A Powerful Message from Standing Rock

Carol A. Hand

On November 20, 2016, Kendrick Eagle posted a video appeal to President Obama.

“You gave me hope…. You said you had our back, and here we are. Help us stop this pipeline. Stick true to your words, ‘cause you said you had our back. I believed you then and I believe you now – that you can make this happen. Thank you.”

The response to Kendrick Eagle’s message reminds us all about the long history of broken federal promises to the Indigenous Peoples of what is now called the United States of America. On Friday, November 25, 2016, the day after Thanksgiving, the US federal government issued an evacuation order to the largest Water Protector encampment in Standing Rock, North Dakota, the Oceti Sakowin campground.

“The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said in a letter to a Native American tribe leading the opposition against the pipeline that it will close the area on Dec. 5, after a series of clashes between law enforcement and protesters…. Anyone staying in the area after the deadline may be subject to prosecution…” (Huffington Post, November 27, 2016)

Thank all of you for doing what you can to stand against tyranny.

18 thoughts on “A Powerful Message from Standing Rock

  1. This government does not represent any of us, Carol. And so our pleas to those in charge will always fall on deaf ears, closed minds and cold, dead hearts. We cannot mend what has already been destroyed, and this government, as far as “we the people” are concerned, was destroyed from its inception; it was all a lie, as you know all too well!

    So activism, from this point forward, I believe, must be carried on outside of this system, and against this system, not inside, which only keeps it alive and abusing us. It does not matter if there are still honest, good people in this government, it is the system itself that is dishonest and evil, as it always has been. And so the good and honest will either change, or they will be swallowed up and spit out.

    And I say all of this, Carol, because of your words here, and other people’s words as well. We keep looking to the very agencies for help that have been seeking our destruction from the beginning. And we need to stop this futility! Starve the beast (withdraw our consent and support), and the beast eventually will die!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for your thoughtful comments, Dave. I really don’t have any brilliant insights about how to affect positive transformations in such a world, so I teach, write, and reach out to those I encounter in my every day life. There have been times when I was part of many institutions. During my times there, I did make small positive contributions – like the starfish story. A few elders here, a few students there, whose lives were a little less bleak. When I left institutions, I could use what I learned to be a more effective advocate. But these times feel qualitatively different, more threatening, and the stakes are higher because it’s the future for my daughter, grandchildren, and future generations who will live with the consequences of our actions and failures to act in constructive, effective ways…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your last sentence says it all, Carol. These times are qualitatively different, and so we must find a new and better way forward. And I certainly don’t have the answers or the way!

        But together, as a united humanity, or as close as we can get, we should be able to come to some answers that will begin to lead us out of this hell on earth.

        “Maybe I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one…”

        Liked by 1 person

  2. The irony here is the overwhelming probability (over 90%) that the Standing Rock protestors will prevail. Because they are protecting their land and their survival they have a far stronger motivation that oil and gas companies and banks who are merely pursuing elusive profits – especially with the price of oil being so low. I understand that the first bank has pulled out. This is what we have found in Taranaki with the fracking industry – there is so little profit in shale oil/gas any longer that it now takes very little resistance to convince them to pull out. It’s really a pity more activists don’t recognize this – that the moment they stand up and resist the odds immediately turn in their favor.

    They try to teach us that resistance is futile – but for the most part this is false history. The only way they can stop us is to kill us all and there seems to be little appetite for mass genocide in this day and age.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Carol I’ve shared information about Standing Rock with my facebook friends and they have shared it far and wide. A call list has also been shared. Your articles, and articles written by other Native Americans, have opened many eyes. I so ashamed of the stance taken by the US government.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for your thoughtful comments, Maria, and for doing what you can to respond constructively and raise awareness. None of us can control the actions of others, although many may bear the negative consequences of the choices and actions of arrogant, heartless government decisions.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Important to know about this. I hope the protests will go on load and clear. We are very worried over here too about everything concerning nature – worsening with the Trump government now.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. OMG, Carol! Are you celebrating? I am so so happy at the news they won’t grant the easement. All those prayers, sovereign power, people power. Yes, there is still lots more work to be done, but “all aboard the hope train!”.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for your wonderful alert, Robyn. I have been avoiding the news for the past of couple days (papers to grade and a class to prep for yesterday). Your lovely celebratory announcement brought such unanticipated relief and gratitude! I’m so thankful that the courage, prayer, ceremony, youth involvement, and global unity have prevailed.

      Thank you for sharing the news from the other side of the globe! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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