This headline rolled by my facebook inbox today.
“Head-on crash kills 4 people near Mandaree” (North Dakota).
The second paragraph of the article in the Minot Daily News reads:
“According to the North Dakota Highway Patrol, Alvin Martinez, 24, of Vernal, Utah, was pulling an empty tanker trailer southbound on North Dakota Highway 22..”
This young man was pulling a tanker trailer. He was heading to or from refineries and transfer stations for petroleum industry. He was on Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara land.
The article continues:
“.. a 1997 Chevy S10 pickup driven by Sarah Darlene Johnson, 21, of Four Bears, around 8:20 a.m.
Johnson and her passengers, Adrian Ross Little Owl, 26; Gracie May Canyon Fox, 5; and Layla Little Owl, 2, all died from injuries suffered in the crash.”
These children and their families are the uncounted casualties of the climate crisis. Their deaths were caused by the processes of industrial capitalism and globalization.
When will the economists and political scientists, who analyze and count such things, count these deaths as also the deaths of the climate crisis, of overconsumption in the North, of the petroleum industry?
On this reservation, my friend Kandi Mossett Eagle Woman, sees several deaths a year from the activities related to extractive industries. In fact, I see her a couple of times a year, three or four on average. Almost every time I see her, she has a new death on the rez. Among many other things Kandi does, she runs a environmental education program for the youth in her community. There are huge sunflowers in her front yard.
She was also recently arrested in front of the White House, along with 1, 232 other people, to stop the construction of a proposed pipeline that would go from Alberta, Canada, to Houston, TX, and run through significant parts of her reservation and other Native lands, from the Loubicon Cree and Dene lands where the tar sands oil would be extracted, to the communities on the refinery and power plant ends: Three Tribes, where Kandi stays, but also other EJ communities: The Little Village in Chicago, Detroit, the Houston Shipping Channel, Richmond and Wilmington (California).
VIDEO of Kandi Eagle Woman at the Tar Sands Action in DC: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcCeb3MuBiQ
The Tar Sands Native Day of Action: http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/brenda-norrell/2011/09/native-leaders-arrested-white-house
The original article on the crash in the Minot Daily News
Another action by women of the Blood Nation against hydraulic fracturing, also in Alberta, Canada: http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2011/09/elle-maija-tailfeathers-blood-nation.html
And, from their statement on why they were protesting:
“We each have a deep love for our homeland and wish for our children and grandchildren to be able to love the land in the same way that our people have since the beginning.”