August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Bad Bear's Photos Longest Walk 4 arrives at Alcatraz!





Bad Bear
Longest Walk 4 Return to Alcatraz photos by Western Shoshone Long Walker Carl 'Bad Bear' Sampson, thank you! Photos of Golden Gate before sunrise, ferry to Alcatraz Island and Pier 33 dock in San Francisco on Saturday, Dec. 21, 2013

Walkers on the five-month Longest Walk 4 Return to Alcatraz arrived on Alcatraz Island on Saturday, Dec. 21, 2013, returning home the sacred staffs. The walk upheld Indigenous Sovereignty and began in Washington DC on July 15, 2013. Walkers followed the route of the original Longest Walk in 1978, from DC and Pennsylvania through the Midwest in Missouri and Kansas, and finally through the Rockies and into the West. Thank you from Censored News, and our readers, for sharing your walk, your stories, and your photos with us, and making the effort and sacrifice to make a difference.
-- Brenda Norrell, Censored News
Longest Walk 4 photo by Bad Bear. At the culmination of the walk, at Intertribal Friendship House in Oakland, Bill Wahpepah was honored. Shown are his family, with Agnes Williams as MC.

Tribute to Hopi imprisoned at Alcatraz for refusing to allow their children to go to US schools and be colonized:

Mohawk John Kane 'Pope Francis: A Gimmick or a Game Changer?'

Pope Francis: A Gimmick or a Game Changer?

By John Karhiio Kane (Mohawk)
Censored News

We are hearing much about this new Pope and his radical support for the poor, but the truth is there will remain a gaping hole in his posture until the papal bulls responsible for the Doctrine of Christian Discovery are addressed. Only a full repudiation of the papal bulls of Pope Nicholas V (1452) and Pope Alexander VI (1493) will keep the bold statements of Pope Francis from ringing hollow for Indigenous people.
Pope Francis may win the Nobel Peace Prize to go along with being named Time magazine’s "Man of the Year," but let's be honest — these honors have less to do with real change and more to do with propaganda. Still, this Pope has the opportunity to follow the World Council of Churches and make the strongest statement on the subject yet.
It isn't enough for the Catholic Church to merely suggest, as it has, that the 15th century bulls are no longer church doctrine. The Vatican started this mess and it's up to this Pope to make a definitive statement rejecting the racist doctrine that continues to be the cause for much of the very poverty to which he speaks.
Of course, strong statements by churches or the Vatican will not undo the damage. The United Nations made its statement, stopping just short of a specific condemnation of the church doctrine in the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) but still making their intent quite clear. The third affirmation of the UNDRIP states:
“that all doctrines, policies and practices based on or advocating superiority of peoples or individuals on the basis of national origin or racial, religious, ethnic or cultural differences are racist, scientifically false, legally invalid, morally condemnable and socially unjust."
But while the U.S. rejects world opinion or international law confronting their "morally condemnable and socially unjust" laws, it seems to have had no problem codifying into its law church doctrine that clearly conflicts with its claim to a separation of church and state.
Both the U.S. and Canada have actually backed themselves into a corner on this. As these two countries attempt to promote themselves as the moral authority for the world even as the balance of world domination slips away and they actively destroy the land, water and air in pursuit of dollars, their ugly history and justice systems built on racist church dogma cannot be ignored.
The "house of cards" that is their federal Indian law cannot survive any legitimate scrutiny. And their oppressive policies that include raids, physical abuse, kangaroo courts and the general criminalization of all things Native are becoming harder and harder for them to explain away as anything less than a gentler form of genocide. Meanwhile, our people continue to defend the land and the future for all of our children while the U.S. and Canada continue to lose credibility with anyone not in their pockets.
I am not among those clamoring for reparations for all past injustices or for an absolute do over for the last 500 years. Both would be a great dream but neither is realistic. In fact some of our own people would be casualties of a toppling of the house of cards the U.S. and Canada is built on. I believe our leverage over their weakness should be used to press for honest and fruitful negotiations to solve the conflicts with the oppressive nature of these beasts.
There is much work we need to do to return to our ways of solving problems. Rejecting the "Indian Act" and Bureau of Indian Affairs dictates and interferences is an important start. Taxation and any outside controls of our economic development also need to be pushed back. And, of course, a seat at the table over environmental issues is an absolute must. The unfettered access to resources from our lands and practices that continue to place our children's future in jeopardy must end and any discussion for such going forward must include us.
As reasonable as this sounds to Native people, the U.S. and Canada are a long way from reasonable on these matters. Only a repudiation of the Doctrine of Christian Discovery and the U.S. Supreme Court decisions and opinions that start in 1823 with Johnson v. M’Intosh can slap some sense into countries that allowed "racist, scientifically false, (and) legally invalid" church doctrine to become their laws of the land. This is literally their entire basis for their alleged diminishment of Native sovereignty.
So step up "Man of the Year" and take the big steps to address poverty. After all, it is the Vatican and other corporations of Christian nations that sit on the wealth and resources that have been and continue to be extracted from the lands of Indigenous peoples. And it is that accumulation and consolidation of wealth that is responsible for poverty. And it is the papal bulls from past Popes that paved the way for this unlawful subjugation that continues today.
Clean your house, Pope Francis, and we'll take it from there.
– John Karhiio Kane, Mohawk, a national expert commentator on Native American issues, hosts “Let’s Talk Native…with John Kane,” ESPN-AM 1520 in Buffalo, Sundays, 9-11 p.m. Eastern Time. He is a frequent guest on WGRZ-TV’s (NBC/Buffalo) “2 Sides” and “The Capitol Pressroom with Susan Arbetter” in Albany. John’s “Native Pride” blog can be found at He also has a very active "Let's Talk Native...with John Kane" group page on Facebook.

First published in Two Row Times, thank you!

Navajo Council gives BHP dirty coal 'free ride' for poisoning Navajos

Speak UP! Navajo Nation Waived BHP liabilities
Now, Navajo Nation set to Waive Sovereign Immunity Rights

Ash ponds close to Chaco wash/Censored News 


FARMINGTON, NM Two months ago (October 23), the Navajo Nation Council waived BHP Billiton of past, present, and future liabilities associated with BHP Navajo Mine. This translates to the Council agreeing to never hold BHP Billiton accountable for any damages, clean up, environmental, and health impacts associated with the mine. Nonetheless, the Council and the Navajo Transitional Energy Company (NTEC) are still moving forward with finalizing agreements on the BHP Navajo Mine purchase by December 31, 2013.

The waiver of liabilities given to BHP disregards BHP’s responsibilities! BHP should be held accountable for any and all consequences,” states
Jerry Bodie, President of Sanostee Chapter.

Now, the Navajo Nation is set to waive sovereign immunity rights to obtain the performance and insurance bonds needed to finalize the BHP mine transaction. Legislation 0367-13 will be discussed during today’s Special Session at 1:00pm at the Navajo Nation Council Chambers in Window Rock, Arizona.

The Shiprock Chapter stands opposed to the waiver language and hopes the Secretary of the Interior will live up to its trust obligations and protect the rights and welfare of the people since the Navajo leadership will not” states Chili Yazzie, Shiprock Chapter President.
Your money is being spent on a dying 50 year old coal mine:
$3 million on Phase 1 and 2 due diligence reports;
$4.1 million to NTEC for finalizing agreements;
$85 million for the mine purchase agreement;
$130 million estimated on the reclamation bond

What makes Navajo Nation leaders think they can compete with Wyoming, Kentucky, and West-Virginia on global coal market when they are also buying BHP's liabilities that would only cost us billion dollars. This is like buying a 50 year old junk car with no liability insurance, and going to take out the car on the public highway and you kill lot of people tomorrow, you be paying out of your pocket to pay for the damages,” states Lester Begay, Tiis Tsoh Sikaad Chapter President.

Lester Begay
Chili Yazzie
Colleen Cooley Email:

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