Darrah Blackwater sees radio waves as a natural resource. The Navajo Nation member and recent law school graduate works to bring high-speed internet to rural tribal lands. Her efforts focus on what she calls “spectrum sovereignty,” or the recognition of tribal spectrum rights.
“That means that the radio waves on the land have been on the land since what we call in federal Indian law, ‘time immemorial,’” she explains. “Which means it’s been there as long as the land, the mountains, the water, the air has been there.”