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imperialism & war | indigenous issues

Peace Will Not Be Assassinated

One granny's take on what is going on in our world after the shooting spree in Tucson.
May we finally stand by the millions with our very lives for what must be done..
Every week i vigil on Thursdays with Women In Black on Vashon. Sometimes it is
just me and one other woman, mostly it is about 4 of us. The experiences these
various women have standing for justice is impressive; so many unknown tales of
vast courage, vision, action. Millions of such people populate this country
whose names we will never know. The underpinnings of a great massive resistance
to violence, corporate/military/colonialist take over of all life is simmering
in the nooks and crannies of this country. No, the billionaire greed mongers
and their hate filled shills shall not prevail.

The time has come for those of us who are guided by the deep principals of
nonviolent resistance to prepare for our final duty. Many of us may die in the
days to come. I am sad to say, many of us will die. To shirk our duty now is to
leave an unbelievable nightmare to our children, grandchildren and great
grandchildren. A very difficult task faces us here. It is the violence
cultivated by the slave owners' descendants, the off spring of the KKK, the
death squads trained to kill their own friends, families and neighbors. It is
the violence cultivated by invaders from Europe still foisting genocide against
Native Americans whether on reservations or walking down a Seattle street
carving a piece of wood. It is violence that has stockpiled weapons of mass
destruction such as the largest nuclear arsenal in the US (possibly the world)
that resides across the water at Bangor Nuclear Navy Base. It is the violence of
crazed militia men fearing Mexico's supposed plans to take over the US or
slandering the environmentalists attempts to save what is left of nature, our
very sustenance, in the name of a contrived right wing Jesus. It is violence
that we are all immersed in here, in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia,
Yemen, Haiti, Colombia, Guatemala, El Slavador, anywhere US trained Special
Forces (highly trained death squads) and their troops have disrupted survival
possibilities of the people to make way for corporate rape and pillage of
remaining resources.

Perhaps we face the most serious task ever laid before a privileged people in
humanity's time on earth. I do believe this is the case.

Last night i was part of an event celebrating the successful halt of a massive
sand and gravel mine operation on tiny Maury Island that would have extracted
7,500,000 tons a year exposing arsenic, contaminating drinking water, killing
fragile sea life in a declared Aquatic Reserve. 2 years ago i participated in a
lockdown roadblock as well as 2 kayak actions of civil disobedience as part of
the tail end of 13 years of arduous community efforts to prevent this debacle.
None of us were ever arrested during this time tho several of us received
written warnings by the US Coast Guard that further such interference with the
construction of the 305 foot steel pier would bring us felony charges, $250,000
fines and possibly 2 years in jail. At least 1,000 people showed up for the
wonderful food, drink, talks, music and happy victory as the 250 acres will now
be a state park. It was a fine gathering thanking all of us for the multi
faceted efforts that seemed to create this shining success.

But i was troubled. In all my many years of doing civil disobedience, never
have i been part of any action that actually worked. I have faced felony
charges before standing in front of a bulldozer threatening the burial site of
Roberta Blackgoat's baby son and mother at Big Mountain in 1989. Along with 3
traditional Dineh (including Roberta) and 6 other nonIndians, we were arrested
that cold sub zero day, put in the Hopi Tribal Jail, divided from the Dineh and
shipped to the Coconino County Jail in Flagstaff. Tho the charges against all of
us were dropped, the bulldozer did it's dirty work.

Last night my son, who is of African American/Cherokee/Irish heritage, said to
me, "If this had been a resistance of Indian people against Glacier's mine, they
would not have won."

It is undisputed that Vashon is a place of great privilege. Many extremely
wealthy people have fabulous homes out here, if not second or third as well.
Fundraising succeeds in maintaining a quality of life that is fast disappearing
elsewhere. Vashon is charmed. It also is stolen land.

Shomamish Peoples were forced off Vashon taking their long houses with them.
Many residents erroneously believe the Indians didn't live here. To this day,
the Puyallup, whose reservation absorbed the Shomamish, have access to the
Chinook Salmon runs under their fishing treaty rights. Maury is where one of
the only remaining healthy runs of Chinook still return in the Puget Sound.

So in all of what happens in daily life locally and beyond, i wonder how will we
make it right where i live? How can we activate restorative justice where we
each live in this country? What about calling back Vashon's first drum and the
people whose songs were here long before invasion?

The Nisqually people have a huge Glacier mine operating on lands taken from them
in the delta that destroyed homes, burial sites, salmon runs and sacred land.
This monstrosity receives little attention as it grinds along as the greatest
source of sand and gravel in the Puget Sound. Glacier is now negotiating
expansion which will endanger the Sequalitchew Creek watershed. They may be gone
from Vashon, but they keep up destruction justified by use in roads we drive on.

To stop genocide anywhere else requires addressing it where we live; where we
stand is sacred land. To stop war elsewhere demands we make it right at home.

The massacre that targeted of Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson yesterday, seriously
wounding her head, was truly shocking. Splashed all over Facebook is the map
Sarah Palin had posted, which she took down shortly after the shooting of at
least 10 people, 5 dead, showing rifle cross hairs marked where she feels
opposers to the right wing corporate agenda should be eliminated. Efforts by Tea
Partiers to distance themselves from the shooter are proving shabby at best.
This is truly frightening as these people, and they are many, are very well

We who stand for peace will be facing people fallible to scapegoating who view
us as a dangerous enemy. The climate of interaction has been fanned with flames
of ignorant hatred via FOX news, Rush, Savage and all those who enjoy large and
wide voice while those struggling nearly invisibly for peace and justice are
known only to those of us with pre existing website access to healthier updates
on reality. How long we will have means of gaining vital information remains to
be seen. Newspapers are all but gone, cell phones faces warrantless search and
seizure, draconian laws suppressing truth are in place. Oh, it is mighty

But what will we do about this? Perhaps it is time to haul out the supplies for
erecting permanent peace camps. We cannot let up for one second. We need to be
talking to everyone who crosses our path. We all are in this together like it
or not. Time to talk seriously to our scary neighbors and relatives. Time to
shift how we live into highly visible solution, if not to the so called media,
to those we live among. We must display a more sane take on the course of
enacting peace in these volatile times.

By stopping all the wars backed by the US NOW, we can begin to rebuild a
sensible society allowing a spectrum of views that are not committed to killing
anyone who thinks differently. This is what war is all about, here and abroad.
We do have a war here. Seriously. Too many people have been killed already
while those in power tip toe around the hooligans, the true domestic terrorists,
who always are able to get more guns. The NRA has played a key role in keeping
the extreme racist right well armed. NRA also insured that the Mexican cartels
can still keep the US guns coming. Meanwhile, peace activists in the mid west
who have no guns, kill no one, are being harassed by the FBI. Something is way
off kilter.

Every action until this point has been preparation for what is demanded of each
one of us now. We must be vigilantly pursuing ways to move the society in a
direction of great love, forgiveness, community. Bring the Billions Home, Stop
All Wars, Save Our Earth, The People, All of Life.

Truly Peace can never die. It lives in the hearts of each person. We all have
the capacity for great love. It is all we have left now. If that peace only
comes with the deaths of us all, so be it. Otherwise, we better get going on
this big mess we all are in. Is is up to us, we know that.