Winona LaDuke: Corporate interests come to destroy our mother

Honor The Earth set up the Red Warrior Camp near Cannon Ball, North Dakota, as part of the #NoDAPL Dakota Access Pipeline resistance movement. Photo by Honor The Earth

Activist Winona LaDuke, a member of the White Earth Nation and the founder of Honor The Earth, heads to North Dakota to join the #NoDAPL Dakota Access Pipeline resistance movement:
It’s 2016 and the weight of American corporate interests has come to the Missouri River, the Mother River. This time, instead of the Seventh Cavalry, or the Indian police dispatched to assassinate Sitting Bull, it is Enbridge and Dakota Access Pipeline.

In mid August, Standing Rock Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II was arrested by state police, along with 27 others, for opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline. In the meantime; North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple called for more police support. Every major pipeline project in North America must cross Indigenous lands, Indian country. That is a problem.

The road west of Fargo is rarely taken. In fact, most Americans just fly over North Dakota, never seeing it. Let me take you there.

My head clears as I drive; my destination the homeland of the Hunkpapa Oceti, Standing Rock Reservation. It is early evening, the moon full. If you close your eyes, you can remember the 50 million buffalo—the single largest migratory herd in the world. The pounding of their hooves would vibrate the Earth, make the grass grow. There were once 250 species of grass. Today the buffalo are gone, replaced by 28 million cattle, which require grain, water, and hay. Many of the fields are now in a single GMO crop, full of so many pesticides that the monarch butterflies are dying off. In my memory, that old world remains.

If you drive long enough you come to the Missouri River. Called Mnisose, a great swirling river, by the Lakota, she is a force to be reckoned with. She is breathtaking.

Read More:
Winona LaDuke: What Would Sitting Bull Do? (LA Progressive 8/25)

More Opinions:
Rewrite by Lawrence O'Donnell: The Protests at Standing Rock (MSNBC 8/25)
Georgianne Nienaber: Barack You Held My Grandson In Your Arms (The Huffington Post 8/25)
Dane La Born: Lochmess, Racism, and the First Nations (The Free Weekly 8/25)

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