To Stay or Go from Pipeline?


Stay or go? Tribe gives conflicting messages to protest camp

Stay or go? Tribe gives conflicting messages to protest camp

Stay or go? Tribe gives conflicting messages to protest camp

Campers shovel out an exit ramp at the Oceti Sakowin camp where people have gathered to protest the Dakota Access oil pipeline in Cannon Ball, N.D., Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016. Many Dakota Access oil pipeline opponents who’ve gathered for months in the camp are committed to staying despite wintry weather and demands that they leave. An overnight storm brought several inches of snow, winds gusting to 50 mph and temperatures that felt as cold as 10 degrees below zero. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Pipeline opponents ride out storm in shelters, casino

Ray Franks, of New York, carries a case of water into a mess hall at the Oceti Sakowin camp where people have gathered to protest the Dakota Access oil pipeline in Cannon Ball, N.D., Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016. An overnight storm brought several inches of snow, winds gusting to 50 mph and temperatures that felt as cold as 10 degrees below zero. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

 

Pipeline opponents ride out storm in shelters, casino

Pipeline opponents ride out storm in shelters, casino

A motorist checks the condition of an exit ramp before attempting to drive out of the Oceti Sakowin camp where people have gathered to protest the Dakota Access oil pipeline in Cannon Ball, N.D., Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016. An overnight storm brought several inches of snow, winds gusting to 50 mph and temperatures that felt as cold as 10 degrees below zero. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

For protesters fighting the Dakota Access pipeline, the messages from the Standing Rock Sioux reservation are confusing: The tribal chairman tells demonstrators that it’s time to leave their camp and go home. Another leader implores them to stay through the bitter North Dakota winter.

The conflicting requests show how the camp’s purpose has widened beyond the original intent of protecting the tribe’s drinking water and cultural sites into a broader stand for Native American rights.

Camp occupants are working through the confusion, said Jade Begay, an organizer with the Indigenous Environmental Network. “The rest of the world just needs to hold tight and be patient,” he said.

Since August, the camp on federal land near the reservation and the pipeline route has been home to thousands of people protesting the four-state $3.8 billion pipeline designed to carry oil to a shipping point in Illinois.

After the camp endured two recent severe storms, Standing Rock Chairman Dave Archambault declared this week that it’s time for the demonstrators to disband.

Archambault said there’s no reason for people to put their lives at risk because no additional pipeline work is expected for months. The company building the project, Energy Transfer Partners, and the Army Corps of Engineers are battling in court over permission to dig under the Missouri River reservoir that provides the tribe’s drinking water. It’s the last big unfinished segment of the 1,200-mile pipeline.

“We understand this fight is not over,” Archambault said. “But the fight is not here, at this moment.”

Native American rights activist Chase Iron Eyes, an enrolled Standing Rock tribe member who made an unsuccessful bid for Congress this fall, implored pipeline opponents to stay in a social media post this week.

The camp rejoiced Sunday when the Army announced that it would not issue an easement for the pipeline to cross under Lake Oahe, but it’s unclear what might happen when pipeline supporter Donald Trump enters the White House in January. The dispute also could be decided by a federal judge.

“We are not in the clear by any means whatsoever,” Iron Eyes said. “This is not a time for celebration. If it’s a time for anything … it’s a time to honor all the sacrifices that have been made” by camp occupants. More than 500 have been arrested since August.

The camp began as a peaceful, prayerful protest of the pipeline. It has since drawn in people who believe the dispute represents an overall stand for American Indian rights.

Iron Eyes said protesters need to stand up for other tribes and treaty rights. “We don’t stand in a place to tell people to leave,” he said.

State Emergency Services spokeswoman Cecily Fong said the state isn’t surprised by the competing messages, noting the “different agendas” of people in camp.

Camp occupants are “working on finding a middle ground and some sort of compromise” through informal discussions, according to Begay, who lives in Tesuque, New Mexico.

“These kinds of decisions don’t happen in just a day or two,” she said. “We need to consider everybody’s safety, everybody’s goals, the different points of view.”

The Corps recently declared the camp area closed to public access and said those who remain are trespassing, but the agency is not issuing citations. North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple has also called on camp occupants to leave, and Sen. John Hoeven issued a similar plea Wednesday from the floor of the Senate.

Iron Eyes said he believes the calls for people to leave the camp are aimed at limiting liability, and he said those who stay do so at their own risk. But he implored people “who understand the inherent risks of staying in a North Dakota winter to stand with us, because this pipeline is not finished, and we have to stand strong and stay vigilant.”

Archambault acknowledged the efforts of people who came from around the world to support the tribe. But, he said, “their purpose has been served.”

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The native people have a huge decision to make. They have a huge and difficult decision and must consider everyone’s opinion as well as the big picture. Our opinion doesn’t count because we are not there living in the winter conditions and being freezing cold. We aren’t trying to decide if we can trust the federal government. I am very proud of them for standing by their principles. They have had more integrity than many white people have.

The European whites who came to America and killed them and robbed them and marched them to reservations proved they  could not be trusted.  I stand with the native people but I am here in my warm house. I respect them tremendously and will be the first to say they have accomplished a great deal.

 

Whatever, the people decide, they have shown the rest of America that they are the kind of Americans that we should be. I hope they begin to be proud of themselves and to take good care of each other. They are the real heroes of America.

 

Namaste,

Barbara

Severe Weather


 

Today, my friends has been the kind of day we read about but don’t usually experience. We have had severe weather and my WiFi was out. It is on again. My phone died. My IPad updated and nothing was working. I will stop here. I am dedicating  Jim Morrison’s song to my day because it is making it the day better already.  I also received a book of prayers in the mail and that also helps. Tomorrow will be a bright new day and I have a drumming circle to attend in the afternoon.  So I am sending all of you my best wishes and many blessings.  Hugs, Barbara

Who Heals the Creative Person


I am a child of the Universe

I am a child of the Universe

” Nature is the common, universal language, understood by all, meanings, moods, the whole scale of our inner experience, finds in nature the’ correspondences’ through which we many know our boundless selves.” —Kathleen Raine

Many people believe that as sentient beings, we are affected by the weather. The Weather Channel can affect my moods with their forecasts.I hate to admit that, but it is true. I think it is true for many and especially for the creative souls who respond emotionally to temperatures, sunlight, moonlight, wind, thunder and lightening. We are all creative in varying degrees and I know that Mother Nature can heal us if we allow it.

Here is a question for you, my readers. Does the sun heal our hearts and souls or do we make the sun smile because we are happy? There is a definite connection between mysticism and Mother Earth.

There is an old story about a woman whose heart had been bruised and maybe even broken. A friend took her on a trip. She shed the few tears she could. She was lost in pain. Halfway through the trip with her friend, a lovely blue sky began turning into a dark, grey, ominous one. Rumbles of thunder began to be heard by the two friends.

Then the bright light of lightning began to flash through the sky to accompany the thunder. Next, the Heavens open up and the rain was so very thick and when added to the dark sky, they found themselves in total pitch black darkness. Both friends were terrified and especially because they were out in the car.

The friend watched another bolt of lightning and a thought came to her as she tried to keep the car on the road despite the high winds. She declared, ” It is as if Mother Nature is angry about the way you have been hurt. And the angels are weeping for and with you. ”

The woman looked at her friend and realized that she was loved. She was loved by the Universe that made up her world and the friend who let her cry. The empathy she experienced through nature slowed her tears and gently brougnt them to a stop. As the skies cleared and the sun came out again, she realized that she had been the kind of love she needed at that moment.

The experience shows us that healing can come from many places through many experiences including nature.

Georgia O;Keefe painting.

Georgia O;Keefe painting.

Sunset on Lake Erie

The angels throw gold on the water to make us happy and content. Photography copyrighted by Barbara Mattio 2013