“Everything was possessed of personality, only differing from us in form. Knowledge was inherent in all things. The world was a library and its books were the stones, leaves, grass, brooks, and the birds and animals that shared, alike with us, the storms and blessings of earth. We learned to do what only the student of nature learns, and that was to feel beauty. We never railed at the storms, the furious winds, and the biting frosts and snows. To do so intensified human futility, so whatever came we adjusted ourselves, by more effort and energy if necessary, but without complaint.”- Chief Standing Bear, Oglala Lakota (Dakota, Nakota)
About a month ago I was fortune to be able to meet the youth from the Standing Rock Lakota, Dakota, Nakota tribe as they made their way down to the Capital. They were running for over 1,800 miles in protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline that would come on their land and pollute the Missouri river. To read more on that event and learn about the pipeline check out my post: https://iceturtlegirl.blog/2016/08/07/standing-with-standing-rock-rezervation-against-the-dakota-access-pipeline-rezpectourwater-waterislife/
When the youth first came to DC & NYC there were a few celebrate supporters & a few media outlets covering this fight but nobody really knew much about it. Since then this thing has exploded to become one of the biggest fights of Native resistance in recent times. Tribes from all over Turtle Island, Hawaii, Canada and Central and South Turtle Island have come to the Sacred Stone Camp & Red Warrior Camp in North Dakota as well as having protest of their own where they are. This is the largest Native resistance in recent history with over 200 tribes coming together in solidarity over this pipeline. Black Lives Matter has shown support and have traveled up their to help and this has even become an international fight from indigenous people all over the world.
What has happened since that protest: The Standing Rock Lakota, Dakota, Nakota Tribe had filed a complaint in federal court that the construction and operation of the pipeline … threatens the Tribe’s environmental and economic well-being, and would damage and destroy sacred sites significant to the Tribe. There are also concerns that digging the pipeline under the Missouri River would affect the tribe’s drinking water supply. The tribe, represented by Earth Justice, a nonprofit environmental law firm, has asked for an injunction.
The Army Corps of Engineers had a hearing a few weeks ago in DC where many people had a rally outside the building. Then on Saturday September 3rd, Dakota Access Pipeline folks came and attacked the camp with dogs & mas that they were spraying in people’s eyes and letting the dogs bite people. The thing was that these people where just praying, chanting, singing & playing music just minding their business when they came and attacked them. They even let a dog bite a pregnant women in the stomach. The only news outlet there that day was Democracy Now! with Amy Goodman who they now have an arrest warrant out for her due to filming the whole thing. But what’s super sad is like always main stream media is not covering any of this and has just started to put a few things out on their sites.
Then on Friday September 9th after the US District Court ruled against the tribe, Obama urged the temporary stopping of the Dakota Access Pipeline near the river. This was only after Obama got called out during a recent trip to South East Asia by a Malaysian women who asked him about the pipeline and what he was going to do about. He tried to push it aside like it was nothing and that he would have to get back to his people about it. That’s when he decided to stop the construction which didn’t last very long.
On Tuesday more than 20 people were arrested blocking construction of the $3.8 billion pipeline in North Dakota. Video can be seen showing police in full riot gear carrying assault rifles at the site of the protest. Among those arrested were two journalists with the outlet Unicorn Riot. Construction was halted for hours, as two people locked themselves to heavy machinery.
That same day in DC a national protest was being held on the big day of action against the pipeline. My mother, aunt, friend Merope and myself went down to the White House to help protest. There were folks from all over who came in support and tribal youth came down from North Dakota to send their message. The program was: Drum ceremony and prayer led by Gabrielle Tayac of the Piscataway Nation and words from Senator Bernie Sanders, Tara Houska with Honor the Earth, Chase Iron Eyes with Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Van Jones, Reverend Lennox Yearwood, Jasilyn Charger, Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Youth and Takota Iron Eyes among other native leaders from North Dakota.
Jasilyn Charger gave such a moving speech to the people and even started to cry at one point as it just got too real what she was saying. Bernie Sanders spoke right before Jasilyn and when he left the crowd kept chanting “Bernie! Bernie!” instead of listening to her speak. Then others spoke like Van Jones and Chase Iron Eyes. After all the speeches a fancy dancer did a dance for everyone before we all went over to the street. I got to interview Jasilyn and she gave out a message to the youth. Once we got there we started chanting and taking pictures. Then it was over but we got lots of great pictures.
There will be another rally on Saturday and will probably be even more in the coming weeks. Last week many protest were held in many cities all over the world including a huge one in Denver last week.
Here are ways you can get involved in this fight for land, water and people:
10 Ways You Can Help the Standing Rock Lakota, Dakota, Nakota Fight the Dakota Access Pipeline:
1. Call North Dakota governor Jack Dalrymple at 701-328-2200. When leaving a message stating your thoughts about this subject please be professional.
2. Sign the petition to the White House to Stop DAPL: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/…/stop-construction…
3. Donate to support Standing Rock at http://standingrock.org/…/standing-rock-sioux-tribe…/
4. Donate items from the Sacred Stone Camp Supply List: http://sacredstonecamp.org/supply-list/
- Large cooking pots
- cooking utensils
- canvas tents
- coats, hats, water proof cloves, snow boots
- heavy blankets
- Huge bags of rice, beans, soup stuff
- solar flash lights
- heavy duty kids clothes
5. Call the White House at (202) 456-1111 or (202) 456-1414. Tell President Obama to rescind the Army Corps of Engineers’ Permit for the Dakota Access Pipeline.
6. Contribute to the Sacred Stone Camp Legal Defense Fund: https://fundrazr.com/d19fAf
7. Contribute to the Sacred Stone Camp gofundme account: https://www.gofundme.com/sacredstonecamp
8. Call the Army Corps of Engineers and demand that they reverse the permit: (202) 761-5903
9. Sign other petitions asking President Obama to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. Here’s the latest to cross my desk – https://act.credoaction.com/sign/NoDAPL
10. Call the executives of the companies that are building the pipeline:
a. Lee Hanse Executive Vice President Energy Transfer Partners, L.P. 800 E Sonterra Blvd #400 San Antonio, Texas 78258 Telephone: (210) 403-6455 Lee.Hanse@energytransfer.com
b. Glenn Emery Vice President Energy Transfer Partners, L.P. 800 E Sonterra Blvd #400 San Antonio, Texas 78258 Telephone: (210) 403-6762 Glenn.Emery@energytransfer.com
c. Michael (Cliff) Waters Lead Analyst Energy Transfer Partners, L.P. 1300 Main St. Houston, Texas 77002 Telephone: (713) 989-2404 Michael.Waters@energytransfer.com
The most effective means of showing support for this cause is to actively participate in protecting this sacred land. Anyone who is able to travel to the peaceful encampments is encouraged to do so. For those unable to make the journey to North Dakota, please utilize the alternate methods provided to show your support for Standing Rock who have united over 100 tribes from across the U.S. Please join this effort to stop this pipeline, which desecrates sacred lands and has serious potential to damage or destroy the Standing Rock reservations lifeblood – its water.
For more videos from Tuesday’s protest please view my fb page.
This pipeline effects everyone on our Mother Earth please support in anyway you can. We all deserve a Mother Earth who is clean, and well taken care of.
Till Next Time…”Mni Wiconi” “Water is Life”