Thursday, February 16, 2017

Native Nations March On Washington

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and Indigenous grassroots leaders are calling on their allies across the United States and around the world to peacefully March on Washington DC. They ask that we rise in solidarity with the Indigenous peoples of the world whose rights protect Unci Maka (Grandmother Earth) for the future generations of all.

Standing Rock and Native Nations will lead a march in prayer and action in Washington D.C. on March 10th 2017.

The March is being organized by the Native Nations Rise Planning Committee

The Demands:
  • ·         #TakeTheMeeting // President Trump must meet with tribal leaders to hear why it’s critical that the US government respect tribal rights. This administration must work with us.
  • ·         #ConsentNotConsultation // Tribal interests cannot continue to be marginalized in favor of the interests of corporations and other governments. Consultation is not enough– we must require consent.
  • ·         #NativeNationsRise // The Standing Rock movement is bigger than one tribe. It has evolved into a powerful global phenomenon highlighting the necessity to respect Indigenous Nations and their right to protect their homelands, environment and future generations. We are asking our Native relatives from across Turtle Island to rise with us.

Calendar of Events
March 7 – 9: Native leaders and their allies will lobby in the halls of power in Washington DC on behalf of the protection of all Tribes.
March 10:  Native peoples + their allies – gathering in thousands – will gather for a March from the Mall to the White House beginning at 10am. After the march, we will gather for a rally at the Ellipse. It is here we will make our demands to the new administration.

Stand with Standing Rock

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

How to Support the Standing Rock Sioux/Oceti Sakowin

How to Contact the 17 Banks Funding the Dakota Access Pipeline:

Banks have choices when it comes to what projects they give loans to.  Here are CEO names, emails, and phone numbers of those supporting the pipeline.

Click on this link:

Here is another excellent article that gives a thorough background: 

Who's Banking on the Dakota Access Pipeline?

Thursday, January 5, 2017

LISTEN: ‘I Will Never Submit To Any Pipeline To Go Through My Homeland’

Standing Rock Elder Phyllis Young spoke about protecting the land even before the Army Corps of Engineers broke ground.  Her understanding of the U.S. history of dishonoring treaties, along with our insatiable hunger for oil, is conveyed in this brief 7 minute audio clip:

Additional background information can be found at "Our Water Is Our Single Last Property".

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Reader Supported News reports: "Pipeline Spills 176,000 Gallons 150 Miles From Standing Rock"

By Katie Herzog, Grist
13 December 16
Pipeline spills 176,000 gallons 150 miles from Standing Rock

A pipeline operated by Belle Fourche Pipeline Company in western North Dakota was shut down following the discovery of a leak on Dec. 5. Cleanup is ongoing, and 37,000 gallons of crude oil have been recovered as of Monday, reports the Associated Press.

The pipeline leaked an estimated 176,400 barrels of crude into Ash Coulee Creek,
near Belfield, North Dakota. (photo: North Dakota Department of Health)

Monday, December 12, 2016

The Color of My Cultural Glasses

Working with the indigenous nations people, I am aware of the crossing of cultures on a personal level. It is easy to view their culture as either quaint or to mythologize it. But if I want to see and accept them for what they are, then I must see myself for what I am. It is hard to know what we look like without looking in a mirror, and their culture has served as a mirror for me to see my culture. We frequently view European cultures as a contrast to ours, but they are so close to us they don't serve well as a mirror.
Sunset with sundog (bright spot to right) in North Dakoda

I grew up in a colonizing culture: we colonized Europe, we colonized the Americas and elsewhere, we colonized across what became the US, and then we went on to colonize where every we could around the world. My culture is one that has figured out a million ways to justify and live off colonization. Colonization is not the only way to live. Many cultures and nations have shunned it.

Sunset and sundog a little later showing the rainbow colors
I grew up in the Christian religion, one of the three Abrahamic religions which share the teachings in Genesis 1:26. “Let them [people] have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” By contrast what I hear in some indigenous cultures is the understanding that people are literally a part of the land and the animals, we are all connected and relatives – man, bird, grasses, the earth. They feel, for example, that their cousin a deer freely offers its life so that they can live. This is in harsh contrast to our culture where, for example, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said about the Iraq embargo I think this [that half a million children have died] is a very hard choice, but the price — we think the price is worth it.”

The capitalist economic system in which I live is fundamentally rapacious, even in comparison to other Euro/Asian developed nations, many of whose economies lean in the communist/socialist direction. Our economy is not about surviving. It is about endlessly getting more, and it externalizes the needs of, or costs to, all other people. Many economies around the world are about everyone collectively surviving.

We are also a culture that worships, or at least tolerates, elites. Kings through aristocrats, Robber Barons through billionaires, popes through televangelists, the powerful above us, we have glorified and served them all - even though they are all scoundrels. By contrast in many cultures it is unthinkable that anyone would choose to, let alone have, the power to give others orders, it is fundamental that each person's voice is heard, and people are very reticent and avoid ever speaking for someone else.

I need to be able to see what growing up as part of this culture means. I can work at changing my perspective but I will never be able to completely shed it. But by seeing the culture I grown up and the color of the glasses I see the world through, I can better accept and respect other cultures as equals and different.

Thursday, December 8, 2016


We (the Meta Peace Team International Exploratory Team), are privileged to be here as part of this marvelous campaign of nonviolent resistance at Standing Rock Oceti Sakowin Camp in North Dakota. The nonviolent campaign is resisting the final leg of construction of the Dakota Access pipeline near the Reservation that would threaten their water.

In a time of much darkness, with fossil fuel corporations ravishing the land in their greed to grow richer, and the Trump presidency about to begin, it is a story of effective resistance against a mountain of odds working against them. The astounding news came on December 4 that the Obama administration denied the permit necessary for the Dakota Access Pipeline to be completed.
Summertime view of the pipe being installed

We're talking about holding up billions of dollars of profit. The pipeline, costing $3.8 billion to build, would transport 470,000 barrels of oil a day across four states extending 1,172 miles.

Over the past months, local and state police have viciously attacked the nonviolent Water Protectors with water cannons in freezing weather, with attack dogs, clubs, rubber bullets, tear gas, mace, and threats. Temperatures in the camp have reached below zero at times. More than 500 were arrested over the past few months. A few hundred have been injured.

Then the Army Corps of Engineers gave a December 5 deadline for the Water Protectors to leave their camp site that is on Corp-managed land. North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple issued an emergency evacuation order following on the Army Corp of Engineers order. Even with this threat, they have not been able to make the Water Protector community back down or withdraw. December 5 was looking like a horrible assault about to happen.

The compound they built to drill under the lake
Then came the stunning Army Corps of Engineers announcement on December 4 that the permit to drill and lay the pipe under the riverbed is denied. The pipeline construction was at a halt. Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics Partners, the corporations behind the pipeline are expressing anger at this affront to their power.

How did the Standing Rock Sioux Nation do it? Not armed with guns, knives, violent weapons of any kind in the Oceti Sakowin Camp near the pipeline construction.

They built the resistance camp community with prayer, Sacred Fire ceremonies, and their spirit of reverence for all people and the earth. They displayed courage and nonviolent discipline in the face of great violent force. They welcomed all who come in support and oriented them to this spirit of respect and mutual taking care of one another.

The campaign used the media effectively. The many facets of media displayed pictures of the brutal attacks, and the courage of the people, and this inspired many across the country and beyond to respond.

They put out the call for support from Native people across the country, and they came. They called all people of good will to come join them. May of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation are U. S. military war veterans. They put out the call to veterans of America to come. And thousands came. To top it off, a contingent of 5,000 vets organized by Wesley Clark Jr. was on its way to be there December 4 -7, when the forced evacuation was to take place.

The local enforcement leaders acknowledged that they didn't have the resources to forcibly remove so many thousands from the camp.

This is a great victory, in the ongoing struggle. Energy Transfer Partners insists the pipeline will be completed. Maybe the route will be altered, far away from Reservation land. But if they pursue the present site, we know they have an ongoing battle with the great nonviolent force of the Standing Rock Sioux Nation and thousands who stand with them. They have inspired people throughout the world today.

 - Elliott Adams and Peter Dougherty

Walking With the Standing Rock Sioux Nation in Their Struggle

Sun shining in the camp
In response to an invitation by the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota, we are here as a Meta Peace Team (MPT) International Exploratory Team.

We say “International” because the Sioux Nation by treaty is a sovereign nation, locked in a complicated web of U.S. federal-state-local laws and tribal laws, through centuries of struggle, occupation and oppression.

We are here as part of the astounding Oceti Sakowin Camp of Water Protectors at Standing Rock, obstructing the completion of the Dakota Access Pipe Line construction that would be a threat to their water.

We are also here by invitation to explore how we may be a resource of nonviolence training for the Standing Rock people.
An overview of the camp

We come as white people, born and bred in the white U.S. culture, truly uninformed (ignorant) of their ways of thinking, feeling, relating to others and the earth. We know also that we still have ingrained biases we have not yet flushed out of our psyches toward others that are “different” from us. We come as learners, as well as companions in the struggle, with some things to share.

Years ago we did a nonviolence training in Michigan. One of our trainers was half Native American, half white. He shared a list of values and traits of Native Americans. One African-American making the training jumped up excitedly and exclaimed: “Those are the values and traits we have as African-Americans! The lesson for me was, that people of color share values in common that are different than those of European Americans.

We are struck by the general accent on the sacred. People and the earth are sacred. There is sacred ritual fire. Relationships are sacred. Land is sacred. Water is sacred. Burial grounds are sacred. Menstruation is sacred. (“It is our honoring,” said one woman). Being an elder is sacred.

We entered one tent in the camp referred to as the Michigan tent. Mostly there were Native Americans. At one point, an elder asked for our attention, then asked one Native American woman there to come forward, to her surprise. He told us of her bravery during the confrontations with police as they violently tried to force the Water Protectors back. He then reverently took out a strikingly beautiful large eagle feather, reverently handed it to her as a token of the community's gratitude. It was a sacred moment.

The seven Lakota (one of the Sioux bands) values are Fortitude, Respect, Compassion, Honesty, Generosity, Bravery, and Wisdom. Some things we heard in the camp “Come with a clean heart.” “If an elder tells you something, that is a blessing.” “Listen.” White relations tend to be transactional, vs the Native American way of first building relationships.

Meeting place of the Tribal Council