Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

November 29, 2022

Defenders of the Sacred on the Frontlines: With Thanks from Censored News

Defenders of the Sacred: Through the years, defenders of the sacred, on the frontline, have shared their stories with us. Here are a few of them. James Main, Chief Johnny Jackson, and Thomas Banyacya gathered on the Navajo Nation in Dilkon and gave birth to a new movement upholding inherent rights and defending the sacred. Robert Free, shown on horseback on left at Wounded Knee, brought heating oil to Indian country from Venezuela. It was Robert's tipi on Alcatraz. Red Warrior Debra White Plume, Lakota, gave the Lewis and Clark Expedition a symbolic blanket of smallpox in South Dakota, as the American Indian Movement told the pretenders to leave. Carter Camp, Ponca, at Wounded Knee. Kahentinetha, publisher of Mohawk Nation News, and Thomas Square, Mohawk Warriors on the southern border.

Defending the Sacred: Celebrating Warriors on the Frontline. Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham rights defender on the border, founder of O'odham Voice Against the Wall. Madonna Thunder Hawk, Lakota, American Indian Movement, whose life of action includes going to Palestine. Louise Benally, Big Mountain, Strength of the Matriarchs, Dine' resisting relocation on Black Mesa. Klee Benally, Dine', leading the fight to protect the San Francisco Peaks. Our friend Tomas Rojo, Yaqui in Vicam, Sonora, Mexico, spokesman defending the water, was kidnapped and brutally murdered. Casey Camp Horinek, Ponca, making sure the world knows: From Standing Rock to Jamaica and Egypt.

With thanks for sharing your stories, songs, and photos with us. Western Shoshones Ian Zabarte and Carrie Dann, fighting mining and nuclear devastation. Keith Secola and Floyd Westerman singing for the people. Buffy Sainte Marie, censored and blacklisted and never giving up. Yaqui Ceremonial Leader Jose Matus, shown in a Zapatista village in the mountains of Chiapas. Marcos in Sonora listening to the people in the north, south of the Arizona border, Joye Braun, fearless with a heart full of love, was the first to set up her tipi at Standing Rock in defense of the water from the Dakota Access Pipeline. Western Shoshone Bad Bear, thank you for sharing your Longest Walk photos and running from coast to coast so many times.

In Memory of Thomas Banyacya, Hopi spiritual leader; Chief Johnny Jackson, Yakama Nation in Washington, fishing rights champion; James Main, defender, Gros Ventre in Montana; Debra White Plume, Lakota from Pine Ridge, South Dakota, Red Warrior fighting for the people; Carter Camp, Ponca, American Indian Movement, Wounded Knee; Yaqui Ceremonial Leader Jose Matus, who joined delegations to Chiapas and Bolivia; Tomas Rojo, Yoeme Water Protector (Yaqui spokesman for Vicam Traditional Authority in Sonora, Mexico) brutally assassinated; Carrie Dann, Western Shoshone fighting for the land, fighting for the people; Lakota Floyd Westerman, singer, American Indian Movement, and Native rights champion; and Joye Braun, Cheyenne River Lakota in South Dakota, Water Protector, pipeline fighter and defender of the land and people.

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