By Mark Sundeen (@SundeenMark)
Last week, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota emerged as climate change heroes when, with little political clout or media spotlight, they halted construction of the $3.7 billion Dakota Access oil pipeline. After tribal chairman David Archambault II and others were arrested for pushing past barricades to block excavating machinery, as the tribe sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to stop crews from burrowing beneath the Missouri River immediately upstream from their land, the homely, unpronounceable hashtag #NoDAPL surged—short for No Dakota Access Pipeline.
Meanwhile, the defiance evoked America’s ugly racial past—and present. “It feels like 1875 because Natives are still fighting for our land,” tweeted Native American writer Sherman Alexie. Archambault could have been describing Ferguson or Baltimore when, in the New York Times, he decried racial profiling and claimed that “the state has militarized my reservation.” In a touch of epic derp that would be funny if it didn’t actually reveal how people of color are assumed to be violent, when the Lakota invited relatives to pack their peace pipes and gather with them in solidarity, the (white) county sheriff thought they meant pipe bombs.
POLICE DOGS ALLOWED TO ATTACK PROTECTORS:
By last weekend, several thousand Native Americans from around the country had arrived at Standing Rock, the 3,500-square-mile reservation with 8,250 residents. They were joined by a smattering of earthy white folk and a crew of Black Lives Matters activists from Minneapolis. The camp was just outside the boundary on land administered by the Army Corps. State troopers blocked the highway to Bismarck, allowing protesters—or “protectors,” as they insisted on being called—to leave but not return. In the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the tribe’s lawyers argued that the pipeline would….Read more at: http://www.outsideonline.com/2111206/whats-happening-standing-rock
CANNON BALL, ND—Sacred places containing ancient burial sites, places of prayer and other significant cultural artifacts of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe were destroyed Saturday by Energy Transfer Partners, Tribal Chairman David Archambault II said.
On Friday, the Tribe filed court documents identifying the area as home to significant Native artifacts and sacred sites.
“This demolition is devastating,” Archambault said. “These grounds are the resting places of our ancestors. The ancient cairns and stone prayer rings there cannot be replaced. In one day, our sacred land has been turned into hollow ground.”
Construction crews removed topsoil across an area about 150 feet wide stretching for two miles, northwest of the confluence of the Cannon Ball and Missouri Rivers.
“I surveyed this land and we confirmed multiple graves and specific prayer sites,” said Tim Mentz, the Standing Rock Sioux’s former tribal historic preservation officer. “Portions, and possibly complete sites, have been taken out entirely.”
Thousands of people from across the United States have joined the Standing Rock Sioux to protest Energy Transfer Partners’ building of the 1,200-mile Dakota Access Pipeline. If built, a half-million barrels of crude oil would pass through the line daily.
The Standing Rock Sioux have filed suit in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to stop construction. The Tribe says it was not properly consulted before the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers fast-tracked construction approval.
A decision in that case is expected by Sept. 9.
“We’re days away from getting a resolution on the legal issues, and they came in on a holiday weekend and destroyed the site,” said Jan Hasselman, attorney for the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. “What they have done is absolutely outrageous.”
Brad Angerman, Pyramid Communications firstname.lastname@example.org 702-218-4490 (mobile)
Denver is Standing in Solidarity with Standing Rock! Sept. 8th at the Colorado State Capitol, 6-10pm
And to show our love, our support and to surround them with our “prayers,” We will be be coming together as all Nation’s are Rising and All People’s are coming together! Thursday at the State Capitol in Denver from 6pm to 10pm.
We will be having a walk coming from the Four Directions. We are asking that you wear the color of the direction that you will be walking from.
This is NOT a violent walk and this is NOT a protest. We are respecting what Standing Rock has asked, and that is to stand in a Peaceful way. Anyone who chooses to act in a disrespectful way, will be asked to leave.
This event is also drug and alcohol free!
Any questions or concerns?
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