The Standing Rock protests have hardly made it in to the UK media and I have no idea how they are playing out in the US but given the shooting of one journalist and arrest of others including the Democracy Now! co-founder (plus a small election in the US) I expect the national US coverage to be fairly low. In fact the only CNN coverage I can see is a hatchet piece.
The protests are far from peaceful. The oil line violates the Sioux’s sacred land and risks contaminating the waters of the Missouri and Mississippi – “Mni Wiconi” means Water id Life in Lakota, a phrase that exemplifies the fears . People are rightly angry and the police are violent. Tear gas, dogs, strip searches, arrests and rubber bullets are being used to intimidate protesters.
The Dakota Access Pipeline is being referred to as ‘the black snake’. There is an old Lakota prophecy where a black snake crossing the land brings with it destruction and devastation.
Apart from the online petitions, of which there are many, what can those of us who can’t be there in person do? Kimberly Williams posting on Philip Carr-Gomm’s blog suggests the following:
1. Prayer and ritual. As Pagans please remember the protestors and the land they are protecting, supporting them in our prayers, thoughts and rituals.
2. Spreading the word: I’m going to shamelessly paste the websites mentioned in Kimberly’s blog post…
Camp of the Sacred Stones official website: http://sacredstonecamp.org
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CampOfTheSacredStone/
See their website for their mailing address and phone number.
Mississippi Stand: https://www.facebook.com/MississippiStandCamp/?fref=ts
Democracy Now!: http://www.democracynow.org/topics/dakota_access
The vastness of the watershed at risk from the DAPL is clear on this map: “the massive catchment area for the Mississippi, Missouri, and Arkansas rivers, as seen in pink,” at www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3860062/The-veins-America-Stunningmap-shows-river-basin-US.html 3.
3. Go to the camp: Stand with Sioux. This is easily the strongest way of supporting the protests! But not practical for those of us who refuse to fly.
4. Donating: There is an aim to raise $2m for legal fees and at the time of posting $1.4m has already been raise. Let’s try to get them the money they need.
Legal Defense Fund: https://fundrazr.com/d19fAf?ref=sh_25rPQa
Camp’s general funds: https://www.gofundme.com/sacredstonecamp
Sacred Stone Camp Amazon supplies wishlist: https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/ref=sr_1_1_acs_wl_1? cid=A2U35DV1L7IRMA&ie=UTF8&qid=1472511370&sr=8-1-acs
Red Warrior Camp: www.gofundme.com/redwarriorcamp
Red Warrior Camp Amazon wish list: https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/ref=sr_1_1_acs_wl_1? cid=A1ZID74L1YUB15&ie=UTF8&qid=1472512327&sr=8-1-acs
However you help the Native Americans, remember that action and ritual can be the same: Ritual as Action / Action and Ritual as the Warrior’s Call states. The fight against the final desolation of our Mother Earth must not be lost and we have to support each other in any way that we can.
The video below is among many showing how difficult things are: