes and Developers

Granger Meador
Flickr Creative Commons

The state of Oklahoma has been locked in a pitched battle with the Choctaw and Chickasaw tribes over who should control a lake in the southeastern part of the state, known as Sardis Lake, reports StateImpact Oklahoma.

At issue: the water isn’t just used for drinking or fishing by the tribes; for them it is sacred. Though the tribes were forced from their homelands in the 19th century, they’ve developed a spiritual connection with the water here. There’s a sacred burial site here, and the area is covered with relics and artifacts.

The trouble lies in the fact that the lake is also one of the best bass fishing sites in the state. Sardis Lake is a popular tourist destination, and many locals want to see more development here. But development often comes at a price.