August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

On the Arizona Border, We Know Who the Monsters Are

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
French translation by Christine Prat at:

It is sad to hear that the volunteers who leave water for migrants are being arrested on the Arizona border.
A few years ago, my friend took me to these same places, showing me the trails. It was about 116 degrees, and her car had no air conditioning. We wrapped ourselves in wet towels to keep going.
We watched the Border Patrol agents sit in their air-conditioned vehicles and throw their Starbucks cups on the ground, and buy junk food at Three Points.
They lounged around and yakked on their cellphones, all in the same area where volunteers putting out life-saving water are now being arrested.
If the timing was different, I could have been one of those arrested.
The volunteers who do this year after year are the heroes.
Another day, with temperatures over 116, my friends asked me to help them search for the body of a migrant. The heat knocked me out immediately, in minutes. They hiked in that scorching sun and found someone's loved one.
Others for years have provided shelter, a drink of water, a sandwich, or a ride to the hospital and saved a life. Sometimes the life saved is an Indigenous person who walked across countries, from Guatemala or El Salvador, in hopes of finding a way to feed their families at home.
The tiny graves in the desert sometimes have a string of Mayan beads across them. These volunteers are heroes.
We know who the monsters are.

Brenda Norrell, journalist in Indian country for 36 years, is publisher of Censored News.

Images: A grave on the Arizona border.
Shoes left behind by migrants. Photo by Brenda Norrell.
Border Patrol agent destroying life saving water, captured on hidden video.

Notes: Nine volunteers with No More Deaths have been arrested and face federal charges charges for leaving water for migrants in the Sonoran Desert on the Arizona border.
This region has one of the highest death rates for migrants.
An ASU instructor and No More Deaths volunteer was arrested this week for rendering aid to migrants at Ajo, Arizona, after No More Deaths released a report exposing Border Patrol agents destroying life saving water in the desert.6
No More Deaths is one of several organizations rendering humanitarian aid. Many individuals, including Tohono O'odham, quietly ignore the tribal and federal laws prohibiting giving aid, and save the lives of migrants.

More at Censored News:
'No More Deaths' 2018 Report, and links to arrest articles:

Copyright Brenda Norrell, Censored News

'Akicita' Premiere -- Standing Ovation for Water Protectors at Sundance Film Festival


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At the premiere of Akicita: The Battle of Standing Rock, the filmmakers said, "We are overwhelmed by the love and support from today’s screening of AKICITA: THE BATTLE OF STANDING ROCK. Thank you to everyone who came out!"

Watch video below:
video link on Twitter and clip below from Facebook


Zapatistas 'Consciences for Humanity -- From the Diaries of the Cat-Dog' by SupGaleano


The EZLN’s Sixth Commission at the close of “Consciences for Humanity”: “From the Diaries of the Cat-Dog.” SupGaleano
From the Diaries of the Cat-Dog: the story of how two great detectives met, a fragment of what ElĂ­as Contreras and SupGaleano talked about during the now not-so-mysterious case of the missing honeybuns, how Defensa Zapatista left the science of language in shreds, and some idle reflections from the Sup on the above subjects

December 30, 2017

Once again, good morning, good afternoon, good evening, good night,

First of all, we want to send an embrace to the Mapuche people who are still being attacked by the bad governments of the countries called Chile and Argentina. They have used legal ruses to again bring charges against Machi Francisca Linconao, along with other Mapuche men and women, proving once again that in this system, those who destroy nature are the good guys and those who resist, defending life, are persecuted, murdered, and imprisoned like criminals. Despite this, or precisely because of it, one word is sufficient to describe the struggle of the Mapuche people and all of the originary peoples of this continent: Marichiweu—we will win, ten, a thousand times over and always.

San Francisco Honors Indigenous Peoples, Dumps Columbus Day

November 1969 Occupation of Alcatraz, San Francisco
Censored News
Audio of Board Meeting

San Francisco, the newest city today(!) along with Berkeley (the US first in 1992) Seattle, Los Angeles, St. Paul, MN, Eugene, Oregon, and 49 other cities across the US; plus four states such as Alaska, South Dakota, Vermont and Minnesota, (and eleventh cities in California!) to have joined by adopting “Indigenous Peoples Day” the second Wednesday in October!  (Hear the vote at City Hall recorded today)

This is an historic occasion to briefly summarize the determined progression led by Indigenous peoples throughout the Western Hemisphere to challenge, reverse, and shatter the myths of the explorer and mercenary Cristobal Colon depicted as some sort of a glorified savior.

Since the beginning of 1492-1992, which marked 500 Years of Indigenous Peoples De-Colonization of the Americas, a Summit was held in Quito, Ecuador in 1990 to develop a strategy to begin to reverse Colonization.  It resulted in a Declaration with resolutions to change the image the media and western society have portrayed and romanticized Cristobal Colon.

That time has finally arrived in San Francisco today!  (The SF School District dropped Columbus Day from their calendars replaced instead with “Indigenous Peoples Day” last year).

The US recognized Columbus Day as a federal holiday since 1934. It is time to lend support within the US Congress starting among the Italian-American legislators to also consider replacing Columbus Day in the near future.  

This is an educational moment, too, for organizing an effort in your communities to remove Columbus Day and celebrate it instead with “Indigenous Peoples Day.”  Organize a Big Time!

The annual Bay Area Alcatraz Island Sun-Rise Gathering held each year on Monday, October (8), will indeed, be a glorious celebration of Indigenous Peoples Day!


All My Relations!

Tony Gonzales
AIM-WEST director


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