Billy Frank’s fight for treaty rights was about civil rights
Many of us who came of age in Seattle during the late 1970s remember the name Billy Frank and the phrase, “The Boldt Decision,” as much as Watergate or Viet Nam. Mr. Frank and U.S. District Court Judge George Boldt brought forth a new way of looking at natural resources in our region. Yet, it was not just about fish. It was also about civil rights. The cultural and ethnic survival of the Pacific Northwest Indian tribes depended their ancient right to fish for salmon. If the salmon went away so would the people.