Letter: Bad River Ojibwe will suffer most with proposed mine

"It's interesting to see the comments about this aspect of the mining issue on both sides.

I have stated many times that I thought the poison of this mining endeavor would unite everyone against it at least until a step in the taconite process was introduced that neutralized the SO4 and other poison.

Instead, I hear justifications such as, "well we put salt on our roads in the winter so whats a little mercury in the water."

Regardless, let's all unite against the poison aspect of the mine until it is solved. Then we can argue jobs over aesthetics, jobs over habitat destruction, or jobs over no water in our wells, but my god let's at least agree we dont want to poison each other.

And even if as individuals some of us are OK with the poison tradeoff, let's agree we have no right to make that decision for everyone.

Also, let's agree that the Bad River Tribe is going to suffer the most from this mine in every respect, both in living right on the poisoned river and losing their wild rice, as well as in loss of fish due to mercury contamination. Further, the Bad River Tribe will be losing square miles of ceded territory that now produces fish and wildlife. This loss, could easily be argued, is a violation of their usufructuary rights to hunt and gather."

Get the Story:
Charlie Ortman: It's About the Poison, People! (The Ashland Current 6/15)

Also Today:
Bad River Tribe Will Battle Proposed Iron-Ore Mine (Northland News Center 6/14)

Related Stories:
Opinion: Proposed iron mine poses a risk to Bad River Ojibwe (6/9)
'Manoominike: Gathering the Good Seed' takes up wild rice (5/5)

Join the Conversation