Want your turkey (or tofurkey) to taste even more savory this holiday?
How about some seasoning of love and support for our Native American brothers and sisters?
You know, the real Americans. The indigenous people who lived on this land well before the first illegal immigrants came (the Europeans).
Many of us are preparing to come together with family for a splendid feast to give thanks for our many blessings. We dream of pumpkin pie, a cozy fire, watching football in a recliner with some cinnamon-spiced hot cider.
Cartooned images of friendly pilgrims coming together with Native Americans in Plymouth for a joyous feast are the historical backdrop that represent this holiday—with little mind to the atrocities the Native Americans endured for hundreds of years after.
As we embark on our celebration, the Standing Rock Sioux and members of other tribes and allies stand in protest in sub-zero temperatures to prevent the Dakota Access Pipeline from being built in their land and putting their water supply at risk. They are hit with water cannons, concussion grenades, tear gas, and rubber bullets.
Reports of excessive force against the protestors are alarming, including Sophia Wilanksy who is being treated for a serious arm injury, allegedly from a concussion grenade.
Watch this interview of Sophia Wilansky’s father describing her injury and reports of extreme human rights violations at Standing Rock:
President Obama has asked for a halt, but construction plans and human rights violations against protestors continue.
We cannot simply look away and enjoy our happy feast this Thursday.
Of course we could make excuses to justify the situation: But Native Americans use gas too! Much of America has pipelines! The trucks transporting the oil are less safe than the pipeline!
And of course, the worst one of all: It doesn’t concern me, hand me a beer.
The bottom line is these people see this as an assault on the environment and the land and do not want the pipeline. We should stand in support of them, if not for this, but for the years of American history where the indigenous people and their land have been abused for our gain.
So, I ask, before you feast this Thursday, will you show your support? I promise your food will be that much more tastier:
How you can support Standing Rock:
1. Spread the word: Post on social media outlets and tell your friends and family. This single step is not enough. It raises awareness which is crucial, but we must not stop here.
2. Sign the petition.
4. Donate to the Standing Rock Sioux.
5. Speak up against human rights violations to protestors:
>> North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple: 701-328-2200
>> Morton County Sheriff Department: 701-328-8118 and 701-667-3330
>> North Dakota National Guard: 701-333-2000
You can say, “I stand with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and all water protectors opposed to the Dakota Access Pipeline. There is no room in a democracy to use water cannons, tear gas, or rubber bullets against peaceful, unarmed water protectors.”
Email from Moveon.org
Stand With Standing Rock
“Dakota Pipeline: Protesters Soaked With Water in Freezing Temperatures,” NBC News, November 21, 2016
“Dakota pipeline operator to defy Obama and prepare for final phase of drilling,” The Guardian, November 8, 2016
“The Standing Rock Resistance Is Unprecedented (It’s Also Centuries Old),” NPR, November 22, 2016
Author: Adrienne Dygert
Image: Mark O’Rourke/Flickr
Editor: Caitlin Oriel