Trails of Tears

Trail of Tears sign from the Cherokee Heritage Museum.This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. Author: Wesley Fryer from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA

by Kathie Malley-Morrison

The current standoff between Native American Water Protectors and the Army Corps of Engineers is only the most recent event in a long history of inhumanity carried out unflinchingly by invasive power structures motivated by greed.

Last fall, during the closing months of the Obama administration, thousands of people—even some banks—rallied around the Water Protectors as they tried to protest yet another treaty violation and protect their water supply and land from the encroachment of the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Victory was joyfully embraced when the pipeline was stopped.

Yet, less than one month into the Trump administration, the pipeline is once again underway, protestors are being forced out of the area, and the battle cry of the public is sadly diminished.

What has happened?

Are the people who are disturbed by the Trump agenda just overwhelmed with Executive Orders, resignations, firings, noisy town meetings, references to Fascism?

Are some people so focused on stopping Trump that they do not have the energy to focus on and resist his carrying out of some of his threatened actions?

If you are concerned with the changes (or extensions of former changes) that seem to be bombarding our experiment in democracy from all sides, my suggestion is to continue as best you can to roll up your sleeves and attend to the three Rs:

  1. Resist oppression.
  2. Reject exploitative capitalism, with its disregard for the human costs of greed.
  3. Repair the system.

Reverse side Trail of Tears sign. Cherokee Heritage Museum. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. Author: Wesley Fryer from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA.

 

 

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2 Responses to Trails of Tears

  1. kathie says:

    A friend just sent me a lovely statement from a Hopi elder that is very relevant to this post and other recent posts. It starts out:
    “You have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour, now you must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour.  And there are things to be considered . . .
    Where are you living?
    What are you doing?
     What are your relationships?
    Are you in right relation?
    Where is your water?
    Know your garden.
    It is time to speak your Truth.

    You can read the whole piece at:
    http://www.communityworks.info/hopi.htm

  2. Gold Dust Twin says:

    I don’t think I ever heard this story before, although I have learned through the years that the cowboys and Indians stories of my youth were vast misrepresentations of the horrendous treatment of the native people by the European settlers. Reading the signs about this particular set of events, which took place almost 200 years ago, is enough to make one weep. How can the government of this country in this day and age continue to violate its own treaties with no regard for the effects on human beings and no apparent guilt whatsoever?

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