Thursday, May 20, 2010

First Peoples News 05/ 20/ 2010

Authorities recover body of third Yakama fisherman
By Phil Ferolito - May 19, 2010

CELILLO VILLAGE, Ore.. -- Authorities this morning recovered the body of the third missing Yakama fisherman whose boat capsized on the Columbia River.

The body of Anthony Wesley, 52, was found about 9 a.m. in a stretch of the river near Celilo Village, Ore., about eight miles east of The Dalles Dam, said his brother Simon Sampson.

"I’m so happy and at the same time I’m so said," Sampson said. "Now the reality is sinking in that he’s gone, and he has to be taken care of properly."

Wesley was among four tribal fishermen in an 18-foot boat that overturned April 30 on the river in an area near the small community of Wishram, Wash.

The bodies of Jessica Lewis, 29, of Wapato and Wilson LaRoque, 57, of Toppenish were discovered the same morning the incident occurred. A third person in the boat, who Samson identified as Johnny Jack, survived after swimming to shore.

Sampson said today he was in Portland when he received the call from tribal police about the discovery of his brother’s body.

Sampson said he’s been talking with tribal authorities about implementing a better way to respond to such tragedies on the river, and plans to compile all the names of the fishermen who died on the Columbia River in recent history.

"The river is mean to our people sometimes," he said softly.

Wesley’s body is being taken to Colonial Funeral Home in Toppenish, and overnight services will be Thursday at the Celilo Longhouse with burial Friday morning at nearby Wishcum Cemetery in Dallesport, Wash.

The longhouse is a a traditional tribal church that overlooks a stretch of the river where water crashed over the great Celilo Falls before The Dalles Dam flooded the area in 1957.

Celilo Falls was a major fishing and trading hub for Northwestern tribes.

Sampson plans to dress his brother in buckskin and may have him buried at the Celilo Village cemetery.

He said Wesley was a woodcutter and hunter as well as as fisherman, and that having his funeral in Celilo will honor his indigenous ancestry.

"I’m just grateful that the Creator did bring him back, right across from Celilo," Sampson said. "We’re all fishermen and we all came from the river."

MSU awarded $1.2 million to strengthen undergraduate and precollege science education
By Melynda Harrison - May 20, 2010

Undergraduate and precollege education at Montana State University will be strengthened thanks to a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) grant announced Thursday......

.....Based in Maryland, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute employs biomedical researchers at medical centers and universities nationwide. A complimentary grants program supports science education in the U.S. and a select group of biomedical scientists abroad.
Gwen Jacobs at 406-994-7334 or

Students seek to put Chief Joseph on $20 bill
By Kristen Kates - May 20, 2010

Students at Hays-Lodgepole High School are doing their part to promote using more images of Native Americans on items printed by the federal government - most notably the $20 bill.

Gotta Love our Young ones.....LOL!


Oelrichs graduate will skip ceremony because of death in family
By Steve Young - May 19, 2010

An Oglala teen who fought a losing battle in court to be able to wear traditional Lakota regalia to his graduation said he won't attend the ceremony now because of the death of his grandfather.

U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Viken of Rapid City ruled Tuesday that the Oelrichs School District could require Aloysius Dreaming Bear to wear a cap and gown to receive his diploma Saturday.

But Dreaming Bear, who argued in federal court that such a requirement infringed on his First Amendment rights, said he will miss graduation to attend the funeral of his grandfather, James Yellow Horse, who died this past weekend......

Nations Honor Ancestors, Gather Apology
May 20, 2010

An unprecedented gathering of leaders from multiple Native American nations yesterday participated in A Time of Rededication and Story-Telling event, presented by The Faith and Politics Institute, at the Congressional Cemetery at 1801 E. St., SE, Washington, D.C. 20003.

The Congressional Cemetery became the official burial grounds in 1807 for congressman, tradesmen, diplomats, domestics, explorers, architects, soldiers and musicians. Thirty-six Native Americans are among the more than 55,000 individuals and 30,000 burial sites in the cemetery and represent peoples from Apache, Cherokee, Chippewa, Choctaw, Muscogee (Creek), Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate, Kiowa, Lakota, Nez Perce, Pawnee, Sac and Fox, and Winnebago tribes and nations. Many Native Americans interred at the cemetery were representing their people in treaty negotiations and government affairs and were far from their native lands when they passed away.
"Native Americans were heavily involved in Washington and international politics more than 200 years ago, which led to their interment away from their homes," said Chad Smith, Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation. "Several Native American nations also had treaties with foreign governments prior to the creation of the United States and still operate as sovereign governments today."

A Time of Rededication and Story-Telling event featured interpretive guides' historical accounts of Native American leaders and dignitaries interred at the Congressional Cemetery including Cherokee citizens Captain John Rogers, Jr., William Shorey Coodey, Judge Richard Fields and great friend of the Cherokee Nation William Wirt; Choctaw citizens Pushmataha and Peter Pitchlynn; Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate leader Kan Ya Tu Duta (Red Crow); Pawnee leader Tuck Arusa Lix Ea; and Muscogee (Creek) Second Chief Berryhill, who reflected on the role of all their delegates.

"Storytelling is a valued tradition in Native American heritage and coupled with an opportunity to relive Cherokee history on these revered grounds was a tremendous experience for guests," added Chief Smith. "The Congressional Cemetery provided for a unique setting where visitors were immersed in traditional stories and historical accounts regarding the Native American people."

In preparation for the event, there was A Time of Service gathering at the Congressional Cemetery on Tuesday, May 18, which provided an opportunity for the general public to clean, weed and help restore some of the Native American graves in the cemetery. Professionals offering direction in the proper care and tending to the neglected burial sites led the efforts and supplied the tools. A short period of storytelling immediately followed the caretaking.

Prior to A Time of Rededication and Story-Telling event there was an official presentation and reading of The Resolution of Apology to Native Peoples by Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) and Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA), co-hosts of the day's events and co-authors of the resolution, which took place in the Congressional Cemetery chapel.

The Resolution of Apology to Native Peoples cites seven key acknowledgment and apology points including one that apologizes on behalf of the people of the United States to all Native Peoples for the many instances of violence, maltreatment and neglect inflicted on Native Peoples by citizens of the United States.

President Obama signed the bill on December 19, 2009, in part to acknowledge a long history of official depredations and ill-conceived policies by the federal government regarding Indian tribes and offer an apology to all Native Peoples on behalf of the United States.

A Time of Rededication and Story-Telling, A Time of Service gathering and The Resolution of Apology to Native Peoples presentation was sponsored by The Faith and Politics Institute and National Congress of American Indians along with representatives of the Cherokee, Choctaw, Muscogee (Creek), Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate and Pawnee Nations.

McDermott, Brownback: Apology to Indians
A political odd couple, liberal Washington Rep. Jim McDermott and conservative Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback, joined Wednesday to read a congressional resolution apologizing for "ill-conceived policies" and acts of violence against American Indians......


Kansas senator reads apology to American Indians
By Murray Evans - May 19, 2010

With the leaders of five tribes in attendance, Sen. Sam Brownback of Kansas read a congressional resolution Wednesday apologizing for "ill-conceived policies" and acts of violence against American Indians by the U.S. government......
Cal Nez invited you to "NATIVE AMERICAN CELEBRATION GOLF TOURNAMENT" on Friday, July 23 at 7:00am.

Cal says, "TWO DAYS OF NACIP FUN. Visit and register at:;

JULY 23RD, 2010 - NACIP Golf Tournament - Thanksgiving Point Golf Course

July 24th, 2010 - NACIP Powwow - Liberty Park, Salt Lake City, Utah

Information: 801-688-9297

What: Tournament
Start Time: Friday, July 23 at 7:00am
End Time: Friday, July 23 at 3:00pm
Where: Thanksgiving Point Golf Course - Lehi, Utah
"A name to span a river's past and future"
By Mark Baker - May 20, 2010

She was the last of three presenters to speak, but her words

seemed to stir them the most.

“This area is where my ancestors lived, we believe, since the

world began,” Kalapuya elder Esther Stutzman told members of

the Springfield City Council and others packed into a work

session last month. She was referring to the stories and l

egends passed down from her ancestors whose history goes back

thousands of years in the Willamette Valley.

The Yoncalla resident spoke of their “beautiful long canoes”

that plied what is now the Willamette River, how there were

once at least 15,000 Kalapuya Indians living in the valleys

from the Umpqua River to the Columbia River, and how there

are now believed to be fewer than 500 descendants left.

“And until the community stepped up to honor the (name) Whilamut,

there was no geographic area in the state with the Kalapuya name,”

Stutzman said, referring to the renaming of east Alton Baker Park

as the Whilamut Natural Area in 2002, and the opening of Kalapuya

High School, an alternative high school in Bethel, that fall.

“Our people were overjoyed ... and recognizing that we are still

here and we’re still alive,” Stutzman said.

“I am so much in support of this name,” she said, explaining that

the word Whilamut (pronounced “wheel-a-moot”) means “Where the

river ripples and runs fast” in the mostly lost Kalapuya language.

The visit to the Springfield City Council was the first of four

local pitches by a community advisory group for the Oregon

Department of Transportation’s $187 million Interstate

5/Willamette River bridge project. Their mission: to make sure

the new bridge — scheduled to be completed in 2013 — is

officially named Whilamut Passage. Stutzman is not part of the

committee; rather, she represents Kalapuya descendants in the

naming effort.

The advisory group has spent months mulling over possible names

for the new bridge, and is now seeking formal support from local

government entities for its preferred option — Whilamut Passage

— before officially proposing the name to ODOT. The very public

process contrasts with ODOT’s secrecy in renaming Belt Line Road

to Randy Papé Beltline. That process drew anger from many local

residents earlier this year who complained they were never given

a chance to voice their opinion before ODOT made the name change.

The difference in how ODOT is handling the two namings illustrates

the wide latitude the state has in how it picks names for its


Lost with time

The I-5 bridge over the Willamette River already has a

long-forgotten name. In the fall of 1961, when it opened, it was

deemed the Judkins Point Bridge, according to a Dec. 5, 1961,

Register-Guard story. Gov. Mark Hatfield appeared at a ribbon-cutting for the opening of the $2.3 million bridge, named for the promontory high above it near Hendricks Park that was named for Thomas H. Judkins, who settled on a farm east of the area in 1853.

To get the new name approved, the advisory group is seeking the

support of the cities of Springfield and Eugene, Lane County and

the area’s Metropolitan Planning Committee, a group of public


The approval of the Oregon Transportation Commission is not needed

for the naming; ODOT’s Region 2 office — which covers Lane County

— in Salem will make the decision, ODOT spokesman Patrick Cooney

said. In addition to securing local endorsements, the Whilamut

Passage name also needs to be cleared by the Oregon Geographic

Names Board. And the name must be acceptable to the Confederated

Tribes of the Grand Ronde, to which the Kalapuya descendants belong.

Stutzman says that will not be a problem.

David Sonnichsen, the advisory group member leading the naming

effort and a representative of the citizen planning committee for

the Whilamut Natural Area, said he’s had talks with city of Eugene

officials about making a presentation to the council, but getting

on the agenda is a “slow process.”

Money not the issue

The naming of the bridge would cost virtually nothing, said Dick

Upton, ODOT’s project manager for the bridge replacement. Small

signs at each end of the bridge would include the names

“Willamette River” and “Whilamut Passage Bridge” and cost between

$1,000 and $1,500 for both. That cost would be part of the total

$187 million bridge price tag, ODOT spokesman Rick Little said.

Proponents of the Whilamut Passage naming say it has nothing to do

with money, and everything to do with history and culture.

“The bridge itself was only a small part of a larger project,” said

Douglas Beauchamp, executive director of the Lane Arts Council and

part of the 12-member bridge advisory group that came up with the

Whilamut Passage name. “It’s not just a bridge we’re naming, it’s

a place where a lot of histories and concerns converge.”

The bridge area is a point of convergence for cars, trucks, trains,

boats, bicycles, pedestrians, even those in wheelchairs or floating

on inner tubes, proponents say.

Beauchamp came up with the idea of joining the name Whilamut — from

the 237-acre Whilamut Natural Area that stretches from Alton Baker

Park west of the bridge project to the Springfield side on the east

— with the word “passage” at one of the advisory group’s initial

meetings in 2008.

Whilamut Passage originally was a proposed theme for the entire

bridge project, meant to guide aesthetic and cultural elements.

Since its inception, the project has been deemed much more than a

bridge. A design enhancement panel picked teams of artists,

architects and landscape artists last year to create landscaping,

sound wall designs, median sculptures and an interpretive area that

reflects the Whilamut Passage theme and the Kalapuya story.

All of the local agencies will vote on the name proposal after

hearing the presentations. Springfield has yet to vote, but after

the April 19 work session, a “yes” vote seems more than likely.

“I’m already happy with it,” Councilor Joe Pishioneri said.

“It’s a great tie-in to what’s already down by the river there,”

said Councilor Christine Lundberg, referring to the “Talking Stones”

with Kalapuya words on them in the Whilamut Natural Area.

FBI, area police search for suspects who fired at officers near
Warm Springs Reservation - Two men fired rounds at Warm Springs
police, striking the windshield of this patrol
By Michael Russell - May 20, 2010

The FBI and local law enforcement are pursuing two men suspected of
shooting at police this morning through rugged land and deep ravines
in the Charley Canyon area of Jefferson County, the FBI reported.

The men, who are thought to have fired at both Madras and Warm
Springs officers during separate high-speed chases today, remain
at large in the high-desert countryside near the Warm Springs

No officers were injured in either shooting, but a Warm Springs
patrol car took a rifle bullet in the windshield.

The first incident began about 12:40 a.m. Thursday, when a Madras
officer stopped a white Ford Explorer near Jefferson and Sixth

As the officer approached the vehicle, it took off, heading north
out of the city. Madras officers gave chase, but were quickly fired
upon by a suspect inside the SUV.

The officers were not injured and did not return fire.

About 7:05 a.m., a Warm Springs officer attempted to stop an SUV
matching the description of the earlier vehicle.

But shortly after the officer hit the patrol car's emergency lights,
the SUV took off. Again, shots were fired backward at police from
inside the suspect vehicle.

A rifle bullet struck the Warm Springs patrol car's windshield,
the officer was unharmed and continued the pursuit while radioing
for help.

The officer followed the SUV along Oregon 3 onto Oregon 8,
eventually turning onto Charley Canyon Road.

The suspects continued along the dirt road for several miles, then
abandoned the SUV and fled into the ravines.

The suspects, one with a rifle, the other with a bag, one in a
green shirt with black shorts, the other in a black shirt with
black pants, fired at police as they fled. An officer with a rifle
returned fire.

The FBI, with assistance from the Warm Springs, Madras and Bend
police departments; the Jefferson, Wasco, and Clackamas county
sherriff's offices; and Oregon State Police, set up a perimeter
around the high-desert countryside. Nine homes in the Charley Canyon
area were evacuated.

Police dogs and surveillance planes are in use to help track the
Buffalo Field Campaign
Yellowstone Bison
Update from the Field
May 20, 2010

* Update from the Field
* New! Two Video Clips from BFC
* BFC Looking for Summer Outreach Volunteers
* Buffalo in the News
* Last Words
* Kill Tally
* Useful Links

* Update from the Field

Wild buffalo flee from their oppressors. BFC file photo. Click here for larger

Every time I close my eyes I see buffalo. Quick flashes of their
soft gentle shapes, dark brown, tawny and black, sprinkled with the
tiny red shapes of baby buffalo. Instead of bringing the usual
peace, these images are unpleasant because the buffalo are running,
tails up in distress, fleeing from the relentless harassment that
they have been suffering for weeks now, victims of the unreasonable
intolerance Montana's livestock industry heaps upon them.

As expected, hundreds of these buffalo that were hazed last week,
and in weeks past, returned to their chosen, historic habitat on
lower elevation lands surrounding the western edge of Yellowstone National Park, where the buffalo find greener, more plentiful, pastures. More than 600 buffalo have been harassed outside the Park, and hundreds of buffalo that never even left Yellowstone have been pursued by agents and exiled from their native habitat supposedly in the name of livestock disease management. Yet there are no cattle here. Additionally, there was no agent activity Friday through Monday, so it seems the so-called brucellosis threat doesn't apply on weekends, or after 5pm.

This baby and its family have been relentlessly harassed this and last week by DOL
agents, such as Shane Grube above. BFC file photo.

Buffalo have been forced to travel for many many miles - upwards of
20 - nonstop, without rest. Perhaps a quarter of these buffalo are
newborn calves, and scores of them pregnant mothers who have yet to
give birth, or who are in labor at the time of the haze. As I write, patrols are reporting that they've spotted a mama buffalo with a wet calf, brand new to the world and about to experience the dark side of the human race. They are being forced to travel at unnatural distances and speeds that a mother buffalo would never ask her baby to cover under natural circumstances. Inexorable government forces push them over terrain and swollen waterways difficult to negotiate under fear, as they are pursued by federally-funded cowfolks on horseback, federal, state and county law enforcement, and the Montana Department of Livestock's helicopter. It is heart-wrenching to see these buffalo tormented so, little babies doing everything they can to keep up with mom, no matter how far or how fast; moms trying to shelter their babies from harm, entire family groups trying to escape the yelling predators in cowboy hats and the metal bird that threatens to land upon their backs and devour them. And this, so say the grinning agents, is the "kinder alternative" to slaughter that bison advocates are supposed to be thankful for.
DOL and Park Service cooperatively harass America's last wild buffalo on Gallatin
National Forest. BFC file photo. Click here for larger image.

Hazing this week began along the south side of the Madison River, in
Gallatin National Forest, targeting buffalo that approached lands
within their migration corridor that are currently unavailable to
them because one landowner leases his land to cattle for a few short
months. The DOL's selfish intolerance deprives the public and
private landowners who want the buffalo around, including businesses
such as the Bar N Ranch, of the presence of native wild buffalo. If
they don't get permission from the landowners, the DOL will trespass
with assumed authority anyway. This particular south side haze
pushed buffalo more than 10 miles and lasted an incredibly long time
for the distance it went, not because of a slow pace but because the

buffalo kept trying to lose the agents. Ultimately, the buffalo were
moved out of Gallatin National Forest and into Yellowstone, and
then returned on their own. Today, the agents are out there again
hazing small family groups with calves through the cattle-free
public lands of the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem.

Buffalo being hazed off the Galanis property by the DOL's helicopter. BFC file
photo. Click here for larger image.

Yesterday, the DOL, Yellowstone National Park, Gallatin National
Forest and Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks attacked cattle-free
Horse Butte once again. Horsemen and helicopter scouted the Butte's public lands. The DOL's federally-funded helicopter flew over the grizzly bear closure area, obviously disturbing the griz, but didn't find too many buffalo on the public land, other than one small group near an area closed to all human activity to protect bald eagles, which should be a safe zone for buffalo. In the DOL's outrageous omnipotence they were allowed to enter the eagle closure on horseback to chase them out, an area where you and I aren't even allowed to step foot. Simultaneously, an additional hazing operation - assisted by the DOL's helicopter that continued to fly back and forth between hazing operations, wasting gallons of fuel and thousands of taxpayer dollars - was ongoing deep inside Yellowstone National Park, yet again pushing exhausted buffalo deeper into the Park where there is very little grass for them to eat right now. The agencies use the tactic of moving buffalo already in the Park to other locations in order to clear areas occupied by buffalo for those being hazed off of habitat outside the Park's boundaries. Tax dollars at work for the livestock industry!

This is another group hazed off the Galanis property. The mom has an injured back
left leg which gave her trouble even when walking at her own pace, and she has a
calf to care for. The young bull also had an injury, but all were forced to run
even through it was extremely painful and difficult. BFC file photo. Click here
for larger image.

Of the more than 100 buffalo hazed off of Horse Butte yesterday,
most of them were on private lands within
Yellowstone Village and the Galanis property, places where the
buffalo are welcome, but the buffalo harassing agents are not.
Horsemen and helicopter appeared in the housing area and proceeded
to trespass. They caused extreme chaos, flying the helicopter over
the neighborhood, stampeding buffalo through people's yards,
swooping low over the Galanis' pastures to scare buffalo into the
housing area, where agent riders waited. Residents and wildlife
alike were disturbed and endangered by the operation's shattering
of the morning's tranquility. The riders were escorted by the
swirling lights, guns and trucks of law enforcement who have been
increasingly aggressive, and giving out frivolous orders in failed
attempts to prevent Buffalo Field Campaign from documenting their
actions. The community was watching with us. Quite a few very
upset residents came out of their homes to have a word with the
DOL, expressing their anger at the situation and underscoring the
absolute wastefulness of such operations.

Today, there is more of the same happening on Gallatin National
Forest and in Yellowstone National Park, and it will continue
tomorrow and probably through next week as well. As I write,
patrols in the field have reported that the DOL have again entered
the buffalo-friendly lands of the Bar N Ranch to haze buffalo,
and they have pushed them onto Gallatin National Forest and eastward
towards Yellowstone. One of our patrols reported that the
helicopter spotted two moms and two calves and it attempted to
haze them, but lost them in the woods. A DOL rider came in to
assist, running the buffalo at a full gallop through the deep
woods teeming with dead-fall, treacherous ground for buffalo to
have to run through, especially little babies.

Law enforcement this week and last has also become increasingly
aggressive, making up extreme excuses to try and keep us from
documenting. They don't want the world to see what they are doing. They know that the vigilent eyes of Buffalo Field Campaign are sharing these events with everyone, and that the world is watching.
Buffalo hazed off Gallatin National Forest, accross Highway 191, towards
the boundary of Yellowstone National Park. Photo by Mike Friberg. Click here f
or larger image.

A message to the DOL: your dominion over America's last wild
buffalo, over Yellowstone National Park, over Gallatin National
Forest, over Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks, over the migratory
movement of prehistoric native wildlife, over state, federal,
tribal, and county officials, over the media and the propaganda
machine, over private property owners, over the citizens of this
state and this country--like all greedy empires--is soon to fall
and the buffalo will take back the lands you have stolen from them. It's only a matter of time.

Friends of the buffalo, please take action by contacting your
members of Congress in the House and Senate and urging them to
stop the harassment and slaughter of America's last wild bison
population left in the United States! Endless pressure, endlessly
applied is going to make the difference.

Write your Senator

Write your House Representative


* New! Two Video Clips from BFC

Buffalo Field Campaign has completed two new video clips! One is
about the birth of the buffalo that we were very lucky to witness
and the completion of our first "off-fence, de-fence" project.
The other is about BFC helping buffalo by warning motorists of
their presence on the highways. Please check out the videos and
help share the buffalo's story and take action on their behalf.
Thank you!

Born Between a Fence and a Road
On the Road

BFC extends our thanks to Tony for helping make these video clips

* BFC Looking for Summer Outreach Volunteers

Buffalo Field Campaign still has a few openings for summer education
and outreach volunteers. If you can commit to spending three weeks
with us, most of which will be spent inside be grandeur of Grand
Teton and Yellowstone National Parks, to help educate Park visitors
about what's happening to America's last wild buffalo, please get
in touch! Drop a line to or
call 406-646-0070 with questions or to apply. Thank you!

* Buffalo in the News

Plight of the Bison (Part I)
Powell Tribune, Wyoming

Bison hazing triggers locked horns, conflict (Part II)
Powell Tribune, Wyoming

Why the buffalo can't roam
Go Earth Friendly Now

Benefiting Buffalo
Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Montana

Hazed & Confused
Helena Independent Record, Montana

Annual Yellowstone bison rounded up near completion

* Last Words

"As we all know, bison are nomadic. They always roam," he said.
"It is a bit early in the season for spring in the west side of
the park. Only the bison will be able to tell us if there is
really adequate forage."

~ Al Nash, Spokesman for Yellowstone National Park, in a comment
to the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, 5/14/10

Do you have submissions for Last Words? Send them to Thank you all for the poems, songs
and stories you have been sending; you'll see them here!

* Kill Tally

AMERICAN BUFFALO ELIMINATED from the last wild population in the
2009-2010 Total: 6

2009-2010 Slaughter: 0
2009-2010 Hunt: 4
2009-2010 Quarantine: 0
2009-2010 Shot by Agents: 2*
2009-2010 Highway Mortality: 0
*Two bulls that were drugged by APHIS on 5/4/10 were shot by DOL
later that evening.

2008-2009 Total: 22
2007-2008 Total: 1,631
Total Since 2000: 3,708*
*includes lethal government action, quarantine, hunts, highway

Media & Outreach
Buffalo Field Campaign
P.O. Box 957
West Yellowstone, MT 59758

BFC is the only group working in the field every day
in defense of the last wild buffalo population in the U.S.


Join Buffalo Field Campaign -- It's Free!

Take Action!
May 12 National Day of Action -- Rallies demand: Seize BP!

The momentum of the Seize BP campaign is growing each day. As BP executives hedge at Congressional hearings, saying they'll pay only "legitimate" damage claims for the oil disaster they caused, people across the United States came out in protest. Yesterday, May 12, was a National Day of Action to Seize BP. Demonstrations happened at BP offices, gas stations and other places in over 20 cities and towns, organized by Seize BP.

"Working people on the Gulf Coast are now struggling to survive, while BP brings in $93 million in profit each day," said Sarah Sloan, spokesperson of Seize BP. "Unless we build a movement around the demand to seize BP's assets, they will pay only a fraction of what they owe. Justice demands that BP's assets be seized so that those who were negatively impacted by the oil spill are fairly compensated."


Click here for brief reports and video from some of the May 12 actions across the country.

Read the media coverage of the Seize BP campaign and the May 12 National Day of Action.

Possibly the greatest
disaster in U.S. history--
Who will pay the price?

A Seize BP delegation speaks to William Mitchell Granger in Venice, Louisiana. William has been a shrimper for 30 years.

Reports from the Gulf of Mexico:

May 14: Environmental effects largely unknown

May 11: Dead in the water


No cap on Big Oil liability

Personalize the subject and text of the message on the right with your own words, if you wish.
Complete the form below with your information.
Click the Send Message button to send your letter to these decision makers:
Your Senators
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This is a hard-copy letter to print out and send via snail mail.
It will get the MOST attention if you do BOTH:
Sign the Petition and send the letter.

Seize BP: Campaign Statement and Petition

The government of the United States must seize BP and freeze its assets, and place those funds in trust to begin providing immediate relief to the working people throughout the Gulf states whose jobs, communities, homes and businesses are being harmed or destroyed by the criminally negligent actions of the CEO, Board of Directors and senior management of BP.

Take action now! Sign the Seize BP petition to demand the seizure of BP!

200,000 gallons of oil a day, or more, are gushing into the Gulf of Mexico with the flow of oil growing. The poisonous devastation to human beings, wildlife, natural habitat and fragile ecosystems will go on for decades. It constitutes an act of environmental violence, the consequences of which will be catastrophic.

BP's Unmitigated Greed

This was a manufactured disaster. It was neither an "Act of God" nor Nature that caused this devastation, but rather the unmitigated greed of Big Oil's most powerful executives in their reckless search for ever-greater profits.

Under BP's CEO Tony Hayward's aggressive leadership, BP made a record $5.6 billion in pure profits just in the first three months of 2010. BP made $163 billion in profits from 2001-09. It has a long history of safety violations and slap-on-the-wrist fines.

BP's Materially False and Misleading Statements

BP filed a 52-page exploration plan and environmental impact analysis with the U.S. Department of the Interior's Minerals Management Service for the Deepwater Horizon well, dated February 2009, which repeatedly assured the government that it was "unlikely that an accidental surface or subsurface oil spill would occur from the proposed activities." In the filing, BP stated over and over that it was unlikely for an accident to occur that would lead to a giant crude oil spill causing serious damage to beaches, mammals and fisheries and that as such it did not require a response plan for such an event.

BP's executives are thus either guilty of making materially false statements to the government to obtain the license, of consciously misleading a government that was all too ready to be misled, and/or they are guilty of criminal negligence. At a bare minimum, their representations constitute gross negligence. Whichever the case, BP must be held accountable for its criminal actions that have harmed so many.

Protecting BP's Super-Profits

BP executives are banking that they can ride out the storm of bad publicity and still come out far ahead in terms of the billions in profit that BP will pocket. In 1990, in response to the Exxon Valdez disaster, Congress passed and President Bush signed into law the Oil Pollution Act, which immunizes oil companies for the damages they cause beyond immediate cleanup costs.

Under the Oil Pollution Act, oil companies are responsible for oil removal and cleanup costs for massive spills, and their liability for all other forms of damages is capped at $75 million-a pittance for a company that made $5.6 billion in profits in just the last three months, and is expected to make $23 billion in pure profit this year. Some in Congress suggest the cap should be set at $10 billion, still less than the potential cost of this devastation-but why should the oil companies have any immunity from responsibility for the damage they cause?

The Oil Pollution Act is an outrage, and it will be used by BP to keep on doing business as usual.

People are up in arms because thousands of workers who have lost their jobs and livelihoods as a result of BP's actions have to wait in line to compete for lower wage and hazardous clean-up jobs from BP. BP's multi-millionaire executives are not asked to sacrifice one penny while working people have to plead for clean-up jobs.

Take Action Now

It is imperative that the government seize BP's assets now for their criminal negligence and begin providing immediate relief for the immense suffering and harm they have caused.

Contributed by Sister:
Firefly (Lilia Adecer Cajilog)
Tawo Seed Carrier
POB 1456
South Pasadena, CA 91031

Shell investors show concern over tar sands

At Shell's AGM on 18 May, 11% of shareholders who voted on the tar sands resolution chose not to back the management, either by supporting the resolution or abstaining from voting - traditionally a way of showing concern on an issue.

WWF supported a resolution calling on Shell to report on all the risks associated with its tar sands projects - a third of its oil reserves. Our supporters were among the 6,000 people who wrote to their pension providers and other large Shell shareholders asking them to back the resolution at this year's AGM.

WWF's head of campaigns, Colin Butfield, says: "Eleven per cent of the vote at the AGM is a significant result for a shareholder resolution focused on environmental and social risk.

"It clearly shows concern among some investors about the financial risks associated with the tar sands development.

"In light of this - and growing concerns worldwide about other risky activities like deepwater drilling - oil companies like Shell need to disclose much more information about the risks they are taking."

Oil companies need to come clean on carbon
Tar sands production releases on average three times more carbon pollution than conventional oil.

We're campaigning for Mandatory Carbon Disclosure for large and publicly owned companies. This will make sure investors have detailed and comparable information about companies' carbon emissions - and about the risks and costs that will result from them.

You can.

Find out more about our campaign to halt the Canadian tar sands
See why we need to prevent oil exploration in the Arctic

Oil Spill May Spell Disaster for Atakapa Indian Tribe
By Janelle Nanos - May 20, 2010

Among the many terrible outcomes that we're just starting to see stem from the Deep Horizon oil spill, perhaps "cultural genocide" is one of the most devastating. The Audobon Society's blog, The Perch, reports that livelihood of the Atakapa tribe, a small group of American Indian families living at the mouth of the Mississippi in a village only accessible by boat, is now threatened. Writer Justin Nobel explains:

This is Grand Bayou Village, home to the Atakapa-Ishak Indians, a dark-skinned tribe that once occupied southeast Texas and south Louisiana but now occupies only this community. There are ten families left, living mostly off the oysters, shrimp and fish they draw from the marshes, their homes only reachable by boat. This is the edge of the edge.

The Atakapa have survived smallpox, Manifest Destiny and a millennium of hurricanes, but the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, which represents a complete unknown, is the scariest threat of all, says Rosina Philippe, the tribe's de facto matriarch. Hundreds of years ago her tribe was driven from the lakeshores, river valleys and coasts they inhabited to this remote spindle of marsh. The ecosystem here is in jeopardy, but there is literally nowhere left to go. "We're looking at the potential for cultural genocide," said Philippe.

Genetically modified crops failing worldwide

The Green Revolution -- a misleading name applied by PR firms to the onset of globalized, chemical-intensive, industrial agriculture that is anything but friendly to the environment -- is coming unraveled around the world, bringing devastation to farmers from the plains of China to the plains of America.


GM Watch
Supremely Important: Genetically Engineered Crops
Ben Lilliston
OtherWords, 17 May 2010

*More questions are being raised about the long-term impact of these crops on the environment.

Fifteen years after farmers and agribusinesses began planting genetically engineered crops in our nation's fields, we still know very little about their long-term environmental, economic, and social consequences.

The Supreme Court is finally getting involved. It recently heard a case involving Monsanto's genetically engineered (GE) alfalfa, which is resistant to the herbicide Roundup. Farmers, including many that use pesticides and herbicides and others that don't, asked that approval for this variety of alfalfa be blocked.

They argued that the Department of Agriculture hasn't completed a required environmental impact statement yet. Farmers fear that GE alfalfa will cross-pollinate with conventional or organic alfalfa that hasn't been engineered. Organic certification prohibits genetically engineered crops entirely. What's more, this kind of contamination could block exports to many other countries, particularly countries within the European Union, who have not approved biotech crops.

The Supreme Court is expected to deliver its decision this summer. However it rules, more questions are being raised about the long-term impact of these crops on the environment.

In April, the National Research Council, which is part of the National Academy of Sciences, published the first research report on how genetically engineered crops affect U.S. farmers. These researchers found there has been a rapid rise in weeds resistant to the herbicide Roundup (so-called superweeds) that could rapidly undercut any environmental or economic benefits of GE crops. Roundup-resistant crops allow farmers to kill weeds with the herbicide without destroying their crop.

To date, at least nine species of weeds in the U.S. have developed resistance to Roundup since genetically engineered crops were introduced. The other primary type of GE seed is designed to produce Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), a bacteria deadly to insect pests. Thus far, two types of insects have developed resistance to Bt. The loss of effectiveness of Roundup and Bt could lead to increased use of more toxic and persistent herbicides.

Greater scrutiny is long overdue. Over 80 percent of corn, soybeans, and cotton grown in the U.S. are already coming from genetically engineered seeds. But the economic stakes are equally troubling. Only a few companies control this industry. Monsanto is already under a Justice Department investigation regarding the pricing of its genetically engineered soybeans. The company has sued more than 100 farmers, alleging patent violations. And as the Supreme Court case reveals, the government and the biotech industry have overlooked concerns of farmers who have chosen not to grow these crops for much of the last 15 years.

The NRC reported that there's little to no scientific literature on how genetically engineered crops affect farmers who choose not to use them, or on the larger agriculture community itself. Why, after 15 years, do we have so little scientific data on these crops? A letter sent to the Environmental Protection Agency last year from 26 leading entomologists (scientists who study insects) gives a clue. The entomologists argued that they were prevented from doing independent research on genetically engineered crops because of technology agreements Monsanto and other seed companies have established. The agreements bar research that isn't approved by the companies.

And where are the regulators? When the regulatory framework for genetically engineered crops was first put in place in the early 1990s, regulators in George H.W. Bush's administration--under heavy lobbying from the biotech industry--determined that these crops were no different than any other crop and hence required no special pre-market testing. They simply squeezed genetically engineered crops into the existing regulatory framework.

Since then, Bill Clinton's, George W. Bush's and Barack Obama's administrations have consistently dodged more rigorous regulation of these crops. Congress has stayed out of the issue completely. Lawmakers haven't passed a single bill to strengthen the regulation of these largely untested crops. It's not surprising that this regulatory and research vacuum on genetically engineered crops has led to a series of court challenges. Even Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has admitted that "our rules and regulations have to be modernized."

But we'll need more than legal rulings to answer 15 years worth of questions about the effects of genetically engineered crops on our nation's fields and farming communities.

Ben Lilliston is the communications director at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy and the co-author of the book Genetically Engineered Foods: A Self-Defense Guide for Consumers.


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Court Ruling Favors Corporate Agribusiness over Salmon and Fishermen‏

dan does good work sacramento way,
all wanting keeping on his mail list
please make it be known.

On 5/19/10, Dan Bacher wrote:
“I was extremely disappointed by Wanger’s ruling,” said Zeke Grader, executive director of the Pacific Federation of Fishermen's Associations (PCFFA), one of the plaintiffs in the case. “It’s as if fish and fishing jobs and communities don’t count.”

Court Ruling Favors Corporate Agribusiness over Salmon and Fishermen

by Dan Bacher

Federal Judge Oliver Wanger issued a ruling this morning challenging the federal biological opinion protecting Sacramento River chinook salmon, Central Valley steelhead, green sturgeon and southern resident killer whales.

Judge Wanger, known for his pro-agribusiness bias, claimed that the Delta Mendota Water Authority and Westlands Water District have, “by a preponderance of evidence, shown legal and equitable grounds for injunctive relief.”

Environmental, fishing and tribal groups said the ruling was bad news for collapsing populations of salmon and other species and the coastal and inland communities that depend on healthy fisheries, while agribusiness advocates celebrated the ruling as a victory of "farmers over fish."

“We are disappointed by today's ruling, which is bad news for anyone who cares about California's wild salmon,” said Doug Obegi, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) attorney, on his blog ( “However, we will continue to urge the Court to uphold these protections, as they are critical to protecting California’s wild salmon, the fishing and Tribal communities that depend on them and the health of the Bay-Delta estuary, which supplies drinking water to millions of Californians.”

Obegi said that Judge Wanger found on a preliminary basis that the federal agencies had not strictly adhered to all of the necessary procedures in the biological opinion that protects salmon, steelhead, sturgeon and orcas from the impacts of the State Water Project (SWP) and the federal Central Valley Project (CVP).

“The Court declined to issue the injunction waiving the protections of the biological opinion, finding that no alternative measure had been offered that would adequately protect the species, and has ordered a hearing tomorrow to discuss how to proceed,” said Obegi. “The Court recognized that pumping restrictions are necessary to avoid jeopardizing the continued existence of wild California salmon and steelhead."

In its ruling, the Court found that unrestricted pumping, as some of the plaintiffs had proposed, could cause “irreparable harm” to California's wild salmon and steelhead, as well as the fishing and tribal communities that depend on healthy salmon runs, according to Obegi.

Wanger recently concluded "the economic pain and hardship has been no less to the fishing industry that relies on salmon than has been the economic consequence to the Central Valley agricultural community.”

In April, the court also recognized the significant harm to Winnemem Wintu Tribe and its spiritual and cultural foundations, finding that these interests are irreparable and protected, and that there are extreme hardships on all sides.

“However, out of the numerous actions and requirements in the nearly 800 page biological opinion, the Court concluded that specific numeric flow restrictions in two of the biological opinion's protective measures were not adequately explained by the agency,” Obegi noted. "The Court found that it could not conclude if these measures 'are adequately protective, too protective, or not protective enough.'"

The Court ordered a hearing tomorrow - and possibly additional hearings in the future - to determine if "some other level of pumping levels would be safe for the species,” said Obegi.

Attorneys from the Pacific Legal Foundation, a right wing property rights group, applauded Federal Judge Oliver Wanger’s issuance of a preliminary injunction against a federal regulatory action that the organization claims has “contributed to devastating water cutbacks for farms and communities in Central and Southern California.”

PLF has been representing some San Joaquin Valley growers that the organization contends "have been hard-hit by the federally imposed water cutbacks." The case is Stewart & Jasper v. Salazar.

“Judge Wanger recognized that federal regulators had not taken account of how water cutoffs could damage the human environment, and they did not use the best available science,” said PLF attorney Brandon Middleton.

“This is a powerful, excellent ruling,” said Middleton. “The judge is telling the feds that they can’t ignore the harsh human and environmental impacts of cutting off water to farms, workers, businesses, and communities. The judge is also saying the feds can’t get away with using slippery science to justify environmental restrictions that rob communities of their lifeblood – water.”

Members of commercial and recreational fishing groups are appalled that the judge favored corporate agribusiness and junior water rights holders over fish and fishermen in his ruling.

“I was extremely disappointed by Wanger’s ruling,” said Zeke Grader, executive director of the Pacific Federation of Fishermen's’ Associations (PCFFA), one of the plaintiffs in the case. “It’s as if fish and fishing jobs and communities don’t count.”

However, Glen Spain, the Northwest Director of the PCFFA, noted what the Judge is actually going to do about his ruling - whether to remand back to the agencies to fix it but leave the BiOp intact, cancel those measures entirely, or mix and match, putting the flows under his specific direction in the interim - remains to be seen after the additional hearing tomorrow on just that issue of relief.

“Also, this ruling affects only a small subset of all the biological opinion, albeit some of the most important ones for maintaining Delta flows,” said Spain, “so this setback is not the end of the struggle to restore collapsing salmon populations by any means.”

Earthjustice Attorneys Erin Tovin and Mike Sherwood, who received legal assistance from NRDC attorneys, are the lead attorneys in this case.

To read a copy of the decision, go to:


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Elders of 4 Colors 4 Directions
Hitec Aztec Collaborations/FM Global

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, May 19, 2010
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District Court to Hear Arguments Over Sewage Effluent Snowmaking Scheme on Peaks
Concerned Citizens Prepare Events to Protect Public Health

Phoenix, AZ—At 1:30 p.m. (MST-AZ) on Monday, June 14th a U.S. District Court Judge will hear oral arguments in a lawsuit challenging the proposed use of treated sewage effluent on the San Francisco Peaks located in Northern Arizona. This case addresses whether or not a private, for-profit business, Arizona Snowbowl Resort Limited Partnership (ASR), which operates on public land managed by the United States Forest Service (USFS), will be permitted to make fake snow using treated sewage water. The current legal challenge has forced the ski business to agree not to begin development.
The case known as The Save the Peaks Coalition, et al. v. U.S. Forest Service will be heard before Honorable Judge Mary H. Murguia. The suit asserts, among other things, that the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) prepared by the USFS ignores the possibility of human ingestion of snow made from treated sewage effluent.
According to Howard Shanker, attorney for the Save the Peaks Coalition and the other plaintiffs, "The Forest Service failed to adequately consider the impacts of potential human ingestion of snow made from reclaimed sewer water as required by applicable law. Our government should not be approving such projects without some sort of understanding of the anticipated impacts. By approving treated sewage effluent for snow making without adequate analysis, the government essentially turns the ski area into a test facility with our children as the laboratory rats. That is unconscionable." Mr. Shanker, a former congressional candidate in Arizona Congressional District 1, represented a number of tribes and environmental organizations in prior litigation over Snowbowl's proposed expansion and threatened use of treated sewage effluent.
Arizona Department of Environmental Quality regulations allow A+ class treated sewer water to contain fecal matter in three out of seven daily samples (R18-11-303 2a). Moreover, studies done by Dr. Catherine Propper, Professor of Biological Sciences at Northern Arizona University, on this same treated sewer water have concluded the waste water contains pharmaceuticals, hormones, endocrine disruptors, industrial pollutants like pesticides and herbicides, and narcotics. Additionally, according to biologist Dr. Paul Torrence the treated sewage effluent may also contain antibiotics, such as triclosan and triclocarban which can break down into bio-accumulating cancerous dioxins when exposed to the high altitude sunlight of the peaks. There have also been documented cases of treated sewage released into the Colorado river that have caused numerous outbreaks of norovirus among Grand Canyon rafters. Plaintiffs involved in this ongoing lawsuit have consistently insisted that the USFS take a hard look at what might happen to the people when they come in contact with or ingest snow made from treated sewage effluent. Under the National Environmental Policy Act, the USFS is obligated to consider these types of potential impacts on the quality of the human environment. In 2007 a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court found that the USFS failed to adequately consider the possibility of human ingestion of snow made from treated sewage effluent. In Judge William Fletcher's opinion, he concludes "the FEIS does not contain a reasonably thorough discussion of the risks posed by possible human ingestion of artificial snow made from treated sewage effluent, and does not articulate why such discussion is unnecessary." The holding of the three-judge panel was later overturned on a technicality by an en banc panel of the Ninth Circuit.
Despite these public health threats and widespread public opposition to ASR's proposed development, the City of Flagstaff maintains a contract to sell up to 180 million gallons of treated sewage to ARS. Arizona Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl have also attempted to pressure the USFS to move the plans forward. McCain even threatened to roadblock Obama appointees to the Department of Agriculture if ASR was not allowed to begin construction for snowmaking with reclaimed sewer water immediately.
"It's disturbing to know that our elected officials care more about a single for profit business' interests than public health, ecological integrity, and religious freedom" said Berta Benally, a plaintiff in the case and a volunteer supporter of the Save the Peaks Coalition. Berta Benally continued, "These politicians are completely disconnected from our community. Would they endanger their own children's health by putting them at risk of being immersed in fake snow made from recycled sewage?"
Even Arizona Congresswoman (CD1) Anne Kirkpatrick's endorsement of using subsidized taxpayer funds to divert scarce freshwater resources toward snowmaking has come under criticism from local environmental groups and Indigenous Nations.
"The City of Flagstaff is trying desperately to find a new water source based on projections that there will not be enough fresh water to sustain us by 2050. I wonder if it is smart choice for Representative Kirkpatrick to subsidize the theft of clean drinking water from our grandchildren's mouths" said Avi Henn, Graduate Student in Environmental Sciences at NAU.
Volunteer supporters of the Save the Peaks Coalition are organizing a caravan from Northern Arizona, and rally and march at the Sandra Day O'Conner Federal Court House in Phoenix on June 14th.
"We want to build public awareness and participation in the protection of public health and ecological integrity of the Holy San Francisco Peaks" stated Alberta Nells, a volunteer supporter of the Save the Peaks Coalition. "We are working with local environmental groups, Indigenous Nations and concerned citizens to promote a unified voice for environmental justice, cultural survival and sacred sites." The San Francisco Peaks are held holy by more than 13 Indigenous Nations from throughout the Southwestern United States.
For a full background, legal documents, photos, and further information on the Save the Peaks Coalition please visit:


DHS Beat Him Up, Native American Says
By Elizabeth Banicki - May 20, 2010

SAN DIEGO (CN) - A Native American says Border Patrol agents in Arizona forced him out of his car at gunpoint and beat him while he pleaded for medical attention for his mother, whom he believed had suffered a heart attack. The attack came, ironically, after a checkpoint at an Indian village, according to the federal complaint.
In his pro se federal complaint, Michael Mattia of San Diego says he was driving on Arizona Highway 85 when his mother "began having serious chest pains and difficulty breathing."
Mattia says headed for a hospital but was stopped at a checkpoint by Homeland Security agents near the village of Chuichi on Oct. 8, 2008.
Mattia says he told an agent that his mother needed immediate medical attention, "but the guard refused to believe him."
"Plaintiff's mother did not appear to be breathing and Border Patrol agents refused to act reasonably in the face of this life-threatening emergency," Mattia says.
"Finally plaintiff told them to follow him to the hospital and left; no border agents followed him," according to the complaint.
Mattia says he called 911 for an ambulance, but soon was blocked by agents who had laid down a spike strip and drawn their guns.
Mattia says he put his hands up and got out of his car, but the agents beat him, "kicking him in the ribs and punching him, while an agent knelt on his back."
He says the agents dragged him across the ground, injuring his left shoulder, then slammed against a patrol car.
All the while, Mattia says, he pleaded for the agents to get his mother medical attention, which she received "far, far later."
Mattia says he was detained without being charged, and eventually was released, but "his car was torn apart and damaged" by the agents. His mother survived.
Mattia seeks damages for battery, emotional distress, false imprisonment and destruction of personal property. He says he filed a claim for damages, and it was denied.

Someone outta make being a blonde politician a criminal offense! Maybe we all write her ask, "are you happy now?"

Teresa Anahuy


Aim Santa Barbara sent a message to the members of American Indian Movement Santa Barbara.

Aim Santa BarbaraMay 10, 2010 at 9:45pm
Subject: March n Demonstration planned in Rapid City South Dakota 6/1/2010!/event.php?eid=126163417397868

Shooting protest march planned

A march to protest the shooting death of Christopher J. Capps of Rapid City, an Oglala Lakota, has been scheduled for 1p.m. Tuesday, June 1, in Rapid City.

Capps was shot to death on May 2 by Pennington County Sheriff’s deputy Dave Olson in an open field behind Sunnyside Mobile Home Community, just north of Rapid City.

In addition, the march will protest the “inadequate news coverage” of the mainstream media in Rapid City, according to James Swan of Rapid City. Sponsored by the United Urban Warrior Society, the march will begin at Mother Butler Center and follow a route to the Rapid City Journal, then with turnaround back up 5th Avenue to the school district administration building before returning to Mother Butler Center.

The protest is expected to end with a community feed at 6 p.m. at Mother Butler Center, according to Swan, who said that in addition to protesters, the sponsor invites drum groups, honor guards and flag carriers.

Swan is encouraging donations of cash and food for the march and the feed.

Those planning to participate can contact Swan at: or at (605) 381-8612.

Sent from Brother David Kitchen (


The Hypocrisy of Anti-Immigration in Arizona
By Hwaa Irfan

Jan Brewer, Governor of Arizona who is about to sign the Anti-Migrant Law SB 1070, speaks of Arizona as a place that rose from the ocean floor spouting hot lava from its volcanos. Canyons were carved out by former rivers and as millions of years passed the land formed along with desertification to provide a home for the Hopi and Navajo Indians today. What Brewer means by “today” can surely not be in the same breath as the rest of the Arizona population that migrated there. Yes, I say “migrated” though other terms can easily be employed when looking at the earliest settlements by non-natives.
Those that migrated there did not change the place names given by the Native Americans such as “Ear of the Wind Arch”, and “Spider Web Arch” albeit the English equivalent; and the Native Americans were more than just the Hopi and Navajo when it comes to Arizona. They include:
• The Apache (Navajo)
• The Maricopas
• The Pimas
• The Papagos
• The Yumas
• The Mohaves
• The Wallapais
• The Chiricahuas
• The Havasupais
• The Hohokam
• The Tohono O’odham Nation
• The Yavapai
• The Hopi
Federally, there is recognition of 21 tribes/clans consisting of 250,000 Native Americans according to the 2000 census living on 24 Indian Reservations.
Before the First Migrants
Before Native Americans were bundled off to live on Reservations – away from the land and life they had known, and separated from the rest of the incoming population/migrants from beyond the sea, life was very different. The Navajo were nomads, living off the land as they roamed. Albeit plentiful in fish, the two things the Navajo never ate was fish or pork. In the winter, their camps could be found on the highlands, and near the rivers in the scorching summer sun. Their homes were of brush, with the earth scooped out beneath for the domestic floor. When they moved camp, they burned their temporary homes. For food they lived on berries, nuts, fruits from various trees, mesquite beans, acorns, the fruit of the giant cacti/yucca, and calves as well as horse meat. There life was self sustaining not desiring more than they needed. There are reports of them being selfish, but they were generous with food.
There was no hierarchical structure, as all members with the clan were considered the same, but like in most things, there was division of labor, with councils of men, and the chief being male. Women built the homes each time they moved.
When it came to marriage, they married outside of the clan, never allowing marriage to near second cousin. A man interested in marrying a young girl/woman, as in Islam, approached the parents. Polygny was not unusual. Women had the privilege of women’s time when menstruating, and would keep the company of other women. This was her time to not be imbalanced by the presence of men. Boys and girls grew up in without having to obey, and like the children of Nubia, both had the kind of freedom where they never had to obey.
Amongst the Hopi, every village is an autonomous government. Given the inability of democracy to facilitate the needs of “all of the people”, maybe this form of governance argued for by many anti-federalists is the natural way. Their language is ancient (Aztec) in origin, and their belief system is deep-rooted in religion which transpires as a deep reverence for all things. They are ancestors of the Anasazi who have a complete belief system which covers all things in life to the extent that they have a ceremonial calendar.
They believed in One Supreme Being Who is the invisible Source of everything.
The Hopis traditionally were farmers, but the force of progress has undermined this self sustaining lifestyle towards cash for work. Part of their contribution to humanity’s food supply is the corn of which they grew 24 varieties. They hunted wild mammoth until they became extinct, and then bison, The Hopi home is made of stone and mud, standing several stories high, this may be the most likelihood origin of the American skyscraper. Unlike American homes, the basement, the kiva, is a place of worship and religious ceremony blessing the home above.
Like the traditional societal structure of the Nubia of Upper Egypt and Sudan, the structure was matrilineal. The nature of commitment from a man to a woman as a stage towards marriage is most honorable, as the groom and his male relatives weave the bridal costume, and the bride to be grinds corn for three days for her groom. When a man marries, the offspring become members of the wife’s clan.
These are but two examples missing from a much wider debate over migration.
From Native American Land to U.S. Land
From life before the first migrants, the rude awakening took the form of the following as described by current Governor of Arizona, Jan Brewer:
“Spaniards sent exploration parties northward from Mexico. The first was a Franciscan priest named Marcos de Niza, who entered the territory in 1539. Other Spanish missionaries followed and established missions to bring Christianity to the Indians [see the Doctrine of Discovery]. Tumacacori Mission, north of Nogales, was founded by Padre Kino at the center of an Indian settlement”.
“After Kino’s death, Spanish development of this area came to a halt. In 1821 Mexico declared its independence from Spain and eventually went to war with the United States. This war ended in 1848, and the land north of the Gila River became United States territory. In 1853 the rest of the area was acquired by the Gadsden Purchase”
There was an open invitation to settlers, not unlike the Zionist invitation to settlers in Palestine. The response involved over 50,000 miners seeking to make it rich overnight because of the abundance of gold, silver, and copper. After Mexican independence won from Spain in 1822, Arizona became a part of the Mexican State of Vieja California under the Treaty of Cordoba in response to the War of Independence by Mexico.
In 1846, the ideology of “Manifest Destiny” or the “Doctrine of Discovery” America initiated the American-Mexican War. In 1848, Mexico was forced under the The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo to hand over its land to America, under the condition that America paid Mexico $15 million in compensation. America was still haggling over desired, land, and it was not until the Gadsden Purchase/Treaty of La Mesilla for $10 million . After the great American Civil War, Anglo-Americans feared the influence and political clout of Mexican-Americans, so the capital of Arizona remained fluid moving from Tucson, Fort-Whipple, Prescott, and then finally to Phoenix.
With the advent of the 1900s, the Republicans sought to keep Arizona American, by making it a part of the Union under New Mexico. It was not until 1912 that Arizona became the 48th state. World War I helped to transform Arizona from a frontier state into a modern state with the demand for copper.
Migration Today
Allah (SWT) made the earth a wide expanse for us to roam in, the Qur’an tells us, but we are the ones who create our own borders. The fact that Arizona is on the border with its past, and the fact that the natives of Arizona to some extent live on their land has become a part of the scenery, but where are their rights? As the protest raises against the Anti-Immigrant Law SB1070 the thought that technically speaking, such a law is utter nonsense when Native Americans are being treated as illegal migrants in their own land, and that those who propose the law are migrants themselves, or are descendent of migrants should be the focus. The issue of how the U.S. treats its neighbors when it comes to politics, trade, employment, and social issues should be the focus. If the U.S. stopped seeing its geographical neighbors as it’s back-door from which to exploit resources and labor for its own benefit, along with corruption and the U.S. – led drugs war in Mexico, there would be less need to cross the border with Arizona, as dangerous as it is, because the reason would be removed. There can be no peace until there is justice for all, and justice is not just a matter of rights, but it is also a matter of a way of life that is so different than the one that the U.S. seeks to impose on the people of the land, the Native Americans. Practice what you preach America, and stop practicing what is in fact unsustainable.
In the words of the Artists Against SB 1070:
“We believe, the decision by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer to sign into law the poorly conceived immigration measure SB1070, marks a new low in the fight to protect civil liberties in The United States. This law allows any officer of the law at the state, county, or city level in Arizona to determine the legal immigration status of anyone at anytime, among other provisions, including making it a crime to be in Arizona illegally.
“Millions of people everywhere believe it will lead to rampant racial profiling, particularly against people of Latino/a heritage. President Obama has called it “misguided.” Furthermore, immigration is a national issue and the state of Arizona has no constitutional role in determining who has legal status in this country.
“We are calling on members of the worldwide artistic community—whether visual, performing, literary or other discipline—to boycott the state of Arizona in opposition to this unjust legislation, for as long as it remains on the books. We ask artists to not perform, produce, present, appear or conduct business in Arizona so that lawmakers there understand that the rest of the country disapproves, so they will feel the economic impact of their bad decision. We call on talent agents, managers, publicists, unions and associations to also support this effort and the artists they represent who choose to join.
“We also call on fans and supporters of the arts to contact their favorite performers and artists and encourage them to participate in this boycott. Fans can also show their support for the boycott by writing to Arizona Governor Brewer, and by supporting their favorite artists when they make appearances in other states.
“The artistic community has a natural role to play in commenting and responding to social issues. Now more than ever the time is right to act.
To Sign-on & Endorse this Campaign as an organization, group or as an individual; please send your: Name, Title/Affiliation and City & State to
The law was signed in by Governor Jan Brewer on May 17th 2010, setting the example that it is possible to make anything legal even if it is against the laws of the nation. To comment from New America Media, native American Roberto Dr. Cintli Rodriguez, professor at the University of Arizona has the following to say:
“With Arizona in the spotlight, most of the nation has focused on the draconian anti-immigrant law SB 1070, which makes it a crime to be an undocumented immigrant. But this is the culmination of a war that has been going on for 518 years. The mood here is not anti-immigrant. It is anti-Mexican. The racial profiling law has little to do with legalities; it is about the expressed targeting of red-brown indigenous peoples.
“Law officers will not target generic Hispanics or even Mexicans. Their profile is 100 percent indigenous. That’s why American Indians in Arizona understand precisely what this law is all about (Navajo Times, May 13). They are subject to this profile because the similarities are obvious: short, dark hair, dark eyes and red-brown skin. Spaniards are not at risk.
“How do we know this? Look to the historic practices of la migra, or the current practices of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. They have been racial profiling for years, and now the governor has authorized all law enforcement to be able to do the same, under threat of lawsuits. For years, those of us with red-brown skin have lived this reality anywhere along the U.S.-Mexico border. Nowadays, this anti-Mexican sentiment, under the veneer of anti-illegal immigrant fervor, is nationwide.
“This is about our bodies.
“In past years, they’ve gone after our tongues. In Arizona, in the year 2000, Proposition 203 virtually gutted bilingual education, based on the belief that it is better to be monolingual than bilingual. Arizona was simply following the lead of California’s Proposition 227 in 1998. But to this day, the question remains: What does language have to do with legal status?
“The latest salvo is HB 2281. This one is about our souls.
“This new law is an attempt by Superintendent Tom Horne to eliminate ethnic studies. Specifically, Horne has targeted Tucson Unified School District’s Mexican American Studies program, arguing that what is taught there is outside of western civilization and should not be taught in Arizona schools.
“This law has nothing to do with “illegal immigration.” If anything, it resembles the practices of the early European friars who deemed indigenous knowledge to be godless and demonic and attempted to destroy it completely. The burning of the books of our ancestors – indigenous peoples of this continent – resides deep within our psyche. The philosophical foundation for Mexican American studies in general is Maya-Nahuatl knowledge – derived from thousands of years of maize culture.
“Anthropologists refer to it as Mesoamerican knowledge. One part of it is: In Lak Ech – Tu eres mi otro yo – you are my other self. It is an ethic that teaches us that we are all part of each other. It is a human rights ethos connected to social justice and love of humanity.
“This is what Horne wants to ban. Could book burning and an auto-de-fe be next? Of course. This is what he wants. He has singled out Rodolfo Acuña’s book, “Occupied America,” and Paolo Freire’s “Pedagogy of the Oppressed” as examples of books that preach hate, promote segregation, anti-Americanism and the violent overthrow of the U.S. government.
“After the law was signed last week by Gov. Jan Brewer, metaphorically, an auto-de-fe was precisely what Horne came to conduct at TUSD the very next day. Hundreds of middle and high school students laid siege to the TUSD headquarters. When he failed to show his face, he scheduled a press conference at the nearby state building a couple of miles away. The same students marched there, laying siege to the state building. Eventually, 15 arrests were made. I was one of them.
“Why are students willing to be arrested? Because the two books singled out are but the beginning. The new law authorizes the monitoring and censorship of books to ensure that they are in compliance with the law. Only non-educators could have come up with this one.
“And so here we are again. Welcome to Apartheid Arizona, U.S.A”. from source
Arizona Councils of Government Arizona’s Native American Tribes
Brewer, J. “The Arizona Story”
June, P. Mexican-Spanish War: Mexican War of Independence
The Apache

Sent from Bail Out The People:
About US Social Forum

What is the US Social Forum?

The US Social Forum is a major gathering of activists and citizens, to network and discuss issues of social and economic justice, peace, and organizing strategies. The 2007 US Social Forum was held in Atlanta, and World Social Forums have been held in Brazil and other developing countries, since 2001.
The US Social Forum (USSF) is a movement building process. It is not a conference but it is a space to come up with the peoples’ solutions to the economic and ecological crisis. The USSF is the next most important step in our struggle to build a powerful multi-racial, multi-sectoral, inter-generational, diverse, inclusive, internationalist movement that transforms this country and changes history.
The 2010 US Social Forum will take place in Detroit, June 22-26, 2010. For more information, click here. For a schedule at a glance of the USSF, click here.
Planning for Detroit!

Please register as an individual or organization for the USSF! Click here for form and details. Once organizations are registered, you can submit TWO proposals for workshops. Click here for application form and info. The deadline has been extended to April 20.
Want to Learn More?

We are excited to announce publication of the USSF 2007 book, "The United States Social Forum: Perspectives of a Movement" edited by the USSF Book Committee. The book documents the entire organizing process for the 2007 USSF in Atlanta and brings to our readers the powerful voices and stories of movement convergence, reflection and struggles in the early 21st century in the U.S. Click here to see and buy the book.
Why a 2nd US Social Forum?

The gathering in Atlanta in June 2007 had 12,000 people come together in the belief that "Another World Was Possible!" Movement forces from all over the country took advantage of the opportunity to celebrate, organize, teach, debate and otherwise contribute to a growing sense that "Another U.S. Is Necessary!" The USSF made clear our need for greater convergence among progressives and the left in this country and to begin to articular our vision for "Another World."
The purpose of the USSF is to effectively and affirmatively articulate the values and strategies of a growing and vibrant movement for justice in the
United States. Those who build towards and participate in the USSF are no longer interested in simply stating what social justice movements
“stand-against,” rather we see ourselves as part of new movements that reach
beyond national borders, that practice democracy at all levels, and understand that neo-liberalism abroad and here in the US is not the solution. The USSF provides a first major step towards such articulation of what we stand for.
Why Detroit?

To win nationally, we must win in places like Detroit. The Midwest site of the USSF marks a fierce resistance movement for social, racial, gender, and
economic justice. Detroit has the highest unemployment of any major city in the country—23.2% (March 2009)—with nearly one in four Detroiters unable to find
work. Michigan has had the highest number of unemployed people in all 50 states
for nearly four years. Thousands of living wage jobs have been permanently lost
in the automotive industry and related sectors. Some think that it will take at least until 2025 for Michigan to recover from the economic collapse and social
dislocation. What is happening in Detroit and in Michigan is happening all
across the United States. Detroit is a harbinger for what we must do in our communities!
As grassroots activists and organizers, we work to address the indignities against working families and low-income people, and protect our human right to the basic necessities of life. In Detroit, we can make change happen!
The US Social Forum provides this space—drawing participants from
different regions, ethnicities, sectors and ages across the U.S. and its colonies. Community-based organizations, Indigenous nations, immigrants, independent workers organizations, unions, unemployed, youth, children, elders,
queers, differently-abled, international allies, academics, and advocacy organizations will be able to come together in Detroit for dialogues, reflection and to define future strategies.
World Social Forum to USSF - Globalizing the Resistance

A global movement is rising. The USSF is our opportunity to prepare and meet it! The World Social Forum (WSF) has become an important symbol of global movement convergence and the development of alternatives to the dominant
paradigm. Over the past nine years, the WSF has gathered the world’s workers, peasants, youth, women, and oppressed peoples to construct a counter-vision to
the economic and political elites of the World Economic Forum held annually in
Davos, Switzerland. After gathering 100,000 people in Porto Alegre, Brazil in
2005, the International Council (IC) decided that in 2006 there would be
regional social forums to culminate in a WSF in 2007. The IC delegated
Grassroots Global Justice Alliance (GGJ) to help shepherd the US Social Forum process, stating that it was strategic to hold a gathering of peoples and movements within the “belly of the beast” that were against the ravages of
globalization and neoliberal policies in the US and worldwide. GGJ is an alliance that grew out of people-of-color-led grassroots groups who
participated in the first WSF. These grassroots leaders initiated a process to create the first USSF National Planning Committee (NPC) and Atlanta was
selected as the USSF host city. In early 2009, the NPC selected Detroit as the
second host city for 2010.

Contributed by Sister Elizabeth Louise

On Saturday, we discussed a way for native people, spanish speaking people to work in coalition to fight this immigration law which has reared its ugly head in Arizona. could you post this so that perhaps those who live in this area (Metro Dc) Can attend?
Elizabeth Louise

--- On Wed, 5/19/10, Sonia Silbert wrote:

From: Sonia Silbert
Subject: [Dcmetrolist] Community Forum Thursday: Immigrant Rights are Civil Rights (Please Forward Widely)
To: "DC Metro USSF"
Date: Wednesday, May 19, 2010, 12:55 PM!/event.php?eid=122225321128690&ref=ts

From Arizona to DC: Community Forum on the Fight for Reform and Legalization!

WHY: Immigrant Rights are Civil Rights!

WHERE: All Souls Church (corner of 16th St and Harvard St NW - Columbia Heights closest Metro stop)

WHEN: Thursday May 20th @ 7 PM

Panelists Gustavo ANDRADE (CASA de Maryland), Linda LEAKS (Empower DC), Ronal MAYORGA (International Socialist Organization), Wendy RAMIREZ (Equal Rights Center), and host Dave ZIRIN ( will discuss the continuing fight for the rights and dignity of immigrant communities after the passage of and passionate opposition to Arizona's latest anti-immigrant law, SB 1070. Come and share your insights, outrage, and ideas with fellow activists to beat back anti-immigrant attacks here in the DC metro area!

For more information email or call 202-903-6906

Sponsored by: All Souls Church, CASA de Maryland, International Socialist Organization (ISO), DC Jobs with Justice, and the Washington Peace Center.

Endorsed by: Africa Action, the African Immigrant and Refugee Foundation, the Metropolitan Washington Council AFL-CIO, the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, CISPES, DC51, Empower DC, The Progressive, the Black is Back Coalition, Code Pink, and Busboys and Poets

Sonia Silbert

Washington Peace Center
1525 Newton St NW
Washington, DC 20010
ph. (202) 234-2000
fax. (202) 558-5685

Are you in the loop? We have an online calendar full of events for you! Sign up for weekly Activist Alert emails so you know what's happening in progressive DC!

Dcmetrolist mailing list

Contributed by Sister Elizabeth Louise


From: "Aliss"
To: "'Mrs. Stanley'"
Subject: apologies, email sent before finished, would like to contact Henry Lickers
Date: Sun, 16 May 2010 18:13:36 -0400

Dear Kittoh,
My apologies. I was writing an email in progress and instead of saving in Draft, it got sent to you unfinished without explanation or signature.

My name is Aliss Terpstra and I am one of the board members of International Institute of Concern for Public Health. Willi Nolan is also one of our members. We get your Eagle Watch letters. They provide us with a bigger and more inclusive picture, thank you for writing them. We mostly work on radioactive waste pollution prevention. Dr. Rosalie Bertell’s message is always “do not harm the seeds.” But we also work on protecting water for the future.

I am looking for a correct email address of Henry Lickers, the biologist who is an expert on fluoride pollution on Cornwall Island. The one I have is not going through:

Brantford, the birthplace of water fluoridation in Canada back in 1945, may be planning to stop the practice, due in part to the problems of fluoride pollution in the Grand River downstream of the towns that add this toxic waste to their drinking water. I know that Henry was born and raised in the Grand River Valley south of Brantford, and I wanted to contact him to ask if any of his relations or friends would be speaking at this Brantford council meeting next Tuesday May 25, so that we may lend our support.

Aliss Terpstra Toronto

Who has a duty of care to the fluoride-poisoned consumer?

Sent from Sister Kittoh, Mrs. Stanley (

Teresa Anahuy

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