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Washington (CNN)--July 9th, 2020 The Supreme Court said Thursday that a large swath of eastern Oklahoma, including Tulsa, is Native American land for purposes of federal criminal law in a decision that the state argued could call into question thousands of state prosecutions for serious crimes. Justice Neil Gorsuch penned the 5-4 opinion joined by the liberals on the bench. "Today we are asked whether the land these treaties promised remains an Indian reservation for purposes of federal criminal law," said Gorsuch, who was appointed by President Donald Trump. "Because Congress has not said otherwise, we hold the government to its word," he said. Under the law, crimes involving Native Americans on a reservation are under federal, not state, jurisdiction. The unique case represented the opportunity for the Supreme Court to weigh in on the limits of tribal sovereignty and revisit the country's horrific history of displacing native tribes from their land. The question before the court involved a case brought by Jimcy McGirt, a member of Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, who argued that his case ought to be tried by the federal government because the crimes were committed on the land of historic Muscogee (Creek) Nation. The distinction of whether the large swath of eastern Oklahoma qualified as reservation land was key -- under federal law, major crimes committed by individuals on Native American land must be tried by the federal government. "The Supreme Court reaffirmed today that when the United States makes promises, the courts will keep those promises," Ian Gershengorn, a lawyer for McGirt who argued the case in May, said in a statement to CNN. "Congress persuaded the Creek Nation to walk the Trail of Tears with promises of a reservation—and the Court today correctly recognized that that this reservation endures."
We all know people who are suffering. Many of us may also be suffering. We cultivate compassion towards others, and towards ourselves. This is good. This is excellent. But what does that actually mean? For example, you know people who are suffering. You feel compassion towards them. What's next? Do you reach out to help? If so, how can you help without enabling? How do you know that your actions are truly compassionate? It may be that the best compassion is to do nothing. Ideas?