August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Larry Kibby: A Mother's Day Message

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Good Morning,

On this Sunday, Mother's Day 2010, I'd like send this message out to all of the Mother's. From Grandmother Moon to Mother Earth, to the Mother's who carry the Unborn, to the Mother's who carry the New born, to the Mother's in the Armed Forces, to the Mother's who live in Poverty, to the Single Mother's, Mother's Incarcerated, Mother's in Rehab, the Abused Mother's, to all the Great-Grandmothers, Grandmothers and Mothers.

For some nine months, you carried us in your womb and then you brought us forth into this world and gave us our first breath of life, our first nourishment and held us close to your heart, provided us with tender care and love.

Through you, we would learn much, you were there for us through our right and wrongs, you were there for us when we got hurt, were in pain, sadness and depression, you were there to help us no matter what.

So today, on this Sunday, May 9th, 2010, we pay honor and tribute to you and for the most part, we understand and forgive you for any wrong you may have done along the way, because if it weren't for you, we wouldn't be here.

Through life there are many ups and downs, but still we remember the good times and yes, we even remember the bad times. Our hearts our sometimes full of happiness and sadness, but that's what life is all about and for the most part, many of us are glad to be here and to have had a Mother by our side.

Mother's, like anyone else, stumble and fall from time to time and it is easy to forgive and to forget, it is something we all must do now and then, because after all Mother's are Human Beings too.

Mother's are a power, they are strong and for the most part, have a beautiful heart, soul and mind. Mother's are wonderful Human Beings, they can be and are intelligent and have been building our Sovereign Nations for time immemorial, they are the life giving force of our people.

So on this Mother's Day, Sunday, May 9th, 2010, to all of the Mother's throughout Indian Country, may your day be blessed with good feelings, good thoughts and lots of happiness and good health. Have a wonderful day and a "Happy Mother's Day!"

Reznews List Owner - Larry Kibby
Elko, Nevada 89801

The International Tribunal of Climate Change and Environmental Justice

Photo: Wiradjuri Traditional Owners protested Barrick Gold's mine destructive operation in Lake Cowal central western New South Wales and its cyanide poisoning. In Western Shoshone territory in the US, Barrick plans similar destruction to sacred Mount Tenabo.

The Tribunal of Climate Change and Environmental Justice
Censored News

The destruction of the earth by mining has resulted in profits for a few while Indigenous Peoples are left with a trail of death and disease in their homelands. At the World Peoples Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth in Bolivia, the people called for the establishment of a Climate Justice Tribunal, and reforms that will result in enforcement. Corporations and governments have knowingly targeted Indigenous territories, from Australia, Peru, Guatemala, Africa and Asia to Western Shoshone and Navajo lands in the US. Using corporate deceit and underpaying for coal and under resources, corporations have reaped the profits. The strategies have included the assassination of Indigenous activists and media campaigns that distorted the truth. Now, in Bolivia, the people say it is time for individuals, corporations and governments to be held responsible for their crimes before an international tribunal.

Final Conclusions working group 5: Climate Justice Tribunal
April 30, 2010 in 05. Climate Justice Tribunal, Working Groups

The peoples of the world have gathered at the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth in the city of Cochabamba, Bolivia, from 19 to 22 April, 2010. We, the Working Group of the Tribunal for Climate Justice, have made the following conclusions: 1.Considering the lack of political will by developed countries to fulfill their commitments and obligations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, and faced with the absence of an international legal framework to prevent and punish the climate and environmental crimes that violate the rights of Mother Earth and Humanity, we demand the creation of an International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice that has the legally binding capacity to prevent, judge, and punish those states, companies, and individuals that pollute and cause climate change by their actions or omissions.
2.The International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice should have the authority to judge, civilly and criminally, states, multilateral organizations, transnational corporations, and any legal persons responsible for aggravating the causes and impacts of climate change and environmental destruction against Mother Earth. Claims may be made by all peoples, nations, nationalities, states, individuals, or corporations who have been affected, without having exhausted national remedies.
3.The International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice should consist of representatives of the peoples, nations, nationalities and states committed to respect and uphold the principles of this court, with international jurisdiction and competence.
The Working Group on Climate Justice Tribunal makes the following recommendations:
1.We call upon the peoples of the world to use existing legal mechanisms and laws in their countries to prosecute and punish those who harm Mother Earth and Humanity and whose actions or omissions aggravate the causes and impacts of climate change, demanding the immediate cessation of activities.
2.We call upon the peoples of the world to join the struggle and mobilization for the consolidation of the International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice, and to put pressure on governments that do not meet their commitments under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol.
3.We call upon the peoples of the world to educate and raise awareness about the dangers caused by an economic system based on economic growth, the accumulation of profit and consumerism.
4.We urge the peoples of the world to propose and promote a thorough reform of the United Nations, in order that all Member States comply with the decisions of the International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice.
5.We urge the peoples of the world to further discussions on the independence, involvement and formation of the International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice in relation to existing multilateral mechanisms.
6.We call upon the peoples of the world to join the struggle and the mobilization that is behind the ethical International People’s Tribunal on Ecological Debt and Climate Justice.
7.We encourage States to submit claims before the International Court of Justice against developed countries that are failing to fulfill their commitments under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, including the commitment to reduce greenhouse gases emissions.

Horse Slaughter Pine Ridge 2010

UPDATE: Oglala Court halts auction of sacred horses

Temporary injunction granted to stop the Oglala Sioux Tribe Parks and Recreation Department from auctioning off these horses on Mothers Day

Statement by David Swallow, Jr., Wowitan Yuha Mani
Teton Lakota Spiritual Leader, Sun dance Chief of the Medicine Wheel Sun dance, and a Headman of the Lakota Nation Band of Wana Way Gu (Broken Bow)

For Immediate Release
Statement Date; May 8th 2010
Transcribed To and edited by Keith Rabin

Hau, Mitakuyapi Na Mita Kola.

Mitakuyapi Sunka Wakan Oyate
Lakota Nation, Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota

The Lakota people of Pine Ridge South Dakota continue their struggle to protect their Sacred Horses from the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council and the Parks and Recreation Department.
Since June 2009, the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council and the Parks and Recreation (OSTPR) have been removing horses owned by the Lakota People of Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota without permission, without notice and without any warrant issued or receipt. Despite repeated efforts, continued obstacles have made it impossible for the Lakota People to get their horses back.
The horses were to be delivered to the St. Onge Livestock Company LTD by the OSTPR to be auctioned off on Sunday, 5/9/10 as loose horses.
In A statement from Elder and Spiritual leader David Swallow, on May 7, 2010, based on the grounds of trespassing on private property, a temporary injunction was granted by the Tribal Court to stop the Oglala Sioux Tribe Parks and Recreation Department from auctioning off these horses on 5/9/10 [Mothers Day]. (Further details regarding the injunction to follow early next week).
The ” Mitakuyapi Sunka Wakan Oyate ” is working to establish a designated fund where supporters will be able to donate funds to help return these Sacred horses to the safety and care of The People. Supporters are encouraged not to send any money at this time.
Please watch for updates as to how to help.
Mitakuyapi Sunka Wakan Oyate (Relatives of the Sacred Horses)
Lakota Nation, Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota
Our Horses are sacred to us and they are our relatives.
We are family and we take care of each other and help each other in times of need.
That is the Lakota way.

Native Women: Honoring the Earth on Mother's Day

Western Shoshone, Navajo and Havasupai women honor the Earth each day in their struggle to defend and protect Mother Earth

From Editor's Note: This post comes to us from our friends over at Earth Island Journal. It offers a different perspective on Mother's Day from Women's Earth Alliance, and asks you to think of celebrating Mother Earth this holiday. For a full version of the guest post, head to Earth Island Journal.

By Caitlin Sislin, Esq., Advocacy Director, Women's Earth Alliance
(Photo NASA)

Today is the day of the mother, the day we honor the source of life. As we give thanks for all the nurturing and resources our mothers provide for us, we also celebrate our shared mother - the Earth. Without her flowing waters, warm sun, rich soil and fresh air, even our most advanced technologies wouldn't be able to sustain our collective life here.

We write to you from the front lines of a critical struggle for justice and sustainability - unbeknownst to many of us - that is unfolding right here in North America. For the past week, the intrepid Women's Earth Alliance (WEA) Advocacy Delegation has been meeting with three Native American communities whose sacred places are gravely threatened by mining and commercial development.

Our team of eight dynamic women - legal, policy, and business experts -convened in Elko, Nevada, to begin our journey. There, we learned from Western Shoshone elder and longtime land rights activist Carrie Dann about the ravaging of sacred Mt. Tenabo by Barrick Gold Mine. For the Western Shoshone and many other tribes in the region, all life emerged from Mt. Tenabo; now, this sage and pinon-covered range is the site of the largest open pit cyanide heap leach gold mine in the United States. The Shoshone say that because of the 1.8 billion gallons of water per year that will be drawn from within the mountain, along with the 2,200 ft. deep mine pit and the toxic cyanide tailings ponds, the mountain itself will die if protective action is not taken.

We then traveled to Flagstaff, Arizona, where Jeneda Benally and the Save the Peaks Coalition shared with us the epic legal and grassroots campaign underway to protect the San Francisco Peaks. These holy Peaks hold the utmost spiritual significance to 13 tribes, and are at risk of total desecration through the use of reclaimed wastewater to make artificial snow at a ski resort. For the Navajo, putting 180 million gallons of wastewater annually on the mountain would irreversibly contaminate the mountain's holy purity.

Finally, we traveled to the magnificent Grand Canyon, where Havasupai leader Carletta Tilousi explained the grave threat of uranium mining to the tribe's sacred Red Butte mountain, to the community's health, and to the safety of the regional aquifer. Since 2005, because of a major spike in the price of uranium on the world market, over 10,000 new uranium claims have been filed on the land surrounding the Grand Canyon, the traditional homeland of the Havasupai. Uranium mining - including one mine just a few miles from the Havasupai's holiest mountain shrine and from the rim of the Canyon, situated directly over the aquifer that provides water to the tribe's village and many other communities - would expose the air, water, land, and community to toxic and carcinogenic contamination through the extraction of hundreds of thousands of pounds of uranium ore.

The unfortunate fact is that our land-use and environmental policies, while allowing for the constitutional protection of some religious freedoms, do not yet protect sacred land for its own sake or for the people who revere it. We have seen that when economic development clashes in court or in the legislature with the protection of Native American holy places, development usually wins - no matter the devastation of natural resources and human community that may result.

On this Mother's Day, why should we care about these injuries to communities we may never know? This week, our team has learned that we all owe our lives to the delicate balance of the planet, and disruption of that balance in one place will impact all of us everywhere.

Lila Watson, Australian aboriginal leader, said: "If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come here because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together."

Our liberation is bound up with the health of the Earth and all her people. WEA's Sacred Earth Advocacy Network is proud to stand in solidarity with the indigenous female environmental leaders of sacred sites protection campaigns in North America, through pro bono legal, policy, and business advocacy collaborations. On this day of honoring our mothers, we invite you to join us in protecting our shared, sacred Mother Earth by learning more about these urgent issues, spreading the word in your community about the impacts of consumption on people and land, and supporting our work toward sustainability and justice. Most of all, take a moment today and every day to stand on the earth, give thanks for all that she provides, and make a commitment to protect her, for the sake of future generations and all life.


Women's Earth Alliance (WEA) is a global organization that implements solutions to issues of climate, water, food, and land by connecting grassroots women environmental leaders to urgently-needed resources, training and advocacy.