Friday, September 30, 2011

YouTube censors Border Patrol arrest at Bisbee

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CENSORED 'Border Patrol in the Bushes'

ACLU says Bisbee activist has the right to video tape, and post the video online, when Border Patrol agents come trampling through her property

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
BISBEE, Ariz. -- Border Patrol agents have pressured YouTube into censoring a video of agents making an arrest in Bisbee, Arizona. The video includes the image of a migrant with a bloody nose. Meanwhile, the ACLU has contacted YouTube stating that a Bisbee resident has the right to post this video.
The Arizona ACLU argues in its letter to both YouTube and Customs and Border Patrol "that public officials have no reasonable expectation of privacy while exercising their official duties in public places."
Stephen Lemon, in his column Feathered Bastard at Phoenix New Times, tries to track down the reasons that Border Patrol doesn't want the video posted. Lemon writes that Activist Alison McLeod "lives on her own property, which is regularly invaded by BP agents hot on the trail of her footprints. (I kid you not.)"
http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/bastard/2011/09/border_patrol_youtube_censor_v.php
For everyone that has been harassed, detained, assaulted or threatened by Border Patrol agents, including news reporters on the border, it is good to see the exposure of both the censorship by YouTube and the Border Patrol's efforts to hide.
Today's story follows last week's release of "A Culture of Cruelty," by the humanitarian aid organization No More Deaths in Tucson, documenting years of abuse, where children and adults were beaten by Border Patrol agents, and migrants were denied water, food and medicine.
At the same time, Border Patrol agents in the Southwest continue to be arrested for drug smuggling and corruption. Yuma Border Patrol agent Michael Angelo Atondo, already suspended after being charged with smuggling 745 pounds of marijuana, was arrested again on Thursday for drug charges.
In June, Customs and Border Patrol officials testified before a Congressional committee, revealing that since Oct., 2004, 127 CBP personnel have been arrested, charged or convicted of corruption. Of the 127 arrests, 95 are considered mission compromising acts of corruption. At the time of the hearing in June, there were 267 corruption related investigations underway of the Border Patrol.
Meanwhile, Alison has made a properly censored video and posted it on YouTube. See both videos below.
Here's her note on YouTube: "BANNED FROM YOUTUBE. Was it the dogs and chickens? The plainclothes agents with the latex gloves? Or was it the young detainee with the bloody nose? This video contains a remake of a benign video that was removed from YouTube at the request of Border Patrol. The original video was intended to show that life on the U.S.-Mexican border is not the 'war zone' as is portrayed in the corporate media. First Amendment protections were designed to keep the government and its officers from abusing absolute power. However, the new video is now properly censored and annotated, with a left-wing liberal bias."
Here's the ACLU's statement and the video:
ACLU Says Bisbee Activist Has First Amendment Right to Post Border Patrol Video on YouTube
Thursday, September 29, 2011
CONTACT: Alessandra Soler Meetze, ACLU of Arizona, (602) 773-6006 (office) or 602-301-3705

PHOENIX – In letter sent today to YouTube administrators, the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona criticized the online company for censoring a video of United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents arresting a man with a bloody nose.
The 5-minute video, dubbed “Border Patrol in the Bushes,” was taken by Bisbee activist Alison McLeod, who pulled out her video camera and started filming border patrol arresting an individual after she heard helicopters and saw several agents, on horseback and on foot, on her property on August 31st. The video shows four CBP agents walking an individual in handcuffs through her property to a white CBP truck parked on a public road. McLeod posted it on YouTube on September 2nd where it received “hundreds” of views within hours. Ten days after the video was posted, YouTube officials took it down, citing privacy complaints by CBP agents.
“This is yet another example of a private online community trampling on our First Amendment rights and trying to exercise greater control over what we share and watch online,” said Alessandra Soler Meetze, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona. “People have the right to film government officials carrying out their duties in public places. By censoring this type of protected speech, YouTube officials not only violated their own guidelines, but they’ve managed to silence debate around U.S. immigration practices along the U.S.-Mexico border.”
According to YouTube, three complaints about the video were filed; two of them were posted by CBP agents. Within hours of the YouTube posting, a CBP supervisor showed up unannounced at McLeod’s doorstep, telling her 19-year-old daughter who was home at the time that he was inquiring about the YouTube video. The agent then offered to give McLeod and her daughter a tour of the Border Patrol facilities and the local search area.
“This is the reality of border enforcement for those of us living on the border,” said McLeod, who has been living on the border since 1997. “Rather than trying to intimidate residents like me who are simply trying to make CBP more accountable to the public, they should respect the rights of all people living on the border.”
The ACLU sent a separate letter to the CBP’s Tucson Field Office, arguing their involvement in trying to remove the video constitutes “severe government interference with McLeod’s constitutional rights.”
“Customs and Border Protection is now the nation's largest federal law enforcement agency and it operates with total impunity, accountable to no one and with little government oversight,” added Meetze. “This video and CBP’s response to it underscores the need for greater transparency.”
Although YouTube has privacy guidelines that allow them to remove content where an individual is “uniquely identifiable,” the ACLU argues in its letter to both YouTube and CBP that public officials have no reasonable expectation of privacy while exercising their official duties in public places. The ACLU letter also points out that “nothing distinguishes McLeod’s videos from the hundreds of videos already on YouTube demonstrating various law enforcement activities.”
“YouTube boasts that it is the biggest news platform in the world,” wrote ACLU of Arizona Legal Director Dan Pochoda in his three-page letter to YouTube. “One of the goals of a free press is to hold government officials accountable for their actions. Granting law enforcement a de facto veto over materials they find objectionable or unflattering would violate and jeopardize that mission.”
The letter to YouTube asks the company to allow McLeod to repost her video and any future videos of government officials performing their duties. The ACLU also is asking CBP to stop interfering with McLeod’s efforts to videotape and photograph CBP activities on her own property or public land, and to rescind its complaints seeking the removal of the video from YouTube.

The Censored Video:
video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

The properly censored video now on YouTube:

Thursday, September 29, 2011

NAMMYs Live Broadcast Online: Friday, Oct 7, 2011

NATIVE AMERICAN MUSIC AWARDS
511 AVENUE THE AMERICAS #371 NEW YORK NY 10011 TEL 212.228.8300 FAX 646.688.6883
EMAIL NAMMYS@AOL.COM   WWW.NATIVEAMERICANMUSICAWARDS.COM

LIVE BROADCAST
THIRTEENTH ANNUAL
NATIVE AMERICAN MUSIC AWARDS
TO BE BROADCAST LIVE ON AWARDS WEBSITE STARTING AT  8 PM EST
During National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

NEW YORK -- On Friday, October 7th, at 8:00 PM EST, the Thirteenth Annual Native American Music Awards (N.A.M.A.), will be broadcast live from the Seneca Niagara Hotel & Casino by media partner, Indigenous Peoples Music & Single Feather Media, who will produce a live video stream of the awards program. All live coverage will be able to be seen and heard on the Native American Music Awards home page, NAMA LIVE.

Broadcast live at the Seneca Niagara Hotel & Casino in Niagara Falls, NY, the Thirteenth Annual Native American Music Awards will host over one dozen featured performances and appearances by leading Native American recording artists. Tickets are available at Ticketmaster and the Seneca Niagara Casino Box Office. Tickets start at $25.00 and up.

The Awards show will by hosted by legendary ice hockey coach & motivational speaker, Ted Nolan. Featured Performers are; Bill Crouse & The Iroquois Smoke Dancers, Buddy Big Mountain, Dylan Jenet Collins, Edko & The Brotherhood (House Band), Gabriel Ayala, Janice Marie Johnson, Keith Secola, Marc Brown & The Blues Crew, Nokie Edwards, Pipestone and much more.

Special Guest Presenters are: Winona LaDuke, Joanne Shenandoah and attending special guest nominees include; Augustine Frank & Native Thunder, Becky Thomas, Beth Wray Webb, Black Thunder Singers, Bobby Bullet St Germaine, Buggin Malone, CC Murdock, Cody Blackbird, Delsey Thompson, Dorothy Aguilera-Bear, Duane Deemer/Windhorse, Everett Chavez, Frank Anakwad, Frank Montano, Frank Waln, Gary Small, George Blitch, Harvey Arden, Herman Edward, Hudson Dean, J. Teller, Jack Gladstone, James Maracle, Jamie Brace & October Soul, Jan Michael Looking Wolf, Jason Chamakese, Jimmy Lee Young, Joel Johnson, Joseph FireCrow, Josh Halverson, Kashnapi, Kelly Montijo Fink, Kyra Climbingbear, Leanne Goose, Louis Capcha Vilchez, Marco Frucht, Matt Uno Bryant, Mike Gouchie, Muckow & Rushingwind, Peter Sackeney, Randy Granger, Raphael Deas, Rhonda Head, Ron Warren, Rose Fernandez, Rose Yazzie Thomas, Scott Golana Cunningham, Spencer & Doc Batiste, Terry Lee Whetstone, Theresa Bearfox, Wendy Bradshaw, Windspirit Drum

The Awards program will commemorate the month of October as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For more information please visit http://www.nbcam.org

The Native American Music Awards is the music industry's largest and independent, organization consisting of national members dedicated to Native American music and are directly involved in the creation, marketing, recording, manufacturing and distribution of both contemporary and traditional music initiatives.

Visit the Native American Music Awards Website, www.nativeamericanmusicawards.com to cast your vote for the winners before October 7th! Join voters who are casting their votes from all parts of the world.

 

Tucson urges release of Dream Act student

Sandra Lopez, deported and thrown on the streets of Nogales, Mexico, and now in detention, describes the terror of being alone and scared, as young girls screamed at night in Nogales.

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com

TUCSON -- Tucson community members urged the release from detention of Sandra Lopez, 20 years old, who has lived in Tucson since she was less than one month old. Sandra was deported and thrown onto the streets of Nogales, Mexico, in what turned into a nightmare.
“I heard the screams of the young girls at the hotel,” Sandra told a judge. “I knew I had no choice if I wanted to stay alive but run for my life, up the lanes of traffic back into the United States and plead for help.”
During a press conference today, Tucson community members and Sandra’s father urged President Obama to do the right thing and release Sandra from the Eloy Detention Center in Arizona. Sandra, an honor student and student of the month in high school in Tucson, has been in detention for eight months.
After being deported to the streets of Nogales, everyone tried to take advantage of Sandra. Women on the streets urged her to join them, police officers tried to get her into their car. After five days on the streets of Nogales, alone and scared, she bolted, she ran down the busy lanes of traffic to the US. She wanted to be detained, she wanted to be safe.
Sandra’s father, Humberto Duran, described his daughter, deported and abandoned on the streets of Nogales, Mexico, for five days. She was left there with no place to go.
“She had never been to Mexico; she spent her entire life in the United States. She was just thrown out there and everyone tried to take advantage of her. It was a living hell, it would be a living hell for anyone out there,” Duran said.
“She was scared, had no money and no place to go, and everyone tried to take advantage of her.”
Now, with Sandra imprisoned in Eloy, Arizona, Duran said every parent should be able to feel what he feels now.
“My message to parents out there is that we have to support one another. Life is not always as we expect. Only parents know how difficult it is to be in a situation like this. I’d like to ask for the community’s help.”
Asked about the anxiety of having a daughter in prison, he said, “If anyone has a daughter or son out there, I would gladly get down on my knees and pray to help them out.”
More than 5,000 people have made phone calls and sent e-mails and faxes to ICE Director John Morton. So far, Morton, the Obama Administration and DHS have turned a cold shoulder to the public outcry on Sandra’s behalf.
After Sandra ran for safety back to the US border, Sandra told a judge what happened on the streets of Nogales, Mexico.
“When I got to Nogales, I was really sacred. Strange men began to ask me to come with them; I ran away from them, I thought they were going to kidnap me.”
She saw men bring younger girls to a hotel. “At night I could hear them scream.”
Older women tried to get her to become a sex worker. “I know they wanted me to be a sex worker for them, I said ‘No,’ over and over, but the men with them tried to grab me and I ran away.”
“I asked policemen for help, but they would not help me, they also tried to get me to go with them and I knew I would be raped, I ran away from the policemen, I was so scared and there was nobody there to help me or protect me.”
Sandra said she fears she will be kidnapped and help for ransom, or worse, if she is deported back to Mexico. “I fear I will be kidnapped and held for ransom.”
“I know it is very common for young, attractive women who are alone, to be sexually assaulted, to be held for ransom, to be forced to work as sex slaves.”
During today’s press conference in Tucson, community members urged the Department of Homeland Security and the Obama Administration to end Sandra’s detention and impending deportation and let her come home. Further, they urged an end to all DREAM ACT eligible residents.
Sandra’s attorney Margo Cowan said President Obama has not fulfilled his promise to the Latino community. So far, Cowan said, Obama has only responded to the pleas for Sandra's release by saying, “We’ve taken this under consideration.”
Cowan said, “We’re calling on President Obama to keep his word. Obama said he is reaching out to the Latino community.”
On August 18, 2011, the Department of Homeland Security announced that it would focus enforcement on high priority cases individuals considered “most dangerous.” This announcement followed a June 17, 2011, memo from Morton wherein the agency defined low priority cases as including person who have lived in the US since childhood.
"Sandra is an outstanding student and graduated with distinction from Amphitheater High School," said John Fife, Pastor Emeritus of Southside Presbyterian Church, among those urging her release today. Fife pointed out that since she has lived here all her life, she is eligible to stay in the US under the Dream Act.
"Sandra is eager to attend college and pursue a career in public service. Sandra is dream eligible and should be provided the opportunity to stay and continue her fine contribution to her family and our community."

Read more at No More Deaths, where volunteers also search the desert for migrants in distress, with humanitarian aid.
Take action, send an e-mail or fax:
http://www.nomoredeaths.org/cgi-bin/dada/mail.cgi/archive/NMDannounce/20110831213749/
Also see: Border Patrol 'A Culture of Cruelty'
No More Deaths' report, following thousands of interviews, documenting that children and adults are beaten by the US Border Patrol. Migrants were denied water, food and medicine:
http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2011/09/border-patrol-culture-of-cruelty.html


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

VIDEO: Ottawa Tar Sands Protest Dirty Oil Part II

Northern Paiute Traditional Gatherer Scheduled for US Court


Northern Paiute gatherer and craftsman Kwassuh, Wesley Dick.
Traditional Northern Paiute gatherer Kwassuh, Wesley Dick, is scheduled to go appear in US court -- the day after Columbus Day -- for practicing his traditions in his homeland
By Kwassuh, Wesley Dick
Censored News
 
 
SUMMARY – NEED FOR JUSTICE

These events are based onthe understanding and acknowledgment of two worlds.

1. The lifeways, the unique cultures, the sacred ceremonial, the loss of identity, customs, traditions and quality of lives the Native Americans all shared from past thousands of years to the present. The aboriginal peoples needs to live good lives depends on the freedoms our ancestors practiced in their daily lives. Respect and the love of our mothers is the same relationship we share with the Earth. The strength, wisdom and protection our fathers provided is related to the respect and honor we have for the Creator. This relationship will never end among all indigenous people worldwide.

2. The interference of these non-Native immigrants that forcibly claimed my people’s homes, food, and more. Including forcing their own religions upon my people and forcing them off their homelands; forcing their laws, rules, regulations, limitations, executing their punishments, penalties, threats, and worse of all the senseless murders that were committed by these people for their own benefit. Also, dislocating and imprisoning the Natives to other areas, the destruction of space; the destruction of the air we breathe, the destruction of the water we drink, the destruction upon our earth, the destruction of plants, the destruction of our animals, the production of toxic chemicals, the production of mass weapons, and the list goes on by these non-Native immigrants with absolute disregard for the good life the aboriginal people had lived for thousands of years are absolutely nothing to be proud of by a nation that claims to uphold “Life, Liberty and Justice for All”. This has been at the expense of the Native American people and now the destruction of the earth and its atmosphere.
Kwassuh's craft made from tules. Photo Kwassuh.
A majority of Native people relate and possess inside themselves the same feeling of loss, direct threats, misinformation, lack of knowledge, and worse of all misguidance from our present tribal leaders who do not seem to have learned from the past Tribal leaders whose failures have heavily burdened our people today time after time. These are the same individuals who before election time, promised to uphold, respect, protect, and preserve our tribal concerns and matters.

It’s amazing how many of these individuals tend to profit on their own behalf and benefit for their own certain followers at the expense of the ones who are really in need of. Financial failures are the most obvious and well known among many tribal governments and seems to be a never ending issue. The loss of our lands is another failed example, but worse of all is the loss of our culture and the loss of our ancestors teachings by our own people except for books, old pictures, artifacts that are collected in museums or individual collections that most people see today. It’s become harder to gain the correct answers among our own people today because the most knowledgeable elders in our communities are passing away and the newer generations are influenced by other societies. I, Wesley Dick (Kwassuh) have always known of the importance of taking the time to learn from my own people, especially while participating, assisting my own tribal people through hunting, plant gathering, ceremonial and all culturally related events. Since the stories shared by my grandparents, family and friends and the killing of my first rabbit when I was 8 or 9 years old, this was the beginning stage of respecting a living being that I learned would provide nutrition and the spiritual understanding of the rabbit to help me throughout my life. From that time, I have excelled in my life-learning importance of all living plants and animals both physically and spiritually from the teachings of my own people and the direct connection of their lifecycle is respectfully honored in our ceremonies and the need to pass on these teachings is the most important. The result of today’s modern hunting methods don’t include the spirituality of these animals being killed. Sadly today’s Native hunters have excluded prayers and the respect of the animals, in exchange hunting is considered sport and the animal is game. The antlers are treasured but the hides and hoofs are thrown away regardless of their spiritual significance that are sacred only to our traditional people.

The efforts to continue what I have learned and the experiences I have been successful in from past to present, has been tremendously disrespected and these interferences have put a large delay in the progress and fulfillment of my obligations to my family and my people. A very heavy financial burden has also been placed on me and my family at the worst of these difficult times. The need to sell some of our personal belongings and get personal loans from the pawn shop in order to maintain the everyday cost of living, having to drive a many distance to and from the library in order to produce documents, traveling to get advice from legal persons, and having to get donations to assist us. Worst of all, is the need to defend myself to this United States Court that cites me because I was doing what I am supposed to be doing as a traditional Native person which is picking my peoples traditional plant in a ceremonial way and citing me for being where my people used to be which is a known burial, ceremonial and traditional plant gathering and hunting area. These customs are known by the Northern Paiute, Western Shoshone, Washoe and recognized by the United States of America.

A formal letter of request for financial assistance was read, given and received by my Tribal Council and was denied even though I explained in detail my full intentions to defend myself and stand up for our Native rights. This is just a few examples of the undue and unnecessary steps we have endured so far. I am thankful to my family and friends for their help in getting me this far. Having to take my family on an over 2,000 mile round trip to the State of Washington to get fair justice by a Tribal Court was especially financially difficult. The Tribal Court panel of judges consists of several indigenous Nations who are very knowledgeable in national and international laws. They recognized my obvious human rights that are being violated. With their assistance and respect, that they have shown me and my family, made it well worth the trip.

This first incident with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service not acknowledging or respecting my inherent rights or my aboriginal rights to practice the sacred methods of my peoples traditional plant gathering and use, outraged not only my tribal people among my reservation, but also included the non-Indians in my local community and surrounding cities and states; most of all, many indigenous people worldwide. These people have all expressed outrage of these nonsense claims and ignorance on behalf of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. In order for myself to be cited for $675.00 for picking my own traditional plant that the U.S. Wildlife Refuge burns thousands of these plants each year, they already spent thousands of dollars to try me in their court. Also, the majority of the tule bundle that I prayed for and picked on the Stillwater Reservation was the majority of the bundle that was confiscated on May 14, 2011 still seems to be ignored. The small amount of tules I observed and picked in the ditch was also acknowledged in the ceremonial way as always. Then, the citation for $175.00 for trespassing, which I was on my own aboriginal territory, to try to collect a $175.00 from me will be an additional thousands of dollars in their court proceedings, not to mention, the embarrassment they will learn is the result of their own ignorance because that’s another traditionally known area by my people, the visitors, hunters, officials, and other Natives. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Fallon Paiute-Shoshone Tribe both states “Home For The Numa” and acknowledges the Northern Paiute people/Toi-Ticutta with their signature stamps/emblem located at the bottom of this sign.

There is absolutely no signs saying No Admittance, Restricted Area, Authorization Only, No Trespassing, Barriers, Fenced Area, Punishment and Fines signs where my truck was parked. The only sign visible to me were Welcome and Auto Tour Loop.
This has always been a known traditional ceremonial and burial area told to me by my grandmother and elders, where the U.S. Fish and Wildlife claims I trespassed/unauthorized area/travel off designated route that I’m being accused of.

There will be a new upcoming misguided direction of this same wildlife officer who cannot tell the difference between a red faced bear hide and an elk hide. Along with my own Tribal police officer who misidentified this hide also and assisted in confiscating my property which places me and my family in a huge financial loss because I needed my flatbed trailer and all its contents. These officer’s threats of felony charges didn’t intimidate me. I replied to them to go ahead and charge me because as a Native traditional practitioner, I have the right to possess any plant, mineral or animal that comes from the Earth especially when it pertains to our sacred culture. No charges were filed and the ridiculous claims of me being in possession of a red faced bear or any bear never existed. A week later, Tribal Police called me to come and pick up my elk and deer hides that the U.S. Wildlife took from our property. These officer’s claims of a head and claws seems to have disappeared.

To date, I never received any written incident reports from these officers or their departments. But I finally received the return of my hides and I await the return of my flatbed trailer by the Fallon Paiute-Shoshone Tribe. Some of the results of my loss include: (1) To complete my hide tanning structure; that is now taken, (2) the wood stumps I have been saving that I planned on using for smoking, (3) the various wood chips I also used for smoking my hides, (4) there were a few tires I could have sold for $10.00 each, (5) the deer hides I intended on tanning for my5 year old daughters dress, (6) the loss of my elk hide I intended on producing hand drums from, (7) the water containers that the hides were contained in, (8) the two axle flatbed trailer that was taken; I paid $600.00 for it and purchased it for the intent of hauling large items and cords of wood on, (9) the hunting trips I have missed out on, (10) the plant picking trips I normally take with my family, (11) ceremonies I had planned on attending, (12) powwows me and my family annually attend, (13) part time jobs I’ve missed out on, from cutting wood, mending fences, and ground clearing, (14) the inability to promise dependability to a full time job (I have been an experienced drywall finisher for over 20 years). These matters with Fish and Wildlife by having to defend my inherent rights and now the illegal taking of my property, has put my family and I in a great financial burden, huge cultural delay and interference with my traditional activities my family and I normally do at this time. No others should have to go through this.

The United States District Court in Reno decision on July 21st Decision of the Government's Oral Motion for Dismissal without prejudice of citation #2011055-N31, Taking of any animal or plant without authorization is granted. I need to define this court decision. It is very important to me to understand how this decision will affect myself and my people who plan on carrying out our plant gathering, hunting and religious matters for today and the future. Does this ruling mean we will have no further interference from these Wildlife Game Officials? Will this ruling assist our neighboring/related Tribes in similar situations? Will our inherent rights and reserved rights as Native Americans be respected from now on? Will our Native sovereignty issues with the United States of America finally be clear and present to these individuals who claim to represent the laws and acts the United States of America claims to be proud of upholding. Maybe these law enforcement officials will make no more mistakes and better understand matters concerning the real aboriginal peoples of this land so we can be able to provide, protect, preserve, maintain, and live the way our ancestors once normally lived and honor them in the right way they deserve and stand in our rightful place in the beautiful circle of life where we belong. This Reno District Court Judge ignored the Tribal Declaratory Judgment that was hand delivered and placed on the District Court Judges desk by his secretary before July 21st court and proceeded to continue with his own proceedings ignoring the Native American rights and laws that pertain to my case. This Declaratory Judgment by the Kuiu Kwaan Tribal Court was stamped and dated by the U.S. District Court on July 21, 2011.

I have been a teacher, demonstrator, practitioner, provider, mentor, a ceremonial assistant, plant gatherer, skilled hunter, and a valued asset to my community, but most of all I am a father to my children, a son to my mother and father, a brother to my sisters and brothers, an uncle to many nieces and nephews, a grandfather to my step-daughter’s children, a good friend to many, a spiritual person and someday an important elder of my tribe. All these people are counting on me to continue what I have been happy to provide and accomplish for many years. In these modern times, all nations of people are supposed to be more educated and aware of the past to better our next generations. Thanks to my single shot 22 MAG rifle I owned for at least 25 years, I once killed 3 jackrabbits in one shot, with one bullet. This rifle is only good if I have a bullet though. I could never accomplish a shot like that with a bow and arrow, even though I am content with one rabbit with one arrow. Our F-350 Duly truck and two axle flatbed trailer was expected to haul 3 to 4 cords of wood from the mountains to home. With no gas, and now minus my trailer, I will be lucky to get only a cord of wood or none at all.

These unnecessary interferences and absolute ridiculous distractions and delays hopefully will end immediately because I have much more to offer and much more to do and accomplish for my family and my people. I see myself as being charged by the United States of America for practicing what I know I am supposed to do as a traditional Native person, being charged for being where I am supposed to be as a traditional Native person, and being charged for being a Toi-Ticutta. The only one guilty is the United States Wildlife Officer and their representatives for interfering, interrupting and preventing me to do as my people are known for doing. These individuals are in total violation and need to be corrected immediately or this will be another case of history repeating itself and another case of indigenous human rights being violated and disrespected by the nation who claims “with liberty and justice for all”.

Thank you, Wesley Dick (Kwassuh)
Northern Paiute (Toi-Ticutta) and member of the Fallon Paiute-Shoshone Tribe

VIDEO: Tantoo Cardinal at Tar Sands Protest Ottawa

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Blood Reserve: Drumming for the Earth Gathering

“DRUMMING FOR THE EARTH GATHERING
Censored News
Photo: Blood Tribe 1910

SPONSORED BY “FRIENDS OF BLOOD LANDS” AND VARIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL COALITIONS

SATURDAY OCTOBER 1, 2011
FROM 9 AM TO 4 PM
NORTH END OF BLOOD RESERVE

COME AND JOIN US FOR PRAYERS AND DRUMMING TO PROTECT THE EARTH, WATER, LAND, AIR, PLANTS AND ANIMALS OF THE BLOOD RESERVE
ALL DRUMMERS AND ELDERS WELCOME
DIRECTIONS:
TURN AT JUNCTION OF HIGHWAY 2 AND 509 WEST OF COALHURST ALBERTA, DRIVE FOR 14 KILOMETERS TOWARDS STANDOFF AND TURN WEST AT THE MATAKI FARMS/ SAWKEE FEED LOT TURN OFF
YOU WILL SEE A BIG BLUE AND WHITE TENT
OR
FROM STANDOFF TURN AT JUNCTION OF HIGHWAY 1 AND 509, DRIVE FOR APPROXIMATELY 20 TO 25 MINUTES AND YOU WILL SEE THE BIG BLUE AND WHITE TENT
BRING: CHAIR, WATER, TOBACCO, CLOTH OR RIBBONS FOR OFFERING
FOR MORE INFORMATION
CONTACT MIKE AT (403) 737 – 2194 OR chiefbird@hotmail.com

VIDEO Ottawa Action 2011



NO! to tarsands and the Keystone XL pipeline
Clayton Thomas-Muller of the Indigenous Environmental Network, said the Ottawa Tar Sands Action, September 26, 2011, was the largest civil disobedience in the history of the Canadian Climate Justice Movement! On Parliament Hill, 212 crossed police line and risked arrest and 117 were arrested. More than 80 were released in a mass release by police when they got tired of processing folks.

Ottawa Tar Sands: Cree arrested at Parliament
By Brenda Norrell
Narcosphere

Cree protesters were among those arrested in Ottawa on Monday, demanding an end to the dirty tarsands and the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, an environmental disaster in the making from Canada to the Gulf Coast.
George Poitras, former Chief of the Mikisew Cree First Nation, and First Nation youths, were among those arrested Mon., Sept. 26, outside of Parliament, demanding an end to the tarsands which is destroying First Nation homelands.
Clayton Thomas-Muller, Cree and among the organizers, said 212 people crossed the police line and risked arrest. Of those, 117 were arrested. More than 80 were released in a mass release by police when they got tired of processing those who crossed the police line.
Speaking at the rally on Parliament Hill, Chief Terry McKay, Tsimshian Nation, began with these words, “We come in peace, we have no quarrel. We see the birds dying, animals dying, and the elders don’t want to eat the deer, the elk, the moose anymore.”
“You come to our land and you take it, and you don’t put anything back, that is not right.”
Chief Jackie Thomas Sai’kuz First Nation said her people came to the Ottawa action to stand up with their brothers and sisters, the Cree and Dene. “We’re standing up to protect our water. We’re standing up to protect our Cree and Dene brothers and sisters.”
“We will put up a wall that Enbridge pipeline can not break through!” Chief Thomas said, to a roar of cheers from the crowd.
Melina Laboucan-Massimo, Lubicon Cree youth, said the government has put her family and all of the families at risk. “This behind me is the House of Commons -- not the House of Corporations.”
Cree actress Tantoo Cardinal also spoke of the suffering of the Cree people.
“We have suffered holocaust, we have suffered genocide. My mothers people knew, and know to this day: The earth is alive. There is no energy more powerful than the natural force. Thank you for standing with your heart, and standing with your spirit, for generations and generations.”
Joining First Nation activists and spiritual leaders was Maude Barlow, national chairperson of the Council of Canadians. Barlow said it is the energy companies that are driving policies, and not the other way around. She said they are violating the rights of the people, including the right to water.
“I am doing this because I love my grandkids.” Barlow said when she and the others crossed the police line, they would not be breaking the law in her opinion. “The people who are breaking the law are in the Harper government, in that building right there.”
Dene National Chief Bill Erasmus was among those speaking at the rally during the planned civil disobedience organized by First Nations and environmental organizations, and endorsed by the Dene Nation.
Chief Erasmus spoke to the crowd of 1,000 people about the impacts of tar sands developments on Dene. Chief Erasmus said the Dene are already afraid to drink the water because of oil spills.
"Toxic tailings ponds already cover hundreds of square kilometers, and are growing by the minute, “Erasmus said. "Millions of liters of contaminated water leak each day from these tailings ponds into groundwater and tributaries in the Athabasca River watershed. These waters flow through Denendeh, from northern Alberta to the Arctic Ocean, and any pollution in the water impacts our communities. This is one of our main concerns about tar sands development."
Chief Erasmus said the Dene Nation has endorsed the Ottawa protests as previous efforts to lobby the government have fallen on deaf ears.
Read more:
http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/brenda-norrell/2011/09/ottawa-tarsands-cree-arrested-parliament

Monday, September 26, 2011

Ottawa Tarsands Protest: Portraits of Arrests by Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless, Mohawk

Photo Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless

OTTAWA TARSANDS ACTION
Sept. 26, 2011
Photos by Ben Powless, Mohawk
See all today's heroes at the rally and arrested: Photos by Ben Powless:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/tarsandsaction/sets/72157627762196960/

Tucson youth held by ICE

Keep pushing for Sandra's release
No More Deaths
UPDATE: Read more about Sandra Lopez, 20, an honor student who grew up in Tucson, and the nightmare of being deported, abandoned on the streets of Mexico, and then imprisoned:
http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2011/09/tucson-urges-release-of-dream-act.html
TUCSON -- A few weeks ago we told you about Sandra Lopez, a 20-year-old Tucsonan who needs our help. Despite being a DREAMer, Sandra has been detained at Eloy Detention Center for the past two months and DHS has refused to release her from ICE detention. Will you help Sandra by making a call demanding that she be released immediately?
Also, even if you have already used our e-action page to send a letter to John Morton, please visit it again to send a letter to both John Morton and Katrina Kane.
Please call now:
Call DHS head Janet Napolitano: 202-282-8495
Call ICE head John Morton: 202-732-3000
Call ICE field office director Katrina Kane: 602-766-7028
Sample Script: “Hi, I am calling to ask that Sandra F. Lopez (A# 200-704-493) be released from Eloy Detention Center, Arizona. Sandra is a DREAM Act–eligible student and she has been detained in Eloy Detention Center for too long. Sandra has lived in Tucson, Arizona, since she was a few days old. Please release her from Eloy Detention Center.”
THANK YOU.

WATCH LIVE: Tarsands Civil Disobedience Sept 26, 2011

Tantoo Cardinal Photo by Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless

Photo Ben Powless
Photos by Ben Powless
UPDATE: Portraits of arrests:
http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2011/09/ottawa-tarsands-protest-portraits-of.html





Also see: CBC Live Ottawa
http://www.cbc.ca/video/#/News/Politics/1244504890/ID=2129385867

Hundreds gather on Parliament Hill to say ‘No to Tar Sands’
(Ottawa) – Hundreds of people from across North America are gathered this morning on Parliament Hill for a rally followed by a mass civil disobedience sit-in. Participants are responding to a call to action for a large peaceful protest where many will risk arrest to tell the Harper government they don’t support his reckless agenda and urge him to turn away from the tar sands and build a green energy future that promotes climate justice, respects Indigenous rights and prioritizes the health of our environment and communities.
“It is morally justifiable to risk arrest if you see and witness a crime occurring or about to occur. We are saying the tar sands industry is unlawful. We need to stop it before the damage is done. It’s worth getting arrested to send that warning out to the rest of Canada,” said Louisette Lante, a housewife from Waterloo.
The action began at 10 a.m. with a solidarity rally in front of the Centennial Flame on Parliament Hill featuring a number of speeches from prominent individuals from environmental organizations and Indigenous communities directly impacted by the tar sands Following the speeches, waves of participants in groups of 20 or more will separate from the solidarity rally and choose to risk arrest by participating in a peaceful sit-in near the front doors to Centre Block.

Media Release
For Immediate Release
September 26th, 2011
Ottawa, ON
By Dene Chief Bill Erasmus

Hundreds have been arrested on Parliament Hill while protesting the proposed
Keystone XL pipeline. The protests have been organized by First Nations and
environmental organizations, and are endorsed by Dene Nation.
Dene National Chief Bill Erasmus has joined the protests, and spoke to the crowd
of one thousand about the impacts of tar sands developments on Dene.
"Toxic tailings ponds already cover hundreds of square kilometres , and are
growing by the minute,” Erasmus said. "Millions of litres of contaminated
water leak each day from these tailings ponds into groundwater and tributaries
in the Athabasca River watershed. These waters flow through Denendeh, from
northern Alberta to the Arctic Ocean, and any pollution in the water impacts our
communities. This is one of our main concerns about tar sands development."
Dene Nation has endorsed the Ottawa protests as previous efforts to lobby the
government have fallen on deaf ears. "It is unfortunate that we must resort to
civil disobedience to make our voices heard," Erasmus said. "But in this
crucial time when tar sands developments are threatening our water, the fate of
our climate, the lives of our children, and our Treaty and basic human rights,
we can no longer afford to be obedient to this government and the fossil fuel
industry."
The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would transport 1 million barrels of synthetic
crude oil each day from Alberta's tar sands to US refineries in the Gulf of
Mexico. Construction of the 2,700 km pipeline would facilitate a massive
expansion of Alberta's tar sands, along with increased pollution, stress on
water resources, and greenhouse gas emissions. Dene communities are downstream
from the tar sands, and are threatened by the impacts of upstream water usage
and pollution, and the impacts of climate change and global warming.
--For more information please contact: Barret Lenoir or Daniel T’seleie, at the
Dene National Office (867) 873-4081 (or by cell at 867-444-0509).

Ottawa action live
http://www.livestream.com/ottawaaction


Watch live streaming video from ottawaaction at livestream.com


lt;

Streaming by Ustream

Watch Live: Twin Cities Tar Sands Action
Today 10AM to 2PM CDT!

http://www.ienearth.org/ien-pipeline.html

CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE OTTAWA TODAY
“We have hundreds of people who have signed up to risk arrest,” said Clayton Thomas-Muller, a campaigner with the Indigenous Environmental Network. “At a time when we need to be fundamentally reducing our emissions, at a time when we need to be generating investments in zero-carbon energy technology, we’re allowing Big Oil and this Harper majority government to lead us on a backward path, which is destroying Canada’s image internationally,” he said.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/oil-sands-opponents-to-descend-on-parliament-hill/article2179710/
Embattled pipeline at centre of mass Ottawa protest
CTV News Canada
Protesters started collecting on Parliament Hill on Sunday, taking part in protest training sessions ahead of a planned mass confrontation with the federal government over its support for the oilsands and a proposed pipeline from Alberta to Texas.
Hundreds of environmentalists are expected to turn out for Monday's mass rally, which organizers expect will become "the largest civil disobedience action in the history of Canada's climate movement." More:
http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/Canada/20110925/protesters-gather-for-pipeline-protest-110925/

KEYSTONE XL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT HEARINGS COMING TO YOUR AREA
Background
www.ienearth.org

The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would consist of approximately 1,711 miles of new 36-inch-diameter pipeline, with approximately 327 miles of pipeline in Canada and 1,384 miles in the U.S. TransCanada filed an application for a Presidential Permit with the U.S. Department of State to build and operate the Keystone XL Project. The proposed Project would have the capacity to transport 700,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil to delivery points in Oklahoma and southeastern Texas.

On August 26, 2011, the U.S. Department of State released a final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) on the proposed Keystone XL pipeline saying the pipeline would have "no significant impact" on the environment. According to the U.S. administration, they are saying President Obama now has three months to determine whether the controversial project is in the national interest of America.

Our concerns with this FEIS are similar to the concerns of a previous pipeline project called Keystone (with no “XL” attached to it, sometimes called Keystone 1) and its final EIS that was done in 2008. The basic concern was the EIS was incomplete, and didn’t thoroughly address all the issues. Keystone XL fails to take seriously the potential damage to American Indian Tribes and their Tribal members in the States of Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. These damages could threaten, among other things, water aquifers, water ways, cultural sites, agricultural lands, animal life, public drinking water sources and other resources vital to the Tribal peoples of the region in which the pipeline is proposed to be constructed. Lack of adequate consultation has been a consistent concern expressed by Tribal members of all the affected Tribal Nations who to this day have not been thoroughly informed of the potential effects of this pipeline.

With over 12 spills caused by the Keystone 1 pipeline, which runs through eastern North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Kansas with links to Missouri and Illinois, it is critical that the State Department take the potential environmental and cultural resource impacts seriously. The FEIS is not even requiring TransCanada, the company that hopes to build Keystone XL, to submit an emergency response plan before final approval. In spite of the reported spills on Keystone I, the XL EIS predicts 1.78 to 2.51 spills, of any size, per year.

Tribal Nations deserve and have a right to be thoroughly informed and have a truthful account of the damage Keystone XL can cause. The toxic corrosive crude oil that would flow through the Keystone XL pipeline comes from the tar sands in northern Alberta, Canada. The tar sands are located in the homelands of the Cree, Dene and Métis communities. The pipeline will cross hundreds of miles of indigenous territory, including Lakota territory, and violate treaty rights under the Fort Laramie Treaties of 1851 and 1868 as well as human rights under the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

U.S executive approval is needed before the pipeline can be laid in place. The State Department has announced the schedule for a series of public input meetings in States along the route of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. Written comments will be accepted by the State Department until October 9th, 2011.

Public Hearings on Keystone XL Pipeline

Monday, September 26, 2011

Texas:
Bob Bowers Civic Center
3401 Cultural Center Dr., Port Arthur, 4:30 – 10 p.m.
Kansas:
Kansas Expo Center
1 Expocenter Dr., Topeka, noon – 3:30 p.m., 4– 8 p.m.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Montana:
Dawson Community College
Toepke Center Auditorium, 300 Community Dr., Glendive, 4:30 – 10 p.m.
Nebraska:
Pershing Center
226 Centennial Mall, South Lincoln, noon – 3:30 p.m., 4. – 8:00 p.m .

Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Texas:
University of Texas Lady Bird Johnson Auditorium,
2313 Red River St., Austin, noon – 3:30 p.m., 4 – 8 p.m.

Thursday, September 29, 2011
South Dakota:
Best Western Ramkota,
920 West Sioux Ave., Pierre, noon – 3:30 p.m., 4 – 8 p.m.
Nebraska:
West Holt High School, 100 N. Main St. Atkinson, 4:30 – 10 p.m.

Friday, September 30, 2011
Oklahoma:
Reed Center Exhibition Hall,
5800 Will Rogers Rd., Midwest City., noon – 3:30 p.m., 4 – 8 p.m.

Friday, October 7, 2011
Washington, D.C.: To be announced via website and public notice.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Navajo Council Angry: Navajo President slashes funds for elderly, children and green jobs

Navajo Council Speaker
Johnny Naize
President’s Shelly’s vetoes target green initiatives, resource development, young people and the elderly

By Navajo Council Speaker  Johnny Naize
Posted at Censored News
http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com

.
WINDOW ROCK Ariz. — The Navajo Nation Council voiced anger at Navajo President Shelly’s line-item vetoes of portions of the FY2012 Tribal Operating Budget on Friday. Among the cuts in the $556.6 million budget included $111 thousand for the Little Folks Day Care Program, $161 thousand for five Navajo Area Agency on Aging offices in Shiprock, Chinle, Tuba City, Fort Defiance and Crownpoint, $352 thousand from the Navajo Green Commission, $130 thousand from the Resources Committee, and $838 thousand for legislative district staff for the 24 Council Delegates.
“The Council is very concerned for President Shelly’s lack of cohesive management on the direction he wants to take the Navajo People,” said Navajo Nation Council Speaker Johnny Naize. “The President says not to forget the elders but it appears he has. He has also said we need to nurture the youth because they are our future but instead has yanked funding that would do just that.”
“Additionally, at a time when other governments are looking for ways to build a green economy to reduce waste and become environmentally aware, President Shelly has decided that the Navajo people will not.”
“These vetoes were unnecessary after all the discussions we held in June between the three Branches and during the recent Budget Sessions which produced this budget,” continued Naize. “I unfortunately believe the President has suddenly decided on himself to rewrite all the work the Branches have done during the past three months.”
In the FY2012 operating budget, the Executive Branch was appropriated the bulk of the $556.6 million at a little more than $505 million for programs and set asides such as for Higher Education and Veterans. Next, the Legislative Branch was appropriated $16.6 million with the Judicial Branch receiving $15.4 million for their programs and set asides. Also included in the budget are $25.4 million for fixed costs and $4 million for chapter spending.
“These cuts are concerning because they appear to be made as a vendetta against certain programs, council members and committees,” said Naize. “But in the process of doing that he vetoed funds for Summer Youth Employment, and an elderly group home in Blue Gap. Our people are in need and even though the President says his Branch provides direct services to the people, these vetoes prove they won’t. That is not how a Natani leads his people.”
Earlier this month President Shelley vetoed $2.2 million for Youth Employment, $286,000 for the Hoosh Doo Dii To’ Home and $1 million for the Navajo Department of Transportation.
Also in these latest round of vetoes was funding for 24 Legislative District Staff for the 24 Council Delegates.
“In the past, the Legislative Branch has worked with a little more than 8 percent of the total Navajo Nation Operating Budget, said Navajo Nation Council Speaker Johnny Naize. “Not only do we need to remain at that level but we’ll also need some additional funds to address the increased workload for the 24 Council Delegates.”
At the district level there is a growing feeling of isolation as Council Delegates juggle up to 8 chapters and their work on their committees in Window Rock. The Legislative District Staff would assist the Delegates by attending meetings that otherwise may have been missed due to other commitments.
Although some thought a smaller Council would mean a smaller budget, the opposite has happened. The increase in Chapter representation has lead to an increase of meeting and on-reservation travel expenses. Speaker Naize and the Council are resolved in making sure the people don’t lose their voice just because President Shelly wants to ration and silence the Delegates ability to serve community needs and concerns.”
“Again, the Navajo People are becoming confused where President Shelly is taking us,” concluded Naize. “All these programs are for the people yet he refuses to acknowledge the need out there. For the last couple of months he has held numerous town halls to get community input yet for all the people’s efforts, he has decided to ignore them.”
“I want the people to know that the Council will not ignore them and will continue to work and make sure the business of the people gets done no matter how President Shelly tries to silence them.”

Mass arrests at Occupy Wall Street

Censored News
http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com

Mass arrests: 80 arrested, including Livestream media team
Livesteram and live chat available again now:
http://www.livestream.com/globalrevolution

VIDEO TODAY: Females maced in the face at Union Square:


Army of police forming at Union Square.. #OccupyWallStreet #o... on Twitpic
Twitter photos of mass arrests now, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011, and more police arriving.



Brutal arrest, without cause, Saturday.

Contact: Lorenzo Saturday
Cell: 701‐330‐2861
Email: progressivechange@gmail.com
#OCCUPYWALLSTREET is a people powered movement for democracy that
began in America on September 17 with an encampment in the financial district
of New York City. Inspired by the Egyptian Tahrir Square uprising and the
Spanish acampadas, we vow to end the monied corruption of our democracy.
#occupwallstreet is currently located at Liberty Square, formerly named Zucotti
Park.

Cree George Poitras: Ottawa Tarsands Action Monday

OTTAWA TARSANDS ACTION – Why am I attending?

by George Poitras, former Chief, Mikisew Cree First Nation
Posted at Censored News

In the past year and even more so in the past few weeks a lot of debate has focused on the tarsands in northeastern Alberta as “ethical oil.” Advertisements taken out on the Oprah Winfrey Network by EthicalOil.org, why Oprah Winfrey has endorsed this propaganda by big oil is anyone’s guess?! The advertisement suggests why should America be dependent on Saudi Arabian oil, “a state that doesn't allow women to drive, doesn't allow them to leave their homes or work without their male guardian's permission.” That there is a better alternative, “Ethical oil from Canada's oil sands." Apparently meaning a more human alternative.

Names synonymous of this “ethical oil” notion include Alykhan Velshi, Ezra Levant.
Proponents who happily began to espouse the controversial two words include Canadian
politicians like environment minister Peter Kent and prime minister Stephen Harper as they
traverse the globe promoting investment in the tarsands.

The tarsands have been mined, primarily open-pit, for the past 40 years in what is known as the
traditional lands of many Treaty 6 and Treaty 8 First Nations. The total tarsands deposit, the size
of England, is known to be the second largest oil deposit in the world, second to Saudi Arabia.
Only 3% of the total deposit has been mined in the past 40 years and Dr. David Schindler, a
world renowned water expert, proved last year that there has been virtually no monitoring of
what has also been characterized the largest industrial project in the world. A claim that the
local Indigenous peoples have made for decades with proof of deformed fish, observation of
poor water quality, receding water levels, impacts to animal health, and more recently in Fort
Chipewyan, an increase in rare and aggressive cancers.

Tarsands a humane alternative?

When local physician Dr. John O’Connor raised concerns of disproportionate numbers of
unusual cancers in Fort Chipewyan in 2006, the government of Canada, or physicians from
the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch lodged complaints against him including a charge
of “causing undue alarm” to residents of my community of Fort Chipewyan. Canada’s charges
against a family physician has never before been heard of in the history of Canada. For my
community of Fort Chipewyan, this unprecedented action by the government of Canada
essentially signalled to us that Canada didn’t care what claims Dr. O’Connor was making or that
people in Fort Chipewyan might be living in a situation with an epidemic of rare and aggressive
cancers. The claims were eventually proven by an Alberta Cancer Board Study in 2009 because
of our unrelenting efforts; perhaps we shamed the Canadian and Alberta governments into doing
so by successfully making our concerns a part of the international debate of this “dirty oil”
campaign and not because the governments felt it was the “ethical” or “humane” thing to do.

Despite this, both the Alberta and Canadian governments continue to this day, to deny there is
any concern with cancers in Fort Chipewyan.

The governments of Alberta and Canada have for the past 15 years relied on the Regional
Aquatics Monitoring Program (RAMP) to monitor the Athabasca River and the fish health.
Every study since then has concluded that there was little to no impacts from tarsands
development on the water or the fish health. A position that was proven wrong by Dr. David
Schindler. Essentially, the RAMP which is 100% funded by the oil companies and who’s data
is proprietary, and the Alberta and Canadian governments have been lying to the downstream
impacted communities but also to Albertans and Canadians. They both shamefully admitted this
following Schindler’s study just days before Christmas in 2010.

Fishermen in Fort Chipewyan have been saving deformed, tumoured, discoloured, and other
problem fish for many years. Many residents in my community have chosen not to eat any fish
from the Athabasca River or Lake Athabasca, a sad commentary to impacts on a peoples way
of living. In June 1970, a Suncor pipeline break spilled 19,123 barrels of oil, roughly 3 million
liters, into the Athabasca River which reached Lake Athabasca. This shut down the fishing
industry on Lake Athabasca for two consecutive years. The fishermen held a press conference
in October 2010 in Edmonton, Alberta displaying many of the collection of problem fish. This
generated further international attention to the tarsands industry and its impacts to water and fish
health.

Indigenous leaders in the downstream community of Fort Chipewyan have been chastised by
oil company executives when they speak publicly to the press about their concerns of impacts
from tarsands. They have gone so far as threatening, that should the Indigenous leaders continue,
there would be repercussions to their First Nation-owned company’s contracts within certain oil
company sites. Oil company executives regularly question the Indigenous leaders when their
own community members speak out publicly on issues and I have seen those members silenced.

Two years ago I attended a protest in Trafalgar Square in London, England. We drew a crowd of
about 500 supporters and this protest generated so much publicity internationally by England’s
BBC and Canada’s CBC who were present and did live interviews. Three weeks after this
action which I dubbed the “bloody oil tour” an executive from a major oil company flew to
my community to meet with my Chief & Council and in no uncertain terms stated that they
didn’t like that I traveled internationally and generated so much negative publicity on the
tarsands industry. They also stated that they knew of all my actions in the past years because
they said they had a binder “this thick” to prove it. He further suggested that somehow I should
be “silenced” or even “terminated” or there would be repercussions. Two weeks later, the First
Nation-owned company contracts worth millions were terminated displacing approximately 65
employees. I chose to leave my employment shortly thereafter.

An ethical, humane future for impacted communities?

In a recent trip to the Amazon and in conversation with a colleague from Nigeria, I told him

many of our issues, our concerns, the repercussions we receive for being vocal. He was in
complete disbelief. He said in a million years he would not believe all of this would occur in
Canada, a developed G8 country. He said Canada is known as a safe country for its citizens.
Canada is known as a country that prides itself for protection of human rights within its own
borders and beyond.

I also tell my fellow leaders in Fort Chipewyan and to those young, brave members of my
community, that the repercussions for speaking publicly is nothing compared to what we will see
in the future. That if only 3% of the total deposit has been mined and the environmental impacts
are so significant, that there will be many more generations of our people who will take up this
challenge and they will face much more backlash than what we are seeing today from what has
become a ruthless and aggressive race to exploit the tarsands.. That many of our people will
continue to see the early demise of their lives from rare and aggressive cancers the same way
we watched our youngest victim at the age of 28 succumb to his cancer just months after being
diagnosed. That if we see our environment in such a negative state today, do we think that we
are capable of handing down to future generations a healthy environment? That if Canada and
Alberta today ignore and repeatedly, knowingly infringe on our Constitutionally protected Treaty
Rights, will our future generations be able to meaningfully exercise their right to hunt, fish and
trap? Will our people in 20 years from now be able to enjoy a traditional diet of fish, moose,
ducks, geese, caribou?

While I do not condone any ill-treatment on women in Saudi Arabia, Indigenous peoples
in Canada’s tarsands should not be a pawn or be sacrificed to allow certainty for Canada,
Alberta and multinational corporations to exploit the tarsands at all costs! From an Indigenous
perspective, watching and being victim to the 40 years of unrelenting, unfettered, unmonitored
development of the tarsands, there is nothing “ethical” or “humane” about the development of
the tarsands!

I will be in Ottawa on Monday, September 26th to oppose the approval of the Keystone XL
Pipeline because an approval means an expansion of production of tarsands by a million barrels a
day, further exacerbating local Indigenous peoples grave concerns about the development of the
tarsands.

Friday, September 23, 2011

'Precious Knowledge' Revolutionary Education in Tucson



FEATURE FILM: Watch trailer: Disenfranchised high school seniors become academic warriors and community leaders in Tucson, Arizona's embattled Ethnic Studies classes while state lawmakers attempt to eliminate the program. Director: Ari Palos Stars: Curtis Acosta and Jose Gonzalez Genre Feature Documentary Studio Dos Vatos Productions

TUCSON -- Precious Knowledge interweaves the transformative stories of seniors in the Mexican American Studies Program at Tucson High School. Inequalities in education continue to affect people of color. The ticking time bomb story of our time is that fewer than six in 10 Latino adults in the United States have a high school diploma. These alarming dropout rates will continue to have a serious impact on our nation. Our documentary goes further, however, by illustrating forms of critical pedagogy that can empower Latino youth and other youth of color and change this state of affairs. Precious Knowledge will illustrate to a nationwide audience a Mexican American Studies program that inspires 82% of its students to enroll in college. The themes of Precious Knowledge are embedded in the journey of each student as they: self reflect, seek out precious knowledge, begin to act, and ultimately transform, while nurturing positive images of Latino identity and embracing the dignity of all cultures and histories.
Description Music Composed by: Naim Amor, http://www.facebook.com/amor.naim
Edited by: Jacob Bricca
Awards Audience Favorite and Special Jury Award, San Diego Latino Film Festival, 2011 Honorable Mention in the Best Documentary Category, Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival, 2011 Starring Curtis Acosta, Jose Gonzales, Crystal Terriquez, Pricila Skilla, Mariah Harvey, Gilbert Esparza Produced By Eren Isabel McGinnis Website http://www.dosvatos.com
 

Anna Rondon: Navajo President Vetoes Navajo Green Economy Office

By Anna Rondon, Navajo
Anna Rondon at successful Career Day at Red Rock State Park
on Sept. 23. Thirty students e-mailed for more info on
renewables and the Green Jobs Handbook.
Photo Anna Rondon.
Censored News
http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com

It is a sad day for Navajo communities, youth and elders. Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly line-item vetoed Navajo Green Economy Office. Though I respect his opinion as President, this act is keeping the coal-based industries in control of our collective future.
It is time to begin balancing our development with earth friendly technologies. It needs true Navajo leadership to be bold. Just as how the 21st and 22nd Navajo Nation Council does have that vision for equitable and fair development at all levels.
Mr. Shelly has shut the doors on the viable and real greens jobs that can be created. If his division directors had the creative capacity to help our people we would be a better place. Onward, it is part of the process and we shall continue to work for our people and I look forward to working with the Speaker's Office and allied council delegates on the projects we do have in place.

This is my opinion and does not reflect other commissioners.

Note: President Shelly signed into law the budget on Thursday and line item vetoed funding for the Navajo Green Economy Office. The action follows his speech to the United Nation Human Rights Council in Geneva this week, urging protection of the earth and respect for the Dine' people. Navajos responding say he has failed the earth and betrayed the Navajo people.

Navajo President fails the Earth and the Navajo People

Navajo President fails the earth and the people

Navajo President Ben Shelly, who urged the protection of the earth and respect for Dine' culture at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva this week, has line item vetoed the Navajo Green  Economy Office.
President Shelly's words to the world will be meaningless if he continues to promote coal-fired power plants. The Navajo Nation already has three coal-fired power plants, with coal mines, and Shelly is pushing for another coal fired power plant.

TOO LITTLE TO LATE
NAVAJO PRESIDENT MISSED THE OPPORTUNITY IN FEBRUARY 2011 TO SAVE THE PEAKS
By Calvin Johnson, Navajo from Leupp, Ariz.
Calvin Johnson
Censored News
http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com

This is a response to a video of Navajo President Ben Shelly at the United Nations making a plea for Protection of San Francisco Peaks. The Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly as a leader of Navajo Nation had a prime opportunity in February of 2011 to negotiate usage of reclaimed water of San Francisco Peaks. At the time, The City of Flagstaff wanted to drill 6 new wells utilizing C-Aquifer on Red Gap Ranch which is city-owned land near Winslow. Then Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly then threatened to file a suit against the City of Flagstaff. But then in May of 2011, Navajo Nation and City of Flagstaff agreed to a deal regarding C-Aquifer water usage of up to 2.6 trillion gallons a year.
Why would the Navajo Nation agree to such a deal when the City of Flagstaff is selling reclaimed water for skiing? The Navajo Nation President missed the prime opportunity to negotiate the taking of the reclaimed water usage off the table. This is so (bleeped) up!!!
The City of Flagstaff wants to use clean Navajo water underlying the Navajo Nation but the Nation buckles down to City of Flagstaff (Non-Natives including Corporations). I wished our Navajo Nation leaders would take a stand and defend human rights and protect sacred sites, period.
Now am watching the video of Ben Shelly pleading for help, it is sickening -- am sorry this is not defending human rights and protecting sacred sites. Maybe this will be a lesson learned from our leaders. But kudos for finally speaking up.
Calvin Johnson
PO Box 5527
Leupp, AZ 86035

Also see: Anna Rondon: Navajo president vetoes Navajo Green Economy Office funding
http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2011/09/anna-rondon-navajo-president-vetoes.html

Dene Nation will be at Ottawa Protest against Keystone XL Pipeline

Dene Nation To Participate In Ottawa Protests Against Keystone XL Pipeline

Press statement
Posted at Censored News

YELLOWKNIFE, Northwest Territories -- The Dene Nation is supporting a day of civil disobedience and protests in Ottawa next week as part of its ongoing opposition to the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. Dene National Chief Bill Erasmus will be there to participate in the protests and to make sure the views of Dene are represented.

On Monday, hundreds of people will flood Parliament Hill to demand a future free of the destructive Alberta tar sands. Many of them will enter the Parliament building and risk arrest by staging a sit-in in protest of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline that, if built, will carry tar sands crude to refineries in the southern United States.

Chief Bill Erasmus at White House rally
to halt tarsands in Sept. 2011
Photo Josh Lopez
“This is part of ongoing activity that is directly related to opposition of the tar sands,” Erasmus said. “From northern Alberta to the Arctic Ocean, our communities are directly downstream from tar sands developments. Water pollution and climate changing greenhouse gases from the tar sands are impacting our rights - protected under Treaty 8 and Treaty 11 - to hunt, trap, and fish as we always have on our land. The Keystone XL pipeline expansion would facilitate a huge increase in tar sands expansion, and this pipeline must be stopped."

Canada’s federal government has approved the pipeline, and the final decision now lies with U.S. President Barrack Obama. Erasmus was recently in Washington, D.C. for massive protests against the pipeline in which many participants, including several renowned Canadians, were arrested.

The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would transport 1 million barrels of synthetic crude oil each day from Alberta’s tar sands to US refineries in the Gulf of Mexico. Construction of the 2,700 km pipeline would facilitate a massive expansion of Alberta’s tar sands, along with increased pollution, stress on water resources, and greenhouse gas emissions. Dene communities are downstream from the tar sands, and are threatened by the impacts of upstream water usage and pollution, and the impacts of climate change and
global warming.

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For more information please contact: Barret Lenoir or Daniel T’seleie, at the Dene National Office (867) 873-4081.

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