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Native Americans

Indigenous Group Launches Campaign Against New Voting Bills

An advocacy group for Native Americans is putting up billboards in various states to oppose measures that it says would increase voting restrictions. The campaign launched by the Global Indigenous Council comes as more state legislatures are considering voting laws like the one in Georgia that sparked corporate backlash. Tom Rodgers, president of the Global Indigenous Council and an enrolled Blackfeet tribal member, said the goal of the campaign is to draw attention to bills that would limit the number of available polling stations and ballot drop-off spots, calling the measures especially harmful to Native Americans who may not have access to the remaining voting locations.

Water Protector Locks To Enbridge Pipe Yard Gate On Black Friday

Backus, MN - This morning, one water protector locked their neck to the gate of one of Enbridge’s massive pipe yards south of Backus, Minnesota, as other rallied and shoppers consumed on Black Friday. Black Friday falls on Native American Heritage Day. Earlier in the week, the Trump administration approved the last major permits of Enbridge’s Line 3 project, following state approval through 818 wetlands and Anishinaabe treaty territory in northern Minnesota by Democratic Governor Tim Walz’ administration.

Scheer Intelligence: The California Genocide No One Talks About

UCLA history professor Benjamin Madley’s book An American Genocide: The United States and the California Catastrophe 1846-1873 details the killing of tens of thousands of Native Americans as the state was being settled in the 19th century. In their conversation, Madley tells Robert Scheer why he believes these massacres did, in fact, constitute genocide in its 20th century United Nations definition. He talks about white settlers’ dehumanization and paranoia about “the other,” and the exceptions to that way of thinking.

‘This Is What Voter Suppression Looks Like’

Two tribes in South Dakota and a voting rights group are suing four state officials, accusing them of failing to offer adequate voter registration services. The complaint says South Dakota “is depriving thousand of tribal members and other citizens of their federally guaranteed opportunities to register to vote and to change their voter registration addresses when these citizens interact with state agencies.” The Oglala Sioux Tribe, Rosebud Sioux Tribe and Four Directions filed a federal court complaint on Wednesday.

Trump Administration Delays #COVID-19 Relief Funds To Native Americans

The law, also known as the CARES Act, directs the Department of the Treasury to distribute the $8 billion to tribal governments "not later than 30 days" after its enactment. The deadline has come and gone even as outcry over the Trump administration's failure to release the funds grows in Indian Country." Indian Country is tired of waiting for the administration to follow the law by delivering pandemic aid to our communities and our people," President Bryan Newland of the Bay Mills Indian Community said on Monday, more than a week after the CARES Act deadline passed." Our lives and our livelihoods are at stake," said Newland, citing the growing number of COVID-19 cases in tribal communities, some of which have been disproportionately affected by the deadly disease."

Genocide Of Native Americans So Devastating “It Literally Cooled the Planet”

The mass genocide of the Native American people by European colonizers during the 15th and 16th centuries—in which an estimated 56 million indigenous people, or 90 percent of the population, were wiped out by violence and disease—was so complete and devastating, new research shows,that it triggered a planetary cooling. According to scientists at the University College London,the Europeans' mass killing of natives in the Caribbean and the Americas led to the populations' agricultural systems to go untended, leading to an overgrowth of vegetation all over the region.

Native American Leader Leonard Peltier Undergoes Triple Bypass Surgery

By Staff of Tele Sur - “My chest was opened and they took arteries from my legs and placed them in the blocked arteries. I had to be given a liter of blood,” Peltier wrote. Leonard Peltier, U.S. political prisoner and Native American leader, is in stable condition after undergoing triple bypass surgery, his defense committee announced Saturday morning. In a letter published by the International Leonard Peltier Defense Committee, Peltier wrote that he had been “taken to an outside hospital in Leesburg (Florida) for what I was told was a routine heart stress test,” due to shortness of breath. However, medics found “clogged arteries, 3 of them!” An immediate operation was scheduled and Peltier underwent triple bypass surgery. “My chest was opened and they took arteries from my legs and placed them in the blocked arteries. I had to be given a liter of blood,” he said, adding that now he's “back in prison” and getting around in a “wheelchair.” Still suffering from a slight shortness of breath, Peltier nevertheless said he was looking forward to his grandson's visit him next week.

Manifesto For A Naïve Activism

By Rev. Billy Talen for Common Dreams - It is the darkest of times; it is the brightest of times. A mentally ill President slouches toward the nuclear suitcase to mistake a Twitter feed for the big one. But he can see in the windows of the Oval Office, out in streets, the 99% and the Black Lives and the Kayaktivists and the Pussy Power and the Dreamers and the Water Protectors at Standing Rock. This succession of startling movements are the seeds of our revolution. The pattern over the five plus years since Occupy Wall Street is one of peaks and valleys. Up in the visionary light of a life-saving rebellion and then down into the aftermath of months and months of organizing, meetings and marches and rallies…

Right-Wing Think Tank Trying To Bring Down The Indian Child Welfare Act. Why?

By Rebecca Clarren for Investigate West - On the wall above his desk, attorney Timothy Sandefur keeps a copy of The Liberator, a 186-year-old abolitionist newspaper that features an etching of a slave auction on its masthead. Sandefur is the vice president for litigation at the Phoenix-based Goldwater Institute, a nonprofit right-wing think tank with a donor roster that includes the Mercer family (Donald Trump’s biggest campaign contributors) and Donors Trust, a dark-money funnel for the Koch brothers, the DeVos family, and others. Goldwater is largely known for its efforts to limit regulation, promote tax cuts, expand school choice, and advance private-property rights. Recently, the Goldwater Institute has stepped into an entirely different legal arena...

Native American Uranium Miners & Trump Budget

By Robert Alvarez for Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists - For minimum wage or less, they blasted open seams, built wooden beam supports in the mine shafts, and dug out ore pieces with picks and wheelbarrows. The shafts penetrated as deep as 1,500 feet, with little or no ventilation. The bitter-tasting dust was all pervasive, coating their teeth. They ate in the mines and drank water that dripped from the walls and, sometimes, developed chronic coughs. And much worse. Native American uranium miners were essential to the United States’ efforts to create a nuclear arsenal. From the late 1940s to the early 1970s, Indian people dug up approximately four million tons of uranium ore—nearly a quarter of the total national underground production in the United States used in nuclear weapons.

This Native American Tribe Wants To Block Trump’s Wall

By Julie M. Rodriguez for Care 2 - We've heard time and time again about Donald Trump's proposed wall between the U.S. and Mexico and why it's a terrible idea. But there's one potential obstacle the president-elect seems not to have noticed: a Native American reservation the size of Connecticut, located directly in the path of his proposed construction. The Tohono O'odham Nation has existed for thousands of years, straddling the line between the land that is now the U.S. and Mexico.

At Standing Rock, A Native American Woman Elder Says The Following

By Ann Wright for Common Dreams - This time I have been at Standing Rock, North Dakota at the Oceti Shakowin camp to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) for four days during a whirlwind of national and international attention following two terrible displays of police brutality toward the water protectors. On October 27, over 100 local and state police and National Guard dressed in riot gear with helmets, face masks, batons and other protective clothing, carrying assault rifles stormed the Front Line North camp.

Pernicious Myths About Native Americans Needing To Be Uprooted Now

By Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz for Truth Out - No collectivity of people in US American society is as enigmatic or misunderstood as Indigenous peoples. From the very first encounters with them five centuries ago, Europeans were confounded by these peoples who looked so different and lived lives that seemed diametrically opposed to theirs and even blasphemous. Europeans brought with them their fears and prejudices accompanied by a sense of entitlement to the land that had been home to the Indigenous peoples for untold thousands of years.

Video Shows Pickup Truck Plowing Into Native American Rights Protesters

By Sam Levin for The Guardian - Reno police are investigating reports of a pickup truck plowing into a group of Native American rights demonstrators after dramatic video emerged showing the vehicle’s occupants arguing with activists, revving the engine and then speeding into the crowd. Police chief Jason Soto said the 18-year-old male pickup driver and 17-year-old passenger contacted police three minutes after Monday evening’s incident beneath the famous arch with the Nevada city’s slogan, Biggest Little City in the World

Letter From Leonard Peltier

By Leonard Peltier for American Indians and Friends. June 26th marks 41 years since the long summer day when three young men were killed at the home of the Jumping Bull family, near Oglala, during a firefight in which I and dozens of others participated. While I did not shoot (and therefore did not kill) FBI agents Ronald Williams and Jack Coler, I nevertheless have great remorse for the loss of their young lives, the loss of my friend Joe Stuntz, and for the grieving of their loved ones. I would guess that, like me, many of my brothers and sisters who were there that day wish that somehow they could have done something to change what happened and avoid the tragic outcome of the shootout. This is not something I have thought about casually and then moved on. It’s something I think about every day. As I look back, I remember the expressions of both fear and courage on the faces of my brothers and sisters as we were being attacked.
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