Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

December 11, 2007

Bush-wacked: Ninth Circuit reconsiders ruling on Sacred Peaks today

Navajo Council Speaker Morgan continues strong support for San Francisco Peaks

PASADENA, Calif. – On Dec. 11, 2007, the fate of Doko’oosliid (The San Francisco Peaks) will come before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Pasadena , CA . The Courts granted the U.S. Forest Service and an Arizona ski resort the opportunity to challenge a recent decision that favored Native American tribes, Navajo Council Speaker Lawrence Morgan said in a press statement today.
Speaker Morgan said, “It is very unfortunate that this case is being reconsidered. As Navajo people, as DinĂ© people, we all consider our mountain to the west, Doko’oosliid (The San Francisco Peaks) very sacred.”
“As I traveled here to Pasadena , I could not help but reflect upon a song that is ever so popular entitled ‘ America the Beautiful,’” Speaker Morgan said. “‘America the Beautiful’ is reflective of our cause today – a cause to protect our sacred sites. The song ‘ America the Beautiful’ was written by Katherine Lee Bates in 1904 and has been an American theme ever since. Morgan explained that the lyrics remind him of Doko’oosliid. When people were singing about liberty then, they were seeking religious freedom. This is similar to the challenges that we face as Indian Nations today.
"Many non-Indians arrived here in the Americas , because of the religious persecution that they were experiencing. Their mass exodus from the old world to the new world represents their desire to seek freedom to worship who they want, what they want, where they want, when they want, and how they want. These same privileges should be afforded to the First Americans. Their pilgrimage then is no different then our fight to sustain our way of life today.
Read Speaker Morgan's press statement ...

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