Indigenous Artists and Writers Collective

Archive for April, 2011|Monthly archive page

A Public Statement of Apology From the Organizing Committee of Defenders of the Land.

In Uncategorized on April 28, 2011 at 7:06 am

Originally Published in: Indigenous AntiCapitalist, April 23, 2011.

Author: Indigenous Women in the Movement


**Please distribute and repost widely***

A Public Statement of Apology From the Organizing Committee of Defenders of the Land. (April 23, 2011.)

This April 22-25th 2011, ALL indigenous land defenders are warmly welcomed to join the 3rd ever Defenders of the Land Gathering in Ottawa. We want to especially honour the women, men and two spirited peoples who stand on the frontlines every day protecting our families, and the land and water and those who f…ace racism and brutality by police, military and settlers. We respect you, not just in our words, but in our actions.

This year, we would first like to publically apologize as organizers for the way we have disrespected and devalued women Elders, clanmothers, two spirited people and young women. We have silenced your voices when you didn’t agree with us, took over in leadership and powertripped on our male privilege, and on the attention we get from the activist community.

We would like to especially apologize for exercising our male and class privilege by using “nonviolence” language that excludes and criminalizes those with no choice but to use whatever means they have to defend themselves and their ancestral homelands.

As the Defenders of the Land Organizing Committee, we would publically like to make a declaration of our support to ALL grassroots, frontline land defenders, whether they burn bridges or flags, whether they take up arms or take up a pen..we will be there to support you, recognizing that as indigenous peoples, we must use whatever means necessary, and because that is what real Warriors do.

If we have trampled on you in our haste to get on the 6 o’clock news, if we have silenced or denounced your voice in order to keep our funders happy, if we have in any way marginalized, oppressed or abused one of our own people, we would like to personally acknowledge, apologize, make amends and take action in every single case where this has happened, no arguments, no questions asked.

We also recognize that the way we have been organizing has been exclusive and hierarchical. We would like to abandon our posts at the top of the Native Activist Pyramid and give the power back to the people, where it belongs. New people, gatecrashers, radicals, little old ladies in combat boots, gun toting bush-nish AND INUIT TOO!!, urban homeless youth, two spirited and trans folk, all genders, all nations, ALL are welcome to the Defenders of the Land network!

We would like to ask, however, that white activists and settlers of colour check their privilege at the door. Question yourselves if you are barricading indigenous-to-indigenous relations by constantly mediating communication and facilitating meetings between indigenous peoples and communities.

In fact, we would like to ask that all white activists take a month’s sabbatical to reflect on their “solidarity” and to begin to organize other white folks in order to effectively fight racism and white supremacy. And we would like to encourage settlers of colour to forge real, healthy relationships with the indigenous peoples in their lives.

We would humbly ask that each and every person or community who has anything to say about this statement of apology gets in touch with us by phone, email, or come in person next time you see us, or you can visit the Indigenous Environmental Network office in Ottawa.

We will shortly be releasing a full disclosure of our structure, our decision making processes, and the concerns which have been brought to us in the past year (and which we have thus far ignored) so as to be fully transparent as a network to the people who put their trust in us to represent them.

To demonstrate our committed resolve to this new leaf-turnover, we will be burning our suits and briefcases in a cleansing ceremony on Parliament Hill.

Lastly, we would like to ask all peoples who have supported Defenders of the Land in the past and present, to vigilantly watch our actions, and the actions of the organizing committee of Defenders of the Land, and of the Indigenous Environmental Network, to be on guard for this kind of unacceptable action in the future.

If we disrespect women, we want to hear about it. If we exclude or marginalize poor, female, two spirited, queer, trans or youth voices, please let us know. If we abuse our power in any way, we want to know. We want to be accountable to each and every community within the network, and that means we need your help in calling us out and challenging us. No act of oppression is too small! Never again do we want to venture down the path we’ve created for ourselves. Never again do we want to talk the talk, without walking the walk.

From now on, the Defenders of the Land Organizing Committee will be fully accountable to ALL voices in ALL the communities it represents and if we cannot succeed in that, we will voluntarily disband the network.

Sincerely,
and with Mother Earth as our witness,

Corvin Russell
Clayton Thomas Mueller
Ben Powless

defendersoftheland@gmail.com

Indigenous Environmental Network
180 Metcalfe Street
Suite 500,Ottawa, ON, K2P 1P5
Ph: 613 237 1717 Ext 106
Ph: (218) 751-4967
Email: ienoil@igc.org

********************************************************

THIS LETTER IS A PARODY aka a SATIRE, although the gathering in Ottawa IS happening this weekend (April 22-25th). The Defenders of the Land gathering this year was in reality, organized as an exclusive meeting, and has for a long time, done the exact opposite of everything in the above letter.

This letter was written by women and grassroots people who have been silenced by the Defenders of the Land Organizing Committee.

It was written in order to turn these men’s attention away from themselves and toward the people they say they represent. We love and appreciate the men, and value their role in the community..but we felt that as grassroots women land defenders, we had to speak up in a way that we could be heard.

We sincerely, sincerely hope that in reading such a statement, the organizing committee will be inspired to change their ways and act in ways which truly honour the women and grassroots people. We believe in these men, and their ability to see a new way of reconnecting with all their relations and call on them to respond!!

-Indigenous Women in the Movement

Why We Wrote the “Statement of Apology” We Wish Had Been Written by the Defenders of the Land Organizing Committee.

In Blockades and Land Defense, News, Uncategorized on April 28, 2011 at 6:33 am

Originally Posted in : Indigenous AntiCapitalist, April 27th 2011.

Author: Indigenous Women in the Movement

(Image from the Alcatraz Takeover, 1969-1971)

Why We Wrote the “Statement of Apology” We Wish Had Been Written by the Defenders of the Land Organizing Committee.

It has been seven days since we published a satirical “statement of apology”,  from the organizing committee of Defender’ of the Land. A group of women and grassroots land defenders wrote the statement, because our voices had been silenced. We feel that what we have to say here must be heard, and so we will continue to speak, despite being silenced again when our account on Facebook was disabled (it has since been reactivated) and when Rabble.ca refused to publish the Statement of Apology. For those who have not read it, it follows this letter.

In Spring 2010, we blocked consensus of a “June 24th Day of Action” call-out for a march during the G20 week in Toronto. We were ignored and silenced. That march was the only indigenous-led event for that important week of public dissent. We had one day for our voices to be heard in the streets. We believe in consensus as a traditional way of guarding against elitism and privilege in our communities, and we believed that by blocking consensus, especially as a group of native women, we would at least be given the chance to speak and be heard. Not only were we ignored and silenced, but the organizing committee blocked communication between us and several native communities. We were told they were “afraid” of us, as though indigenous peoples need protection from each other when our voices speak different opinions.

We blocked consensus because we felt that the call out for the “June 24th Day of Action” (which was sent out by Defenders of the Land) would criminalize and disempower grassroots land defenders and erode our autonomy to defend ourselves and our land and communities. We felt that the heavy use of “non-violence” wording was a slippery slope toward co-operation with the Canadian government and police…who also desire us to be “non-violent” so that we are less of a threat to the realities that we face daily: our children being stolen, our lands being exploited for profit, murder and brutality at the hands of police and racist settlers, the disappearance and murder of thousands of indigenous women.

We felt that this was not an issue of semantics, that this was deliberately being taught to our peoples, our youth and our communities by the interests of government and corporations, who we began finding out more and more, were actually helping to fund well-paid activists who ran well-funded workshops, training and retreats on “non-violence” and “civil disobedience”. Some of this was traced back to funding which came from “ethical oil” strategies, and that’s when we started realizing the sickening accuracy of our premonitions.

The June 24th “Day of Action”, although well attended and successful in bringing people together to demonstrate resistance, was also extremely compromised. Undercover police and informants who came to the organizing meetings were “justified” in being there, people were told that because of “trouble makers”, we should cooperate with the police. These “trouble makers” were several indigenous people who were standing up and questioning the way the organizing was being increasingly straitjacketed.

“Non violence” was used to narrow the parameters of our ability to speak and express our struggle: we were barred from wearing camoflage, barred from wearing masks, barred from carrying the Unity flag or from any “warrior” images or symbols. On the day of the march, undercover police were permitted by the organizers to infiltrate the march, and those of us who had questioned the organizers were told that we would be turned over (by the march’s own security team) to the police.

Members of the Defenders of the Land organizing committee were present at these meetings, they helped to organize and promote the march and they did not speak up in defense of those who were criminalized and targeted, just as they did not listen to the voices of women who had blocked consensus of the original call out.

That has been our experience and involvement with the organizing committee of the Defenders of the Land, a network that began with the dream of a woman: a clanmother and Elder from one of the most exploited communities on Turtle Island which has been devastated by mercury poisoning and logging: Grassy Narrows.

We believe in honouring the dreams of women, in freeing ourselves from judgement and bias, decolonizing our minds and our hearts. We believe in being action-oriented, not paper-oriented. We don’t need Canada’s approval or consent, and we don’t need government or corporate funding. We have always had what we will always need: the Kaianerenkowa, the Medicine Wheel, our teachings, our clan systems, our languages, our ceremonies.

We can empower ourselves, we don’t need to wait for an NGO or a suit to tell us how to feel empowered. We aren’t the ones who need “non violence training”, the ones who need to stop using violence are the ones in power: police, government and corporations.

We absolutely believe in non-violence: when the cops lay down their weapons, the mining and logging companies abandon their industries, when the government returns the land to the people who belong to her, when racist settlers lay down their racism and patriarchy, when we vomit up the internalized racism from generations of abuse and torture at the hands of the government and can feel good in our own skin, can feel loved by each other, comforted, proud of and nourished by our beautiful brown skin, instead of vying for the attention of white thighs, settling for the white lie.

When the violence against us stops, maybe then we can begin to return to a time of peace. But to adopt a strategy of non-violence during a time of war is suicide: and we already have enough children and youth killing themselves because their innate resistance to genocide is stifled by white Canadian education, media, foster homes, jails and poverty food. Native children and youth do not need to be taught how to defend themselves: they need to be given the freedom to do what their spirits already understand is necessary.

Nonviolence as a mass political strategy was never part of our traditional ways of being on Turtle Island. We laid siege to forts, we picked up arms, we mounted riots and uprisings and full scale guerilla wars against colonial governments, militaries, corporations. We ate the hearts of our enemies. We did not curry favour from rich white men, we fought and killed them.

The most successful military campaign against Amerikkka was waged and won by the Oglala Sioux at Little Big Horn in 1876 and in 1973, they defended it again against the FBI, military and goon squads. Our people were often were masked in ceremonies and in battle, just look at the indigenous Zapatista movement–“masking up” is a practice rooted in indigenous movements and indigenous resistance.

Non-violence may be one strategy, and true to our nature, if it works, we’ll use it. If it doesn’t, we won’t. The bottom line is that we defended our land and our families with whatever we could. We owe our very existence to our ancestors who resisted total extermination and genocide by fighting back, and we will continue to honour those who gave us life by resisting the ongoing colonization of our lands and our peoples. If we have breath, we owe each one not only to our ancestors but to the land they fought and died to protect, and to the next seven generations.

-Indigenous Women in the Movement

Desecration of Haudenosaunee Burial Mounds Sanctioned by City Council

In News, Uncategorized on April 26, 2011 at 11:58 am

Originally Posted in: Intercontinental Cry, April 25th, 2011.

Author: T a i a i a k o ‘ n H i s t o r i c a l P r e s e r v a t i o n S o c i e t y

http://intercontinentalcry.org/desecration-of-haudenosaunee-burial-mounds-sanctioned-by-city-council/

Toronto’s High Park, located near the edge of Lake Ontario, is home to more than four dozen Haudenosaunee burial mounds, some of which could date back 3000 years, making them older than Haudenosaunee Confederacy. Today, some of those burial mounds are being casually desecrated with the implicit sanction of Toronto’s City Council.

Snake Mound South Entrance Barricade March 19, 2011. Photo Taiaiako'n Historical Preservation Society Snake Mound South Entrance Barricade March 19, 2011. Photo Taiaiako’n Historical Preservation Society

Roughly 4,200 kilometres away from Vallejo, California, where Indigenous Peoples have gathered to prevent a sacred burial ground from being converted into a public park, members of the Haudenosaunee Nation are speaking out against the continued desecration of burial mounds within Toronto’s largest park area.

“The territory that is now known as High Park was home to an Iroquoian people known as the Erie/Neutrals , ancestral to Meadowood Complex, who, over the course of the Woodland Period (1000 bce – 1614 ce) built earthwork mounds for honouring and burying their dead,” explains the Taiaiako’n Historical Preservation Society (THPS).

“The Six Nations are the custodians of the burial mounds… When John Howard bequeathed the park to the city [in the 1800’s] he also provided the condition that the Six Nations would continue their custodian role over their sacred sites. It is their duty to maintain the mounds and connection with the ancestors for future generations.” Led by Rastia’ta’non:ha from the Seneca Wolf Clan, THPS was founded to carry out this duty.

Unlike Glen Cove, which has not yet been desecrated, for years the burial mounds in High Park have been stepped on, dug out, driven over with bikes and just simply ignored.
THPS says that “No fewer than fifty-seven such mounds have been identified, and yet they are generally overlooked and unknown. Worst yet, these significant archaeological sites are being desecrated by some. One site, Snake (or Serpent) Mound, has been almost totally destroyed due to off-road BMX enthusiasts, who have actually dug up the mounds and installed ramps to make a dirt jumping course at the south-eastern corner of the park.”

Snake Mound April 28, 2010 new illegal ramps An off road bike jump course at the on the Snake/Serpent Mound. Photo THPS

“Determined efforts to reason with the perpetrators have so far proven unproductive, and repeated attempts to engage the Park Board and City Hall to intercede on this issue have been met with puzzling indifference,” THPS adds.

The City Council continues to ignore valid archaeological evidence along with historical facts and claims by the Haudenosaunee. They have also refused to apply any of their own by-laws concerning the construction of ramps (video) and use of bicycles within the park and dismissed requests (pdf) from the High Park Community Advisory Council (HPCAC) to meet with their representatives. Among other concerns, the government has also used apparently unlicensed archaeological consultants.

Despite the veritable stone wall they’ve been pushing against to secure the ancient mounds, THPS clearly has no intention of giving up. In fact, after ten years of diligence, their effort is finally getting public support. Most recently, on April 18, THPS held a public event with Friends of Snake Mound welcoming Onondaga Chief Chief Arnie General and a group of Clanmothers and Faithkeepers to discuss the issue. They are also now preparing for a public gathering at Snake Mound on May 1, 2011 to answer questions and discuss a strategy specifically for Snake Mound.

Everyone Welcome to our first Snake Mound Gathering of the Spring/Summer season

For background and more information, please visit Taiaiakoo’n Historical Preservation Society website at http://taiaiakon.wordpress.com; or contact THPS

T a i a i a k o ‘ n H i s t o r i c a l P r e s e r v a t i o n S o c i e t y
410-223 Jackson St. W., Hamilton, Ontario, L8P 4R4
905-522-5717 – ogetgwiaotahioni@cogeco.ca – attention: Rastia’ta’non:ha
Website: http://taiaiakon.wordpress.com/

Tell the City of Toronto to Do it’s Job!

Mayor Rob Ford
E-mail: mayor_ford@toronto.ca
Mail: Office of the Mayor – Toronto City Hall, 2nd Floor, 100 Queen St. West, Toronto ON M5H 2N2
Phone: 416-397-FORD (3673)

Councillor Sarah Doucette
City Hall
E-mail: councillor_doucette@toronto.ca
Mail: 100 Queen Street West, Suite C46, Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
Phone: 416-392-4072
Fax: 416-696-3667

Councillor Gord Perks
City Hall
E-mail: councillor_perks@toronto.ca
Mail: 100 Queen Street West, Suite A14, Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
Phone: 416-392-7919
Fax: 416-392-0398

For By-law/Municipal Code inquiries, please contact (Unconfirmed):
12th floor, West Tower, City Hall, 100 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON M5H 2N2 Fax: 416-392-2980
Gil Golka ggolka@toronto.ca
Sylvia Alfano salfano@toronto.ca
Karen Lunn klunn@toronto.ca
416-392-4364 416-392-0552 416-392-6665

Support the South Fraser Protection Camp NOW!

In Blockades and Land Defense, News, South Fraser Protection Camp, Uncategorized on April 25, 2011 at 2:27 pm

Originally Posted in: Vancouver Media Co-op, April 24th 2011.

Author: Stop the Pave (www.stopthepave.org)

http://vancouver.mediacoop.ca/newsrelease/7047

The Wave Against the Pave is rising! The South Fraser Protection Camp has been established. WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT NOW.

The longer we stay, the longer the bulldozers can be stopped, and an education campaign about the real impacts of this project can grow in the surrounding neighborhoods.  The political climate is more unstable than ever, and THIS IS NOT A DONE DEAL, so now is the time to stand together for climate justice and for the health of our community.

On Earth Day Friday, around 200 local residents and concerned citizens from far and wide met in Delta to rally against the proposed South Fraser Perimeter Road. We marched to a site on the Fraser that has recently been deforested to make way for the freeway, and established our camp there. The camp is a truly inspiring place. It is located high on a bluff overlooking a historic fishing port, with a spectacular view of surrounding mountains and river. This is a strategic spot to stop this pave. We have planted a number of trees in the middle of the road. There is a free kitchen, a medic tent, hygiene facilities, art-making, a solar-powered media tent, and a real full-sized teepee for meetings.

There has been minimal police presence, however, work crews are expected to return to the site on Monday or Tuesday and we MUST have a strong onsite presence.

If you can join our camp for any length of time, your support would make a difference. There will be music and a fire circle discussion tonight (Sun) & Monday evenings. We’ll host a tour of the camp at about 2pm Monday, and a press conference at 3pm.

MOST VITAL RIGHT NOW is to have people onsite through tonight, and possibly Monday night. If you can’t come and camp, please come as early on Monday or Tuesday morning as possible (the first #640 bus leaves Scott Rd. SkyTrain station at 6:10 am, and it is 10 minutes from there).

WE CALL FOR YOUR SUPPORT NOW. Come for a visit, stay for a short time, or camp for a while. Bring food or supply contributions if you like, but most importantly, just come.

The site is easy to reach. The main entrance is on River Road, Delta, just west of Brooke Road (10675 River Rd),  – look for the signs and banners. Drive, bike from SkyTrain, or catch the #640 bus from Scott Rd SkyTrain station (or if westbound, from Ladner Exchange). Our Info Line is 604.355.2771, or call 604.588.4203.

We thank you for all your support, and hope to see you in camp soon!
In gratitude and solidarity,

StopThePave.org

For a good description of the action and the campsite see pictures  The Tyee OR Vancouver Media Co-op, W2TV or The Province.  Some background and an invitation to the Camp is in this video.

<< a bulletin from http://stopthepave.org >>

Citizenship is Based on Theft, Domination and Criminalization

In Migrant and Undocumented Persons Movement, Nazi/Islamophobic/Anti-Native Hate Watch, News, Uncategorized on April 25, 2011 at 2:10 pm

Originally Posted on: People of Color Organize (Summer 2010)

Author: deletetheborder

http://www.peopleofcolororganize.com/opinion/citizenship-based-theft-domination-criminalization/

If for some reason it had not yet been time to really address the concept of citizenship, now is the time. Once congress is back in session, birthright citizenship will be the next hot topic of debate. The 14th amendment gave ex-slaves and their children the citizenship they did not have before, and has since applied to anyone born on US soil (aside from a few cases), including the racist-tizzy-inducing undocumented immigrants’ children, called by the derogatory term, “anchor babies.”

The focus on birthright citizenship, if it does not succeed in changing the 14th amendment, may have a chance at shifting the debate in the favor of the racists. They not only want to remove all undocumented immigrants from the country, but their children as well. While they claim that their concern is over the law (‘Illegal is not a race, it’s a crime’, Pearce says) as of right now, the so-called “anchor babies” have not committed any crime, yet they are to be ousted as well. The immigrants’ rights movement will find it necessary to focus on defending the children of undocumented parents and retreat from the defense of undocumented immigrants themselves. This may look similar to the hierarchy created between the more deserving and the less deserving created by the debate around the Dream Act. We cannot allow them to shift the debate in this way. We need to shift it in the direction of questioning the concept of citizenship and the legitimacy of the country in the first place.

So we must ask, what does citizenship mean? We should especially ask this in the context of the fact that the US is on stolen land. What does it mean for some settlers to seize a bunch of land and declare that they are citizens and the original peoples are not (it took a while for indigenous people to be counted as citizens even after ex-slaves were included), and then continue to do this to many people who are in fact more indigenous to this continent than the settlers are. Not only are they withholding citizenship and the rights and privileges it entails; they are criminalizing most of the folks who reside in the US who are not citizens. This means detention centers, deportation, fear, etc.

Citizenship is based on theft, domination, and criminalization.

Certainly there are many of us who are counted as citizens who do not have allegiance to the US government. However, in many ways citizenship is about loyalty to this system. In what ways can we call this into question? This all deserves much more attention and discussion.

US out of North America!

– Deletetheborder

two native elders from lillooet more concerned about wilderness than $$

In News, Uncategorized on April 24, 2011 at 1:25 am

Originally Posted in: Winds of Change, April 15th 2011

Author: Janine Bandcroft

http://janinebandcroft.wordpress.com/2011/04/15/two-native-elders-from-lillooet-more-concerned-about-wilderness-than/

The BC Government and BC Hydro seem more concerned with providing energy for export than Indigenous Rights, or preserving wilderness and wildlife for future generations.  Roger Adolph and Marvin (Butch) Bob are former chiefs in the Lillooet region of British Columbia, and they’re faced with yet another divide-and-conquer agreement signing that will put some money in some hands, and take all rights to land and water away from the people for all time.  Their concern is that their friends and family don’t really understand the implications of the agreement, set for ratification on May 10th 2010 (the same day the Declaration of 1911 was enacted).  They want media attention, lawyers, and support to stop what will undoubtedly result in further devastation to the land and its creatures, and the final loss of sovereignty for the indigenous people of the region.

Statement of Opposition to the signing of the St’at’imc Hydro Agreement

In News, Uncategorized on April 24, 2011 at 1:19 am

Originally Posted: St’at’imc Territory, April 19th 2011.

Author: Gelgelatkwa7,  Xaxlip – Tsalalh, Great Great Grand-daughter of Ts’ilhusalst, Xaxlip Hereditary Leader

Re: Statement of Opposition to the signing of the St’at’imc Hydro Agreement

 

To Whom it May Concern,

We, the youth, women and families of the St’at’imc Tribe have protected this land since time immemorial.  We deliver now the thundering demand of TRUE justice.

We affirm these tribal lands were never sold, surrendered, or given to anyone, or anyone who would claim jurisdiction as a foreign corporate Government defacto State called CANADA (0000230098) in which they hire subjects to conduct business as ministers, officers, agents, or employees registered as an entity in a sub-corporation called BRITISH COLUMBIA PROVINCE OF (0000014306).We are the witnesses to those who stood before and passed on the oral history of the Indigenous place names, traditional culture, language and songs of the peoples of the St̓at̓imc Tribe. We take this stand for all of those who believe in Our Mother Earth and the natural laws of Energy and Spirit She is, and where we are all connected. As original tribes of Turtle Island we declare our right to Natural Tribal Laws, through the Traditional Customs the Creator has encoded in the genetics of our blood and passed on through oral history. As Tribal Peoples, we have never lost in war, sold the land we have been given to take care of, or given it away through Treaty, gift or any other means of annexation through colonial occupation of a British Dominion, CROWN Corporation, or enforced State registering corporate entities, companies, nor have we borrowed from any bank, financial institutions to allow them to claim a controlling interest through security agreements in the tribal lands we inhabit. Being heirs and successors of the original tribal peoples, clans, matriarchal clan mothers and women of the clans who have title to these tribal lands from time immemorial, we are the signatories who have the right of claim encoded in our blood to the traditional tribal lands in which we stake title through the place names of our language by the Will of the Great Spirit.

No longer will we continue to enslave our children under bondage of our words and signatures with any foreign colonial Dominion, CROWN Corporation, or State enforced occupation. Within the seven dimensions of knowledge and other teachings of both the physical, spiritual, conscience, sub conscience, matter, anti-matter, light, dark, the original peoples must ensure to keep these things in tune with the Harmony of Mother Earth̓s vibrations, color coding, genetics, symbols of life and the energy of Earth, moon, sun and universe. Please be advised that we will not accept any people surrendering ANY access, to or on our sacred land or waterways.

Employees of the Canadian Government, also known as elected leaders, may not speak or represent on our behalf while negotiating the future of our children or land.  We are making the statement that you do not have permission to negotiate monetary issues and to make decisions without recognizing the Tribal Rights of the Original People, also known as Ucwalmicw.  We stand firm in defense of Mother Earth and will not take part in the destruction of her for payments of money or otherwise.

Any continuation with the signing of this agreement will be seen as a direct threat to our mother, the earth, our children and our lifeline, the water.

We are ready to co operate and halt the abyss that is recklessly speeding the end of the world.  We are concerned that the path of destruction created by hydro generation and we would like the current negotiators to step down and not sign the agreement that will continue to allow the silent killing of our tribal members.

Also, below is the Declaration of the Lillooet Tribe further stating our ownership and ancient ties to our lands.

Swátas ku huz̓ ats̓xentál ts7a:

Snímulh lts7áwna kupkúkwpi7 lts7a St̓át̓imc, húz̓lhkalh tsut, snimulh lts7a kupkúkwpi7 st̓át̓imc wa7 metscál. –

Huz̓lhkalh qwal̓út, kalh lts7a qwal̓út ku7 ti7tecw.  Wa7 qwal̓utcítem tákem ts7a i ucwalmícwa, q̓em̓p wi xw7útsin xetspqéqinst lhkúnsa.

Wa7 zwátnem kwa stsuwa7lhkalh ts7a tmicw wewá7lhkúnsa. Cw7ays t̓u7sas lhwálen tmicw-kálh, cw7ays t̓u7 lhwálen swat.

Wa7 i wa7 t̓ak kam̓antúmulhas ken skwanítas ti tmícwa, t́iq aylh i sám7a.  Nilh inátcwas wa7 t̓íqwit i sám7a, t̓íqwit lhkúnsa sq̓it.

Wa7 zwátnem kwa stsuwa7mínitas ti B.C. Kv́pmen, ti tmicwakálha, ts̓íla tsuwa7mínsas skú7na ti núkwa úcalmicw tmicw cw7aoz hem̓ t̓u7 kwes ts̓íla áti7 wa7 t̓u7 tsuwa7lhkálh ti tmícwa.  cw7aoz nastsi, cw7ays t̓u7 tawmínem.

Cw7ays t̓u7 swat ku tsut nká7as mets, cw7ays t̓u7. Wa7 tsut k̓u úcwalmicw wa7 tsúw7as ti kv́pmena, t̓u7 wa7 tsuwa7lhkálh tákem.

texw t̓u7 ntsutánwas i ucwalmícwa kwes ti7texw lhes qwal̓lút i sám7a.  Ntsutanwaswít aylh ku snaqw̓ i sám7a, cw7aoz kwas kákza7.  Nilh aylh naqw̓tanemwit áma qwal̓útwit. Wa7 zwátnem aylh plan wa7 kakz7antumulítas lhkúnsa.  Tsutánwas i ucwalmícwa kwes tsuk ti7 láti7 kwíkwsa ti kwanítas, nilh t̓u7 lil̓qscitánemwit

Nilh-awílh-ka áku7 ti xzum aylh kwanítas iz̓ i sám7a zaytenlhkálha, cw7aoz ku zwatnem ku kwanítasts̓íla, kakz7antumulítas, naqw̓tumulítas, tákem stam̓

ts’íla qvl záyten-i.

wa7 zwátnem kwes naqw̓tumulítas ti tmícwa ti B.C. kv́pmen.Cw7ays t̓u7 zwátnem ku kaststúma ku7 ts̓ila wa7 snilh. Qvlwít, tákem t̓u7 zstam̓ wa7 p̓elp̓elkanítas. Wa7 zwátnem texw t̓u7 naqw̓citumulítas ti tmicwlhkálha, ti kvpmena.  Nilh cw7ays t̓u7 zwátnem kwes kánem, cw7ays t̓u7 zwátnem kwes kánem, cw7ays t̓u7 zwátnem kwes kánem, cw7ays káti7 kwes nukw̓7anstúma.  Plánlhkalh ku zam̓ aylh wa7 gélgel ti ptinusemlhálha.

Wa7 qwal̓utmínem i tákem stam̓ nilh lhes ku p̓an̓tstúma s7ents ku muz̓ p̓an̓tstúma ti tmicwlhkálha.

Tsícwkalh, qwal̓útenlhkalh akúna7 ti sam7a kúkwpi7, England, King-ha múta7 akú7na Ottawa. Ts̓íla ku7 cw7aoz kwes t̓iqstumulítas i sám7a kupkúkwpi7 múta7 kv́pmena lhkúnsa.  Ts̓íla t̓u7 zam̓ ku plan wa7 ts7as culelwít, k̓alánwit huz̓ ínwat.

Qaním̓lhkalh plans maysenítas i tsuw-íha sqwal̓út láku7 i Nlhakápmec-ha, múta7 i Scwapmec-ha, múta7 i Ts̓wánamc-ha.  Plans, maysenítas i gélgela sqwal̓út i láti lti July 16th, 1910.

Qaním̓lhkalh zam̓ ti ámha sqwalut láku7 Ottawa kv́pmen.  Húy̓lhkalh qweznem i tsúwa lhkálha gélgel sqwal̓út.  Ts̓íla ku ts̓ila ti tmicwlhkálha, ts̓íla ku7 cat̓ kwezusemlhkálh, ts̓íla kwezúsem st7u núkwa B.C.

Wa7 lhkalh zam̓ wa7 si̓wlec et7úna wa7 snilh i t̓ákmens et7úna i swa7a. Cw7it zam̓ i kupkukwpi7 tsicw a̓ta7 Lytton palla7mintwa̓lwit láti7 lti7 February 6 1910.  Tsicw wit múta7 et7u Lillooet February 24th, 1910.

Nilh aylh sqwal̓út i, pal7ulwílhkalh et7ú ti Nk̓áclumc múta7 et7úna i k̓ut̓mec-ha.

Wa7 lhkalh stálhlec úllus ku snilh t̓u7 tsicw uts ts7a ti ucwalmi̓cwa tmicw.

Cuz̓ hem ts̓íla qwal̓utlhkálha, qwal̓út-íha láku7 ets7áwna i pal7úpsta gélgel sqwal̓út láku7 lit7 Spences Bridge, July 1910.  Ts7áwna, múta7 ti áw̓ta, texw t̓u7 xat̓stúm kwancitumulítas ti tmicwkálha, láta7 “The Shirt Portage” nilh zam̓ íza i sám7a kúkwpi7 B.C. kvpmen.

Lheltúsa kwes zwátnem kwas tsuwa7lhkálh ts7a ti tmícwa. Lan tu7 p̓a7cw ku kalhás kwe qwezném ti7

Wa7 t̓it xat̓stum tsamaysenítas ti tmícwa, láti7 ti nkaoh-háwsa múta7 ti śwlectnsa ti train-a.

Cw7itkalh hem̓ áku7 t̓ákstum ti ̓ku ts̓íla ku ts7áwna ti sqwal̓utkálha cw7its cítem áku7 sHonorable Mr. Oliver, Superintendant Indian Affairs múta7 ti Secretary-ha Indian Rights Association Mr. Clark K.C., múta7 sMr. McDonald, ti Inspector-ha Indian Agencies.

Signed:

James Nraiteskel – Kúkwpi7 – Lillooet

James Stager, Kastíts̓a – Kúkwpi7 – Líl̓wat

Peter Chalal – Kúkwpi7 – Mission

James James – Kúkwpi7 – Nqayt

John Koiustghen – kúkwpi7 – Pasulko

David Eksiepalus – Kúkwpi7 – No. 2 Lillooet

Charles Nekaula – Kúkwpi7-  Nkempts

James Smith, Kákla – Kúkwpi7 – Tenas Lake

Harry Nkasúsa – Kúkwpi7 – Samaquam

Paul koitelamugh – Kúkwpi7-  Skatín

August Akstonkail – Kúkwpi7-  Xáxts̓a7

Jean Baptiste – Kúkwpi7 – Cayuse

David Skwinstwaugh – Kúkwpi7 Nxwísten

Thomas Bull – Kúkwpi7 – Slahoos

Thomas Jack – Kúkwpi7 – Nkw̓átkwa7

Chief Francois

Thomas Adolph – Kúkwpi7 – Xáxlep

Sincerely,

Gelgelatkwa7,  Xaxlip – Tsalalh

Great Great Grand-daughter of Ts’ilhusalst, Xaxlip Hereditary Leader

Camp on the Fraser Continues, Supporters Welcome

In News, Uncategorized on April 24, 2011 at 12:00 am

Originally Posted in:  Vancouver Media Co-op

Author: Vancouver Media Co-op

http://vancouver.mediacoop.ca/photo/camp-fraser-continues-supporters-welcome/7039

After a chilly night under the stars, dozens of people are working to make the camp at the site of the proposed South Fraser Perimeter Road permanent.

“There’s lots of people, not only people camping here but neighbours wandering through with their kids, and it is a happening fun scene in this beautiful location that’s unfortuntaly been clear cut and dug out,” said Eric Doherty, an organizer with Stop the Pave.

“One of the things we’re planning to do is an easter egg hunt at 2pm tomorrow,” said Doherty. “The main thing that we’re doing here is setting up a hospitable site so people who are just interested can come down, and find out about the issue, and also find out about us, the diverse group that is here, standing up for a variety of different reasons, opposing this freeway.”

Doherty encouraged supporters and anyone curious about the freeway expansion to stop by for a visit.

Here’s a link to the location of the camp: http://bit.ly/fjJj0w.

Natives Occupy California Burial Ground to Stave Off Bulldozers

In News, Uncategorized on April 23, 2011 at 11:55 pm

Originally posted in: Indian Country Today Media Network, April 23 2011.

Author: Dan Bacher

http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2011/04/natives-occupy-california-burial-ground-to-stave-off-bulldozers/?utm_source=Social+&utm_medium=Twitter&utm_campaign=TF

Native Americans occupying a burial ground facing development by the Greater Vallejo Recreation District (GVRD) are inviting the public to an Indigenous Peoples Earth Day and Interfaith Gathering happening Saturday, April 23 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Glen Cove Shell Mound site, where they have set up their Spiritual Encampment and Vigil.

The history and cultural value of the site has never been disputed. Native Americans continue to hold ceremonies at Sogorea Te just as they have for thousands of years. The Glen Cove Shell Mound spans 15 acres along the Carquinez Strait. It is the final resting place of many indigenous people dating back more than 3,500 years and has served as a traditional meeting place for dozens of California Indian tribes. The site continues to be spiritually important to California tribes.

“GVRD’s plans to desecrate the sacred burial site have not been called off and we ask all our supporters to please remain on alert,” said Morning Star Gali from the Sacred Site Protection & Rights of Indigenous Tribes (SSP&RIT). “We continue to invite all who will join us in prayer to stand with us at Glen Cove as we continue to work on all levels to protect the ancestors from further desecration.”

The occupation of the ancient burial site at Glen Cove in Vallejo by Native Americans and supporters entered its sixth day on April 18, and dozens remained throughout the week.

“We did remove some of the tents we had set up as the GVRD requested, due to complaints they received about us not having camping permits,” said Gali. “However, we didn’t move our sacred fire as they requested. There is supposed to be an agreement drafted today on a cultural and religious permit to stay.”

Gali also noted that she met with traditional Patwin Tribe elders yesterday and received their blessing for the occupation.

“This is not about winning or losing,” said Norman “Wounded Knee” Deocampo of SSP&RIT. “This is about honoring our ancestors. As indigenous people, we must take a stand or governments will continue to desecrate sacred sites.”

On April 17, American Indians and their supporters conducted a cleanup of the beach at Glen Cove and painted over Nazi graffiti that the city had allowed to remain on the old mansion at the site. Dozens of local residents visited the occupation over the weekend and expressed their support. Many expressed outrage that the city was wasting money fighting the Native Americans over this site when other city parks are dilapidated due to budget problems. Supporters brought food and supplies.

The Native Americans are highlighting the fact that public statements by the Greater Vallejo Recreation District have been very misleading, with GVRD representatives claiming they want to protect the burial site but failing to mention their plans to bulldoze into a hill that likely contains human remains. The U.S. Department of Justice met with the Indian leadership on April 16 to lay the groundwork for a possible mediation with the Greater Vallejo Recreation District.

The Glen Cove site is acknowledged by GVRD and the City to have many burials and to be an important cultural site, yet they are attempting to build a toilet and parking lot here and grade a hill that likely contains human remains and important cultural artifacts. SSP&RIT have asked GVRD to reconsider their plans.

Before the protest began, SSP&RIT filled an administrative civil rights complaint on April 13, 2011 with the State of California against the Greater Vallejo Recreation District and the City of Vallejo.

The group filed the complaint under California Government Code § 11135 alleging that the City and GVRD are discriminating on the basis of race in threatening to destroy and desecrate significant parts of the Glen Cove Shellmound and burial site, for harming Native Americans’ religious and spiritual well-being, and effectively excluding Native Americans from their right to full participation in the decision-making regarding this project.

“Everyone has the right to a final resting place. Our ancestors deserve to have a resting place on their original land without the threat of being removed for the sake of a park,” said Corrina Gould, Ohlone resident of the Bay Area. “Other countries realize the significance of ancestors and honor the ancient cemeteries by not disturbing them. Who does it ultimately serve to complete this project? Let our ancestors rest.”

http://protectglencove.org/2010/times-herald-group-says-prayers-to-protect-native-american-burial-ground/

A message and a warning: American Indian women aim to raise awareness of shared threat

In News, Uncategorized on April 23, 2011 at 11:29 pm

Originally Posted in the Spokesman Review, April 23rd 2011.

Author: Kevin Graman

http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2011/apr/23/a-message-and-a-warning/

A group of American Indian women, inspired by an environmental prophesy, passed through Spokane on Earth Day on their 1,800-mile walk from the Pacific Ocean to Lake Superior.

They were welcomed on Canada Island in Riverfront Park on Friday by the representatives of several Inland Northwest tribes, the sound of Native drumming and the roar of the raging Spokane River.

The Anishinaabe women and their entourage are part of the Mother Earth Water Walk, a grass-roots movement to call attention to the environmental danger to our water, the blood of the North American continent they call Turtle Island.

“It is a message to all people to think consciously how they consume water and to raise awareness for future generations,” said Sylvia Plain, of Aamjiwnaange First Nation in Canada, who is among the group of about 14 Native walkers who set out April 10 from Aberdeen, Wash., on their way to the Midewin Lodge in Bad River, Wis., home to the Ojibwa Medicine Society.

There the walkers will be joined by other Native walkers coming from Machias, Maine; Churchill, Manitoba; and Gulfport, Miss.

In each group, the women carry copper pails bearing water from the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, Hudson Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Native men accompany them. The sacred water they carry will be united in Lake Superior, where the first Water Walk began.

The Gulf of Mexico walkers are led by Josephine Mandamin, a 66-year-old Ojibwa grandmother who founded the Water Walk in 2003 with a prophesy that in 30 years water would cost as much as gold.

Since then, Water Walkers have walked around each of the Great Lakes and followed the length of the St. Lawrence River. This year, Mandamin’s group set out walking from Gulfport on Wednesday, the anniversary of last year’s BP oil spill.

The Western group, which is attempting to walk 35 miles a day, included three generations of a Washington state family whose matriarch is Dixie Dorsey, 70. The youngest in the group is her 3-year-old grandson Anahuy Lopez. Dorsey plans to walk as far as the Flathead Reservation in Montana, birthplace of her father.

Greeting the walkers at the Riverfront Park totem pole were Spokane Mayor Mary Verner, and Spokane, Colville, Kalispel and Coeur d’Alene tribal members, among others.

“Water is what ties us all together,” said Yvonne Swan, of the Arrow Lakes Nation. “We may have differences of opinion, but we all depend on water.”John Osborn, chairman of the Spokane chapter of the Sierra Club, said the Spokane River – currently raging from spring runoff – has been damaged by mine wastes, PCBs, sewage and over-pumping.

“The survival of the river will depend on the love and care of the community,” Osborn said.

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