In Approving Major Crude Oil Pipelines, Consulting with Native Nations is Not Enough; the Goal is Consent

When it comes to crude oil pipeline projects, Indigenous concerns and opposition all too often get marginalized by decision makers.

Such conduct violates the principles outlined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a commitment both the United States and Canada support. The Declaration says that governments should get Indigenous nation’s free, prior and informed consent before “adopting and implementing legislative or administrative measures that may affect them.”

What happens in practice is that the powers-that-be have a “conversation” with Native nations, check the “consultation” box, and think they’re done. That’s not good enough.

The latest example comes from the Standing Rock Sioux Nation in North Dakota. It has found government documents that show how little Indigenous concerns mattered when it came to the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). Continue reading

Minnesota Law Enforcement Already Coordinating with Enbridge to Respond to Line 3 Protests, Report Says

Unicorn Riot has uncovered documents revealing Minnesota has created a task force “stockpiling equipment and training police in preparation for Line 3 pipeline protests across the state.” According to its Feb. 11 story: Multi-Agency Task Force Prepares “Rules of Engagement” For Line 3 Protests: “The documents show coordination between various law enforcement agencies from states across the region including Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota.”

Called the Northern Lights Task Force, it’s already coordinating communications and resources with Enbridge, the story said. Hundreds of officers have already taken trainings on how to respond to civil disobedience. Continue reading

Trump’s Indifference to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Belies His Argument to ‘Build a Wall’

The media has rightly criticized President Donald Trump for making up stories to justify his border wall. In addition, it should point out that Trump’s a hypocrite.

Trump has repeatedly told terrifying stories of women being trafficked across the Mexican border into the United States. Yet his administration has yet to provide facts to back him up. And while Trump expresses this deep concern about human trafficking, his administration has actively worked against efforts to address it here in the United States, specifically the crisis of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW).

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As Key Enbridge Line 3 Vote Looms Monday, Encouraging News in Other Pipeline Resistance Efforts

Proposals to build new crude oil pipelines are an investment in an old and failing energy infrastructure. They reflect a world view that favors short-term profits over the long-term health of local economies and the planet itself. Investors make money off selling refined gas, but shift long-term costs to future generations — costs from destructive oil mining practices, costs from future oil spills, and costs from climate change.

It is no wonder that Native nations and indigenous advocates have lead efforts to stop new crude oil pipelines, as they hold to a world view that considers the impacts of decisions seven generations into the future.

As we head into what is expected to be a frustrating Monday meeting at the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) regarding the future of Enbridge Line 3, let’s pause for a moment to reflect on some recent wins. They are a reminder that this work takes years, allies continue the resistance, and we do have victories. Continue reading

Hiawatha Homeless Camp Update; Mindful Direct Action Training; Community Reparations Gala, and More

In this blog:

  • MPR: Families at homeless encampment weigh staying together, seeking shelter
  • Mindful direct action training Nov. 11 at First Universalist in Minneapolis
  • Inaugural Community Reparations Gala
  • Indian Country Today: Planned Scorsese film version of “Killers of the Flower Moon” raises concerns in Osage County
  • Censored News: Standing Rock Water Protectors file Class Action Lawsuit against Morton County, North Dakota and TigerSwan

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Bde Maka Ska Dedication, Mayo Clinic Apologizes for 1862 Grave Robbing, Indigenous Food Tasting, and Other News

Inbox is full with news and events:

  • Dedication for restoring the name Bde Maka Ska set for Saturday.
  • Belated Apology: In 1862, Dr. William Mayo stole the remains of Cut Nose, one of the 38 Dakota men hung in Mankato following the U.S. Dakota War. One hundred and fifty six year’s later, the Mayo Clinic apologizes.
  • Indigenous Food Tasting Oct. 8
  • Mindful direct action training set at Common Ground Meditation Center Saturday.
  • Water protectors face felony trespass charges as they try to stop DAPL in Louisiana, an example of how states are trying to stifle protest with stiffer penalties.

Details below.

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