Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Heading back to Standing Rock

  Flyer on the campus of the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque
I'm on my way to Bismarck this morning where I will pick up some goods and head back down to the Standing Rock encampment. What's different about this trip is that I will be joined on Friday by two vans filled with Chicago high school and college students.

The trip has been organized by our local community organization, Logan Square Neighborhood Association. My wife, Susan is an LSNA board member whose report to the board following last trip to Standing Rock in September helped encourage this trip. The main spark for the journey came from a youth leadership program organized by LSNA. Several in the group received DNA test results revealing their Native ancestry.

The students tell me, they see the struggle in North Dakota as their own.

This should be a great learning experience for all of us, especially being there on Columbus Day Indigenous Peoples Day to support Native American rights and the struggle to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Among the students heading to Standing Rock
Our last trip to Standing Rock ended with a quick return to Chicago to witness the birth of our new granddaughter, Isadora. This time, I plan to be back in time to walk the picket lines with striking Chicago teachers who've been working without a contract for more than a year. As of now, it looks like 26,000 CTU members will hit the bricks on October 10th.

Thanks go out to all those who contributed money and who are still dropping off badly-need supplies, at the LSNA office, including warm clothing and medical supplies, to bring up to the encampment. The students are still about $1,500 short of their goal to pay for their journey to North Dakota. So if you haven't already contributed, you can still do it here. 

Special thanks go out to Barbara Madeloni, president of the 110,000-member Massachusetts Teachers Association (MTA) who sent us a nice-sized personal check. Barbara is a staunch advocate for students and educators in the public schools and public higher education system in Massachusetts where the battle to stop the expansion of privately-run charter schools is raging.

I'm excited to hear that Denver has just joined a list of several other large cities in doing away with Columbus Day and designating the same second Monday of October as Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

According to the Denver Post:
Last October, the council passed a one-time proclamation recognizing Indigenous Peoples’ Day. But this year the city is following Boulder, which in August became the 14th U.S. community to recognize an annual day honoring Native Americans. Other cities on the list include Albuquerque, Seattle, Minneapolis and Portland, Ore.
I'm still waiting for Hillary Clinton to follow Pres. Obama's lead and say something in support of the Standing Rock Sioux and in opposition to the pipeline. #NoDAPL

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the personal up-date on the situation and kudos to all the students and others who support the Native People in their struggle against that ghastly pipeline.


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