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What I have discovered is that the state of Texas has conspired with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to downplay and cover up toxic and contaminated water supplies in state-run prisons as well as the rural communities which have found themselves in close proximity to these toxic sites. It is not just the prisoners in Texas who are suffering the ill effects. I have also discovered that what is happening in Texas is not unique.
Late yesterday, Feb. 22, law enforcement invaded the main camp at Standing Rock, Oceti Sakowin, to evict the water protectors who had been desperately trying to move everything from the flood plain, where thousands of people were camped just a couple of months ago. During the invasion, all media were cut off and about 10 mediamakers arrested, possibly including the Bay View team. Prayer ceremonies were held on Wednesday, and part of the camp was set on fire before the eviction began. A couple dozen people are still remaining at the camp, which water protectors say sits on unceded Sioux territory, giving them a right to remain.
Based in the Oceti Oyate camp, on land claimed by the Army Corps of Engineers, we have a clear view of the incredible amount of work that needs to be done to resist the Dakota Access Pipeline, the Black Snake that legend says will come some day and poison the water, the water of life. Oceti Oyate is in urgent need of both skilled and unskilled labor to not only assist in camp operations, but in the relocation of tipis, yurts, and tarpis. We must kill the Black Snake. Consider this a personal call to action. The bus will leave as soon as 10 people sign up.
Standing Rock has caught the imagination of the world: A resurgent Indigenous movement, which has been leading many battles in the U.S. and Canada; a fighting veterans’ movement, re-emerging as a powerful force; a large contingent of young people of many colors from all over, selflessly devoting themselves to the struggle; networks being activated around the country and the world – all coming together in a coalition that, in the context of the global economic and financial crisis, just might be able to take on a powerful oil company that is threatening to poison the water and defeat it.
Cannon Ball, N.D. – Hundreds of water protectors were injured at the Standing Rock encampments when law enforcement blasted them with water cannons in freezing temperatures Sunday evening, Nov. 20. The attacks came as water protectors used a semi-truck to remove burnt military vehicles that police had chained to concrete barriers weeks ago, blocking traffic on Highway 1806. LaDonna Allard, director of the Sacred Stone Camp, says: “We are asking for clean water, for the right to live. Instead they attack us, because they protect oil.”
Over 300 police officers in riot gear, eight ATVs, five armored vehicles, two helicopters and numerous military-grade humvees showed up north of the newly formed frontline camp. The 1851 Treaty Camp was set up this past Sunday directly in the path of the pipeline, on land recently purchased by Dakota Access Pipeline. Today this camp, a reclamation of unceded Dakota territory affirmed as part of the Standing Rock Reservation in the Ft. Laramie Treaty of 1851, was violently cleared. See how you can help.