Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

October 30, 2010

Protest US Torture Training at Fort Huachuca Ariz. 2010

2010 Schedule for Southwest Witness Against Torture:Photo: Josh being carried away at Fort Huachuca main gate 2009/Photo Brenda NorrellSat., Nov 13, Southside Presbyterian Church
10th Ave. @ 22nd St, Tucson, AZ
6 PM, Lasagna Dinner (salad, lasagna, bread, drinks)
7- 9 PM Ritual for Preparing and Holding Peace Within
Southside Kiva
Sun, Nov 14, Noon - 2 PM, Ft Huachuca, Main Gate, Sierra Vista, AZ
Vigil of Peace and Demonstration Against Torture
Extending Peace Outward
using presence, silence, speaking, song
Note: The program is shorter than in previous years. Please join us at the start time at the Main Gate to Ft. Huachuca. Allow time for travel, parking,etc. There will be no procession to the
Fort. Please bring signs of peace with you. Volunteers needed: Br. David, 314-803-6735 needs volunteers for preparing, hosting, and cleaning up after the meal We may need more volunteers for reading at the Sat. ritual and Sun. vigil. If interested, (or with other questions) call Catherine 260-5254 or Br. David. Directions and parking info will follow soon - more info at

October 29, 2010

Tucson Hearing Puts Spotlight on Private Prisons in Arizona

Contact:Penny Pestle, (616) 340-2938, Caroline Isaacs, (520) 256-4146,

Tucson Hearing Puts Spotlight on Private Prisons in Arizona
Breaking News Highlights for-profit prison companies’ role in state legislation

Photo: Mike Wilson, Tohono O'odham who puts out water for migrants
TUCSON -- Wednesday night in Tucson, an overflow crowd heard testimony from experts and the public about the risks and suspect practices of the private prison industry across Arizona, the nation and internationally. The Hearing was presided over by a panel of Conveners representing a bipartisan spectrum of county, city and state elected officials.
Testimony was presented by a range of experts, including prison staff and administrators, attorneys, researchers, and even a real estate appraiser. Stephen Nathan, researcher and journalist, traveled all the way from London, England to lend his expertise on the practice of prison privatization worldwide. Members of the audience were also given the opportunity to present testimony to the panel, and included representatives of religious congregations, formerly incarcerated people, and an organization representing prisoners from Hawaii who are incarcerated in for-profit prisons in Arizona. Representatives of the private prison companies and the Arizona Department of Corrections, although invited, were noticeably absent at the event.

This important hearing, designed to prompt dialogue among policy-makers and the public, raised important questions about the perceived cost savings of private prisons, the safety of their facilities, the lack of accountability to the public of for-profit corporations, and the larger ethical concerns associated with profiting from incarceration.

From Mike Wilson of the Tohono O’odham Nation to Joe Glen of the Maricopa & Pima Juvenile Corrections Associations, the theme was the same: Companies such as Corrections Corporation of America, Management Training Corporation, and the GEO group consistently focus on profit over safety and rehabilitation of those who are incarcerated in their facilities.

Coming directly on the heels of the Tucson Hearing was a scathing report from National Public Radio exposing the influence that private prison corporations had in the development of Arizona’s controversial immigration law, SB1070. Corrections Corporation of America, which holds contracts with the federal government to incarcerate immigrants, was a key player in creating a law that would increase the number of immigrants in detention, thus representing the potential for tremendous corporate profits. The report describes how a shadowy organization called ALEC provided opportunities for corporations to meet with state legislators to draft model legislation, which those legislators later took back to their states.

What the NPR report does not reveal is that this practice dates back literally decades, and that ALEC was a driving force behind most of the “tough on crime” legislation passed by Arizona and other states in the 1990’s. These laws, such as truth in sentencing and mandatory minimums laws, sent state prison populations through the roof, and the resulting prison overcrowding crisis proved to be a golden opportunity for private prison operators in Arizona and elsewhere.

Arizona state legislators have been linked to ALEC and for-profit prison corporations for years. A 2006 report by the Institute for Money in State Politics tracks campaign contributions from the private prison corporations to various Arizona state legislators who were ALEC members, and links them to five pieces of legislation during the same period that sought modify Arizona’s sentencing laws, increase the number of private-prison beds in the state, and address overcrowding by requiring the Department of Corrections to transfer prisoners to private prisons.
The Tucson Hearing was the first in a series of statewide hearings on the issue. The next will be held in Kingman, the site of the recent escapes from a privately-operated prison, on November 8th.


For more information on the hearings, background information on private prison companies, and materials on the issue of prison privatization, go to:

These materials, plus photos from Wednesday night’s hearing are on our blog, Cell-Out Arizona at:

October 27, 2010

Larry Kibby, Wiyot: 'The Big Kettle Theory'

The Big Kettle Theory
by Larry Kibby
Wiyot Indian of California
People who employ the art of taking the American Indian and dumping them all into a big kettle and stirring it up and then calling them all one nation is just really senseless. People and even our own Indian people do this, stating how we are all united under one creator, one culture and one belief, that ladies and gentlemen is just extremely wrong.

Today, there are now 565 Federally Recognized Sovereign Nations, several hundred other Sovereign Nations that aren’t Federally Recognized, so we are talking about some 800 to 900 Sovereign Nations throughout these United States.

Once so very long ago, North American, Mexico and South America were lands that had a unique population of Indigenous People and I’’m talking about millions and millions of Indian People.

What does that mean? Primarily it means that there were millions of different Nations of Indigenous People. Millions of different forms of Customs and Beliefs. Yes, some were related in some fashion, however, these great Sovereign Nations were genuine and unique in their own Way of Life.

When people and governments decide to change history to suite their own needs, that present complications, complications that can create a severe portrayal of a people who may not be able to generate the truth and that truth is vital and essential for future generations.

The United States Government commanded a policy to propagate disharmony within the tribes of the American Indian, a reckless policy that would severely distort the customs and beliefs in any manner that would aid and assist the Governments effort to control and maintain discipline over the American Indian.

Another arrogant factor the Government developed was the endeavor to convert the Indian to Christianity and often the methods utilized were found to be severely Heartless, Barbarous, Heinous and Inhuman.

The Chronicles of American History in fact wrongfully portrayed the American Indian in every expression, simply eradicating the Culture the best it could, with the strongest attempt to Remove the Indian from the Man and turn the Indian into a Civilized Being.

The Indian was taught that the "Great Spirit" or "The Creator" would be generous to the Indian if he would concede to Christian Values and Principles, failing to do so would generate severe punishment in an Inhuman form.

For the most part, the Government won in assimilating the Indian, that is obviously seen in this day and age as we come to realize that folks, Indian and Non-Indian, continue to do the Governments "Dirty Work."

Traitors, Defectors, Turncoats, Saboteurs, however you may label such people that continue to cause discord, mayhem and chaos for the Sovereign Nations throughout Indian Country, they don’’t care and a lot of these types of people get acknowledged, recognized, blessed and even praised for helping the Government "Desecrate the Customs and Beliefs of their very own people.

The generations today do and say as they will and as for the times of yesterday, I’m afraid those days are lost, shoved aside, ignored or in some cases made a mockery of. The cultural philosophy that was preserved by our ancestors within their hearts and established in our hearts has now been exploited and annihilated, the authenticity of our ancestors forever disgraced and dishonored.

The hearts of tomorrow’s generations has been perverted through these modern times and by sophisticated technology, seduced by greed, their intelligence polluted through false testimony and their weakness has become a disease that will spread to generations to come.

Our Sovereign Nations never observed just one Sovereign Nation, Culture, Spirituality or Religious Belief. Nor did our people follow one Prophet, one Spiritual Leader or one Medicine person.

For centuries, not just decades or years, but centuries, the ancestors of our generations endured the worlds worst acts of inhumanity, their survival under such deadly and hateful conditions was courageous, but their hearts were severely dampened by racism and oppression, yet they would somehow prevail.

And like our ancestors, all our relations, such as the eagle, buffalo, wolf, deer, elk, raven, coyote, fox, cougar, magpie, beaver, antelope and so many others, would also face near extinction, senseless slaughters, an extermination policy to wipe out the harmony and unity, to destroy the way of life of the Indian and all his relations.

So how does our generation and the younger generation repay our ancestors significant survival?
And as I watch the severe rangeland fires, intense rainfalls, deadly tornadoes, critical hurricanes, fatal snowfalls, I somehow feel that our ancestors are expressing their discontent, that they are answering the question and I wonder if they will forgive us and our children.

I have a deep sadness in my heart for the future generations, yet a small form of joy exist, knowing that I won’t be here to observe the accomplished deterioration of the Sovereign Nations, the Ancient Custom and Belief’s of our Sacred Ancestors.

I fear, the final phase has begun, the closing of the door on the past, culture and beliefs of our people is near completion, the last chapter in a great and noble people, who were once full of pride, dignity and honor, will only be known in history books, novels and movies.

Yes, we have lost the war, we have lost the land and now we are losing the last of the authentic customs and beliefs.

In that, I sincerely, with the greatest amount of respect, apologize to my ancestors for not doing more, for not stepping up to make a stronger effort to preserve and protect their most Sacred Ancient Customs and Beliefs.

The End

The Big Kettle Theory
Prose Article - Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Composed by:
Larry Kibby - Wiyot Indian of California

October 25, 2010

AIM Film Fest Best Doc 'Hawaii, A Voice for Sovereignty'

Best Documentary Award by AIM International Film Festival 'Hawaii, A Voice For Sovereignty' By AIM West

The long awaited efforts to bring the American Indian Movement (AIM) International Film Festival to San Francisco was finally held on Monday and Tuesday, October 11 -12, 2010. The film festival, the first hosted by AIM-WEST, an affiliate organization in the bay area, ended on a high five, or hang ten, whichever! It was also deemed an important educational alternative to the stories typically associated with Columbus Day and what it means to Indigenous Peoples throughout the Americas during this period. The Best Documentary Award that was selected by the judges committee went to “Hawaii, A Voice For Sovereignty”. It was accepted by Ms. Catherine Bauknight, film maker and Director.

The intensity projected in the documentary, made in 2009, ‘What Happen to the Land Happens to the People’ is the first of its kind to feature the native Hawaiians journey to sustain their culture, spirituality, and connection to the land. This modern epic documentary, filmed over four years, contains rare interviews with Native Hawaiians in their homes, at sacred sites, in mountains and the rain forests. Along with the voices of the people of the land, Professor Haunani-Kay Trask, and other Hawaiian leaders, take us into rarely seen ancient lifestyles where spirituality, culture, and care for the land form a sacred bond between humankind and the natural world. They reveal their quest to secure their Hawaiian rights as the host culture, and their economic, social, and ecological future. By bridging their ancient knowledge with modern technologies such as wind, solar, and wave renewable energy and agricultural land systems they move towards their goal of sustainability.

The award presented by Master of Ceremony, Mr. Bill Means, to Ms. Bauknight, is a cherished photo of AIM Minister of Culture, Floyd Red Crow Westerman (1988 Dances with Wolves), in his memory of promotion of cultural rights, and the quest for sovereignty, exemplify the legacy and spiritual movement of resistance, and the fight for self-determination found among Indigenous peoples throughout the globe. Also present with the award in photo (Neil Whitelaw, photographer) is Bill “Jimbo” Simmons, movie presenter, Aleck Cheney, producer, Antonio Gonzales, AIM-WEST Director, Venezuela Consulant Martin Sanchez, and Tomas Reyes, AIM-WEST Community Volunteer Coordinator.

The AIM film committee wishes to thank everyone who contributed to the success of this event. We especially took advantage of the this year’s occasion which coincides with the United Nation’s theme of “Indigenous Peoples and film making” declared at the 2010 International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples held in New York. We are optimistic this can become an annual film festival. We also wish to inform Indigenous and non-Indigenous film-makers alike, worldwide, about the great opportunity they have to educate the general public and non-governmental organizations by producing these themes and to showcase the wide spectrum of struggles on a myriad of issues they are going through on their lands. Many times these valuable films shot with perception and detail, are lost or have a difficult time in their countries exposing or revealing the burning challenges they wish to project, on a daily basis. This is their chance to reveal the truth in the search for justice.

And finally, AIM-WEST wishes to extend a cordial salute in solidarity with the 35th Anniversary next month of the American Indian Film Festival held in SF, and its director, Mr. Michael Smith, with respect for their many hard years of commitment to quality films depicting American Indians in the film industry in both Canada and the United States. Your dedication in this endeavor over the years has paved the way, and provided the necessary means to fulfill a need by bringing together all the continents, where real Indigenous peoples can see for themselves how they continue to thrive and practice their traditional and cultural way of life.

Thank you once again, ALL My Relations,

Antonio Gonzales
AIM-WEST Director


MNN: Long Ago Before Colonial Borders

Mohawk Nation News

MNN. October 10, 2010. During the French and Indian Wars in the 1750s, the invaders came up against the Mohawk “Keepers of the Eastern Door” who told them to go home. In order to occupy land the legal occupants had to be killed off. The colonists started a genocide campaign beginning with the Mohawks.

As a story goes, once upon a time in present day New York State, a French troop came across a lone Mohawk Warrior standing on top of a cliff waving at them. The troop commander told three of his men, “Go up and kill him’.

They climbed up. Behind the bushes a big fight broke out. The commander waited. They never returned. Eventually the Mohawk Warrior appeared on top of the mountain and waved to the troops below. Aghast, the commander ordered another 10 soldiers to, “Kill him once and for all”.

They went up. Another noisy fight ensued. None returned. Once again, the Mohawk Warrior stood on top and waved to them with a big smile.

Finally the commander ordered the rest of his troops to go up and “Finish him off”, to return and tell him what happened.

Another huge fight took place with lots of yelling and screaming. This time one badly wounded man came down the hill. “What happened?” asked the commander.

The soldier said, “That Warrior wasn’t alone. He had a Mohawk woman behind him!” and then passed out. The Mohawk Warrior stood at the top of the cliff and waved at them to leave.

Indigenous women continue to be the foundation of our communities. Presently 550 have disappeared without a trace. Canada refuses to investigate, callously calling us “sexual objects” and “street workers”.

Our women are not protected by police, politicians and upper levels of society for a reason. Possibly these girls have too much information on the underbelly of the ruling class and their fascination with abusing children, particularly Indigenous.

It seems the Canada Border Services Agents CBSA and law enforcement want to arrest and criminalize our men who protect our women and children.

Border guards leer at Mohawk girls and our young men. Perverted Border guards are known to put their hands in the pants of the adolescent boys and grab their genitals. Cavity searches are going to become common to intimidate and psychologically subjugate people.

A British military man once remarked: Mohawk men allow themselves to be dragged around by their women, but in no way did it emasculate them. In fact, they became great warriors.

We were the canary in the mine. The behavior that the indigenous people have withstood for centuries is now going to become mainstream for everyone.

Kahentinetha, MNN Mohawk Nation News For more news, books, to donate/legal fund and to sign up for MNN newsletters go to Other articles in category “Border”.

Store: Indigenous author – Kahnawake books – Mohawk Warriors Three – Warriors Hand Book – Rebuilding the Iroquois Confederacy.

MNN Category: World – Indian holocaust/genocide – Great Turtle Island – History – New World Order - Akwesasne - Border - Central, South America - Colonialism - Constitution/Jurisdiction -Courts/Police -Kahnawake - Legal/lawyers -
Tags: Mohawk Nation News - Turtle Island/North America - Indigenous sovereignty - Akwesasne - Kahnawake - Canada-US-Mexico border - Great Law - Two Row Wampum

October 21, 2010

October 19, 2010

Navajo Water Rights Talking Points

Talking Points on the proposed Northeastern Arizona Indian
Water Rights Agreement, Legislation 0422-10
Dated October 19, 2010
Photo: Navajo elder drinking contaminated water/Photo Forgotten People1. The Navajo Nation Council should vote No on the proposed Northeastern Arizona Indian Water Rights Agreement, Legislation 0422-10 until the Navajo Nation government installed in early 2011 can take up the settlement negotiations from an honest and fully informed perspective and a quantitative analysis is done of present and future needs for domestic use, large-scale agricultural projects and livestock.
2. There is not only no use of our Treaties in the 400 pages of the proposed Arizona Water Settlement, there is actually no mention whatsoever of either of our Treaties in the proposed settlement agreement.
3. The Navajo Nation is a federally recognized Indian Tribe, having two Treaties with the United States, dated 1849 and 1868 and is the only one of the 22 Arizona Indian Tribes that has a Treaty with the United States but the treaties are not mentioned in the Settlement.
4. The Settlement does not recognize the purposes of the Navajo Indian Reservation, as identified in the 1849 and 1868 Treaties as a "permanent home" specifically for agricultural purposes, with the 1849 Treaty referring to Navajos receiving "implements," which means farm implements, and the 1868 Treaty referring to "cultivating the soil," "seeds and agricultural implements," "farming and mechanical pursuits," and "sheep, goats, and cattle," and also encouraging us to "settle permanently" on our Reservation.
5. No "permanent home" of a people can exist without productive agriculture, and the Navajo People have always been and generally continue to be an agricultural people, while also engaging in many other ways of making a living.
6. Indian Tribes with Treaties rely on those Treaties as the most important foundation of their Indian reserved water rights, which are sometimes referred to as ''Winters Rights."
7. Indian reserved water rights are not lost by non-use, meaning tribes have ongoing rights to use water in the future that they have never used in the past as long as that water is appropriately quantified in the legal process and reasonably serves the purposes of the Reservation.
8. Productive agriculture requires large amounts of water, and agricultural tribes such as ours, with agricultural and permanent home purposes for our Nation, must have full and fair reserved water rights to support their agricultural and other uses, and not just rights limited to past and present uses.
9. In the 1960s and 1970s the Navajo Nation discussed claiming as Winters Rights as much as "two thirds of the annual flow of the Colorado River," which amounts to about ten million acre feet.
10. In 1997, Stanley Pollack publicly announced to a water rights meeting in Santa Fe, New Mexico that the Navajo Nation's basic surface water rights to the Colorado River System in the States of New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona must begin at no less than five million acre feet.

11. The proposed water settlement in its Part 4 even waives our past uses and prior rights to irrigation water in the Little Colorado River drainage, ownership rights that are likely worth $160,000,000 (at the low ownership value of $4,000 an acre foot) and which would otherwise be automatically reserved for us, and ignores values of waived rights and the compensation we should receive if we do not get the water and at our Winters Rights priority.
12. The provisions of the Settlement that address the Little Colorado River and groundwater have too many difficulties with their details for us to cover those provisions in this urgent resolution, but among those are a lack of specific information regarding construction of retentions structures with and without Hopi Tribal Consent, related capital improvement funds, a lack of quantification and specifics for large-scale agriculture, irrigation, livestock development and improvement of the range.
13. The carrot they are using to get support for the Settlement purports people will get piped water without appropriations earmarked in an economic climate with competing interests for funding needed.
14. Climate change is not considered. For the first time, federal estimates issued in August indicate that Lake Mead, the heart of the lower Colorado basin’s water system has the lowest 11-year average in the 100-year-plus recorded history of flows on the basin. The reservoir is now less than 15 inches above the all-time low of 1,083.2 feet set in 1956.
15. Exercise hozho go caution and care when a proposed Settlement is being rushed for a vote with language as follows:
The Settlement, Exhibit 14.1.1 states: Waiver and Release of Claims for
Water rights, Injury to Water Rights and Injury to Water Quality, by the
Navajo Nation on behalf of itself and its members and by the United States
acting in its capacity as Trustee for the Navajo Nation and its members
2.0 WAIVER AND RELEASE OF CLAIMS. 2.1 Except as provided in
3.0 hereof, the Navajo Nation, on behalf of itself and its
Members, and the United States acting in its capacity as trustee for the
Navajo Nation and its Members pursuant to the authorization set forth in
Section of the Act, hereby waive and release any claims against the State,
the Hopi Tribe, or any other person, entity, corporation or municipal
corporation under Federal, State or other law for all:
2.1.1 Past, present and future claims for Water Rights for Navajo Lands
arising from time immemorial.
16. The Settlement is a recipe for economic and political termination of our tribe.
17. Water is the most precious resource of all. Water is life. Please urge the NNC to vote against the proposed Northeastern Arizona Indian Water Rights Agreement, Legislation 0422-10 until the Navajo Nation government installed in early 2011 can take up the settlement negotiations and a quantitative analysis is done of present and future needs for a growing nation to fulfill its purpose affirmed in our treaty rights.

October 18, 2010

Southern Border Indigenous Peoples Roundtable Symposium

Southern Border Indigenous Peoples Roundtable Symposium
Earthcycles and Censored News will broadcast live!
Thursday, November 18, 10 am to 2 pm
YWCA Frances McClelland Leadership Center
525 N. Bonita Ave Tucson, Arizona
Photo: San Xavier, remembering the migrants/Photo by Brenda Norrell
By Alianza Indigena sin Fronteras/Indigenous Alliance without Borders
For over a decade the Indigenous Alliance Without Borders has worked to be an international voice for traditional southern borderland indigenous peoples. The Indigenous Alliance promotes respect for indigenous rights, border rites of passage and recognition of our indigenous relative’s cultural affiliation with Southern Border Indigenous Nations from California, Arizona and Texas. To ease border crossings for all indigenous peoples residing in Mexico to attend ceremonies, social events and visit family.

Why a Roundtable Border Symposium?

For more than two centuries indigenous peoples have inhabited the southern border long before the establishment of the U.S. and Mexico Nations. Indigenous peoples have been impacted by policies set in the far off capitals of these two nations, but have continued to maintained their cultures and social networks despite these bad government policies indigenous peoples continue to maintain their way of life and address their every day needs; We have continued to maintain our ancient indigenous cultures and social networks within our traditional homelands now divided by the U.S. – Mexico international boundary.

Since 1990, our Indigenous brothers and sisters have been faced with legislation and restrictive border enforcement policies, militarization/border wall, heavy migrant and undocumented traffic, environmental destruction of indigenous borderlands, ceremonial grounds, and sacred sites. We need to educate and inform the general community on border indigenous concerns affecting the southern border indigenous peoples

Round Table Discussion:
•Recent Changes to U.S. Immigration & Border Policies could erode or affirm indigenous peoples rights to maintain their cultural connections across the U.S. – Mexico border;
•Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative does not apply to Indigenous Mexican nationals who are culturally affiliated by blood relative, language, ceremonies and traditions
•Affects of Racism and negative political climate in Arizona on indigenous communities
•Potential Regulatory Solutions and Strategies to promote Southern Indigenous Rights and Justice.

Navajo Water Rights: Free, Prior and Informed Consent

Immediate Release: Contact: Elouise Brown, 505-947-6159 or 928-401-1777

Update: Read, download or print the resolution:
The Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission adopted Resolution No. NNHRCOCT-8-10 on October 1, 2010. It recommends that the Navajo Nation Council should refer the approval of the Northeastern Arizona Water Rights Settlement Agreement to the Navajo People in a referendum.

The resolution is based on consideration of several important factors, and among them is the “world standard” for decisions by indigenous peoples on their resources made by “free, prior, [and] informed consent” (Resolution at Preamble No. 6).

The right of free, prior and informed consent is a right that belongs to all indigenous peoples, including the Navajo People as a collective right to be exercised in the electoral process. The existence of the right as an international human right has been confirmed by the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in a report to the Human Rights Council of the United Nations that was accepted by the Council. Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Progress report on the study of indigenous peoples and the right to participate in decision making, ¶¶ 34-42, No. A/HRC/15/35 (23 August 2010); Human Rights Council, Human rights and indigenous peoples, No. A/HRC/RES/15/7 (5 October 2010).

The human rights principles are plain and clear:

• “Free” means done without undue influence or coercion and without regard to favoritism or promises and in an open and transparent way;

• “Prior” means done before the fact and without any binding obligation on the part of the Navajo People done by water negotiators, with side deals and promises that cannot be enforced or favors for approval by public officials;

• “Informed” means that those who make the decision, and it should be the Navajo People in a referendum vote, means that there is adequate, accurate information on the huge 400+ page document that Navajos or ordinary understanding, in their chapters and in the areas that will be affected by the agreement, know precisely what is being proposed and understand its implications and consequences as such impact their daily lives and futures; and

• “Consent” means a knowing act of freely making an informed decision about one’s own future and that of community and of Mother Earth in a meaningful way, namely a referendum vote.

October 14, 2010

Hopi Chairman's Proposals Removes Religious Protections in Hopi Constitution

Press statement
Freedom to Practice Religion Infringed by Constitutional Changes Proposed by Hopi Chairman
Proposals Strip Religious Leaders Governmental and Religious Authorities Protected in Hopi Constitution
SHUNGOPAVI VILLAGE, Hopi – The right to practice religion is a fundamental right of freedom guaranteed by the Bill of Rights which is part of the U.S. Constitution. These rights according to Ronald Wadsworth, Director of the Hopi Traditional Office located on Shungopavi Village at the Hopi Reservation, are today threatened by Hopi Chairman Leroy Shingotewa.
Hopi Nation Director Wadsworth said “a recent call for the establishment of a ‘revised Hopi Constitutional amounts to the destruction and removal of existing religious and traditional practices effectively creating an environment hostile to religion and thereby ultimately forcing traditional religious practices underground.”
“The First Amendment of the United States Constitution protects the right of the people to practice the religion of their choice. The Hopi Constitution also protects Hopi Religious practices and traditional religious leader’s practices; however, changes proposed by the Hopi Tribal Council Chairman to the Hopi Tribal Constitution reinvent the Hopi Constitution and remove the authorities and traditions of the Hopi people. Hopi Chairman Shingotewa’s so-called reforms intentionally destroy Hopi religion and practices which are the things that make us Hopi. These are the customs and practices of the Hopi people from time immemorial. The Hopi people consider the right to practice our religion a fundamental human right and a fundamental Hopi right. It is an embarrassment and an insult to the Hopi people that a Hopi Chairman who does not practice the Hopi religion leads the charge to remove those protections from the Hopi Constitution” said Ronald Wadsworth, Director of the Hopi Traditional Sovereign Nation Office located at Shungopavi Village on the Hopi Reservation.
“The Village of Shungopavi is a Traditional Village governed by a Kikmongwi since time immemorial and whose powers are inherent in the position of Kikmongwi through the traditional rite of succession. The Hopi Constitution although the creation of the white man’s government provides an additional protection of those powers which have been repeatedly acknowledged by Secretaries of Interior on behalf of the United States Government. In recent years former Secretary of Interior Manuel Lujan acknowledged the sovereignty of the Kikmongwi but also suggested the submission of a Government Plan which would further substantiate the right of Shungopavi Village to act as a sovereign entity without the involvement of the Hopi Tribal Council” said Hopi Nation Director Wadsworth. (See Albuquerque Journal report on meeting between Secretary Lujan and Shungopavi leaders.)
“The audacious and unconstitutional proposal of Hopi Council Chairman Shingotewa proposals eliminating the basic protections of the Hopi people’s right to practice the religion of their choice are unconstitutional and violate the intent and specific language of the Hopi Constitution. Chairman Shingotewa and those members of the Hopi Tribal Council who voted to support the changes to the Hopi Constitution are in violation of their Oath of Office wherein they promise to uphold and protect the traditions, culture, history, and religion of the Hopi people. This is cause for immediate removal and sanction for their actions which willfully violate the Hopi Constitution.”
“This is not only an infringement of the Hopi Constitution but in our opinion an infringement on the rights afforded all Americans in the U.S. Constitution. Hopi Chairman Leroy Shingotewa does not practice the Hopi Religion nor has he been forced to do so, however, his actions can only be construed as dictatorial and intended to subvert Hopi religion and practices leading to the destruction and obliteration of Hopi religion, custom, practices, culture, tradition, language and its history forever” said Hopi Traditional Nation Director Wadsworth.
“Chairman Shingotewa’s proposed amendments to the Hopi Constitution completely reorganize the current governmental system thereby placing the Hopi Tribal Council in a position of dictatorial and extreme power without a checks and balance system. Destroying Tradition and Religion leaves the Chairman and Tribal Council as the sole power at Hopi thereby making every individual subservient to the whims and dictates of the Tribal Council. There would be no accountability for expenditures or any other decision made by the Tribal Council. As it stands now the Tribal Council can oppose any decision of the tribal courts by merely convening itself into a Tribal Court and voting against the courts decision. Although, as it stands right now the Tribal Courts are funded by the Tribal Council and every Judge receives his salary through the courtesy of funds provided by the Tribal Council. The question of true Justice is at issue. Instead the system as devised is now a travesty of justice!” said Director Wadsworth.
“The Bureau of Indian Affairs is well-aware of the actions of the Chairman and Tribal Council but choose to sit quietly by and claim “gee, this is an internal matter and we can’t get involved.” That is nonsense! The Chairman and the Tribal Council are intentionally attempting to destroy Hopi religion and to install a government with exclusive powers and authorities. Of course, the BIA prefers a Tribal Council that will sign new coal leases without the input of the Hopi people. The BIA is responsible for the installation of the Tribal Council form of government for the purpose of easily acquiring permission to mine Indian lands” said Director Wadsworth.
“The Hopi people have not yet digested the fact that elected leaders of the Hopi tribe would have the audacity and temerity to wipe out the Hopi people’s religion. It is not often that religious rights are infringed upon by the decisions of the Hopi Tribal Council but today is a new day and unfortunately the actions of the Chairman require us to speak out on behalf of the protection of our religion and our religious leaders” said Hopi Director Wadsworth.
“We call on the Secretary of Interior to immediately take action to protect the Hopi people and our Hopi Religion. We call on all people to step forward and call the Secretary of Interior, the Assistant Secretary of Interior in Washington, D.C., and call your Congressman and elected leaders and ask them to help the Hopi Leaders stop the Hopi Tribal Council. We need the support of the media and the outcry of religious organizations to help us stop this atrocity from taking place” said Hopi Nation Director Ronald Wadsworth.
For More Information Contact: Bertha Parker

Los Angeles American Indian Film Festival

LOS ANGELES American Indian Film Festival

7th Annual Red Nation Film Festival – The Authentic Voice of American Indian Indigenous Cinema™
Founded American Indian Heritage Month in the city/county of Los Angeles
October 28 – November 9, 2010
Image: Artist: Monte Yellow Bird Sr.- Black Pinto Horse

LOS ANGELES - Red Nation Celebration and its founder Joanelle Romero began a 5 year long initiative to have the city/county of Los Angeles recognize “American Indian Heritage Month” in which Los Angeles has the largest American Indian Urban population in the country, is the Entertainment capital of the world, and is the second largest city in the United States. In 2006, Red Nation’s dream came true and American Indian Heritage Month was launch in the city/county of Los Angeles.
Read more ...

SAN FRANCISCO American Indian Film Festival

Updated Oct. 19, 2010
Media Inquiries Contact: Cindy Benitez,

By American Indian Film Institute
SAN FRANCISCO -- The American Indian Film Institute (AIFI), proudly announces the 35th annual American Indian Film Festival, November 5-13, 2010. The American Indian Film Festival will premiere over 90 innovative feature films, shorts, public service, music videos and documentaries of USA American Indian and Canada First Nation communities. Founded in 1975, AIFF has established itself as the premiere Native film festival in North America. This year’s selection continues to celebrate the Festival’s tradition for excellence and diversity with powerful performances and new cinematic expression by cutting-edge media makers.
Prominent Sponsors of the 2010 American Indian Film Festival;The Seminole Tribe of Florida (Title Sponsor); Yocha De-He Wintun Nation, CA; San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, CA; Jackson Rancheria,CA; CBS Television, NY; and Grants for the Arts.
Public screenings and events will be held for nine days, from Nov. 5-10 at the Landmark Embarcadero Center Cinema, One Embarcadero Center, Promenade Level; and conclude Nov. 11-13 at the Palace of Fine Arts, 3301 Lyon St. @ Bay Street.
“The film festival and awards show are the cornerstone of what we do — provide an opportunity and national venue for emerging and established filmmakers, entertainers and performing artists to convene, renew their artistic spirit and share their gifts." - Founder/ Director Michael Smith.
Opening the Festival on Nov. 5, is feature film A Windigo Tale (93 min) – starring Andrea Menard (The Velvet Devil) and Gary Farmer (Dead Man, Powwow Highway).Taking its inspiration from Ojibway spiritualism, A Windigo Tale is a chilling and redeeming drama, with its backdrop during the residential school era, where generations of Native children were forcibly removed from their families and assimilated into Euro-Canadian society. A Windigo Tale will be preceded by short film Windigo (11min) dir. by Kris Happyjack-McKenzie,based on the Indigenous creation myth. Also included will be music video The Road Forward (10 min) dir. by Marie Clements and documentary short Potlatch:To Give (10 min) dir. by Barbara Cranmer.
Concluding the film portion of the Festival on Nov. 12, is feature film Of Mice and Men (74 min) dir. by Kyle Hudlin-Whelan – a Native adaptation of John Steinbeck's classic novel, takes place in Winnipeg, where George (Stan Wood) and Lennie (John Cook) are displaced Aboriginal teenagers who decide to leave their remote Northern community to look for work. As their destiny unfolds tragically, they keep dreaming, not of their own farm, but of the home they left behind. This film was made entirely by an in-house student production at Argyle Alternative High School in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Actors Stan Wood and John Cook in attendance. Preceding will be documentary feature Buffy Sainte-Marie: A Multimedia Life (60 min) dir. Joan Prowse – This one hour documentary chronicles Buffy Sainte-Marie’s remarkable career as she rises to prominence in the 1960s Greenwich Village folk music scene and blazes a groundbreaking path as an Aboriginal activist, digital artist and popular songwriter. Director Joan Prowse and Buffy Sainte-Marie in attendance.
Other Noteworthy Film Selections:
Nov. 6
Animation Program: AIFI presents a collection of over 13 films told using a mix of traditional animation, computer-generated effects, stop-motion, and everything in-between.
*The Legend of Secret Pass (75 min) dir. Steve Trenbirth – A CG animated fantasy feature film that follows the incredible journey of an American Indian boy Manu, as he battles the forces of Darkness and defies all odds by embracing his destiny as keeper of the key to the Secret Pass.*Red Ochre (3min) dir. Jerry Evans –a personal rendering of growing up MI'kmaq in Newfoundland.*Dancer of the Grass (2min) dir. Melanie Jackson – A stunning display of a stop motion animation that depicts the majesty of the hoop dance.
Festival Fright Night – Spotlight on Horror, Sci-fi and Thriller
* A Flesh Offering (85min) dir. Jeremy Torrie – A chilling story about four teenagers who are isolated at a remote cabin and are hunted by an unknown entity. Each of the friends is forced to face their own demons or one by one will fall victim. Director Jeremy Torrie in attendance. *The Cave (11min) dir. Helen Haig-Brown – A hunter on horseback accidentally discovers a portal to the afterlife in this sci-fi version of a true Tsilhqot’in story.*File Under Miscellaneous (7min) dir. Jeff Barnaby – Set in a metropolitan hellscape, a spiritually exhausted and destitute Mi'gMaq man has resolved to assimilate into the ruling culture by undergoing a gruesome procedure to rid him of his red skin.
After Dark – Special Spotlight Presentation
* Late-night screening of director/writer Rodrick Pocowatchit’s, The Dead Can’t Dance (102 min). This zombie adventure follows three Native American men who discover they are somehow immune to a mysterious plague that is turning everyone else into zombies. Director Rodrick Pocowatchit in attendance. This screening is FREE with an Unwrapped New Toy or Money Donation. All proceeds from this screening will benefit AIFI’s annual Holiday Toy Drive for families in-need.
Nov.7: *Two Indians Talking (95 min) dir. Sara McIntyre – A comedic drama about the conflicting opinions of two First Nations men as they prepare to set up a roadblock. *Reel Injun (54min) dir. Neil Diamond – an insightful documentary that takes an entertaining look at the Hollywood Indian through a century of cinema.
Nov. 8: *Behind the Door of a Secret Girl (100 min) dir. Janessa Starkey & Jack Kohler – Sammy is a teenage cutter living with her meth addicted mother and her mother’s drug dealer. Her best friend David (Winter Fox Frank) decides to help her escape from the dysfunctional life she's had to endure since her father died. Directors Janessa Starkey and Jack Kohler in attendance.
Nov. 9: AIFI Retrospective – Special Spotlight Presentation:AIFI 1979 Best Film and Official Selection Cannes Film Festival, 1979.
*Spirit of the Wind (98 min) dir. Ralph Liddle –Set in the rugged but beautiful Alaskan wilds, the film chronicles the true life story of George Attla, a famous Alaskan dog sled driver, who tries to overcome his own demons as a young man by seeking solace through dog- sled driving. Starring Pius Savage and Chief Dan George.
Shorts Program: AIFI presents over 19 short stories that range from the highly comedic to the subtle and dark all through Native perspective.
*Cousins (17min) dir. Sally Kewayosh – A coming of age story about two young girls, their crush on one boy and the lessons of young love and friendship. Director Sally Kewayosh in attendance. *Savage (6min) dir. Lisa Jackson – A residential school musical. *Ikwe (5min) dir. Caroline Monnet – experimental film that weaves the narrative of one woman's (IKW') intimate thoughts with the teachings of her grandmother.
For the evening program, documentary feature Hearing Radmilla (82min) dir. Angela Webb – an in-depth portrait of Miss Navajo Nation, Radmilla Cody, from her early childhood to the scandal that shook the Navajo nation. Preceding will be award-winning short film Shimasani (15min) dir. Blackhorse Lowe – Set in the 1920’s, the story follows Mary Jane’s difficult decision to either stay at home on the reservation or leave to go to boarding school.
Nov.11: *A Good Day to Die (92min) dir. Lynn Salt & David Mueller –The film presents an intimate look at Dennis Banks' life beginning with his early experience in boarding schools, through his military service in Japan, his transformative experience in Stillwater State Prison and subsequent founding of the American Indian Movement that, through confrontational actions in Washington DC, Custer, South Dakota and Wounded Knee, changed the lives of Native Americans and all indigenous people forever. Introduced by Marshall McKay,Chairman, Yoche De He Wintun Nation(Executive-Producers). In attendance, directors Lynn Salt & David Mueller and activist Dennis Banks.
Special Events:
Nov.11 – CBS Casting Workshop @ Radisson Fisherman Wharf – CBS VP of Casting, Fern Orenstein, will conduct an intensive actors workshop that will focus on analyzing actors' headshots and offer specific critiques on the principles of acting and casting auditions. This program is free and open to the public. Must Register in Advance.
Nov. 12 – Tribal Touring Program – Theatre 39@Pier39 (Beach St. and The Embarcadero)

The American Indian Film Institute (AIFI) is proud to celebrate its tenth year of youth film programs during this year’s Festival. AIFI is able to engage hundreds of Native youth each year, where aspiring student filmmakers participate in a ten- day long film workshop supported by AIFI’s tribal host partners. This year AIFI’s Tribal Touring Program will showcase youth films from – Yocha-De-He Wintun Nation, Brooks, CA; Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, Rohnert Park, CA and Nisqually Indian Tribe, Olympia,WA.
Nov. 13 – American Indian Motion Picture Awards Show
AIFI’s American Indian Motion Picture Awards Show, honoring filmmakers and showcasing contemporary Native American talent, will be held on Saturday November 13, 2010 @ the Palace of Fine Arts beginning at 6:00pm. Guest awards host include actors Michael Horse, Andrea Menard and Michael Spears. Fourteen awards will be presented including Best Film, Best Actor and Best Documentary. The awards show will include a mix of live entertainment by established and emerging Native artists and performers. The line-up includes: Singer Andrea Menard, blues band The Plateros, singer Paula Bowers- Sanchez, Yaaw Tei Yi Tlingit dancers from Juneau,AK, singer Jeremy Good Feather, indie singer/songwriter Samantha Crain, and violinist Swil Kanim.
A complete schedule is available on our website All programs are open to the general public and will require tickets for admission. Advance Tickets available thru AIFI: 415-554-0525 Visa & Mastercard. On-site tickets available at the following theater venues (on day of show.) * Photos available upon request as well as interviews can be arranged.
Cindy Benitez,
Public Relations • American Indian Film Festival
333 Valencia Street, Ste. 322
San Francisco, CA 94103
415.554.0525 (p) • 415.554.0542(f)

October 13, 2010

O'odham Ofelia Rivas speaks on Human Rights in Wisconsin

Tribal Elder Speaks about Human Rights
By McKenzie Badger
The Badger Herald
Tuesday, October 12, 2010 6:15 p.m.
Updated Wednesday, October 13, 2010 2:09:12 a.m.
A human rights activist detailed atrocities occurring right here in the United States to a University of Wisconsin audience Tuesday, from trucks running over teenagers to the exhumation of bodies. Ofelia Rivas is the Tribal Elder in the second largest reservation in the United States. About 20,000 citizens reside on the reservation she represents in the U.S. and 6,000 in Mexico, as their reservation crosses the border.
Read article ...
Also see:
Indigenous grassroots women's delegation seeks sponsors for Cancun Climate Summit
Ofelia Rivas, cochair of the Working Group on Indigenous Peoples at the Cochabamba Climate Summit in Bolivia, is among seeks sponsors for the summit Nov. 29 --Dec. 10, 2010:

Cochabamba Proposals will be brought to Cancun

Cochabamba Proposals Will be Brought to Cancun

Communique by the Plurinational State of Bolivia
Photo of Cochabamba Climate Summit by Michelle Cook, Navajo

(October 10, 2010 – Tianjin, China) The proposals of the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth have been maintained and expanded upon in the new negotiating text on climate change that emerged from the last round of negotiations in Tianjin, China.

Throughout the process in Tianjin, attempts were made to substitute the negotiating text, which contains the positions of all countries, with a text that would be limited to recognizing the principal elements of consensus for Cancun.
In some working groups, such as the one dealing with “various approaches for mitigation actions,” a proposal was presented which only contained the pro-market option. Following a long debate in which the right of all countries to have their proposals reflected in the negotiating text until a consensus is reached ultimately prevailed, a new text was agreed upon. That text now includes, among various options, the position of Cochabamba against the carbon market, and a passage asserting that the rights of nature must be recognized in mitigation actions.

Likewise, in the “shared vision” group, a proposal to consider the impacts of war on greenhouse gas emissions was introduced. Support was garnered among many delegations for a critique of market mechanisms related to forests and the need for a more integral view of forests.

In the last plenary, an intense debate took place due to the appearance of texts from facilitators of some groups that had not been previously discussed. It was made clear, though, that the entire negotiating text that emerged from Bonn, as well as the advances made in Tianjin, will continue to serve as the base for negotiations in Cancun.

The negotiating text that will be taken up in Cancun includes, among other elements, the following proposals from Cochabamba:

•Reduce emissions by more than 50% for 2017.
•Rights of Mother Earth.
•Full respect for human rights and the rights of indigenous peoples and climate migrants.
•Formation of an International Climate Justice Tribunal.
•No new carbon markets.
•6% of GDP in developed countries to finance climate change actions in developing countries.
•Lifting of barriers to intellectual property that facilitates technology transfer.
•No commodification of forests.
In Tianjin, advances were made in the institutional framework regarding financing, technology transfer and adaptation. However, on the principal issue of emissions reductions under the Kyoto Protocol, no advances were made with regard to the offers made by developed countries supporting a temperature increase of 3° to 4°C.

The situation ahead of Cancun is extremely worrying. There exists the very real danger that a text could be imposed at the last minute that was not negotiated and agreed upon by all parties. Similarly, there is the risk that the treatment of substantive themes such as emissions reductions and the maintenance of the Kyoto Protocol could be postponed until South Africa or beyond.

There is also enormous pressure by developed countries to give the green light to new carbon market mechanisms, particularly in relation to forests. In this context, the only way to advance toward a satisfactory result is by strengthening the organization and mobilization of social movements, environmentalists, indigenous peoples, women, intellectuals, artists, youth and the people as a whole behind the banner of the “People’s Agreement” of Cochabamba.
Also see:
Closing statement of ALBA countries at China Climate Summit:

October 12, 2010

VIDEO: Navajo Water Rights March

Read more at Censored News

Proposed Navajo Water Rights Settlement

Voting record from Sept. 29, 2010, including council delegates voting against tabling the settlement

VIDEO: Roscoe Pond's 'Natives in Hollywood: How Far Have We Come?'

The discussion is about Hollywood and the Native American. Filmmakers Sonny Skyhawk, Delanna Studi, Elena Finney, Tim Ramos, Victoria Regina, Mark Reed, Kathy Peltier, Marjorie Tanin, Cassie Melcher. It is still relevant in 2010. The Internet has changed everything though. Natives have found a voice on the Web and with Independent films.

October 11, 2010

Document: Proposed Navajo Water Rights Settlement (405 pages)

Photo Calvin Johnson, Navajo, published with
permission at Censored News

Proposed Navajo Water Rights Settlement
Censored News
Photo: Calvin Johnson, Navajo
Print or download the document:
Message: Please check out the link for the NE Arizona Water Rights Settlement 405 pages. Exhibit 14.1.1: Waiver and Release of Claims for Water rights, Injury to Water Rights and Injury to Water Quality, by the Navajo Nation on behalf of itself and its members and by the United States acting in its capacity as Trustee for the Navajo Nation and its members (but not its members in their capacity as allottees).
2.0 WAIVER AND RELEASE OF CLAIMS. 2.1 Except as provided in Paragraph 3.0 hereof, the Navajo Nation, on behalf of itself and its Members, and the United States acting in its capacity as trustee for the Navajo Nation and its Members pursuant to the authorization set forth in Section of the Act, hereby waive and release any claims against the State, the Hopi Tribe, or any other person, entity, corporation or municipal corporation under Federal, State or other law for all:
2.1.1 Past, present and future claims for Water Rights for Navajo Lands arising from time immemorial.

October 6, 2010

American Indian Movement International Film Festival 2010

American Indian Movement International Film Festival, October 11-12, 2010
Written by Arthur Jacobs
Art design donated by artist Sal Garcia
American Indian Movement International Film Festival
October 11-12
San Francisco Bahai Center, 170 Valencia Street
Doors open at 12 noon first movie begins at 12:30 pm
Ticket donations at the door are $10 for one day and $15 for two days, nobody turned away for lack of cash, slide scale.
Wheelchair accessible. All children under 10 years are free! Refreshments and popcorn available.
The Film Festival is to help prepare for the Annual AIM-WEST Conference November 22-27, in San Francisco. AIM-WEST proudly presents the American Indian Movement (AIM) International Film Festival, October 11-12, 2010 in San Francisco, CA.
Films selected for this year’s festival exemplify the legacy and spiritual movement of resistance, and the fight for self determination found among Indigenous peoples throughout the globe. Held each year on Indigenous People's Day, the Festival offers an important educational alternative to the stories typically associated with Columbus Day and what it means to Indigenous Peoples throughout the Americas. The Festival also coincides with the United Nation's theme of “Indigenous Peoples and film making” declared at the 2010 International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples held in New York.
Read more about the festival, with schedule:

Peabody Coal's records for Black Mesa sought in court

Lawsuit Seeks Release of Public Records for Peabody Coal Operations on Tribal Lands in Arizona
By Center for Biological Diversity
Censored News

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - October 5 - Native American and conservation groups sued the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Office of Surface Mining (OSM) in federal court in Colorado on Thursday for withholding records relating to Peabody Energy’s coal-mining operations on tribal lands in northeast Arizona. To date, the agency has refused to publicly release records relating to Peabody’s coal-mining operations — including a copy of a current, valid operating permit for Peabody’s mining. The lawsuit was brought under the Freedom of Information Act.

“For decades, OSM has quietly issued permits to Peabody in a way that has thwarted meaningful public involvement and community understanding of Peabody’s mine operations,” said Nikke Alex, executive director of the Black Mesa Water Coalition. “OSM’s permitting actions have a direct and irreparable impact on our community. These records must be released to the public.”

Peabody, the largest coal-mine operator in the world, runs the 40,000-acre Kayenta Mine and adjacent 18,000-acre Black Mesa Mine on Navajo Nation and Hopi tribal lands in northeastern Arizona. On April 9, citizens submitted a FOIA request to OSM for records related to the agency’s renewal of Peabody’s Kayenta Mine operating permit. On June 4, OSM’s office in Denver, Colorado ended the public comment period for Peabody’s renewal permit without releasing the requested records (including a copy of Peabody’s operating permit).
Read more ...
CONTACT: Center for Biological Diversity
Brad Bartlett, Attorney, Energy Minerals Law Center, (970) 247-9334
Wahleah Johns, Black Mesa Water Coalition, (928) 213-5909
Andy Bessler, Sierra Club, (928) 774-6103
Taylor McKinnon, Center for Biological Diversity, (928) 310-6713

Native American Prisoner Advocate Lenny Foster Suffered a Stroke

Message from Marley Shebala
Greetings Everyone,
Photo: Lenny Foster advocating for the spiritual rights of Native American inmates at AIM West in San Francisco. Photo Brenda Norrell.
I just received a telephone call from Lenny Foster's brother Oree Foster. Lenny suffered a stroke Saturday morning at his home in Window Rock, Ariz/Navajo Nation. and was flown to St. Joseph's Hospital, Phoenix, late Saturday night. When he arrived at the hospital, he was taken into surgery to remove a blood clot from his brain. He is recovering and listed in good condition. Doctors say he'll need two weeks of recovery and then he'll be sent to rehab for physical therapy.

The surgery involved drilling a hole in his skull to alleviate pressure and allow blood flow and so they had to shave Lenny's head. He's under heavy sedation at the time but people can call the hospital to find out how he is doing. Doctors said Lenny is strong and that he might not need two weeks of recovery but he does not physical therapy for his left leg.

Oree said that when Lenny was walking from his bedroom to the living room that his left leg just gave out and he feel to the floor. Lenny had to crawl to the phone, which took him 1.5 hours.

Oree also said that Lenny had just returned from a trip to Anthony, N.M., prison. He was also scheduled to go to San Francisco and New York City. Oree said that Lenny's heavy schedule probably contributed to his stroke.

He said that Lenny wants everyone to know what happened to him and to prayer for his recovery. Oree said rumors have already started that Lenny had a heart attack and passed away.

Oree gave me his phone number but I forgot to ask him about sharing it. The news about Lenny scared me. He's in my prayers.
Brief Bio on Lenny:

Lenny is the Director of the Navajo Nation Corrections Project and the Spiritual Advisor for 1,500 Indian inmates in 34 state and federal prisons in the Western U.S. He has co-authored legislation in New Mexico, Arizona and Colorado that allows Native American spiritual and religious practice in prison and results in significant reductions in prison returns. He is a board member of the International Indian Treaty Council, a sun dancer and member of the Native American Church. He has been with the American Indian Movement since 1969 and has participated in actions including Alcatraz, Black Mesa, the Trail of Broken Treaties, Wounded Knee '73, the Menominee Monastery Occupation, Shiprock Fairchild Occupation, the Longest Walk and the Big Mountain land struggle. He was a 1993 recipient of the City of Phoenix, Dr. Martin Luther King Human Rights Award.
■Religious Freedom for Indians in Prison
■Using the Spiritual Path to Avoid Being Institutionalized
■Sovereignty Self-Determination & Human Rights

October 4, 2010

Protect Dine' Hopi Water Rights

Click on image to enlarge
Diné-Hopi Water Rights!Forgotten People, Percy Deal (longtime Council delegate, Navajo County Supervisor andHardrock Chapter President), and concerned Diné citizens are requesting Resources Committeeand the Water Rights Commission hold public meetings in Pinon and Tuba City on the Northeastern Arizona Indian Water Rights Agreement, Legislation 0422-10. Call
your Council delegates, Resources Committee, Water Rights Commission. Demand they table the Agreement until the new administration so they can study the issue and brings it as a referendum for the people to decide. The directly affected and concerned people must be givenan opportunity to address the Council at their Special Sessions. The Navajo Nation Council needsto inform the people of a date for the next Special Session.

October 2, 2010

Navajo Water Rights Settlement: Demand 90 Day Extension

Navajo Water Rights Settlement: Demand 90 Day Extension
Message from Forgotten People, Navajo Nation
Photo: March for Navajo Water Rights Sept. 29, 2010/Dine' Water Rights
Protect Dine' water rights. Please sign and submit the attached Petition ASAP, contact your Council delegates and demand a 90-day extension by the Resources Committee of the NE AZ Indian Water Rights Agreement, Legislation 0422-10 beyond 10/13/10, the date set for execution of the settlement agreement to allow for greater public education and input.
Navajo Nation Special session 2010 voting results & MEMO frm Rex Lee Jim

October 1, 2010

Mohawk Nation News Needs Help!

Horn V. Canada Border Service Agency
Kahentinetha Horn Hospitalized

Dear MNN Readers,
On June 14, 2008 two grandmothers supposedly beat up a squad of well-built muscular border guards and police officers. The impression being created is that these two women scared them and beat them to a pulp.
In fact, Kahentinetha suffered a trauma-induced heart attack and has been in and out of hospital since. Two years later the Canada Border Services Agency CBSA has brought charges against her for assault and obstruction. A date for this important trial will soon be set.
We want the truth to come out. It appears we are being used as examples of how those who oppose the fascist buildup of power at the Canada-US border will be treated.
The government of Canada and their agents are using the money and power of the state to stop people from expressing their legal rights.
We must stand together to protect ourselves against tyranny. Kahentinetha should not be alone. You are needed to get behind those who are standing up.
For twenty years MNN has raised awareness of the political, economic and social issues of people who are oppressed everywhere in the world. In particular, MNN has defended everyone who want to cross the border freely and not be harassed or abused.
MNN website has been hacked, crashed and interfered with, causing untold difficulties. We have never given up being a voice for freedom for the average person. MNN needs your donations for Kahentinetha's defense so we can properly defend ourselves from the might of the Canadian government.
Please help me any way you can. It doesn't matter how much. Just let us know you are standing with us. Monetary support is needed as this will be a long term fight - a 70-year old grandmother is doing this on your behalf.
Kahentinetha, MNN Mohawk Nation News For more news, books, to donate and to sign up for MNN newsletters go to