Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights 2020

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Desecration of Mato Paha (Bear Butte)

From: Debra White Plume, Lakota
To: Dept of Environment and Natural Resources,
Division of Environmental Services
Surface Water Quality Program
Joe Foss Building,Pierre, SD 57501-3181

Dear Sarah Speck:

I care very much about protecting the natural resources around Mato Paha(Bear Butte) and Bear Butte Lake and I encourage the DENR to exhaust allremedy available to it to protect the water quality and aquatichabitat of Bear Butte Creek & Belle Fourche River while processingthe Glencoe Camp Resort's application for Surface Water DischargePermit # SD0028355. Please accept my encouragement also to deny this application because the effect on the water quality and aquatic habitat of theselocales cannot escape a detrimental impact from so much dirty water being putinto it. There is NO safe guarantee of what is in shower water, sewer water or any kind ofused water it could even include meth or other harmful chemicals that are VERYdangerous. Just the shower water from up to 70,000 people times 7 days is half amillion people's waste water that I do not want to see added to a creek, lake,and/or river. Such a cumulative influx of dirty used waste water cannot beenvironmentally safe nor respectful of Mother Earth and the creatures and plants that live nearby, not to mention the human beings, andespecially the sacredness of Mato Paha. Mato Paha is a sacred mountain and deserves the respect and integrity shown toall sacred places of prayer, such as a church or synagogue. I think the CatholicChurch would resist the state of SD allowing someone to pour the used dirtyshower water of 490,000 people onto the floor of their church, or church parkinglot, or church front lawn. The outrage expressed by those church members is thesame as what we Lakota People will feel if the Glencoe Camp resorts' waste waterdischarge permit is granted to pour his waste into a good place, a sacred place. Mr. Lippold may not respect Mato Paha and all water and the life it supports, butthe DENR and the state of South Dakota can show that respect by not granting thispermit to desecrate Mato Paha and the surrounding area.

Sincerely, Debra L. White Plume, Oglala LakotaOceti Sakowin (Seven Council Fires) of the "Great Sioux Nation"Manderson, SD 57756-0071
Photo: Deb White Plume tells the Lewis and Clark Expedition to turn around and go home in Chamberlain, South Dakota in 2004. White Plume gave the Expedition a symbolic blanket of smallpox. It was among the most censored stories in 2004. Photo Brenda Norrell.

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