A Better Monday


Standing Rock Sioux siblings Austin, Mani, and PJ, stand in front of a police-guarded barricade. Photograph: Joe Whittle for the Guardian

‘We opened eyes’: at Standing Rock, my fellow Native Americans made history.

Joe Whittle

As an Indigenous American, there was never any question of whether I should travel to Standing Rock or not. I needed to witness firsthand what was happening there, and wanted to offer solidarity to those fighting for the right of tribes to exercise agency over their own futures.

Only one problem remained: I had to find a way to go.

I am not a man of means. I weighed obligations, such as bills and work, and considered travelling expenses. I glanced at my vehicle, already knowing it was hardly suited for the 1,100-mile drive from my home in north-east Oregon, and resigned myself to staying home. I just couldn’t afford the trip.

But as police use of force escalated and news came out of private oil company security contractors using dogs against protesters, more and more people began to reach out to me, expressing a desire to help.

In early November, I was contacted by my good friend Jamie Stone, who said he wanted to go and offered his truck and trailer to haul supplies. Jamie also happens to be a former oil worker on the North Slope of Alaska. His uncle is an oil executive, and his brother works for oil companies around the globe, but he also has family members who are farmers in the midwest and have had easements forced across their own land for oil pipelines.

“This issue brings a lot of people together for a lot of reasons,” Jamie told me, “whether it’s eminent domain, protecting water rights, or just people sick of ‘profit over people’. These corporate terrorists need to get the point that people are changing, and we aren’t going to be their sheep for much longer.”

@ TG


About Den

Always in search of interesting things to post. Armed with knowledge and dangerous with the ladies.
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14 Responses to A Better Monday

  1. Den says:

    One Christmas Bonus, now if we could get rid of rich boy all would be good, oops forgot the illegal wars, get rid of those too, then we would have a really joyous Christmas Season, fingers crossed.


  2. David B. Benson says:

    Up B Street to the Hillside Cafe in 13 minutes. Brisk out.


    • David B. Benson says:

      Snowing at the start of the stick walk out to the end of Grimes Way but soon stopped. Just turned around and stick walked back to the Hillside Cafe because my hands were cold. Having warm cheese filled tortellini with marinara sauce. So just 79 minutes today.


  3. Den says:

    Chill expected here, 30 or so, Pipes all bubble wrapped, bring it on!


  4. David B. Benson says:

    Cold enough strolling home that my eyes noticed it. Becoming old…


    • David B. Benson says:

      Maybe feel warmer when it starts to snow. Brrr…


      • Den says:

        A trick if you get chilled to the bone, an nice hot shower followed by some fleece duds and a shot.


      • David B. Benson says:

        No snow yet, just cold. Wearing my winter parka over all the layers with a comforter on my lap. Warm enough except when I go out for a smoke.

        On my stick walk I saw a small flock of tiny birds with striking colors. I don’t find those in the birds of Washington state listing. Oh yes, still a few crows hanging around.


  5. Den says:

    ” Wearing my winter parka over all the layers with a comforter on my lap. ”

    In the house? No furnace? (Smoking constricts your blood vessels making you colder.)

    You are heading to the Pneumonia Ward, I can send you a good little electric heater.


  6. Den says:

    Too late for this poor fellow:


  7. David B. Benson says:

    General Mattis was born in Pullman.


  8. º¿carol says:

    Yesterday’s snow all gone today. It was cold when I went out for my walk though, 28°.


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