August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Monday, August 13, 2012

US Army set to raze Carlisle landmark over descendants objections


The Carlisle Indian Industrial School, now a US war college, was the first all-Indian off-reservation government-run boarding school where thousands of Native children were sent to be civilized in order to “Kill the Indian, Save the Man.”

By Louellyn White, Spokesperson for Carlisle Indian School Descendants, Relatives, and Friends
Censored News

AUGUST 12, 2012 (Carlisle, PA): Despite an outpouring of pleas from descendants and relatives of students who attended the Carlisle Indian Industrial School, the U.S. Army War College has reaffirmed its plans to raze one of the last standing and culturally significant structures remaining from the legendary boarding school in August or September of this year. The structure is an original farmhouse used by the school to train in farming techniques and to help prepare students for farm work as part of Carlisle's unique "Outing Program." The building housed students as well as served as a classroom for agricultural courses.
Demolition is moving forward over the strenuous objections of descendants due to the farmhouse not being listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The lack of inclusion is justified by a 1985 Historic Survey that erroneously states that the farmhouse and outbuildings had served the Indian Industrial School only in a “peripheral way.” This justification has not been revised or revisited, despite extensive subsequent research that identifies the farmhouse as a location for student housing and classes and its numerous inclusions in various school publications. Barbara Frederick, Historic Preservation Supervisor for the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, states that “the project requires no further consultation with our office under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act."
Carlisle cemetery
The ones who never came home
Photo by Brenda Norrell
For the relatives
The Carlisle Indian Industrial School was the first all-Indian off-reservation government-run boarding school where thousands of Native children were sent to be civilized in order to “Kill the Indian, Save the Man.”CIIS and its models had a devastating effect on the lives, cultures, and languages of these children, their families and descendants. Many CIIS students participated in the summer Outing Program, where they would learn the skills of white society while forced to give up their traditional ways of life. Some students were sent to nearby farms to work and received their training at the CIIS farm and stayed at the historic farmhouse. Despite the historical significance of the school to both Native culture and American history, which is reflected in its designation as a National Historic Landmark and acknowledged with a state historical marker, this is not the first time tensions between the historical significance and the exigent needs of the U.S. Army War College have resulted in a devastating loss for descendants, most notably moving original graves of the 186 students who died at the school to a new cemetery to make way for an entrance road. The decision to raze the farmhouse by Carlisle Barracks Command, as stated by Ty McPhillips, Project Director for Balfour Beatty Communities, is “[a]fter a review with the Installation and in addressing their Master Planning needs for a new War College etc, it was again reaffirmed that the Farm House needed to be razed so the space could be used for RCI housing effort. There was no other location to place/site the 4 new homes slated for that area. ” No mention of the house’s use in the Carlisle Indian Industrial School or its significance to American Indians’cultural memory was made.
Carlisle is a major site of memory for many American Indians and will serve as the host site for a nationwide symposium on October 5thand 6th, titled Carlisle, PA: Site of Indigenous Histories, Memories, and Reclamations. Descendants have requested that plans for demolition at least be postponed until after this national gathering in order to give descendants and relatives a chance to visit the structure and have their objections heard. The U.S. Army War College has not responded to this request and descendants have created a petition, available at, to gather signatures in further effort to stop the demolition of this historic structure.

More information on the history of the farmhouse and the Carlisle Indian Industrial School can be found by visiting:

Farmhouse History - documented by Carolyn Tolman

The Sentinel news story

Carlisle Indian Industrial School - by historian Barbara Landis

Farmhouse photo: This photo was part of an 1895 souvenir book created by John Leslie, an Indian student and the “right hand man” of John Choate, a well-known photographer at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School. It is the earliest known photo of the Farmhouse.

Courtesy of the Cumberland County Historical Society

Dine' Kris Barney walking for San Francisco Peaks


Join Kris Barney on this prayer walk now for San Francisco Peaks
Press statement
Posted at Censored News

French translation by Christine Prat:

ROUGH ROCK, Ariz. -- On August 12, 2012, at dawn, Spiritual Walker/Runner, Traditional Dine' Farmer/Rancher, Medicine Practitioner, Poet, Artist Kris Barney began his walk from his home in Rough Rock, Navajo Nation to the Base of the Holy San Francisco Peaks near Flagstaff. His reasons for his walk is as follows:
The holy San Francisco Peaks is under attack. Our culture, our traditions, our ceremonies, our very existence as Dine' (Navajo) people is under attack by the Arizona Snowbowl and its plans and ongoing construction on top of the Holy Mountain Dooko'o'sliid. This mountain is sacred to more than 13 Indigenous Nations and at this moment they are committing genocide through environmental ecocide on this holy mountain where we gather medicinal herbs and pray.

"The San Francisco Peaks is essential to our health and well being as human beings. With my body, with my prayer, with my two feet I will send a message to all our Nations to Unite together to address this issue with the Arizona Snowbowl and its construction of a pipeline to transport reclaimed wastewater from the city of Flagstaff to a 10,000 gallon storage pond on top of the holy San Francisco Peaks. At this very moment crews are clear-cutting old growth forest for their new ski lifts and recreational expansion. They are threatening endangered species of plants and animals and defiling sacred places where we go to pray and make offerings for all living things. I want to extend a hand of invitation to all Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Peoples, Navajos, Hopis, Havasupais, Apaches to come out and walk with me. The Peaks needs all of us.”

Here is a list of expected days and communities Kris will be walking through:

Sunday August 12, 2012:

Rough Rock, AZ to Big Mountain, AZ

Monday August 13, 2012:

Big Mountain, AZ to highway 264/Moencopi, AZ

Tuesday August 14, 2012:

Rest Day

Wednesday August 15, 2012:

Moencopi/Tuba City to Cameron, AZ

Thursday August 16, 2012:

Cameron, AZ to Grey Mountain, AZ (and beyond)

Friday August 17, 2012:

Grey Mountain/Elden Ruins/Mt. Elden through Flagstaff to the San Francisco Peaks

Saturday August 18, 2012:

Sunrise/Morning Gathering at Snowbowl Parking Lot(s)/Base of the Mountain

(All times and places are subject to change based upon weather, walkers and accessibility to camping areas and to unknown circumstance.)
Donations of food, water, money for food water and gas (for support vehicles) and two pairs of running shoes (Men's sizes 10 ½ and size 11) would be greatly appreciated, Runners, walkers, story tellers, youth, adults, elders, medicine people, and all people are welcome to join the walk. All we ask is for you to be respectful and respect the sacredness of this walk.”
Kris Barney
Dine' Spiritual Walker

Beware of frauds in Indian country

Grant writers in Indian country seldom tell the grassroots people about their grants, and the media is part of the hoax

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

It seems a number of people who are suddenly Indians, continue to take over the stage and agenda in public forums, such as at the United Nations, and local gatherings.
This takeover includes those engaged in the repetition of academic rhetoric, which distracts from real grassroots issues like mining, fracking and Border Patrol abuse.
Censored News does not promote those who disrespect Indigenous sacred names, or appropriate the hard work of others for personal gain, including those receiving grant funding for others struggles, and those who are 'suddenly-Indians' seeking media attention.
Ofelia Rivas, O'odham, made a formal complaint to the UN Rapporteur for Indigenous Peoples during the April 2012 session in Tucson. Rivas reported that a person in Tucson has violated one of the most sacred names of the O'odham and is using it for his 'non-profit.'
Unfortunately, UN Rapporteur James Anaya had the same person listed as a featured speaker at the session.
Meanwhile, Amnesty International continues to promote this person, even after a complaint has been made concerning the violations of using the O'odham sacred name and appropriating the work of others for self gain.
Wannabe frauds appropriate the hard work of people like O'odham Ofelia Rivas for their 'non-profits,' which of course are extremely profitable for the grant writers. The grants are usually kept secret from the grassroots communities who are targeted to be used and abused.
In another case, organizations have been taken over by non-Indian wannabe frauds, who are receiving huge grants that the people are never told about. Many of these can be located by way of Google Internet searches, using the organization's name plus the word 'grants.'
For instance, you can search and see who received a $40,000 grant for traditional 'food sovereignty' workshops in Indian communities. Ask the grassroots communities in Canada, Mexico, Alaska and elsewhere if they were ever told about this $40,000 grant.
Often, not only are Indigenous Peoples never told about these huge grants, but they are told that there is no funding for the event. The grassroots people are required to both provide the food and sleep on the floor -- while the speakers stay in pricey hotels.
The media also plays a role. Currently, some reporters and editors in Indian country rely on plagiarism and phone calls, and mimic press releases and self-promoters, instead of having reporters present.
The armchair reporters promote academic grandstanders and the corrupt politicians with good press release writers, along with the reporters and editors own personal friends. The grant writers and corporations profit from the reporters failure to be present, as they spin out their press statements for self gain. The publishers who could afford to hire real reporters to be present, instead are hiring plagiarizers.
As for one of these armchair reporters in Indian country, I haven't seen her actually out on a news story in the last 30 years.
Far removed from the backroads, these reporters and editors continue to perpetuate the injustice and fraud.
Send us any alerts about frauds: