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Vi Waln: The #NoDAPL movement reminds them we are still here

Filed Under: Opinion
More on: dakota access pipeline, dna, genocide, lakota country times, law enforcement, north dakota, vi waln
     
   

The Backwater Bridge in Morton County, North Dakota, remains barricaded as winter has set in on Oceti Sakowin, the largest #NoDAPL encampment. Photo by Digital Smoke Signals [GoFundMe]

It Can Only Be Described as Evil
By Vi Waln
Lakota Country Times Columnist
www.lakotacountrytimes.com

I rarely use the word evil. It’s a word best left to the Christian fanatics to pepper their fire and brimstone speeches with. Still, what we’ve all witnessed in person, as well as on social media video shared from Standing Rock, can only be described as evil.

The Indigenous people of Turtle Island were not supposed to survive. The evil wasicu army led many massacres in their efforts to wipe us out. Their notion of Manifest Destiny had no place for Indigenous people.

Members of the National Guard and numerous law enforcement officers serving in the Morton County army in North Dakota are direct descendants of those blood thirsty military gangs who led government ordered attacks on our ancestors. The militarized police force is committed to protecting and serving the Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL) construction. Several attacks led against unarmed Water Protectors have been marked with violence.

For example, the brutal attack on Red Fawn Fallis on October 27, 2016, was documented on a cell phone video. The footage depicts the dog pile attack on her by a gang of officers clad in riot-gear. The video shows her being hit several times with a Taser while she was immobilized on the ground.

Consequently, those now serving in Morton County’s military force carry the memory of their ancestor’s violence in their DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid). This DNA memory contributes to the overt cruelty inflicted upon unarmed Water Protectors by members of the military force operating in North Dakota.

It’s very difficult to transform DNA. It takes great effort by the individual to rise above the detrimental effects that inherited memories have on their DNA. What we’ve seen coming from the militarized police force, through their recent attacks against unarmed people, shows that it’s easier for them to succumb to the violence handed down by their ancestors. They would rather perpetuate the violent cycle handed down to them by their murderous ancestors than work on healing themselves.

We were put here to evolve into higher level human beings in order to care for Mother Earth. People who choose not to do the work required to reach an evolved thought process can be compared to plastic; think of them as kind of like man-made dolls. They might appear human on the outside but they’re spiritually empty on the inside. Their spirit left long ago, no one has called it back for them.

The lack of human compassion also contributes to a tendency to lie. Arrogance, ego and denial are attributes continuously displayed by the Morton County Sheriff’s Department. That is, contrary to statements made in press conferences by law enforcement employees, video footage captured by several Indigenous journalists shows countless violent acts perpetuated against unarmed Water Protectors. Cameras don’t lie.

Images of the army force decked out in riot gear standing behind concrete barriers reinforced with prison grade razor wire, aiming firehoses to soak unarmed people in below freezing temperatures have been viewed by millions around the world. The Morton County Sheriff’s Department lost face long ago. They have zero credibility. Their behavior has changed the way I now perceive law enforcement.

The members of the Morton County army who step up with smiling faces to brutalize unarmed people, epitomize evil. Their inhumane actions are characteristic of people whose spirits have left them. Their behavior has many of us wondering what kind of deal they’ve struck with the demons controlling their actions.


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On November 25, 2016, a day designated by President Barack Obama as Native American Heritage Day, a letter was received by Dave Archambault II, Standing Rock Tribal Chairman. This letter was written by the US Army Corp of Engineers District Commander/Colonel John W. Henderson and reads in part:
I am closing the portion of the Corps-managed federal property north of the Cannonball River to all public use and access effective December 5, 2016. . . Any person found to be on the Corps’ lands north of the Cannonball River after December 5, 2016, will be considered trespassing and may be subject to prosecution under federal, state and local laws. Furthermore, any person who chooses to stay on these Corps’ lands north of the Cannonball River does so at their own risk, and assumes any and all corresponding liabilities for their unlawful presence and occupation of such lands.

The land referred to in Henderson’s threatening letter is where the Oceti Sakowin Camp is currently located. This area is also a part of the 1851 Treaty land. Consequently, the Water Protectors now inhabiting the camp have issued publicly statements indicating they will not leave until the Army Corp of Engineers denies the easement application submitted by DAPL.

Again, we were not supposed to survive. Today, our physical presence reminds the wasicu that their efforts to annihilate us failed miserably. Every time they see one of us, it is proof their ancestors failed in their genocide attempts. We are still here. We will continue to fight for clean water for our unborn generations.

(Vi Waln is an enrolled citizen of the Sicangu Lakota Nation and is a nationally published journalist.)

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