Fighting for humanities rights for clean water

Irene Glazer

We heard about what was going on with the plight of the Indigenous people, as well as the environmental issues surrounding the Dakota Excess pipeline (yes, I said excess) at Standing Rock, and were drawn to go… to help…or just to Stand.

Once there, one immediately feels the cause and it’s all consuming. You might not know exactly your mission when you arrive, but when the morning wake up call goes out, your mission finds you. There’s something about being called a “relative” by people whom you have never met before…immediately tells you that, yes, we are all connected, we are in fact, all ONE. This was a gathering of humans like none other. Prayerful, peaceful, people who are willing to drop everything, and help one another, at a moment’s notice. They are genuinely fighting for all of humanity’s right to clean water. “If you drink water, we’re fighting for you!” is the battle cry. The black snake puts 17-million people’s fresh drinking water at risk.

The camp was much more organized than we had expected. Since people have been there since April of last year, there are regular meeting times and rules posted throughout. No alcohol. No drugs. People get ejected immediately for any shenanigans. A large information board greets you near the sacred fire. The kitchens, as well as medical tents (with an amazing array of botanically based medicinals) are well stocked, plenty of port-a-pots, there’s even a school. People naturally fall into roles whether that be medics, cooks, kitchen help, etc.…and everyone is eager to help. Is this some sort of utopian society?

The needs at Standing Rock are many…In general; more numbers of people is the main one. We have to be able to help hold the line and make a strong stand against the pipeline company. The bigger the numbers the better for that purpose.

For those who decide to make the journey, make sure to be ready for anything. Come as you are, but be self-sufficient. If you have forgotten something there seemed to be plenty of supplies with regard to donated clothes and food.

Winter is extremely harsh in North Dakota, and most of the needs are based on building temporary shelters, and keeping warm. Tools. Shovels. Propane. Military tents. Cots. Zero degree sleeping bags. Solar panels. Heavy-duty winter gear (think arctic conditions). Also, it would be nice for someone to bring down a huge set of reusable table ware and silverware (at least 100) so that there is less waste created by feeding all of those people.

For those who cannot make the journey, there’s still plenty you can do to help:

Make phone calls, sign every petition you see, cut the lifeline to the pipeline, by withdrawing all of your funds from the big banks (especially the ones who are funding this pipeline). 

1. Make donations to the Northwest Denver led initiative building solar panel trailers for Standing Rock at:

2. There’s a huge need for funds for the legal assistance of the water protectors who have unfortunately been arrested, and suffered at the hands of the highly militarized police force, as well as funds to build temporary shelters.

3. Make 3 calls right away:

• Army Corp of Engineers to tell them to reverse the permit on the pipeline!
(202) 761-5903.

• The White House at (202) 456-1111 or (202) 456-1414. Tell President Obama to rescind the Army Corps of Engineers’ Permit for the Dakota Access Pipeline.

• Wells Fargo CEO Timothy J. Sloan. Tell him that their bank has had enough issues, and this could be one that is easy to rectify, and would do wonders for the banks reputation. 866-249-3302.

Learn more at:     and

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Mexican Environmental, Indigenous, and Social Justice Organization to Receive Human Rights Award

WEST HIGHLAND — On Saturday, October 29th, the Denver Justice and Peace Committee (DJPC) will present its annual Global Justice & Peace Award 2016 to Otros Mundos, represented by Claudia Ramos at the Highlands United Methodist Church, 3131 Osceola St. Denver, at 7:00 pm.

DJPC has been advocating for justice and peace in Latin America for the over 35 years, promoting human rights, economic and environmental justice for the disadvantaged in Latin America. We support the struggle for environmental justice in many countries where extractive corporations have been displacing people from their homes and contaminating their lands. On Saturday we will celebrate our work together with our community of supporters.

Otros Mundos is a Chiapas (OMC), Mexico-based organization committed to the search for alternatives to the social, economic, political, and environmental crisis of contemporary capitalism. OMC works for gender equity and a world of just, diverse, and inclusive worlds where the possibilities of access to a decent life, justice, and peace are available for everyone. OMC works on issues of water, energy, dams, mining, climate change, forestry, women’s rights, and ecological debt. In particular, OMC allies with families, grassroots organizers, campesinos, indigenous organizations, and human rights organizations. To receive the award, Claudia Ramos Guillén will represent Otros Mundos. Ms. Ramos Guillén is an agroecologist working on forest management and against monoculture and plantation forestry. She accompanies the defense of land against extractivism, advocating for biodiversity and the struggle for alternative development rooted in the indigenous and peasant communities of Chiapas.

We will also be honoring Preston Enright with the John Proctor Member of the Year Award 2016. Preston was born in Philadelphia, where he attended a Quaker elementary school and lived subsequently in Omaha and Fort Collins, where he attended Colorado State. During a year off, he worked as a landscaper and met a veteran of the Salvadoran military who told Preston of the massacres and human rights violations of the US-backed regime. His interest in US empire had been awakened, and on his return to CSU, he saw a talk by Noam Chomsky, and things haven’t been the same since. He subsequently worked with the Committee for Peace and Justice in Latin America and went to Nicaragua on a cultural exchange with a Boulder-based solidarity group, “Los Pipitos.” He has continued travel in Latin America, and his politics has evolved to focus on grassroots media, including a YouTube channel called The Public Mind of Denver and a program of leftist lectures on Denver’s community access television station, working with David Barsamian of Alternative Radio. For fun, he rides his bike, hands out copies of Yes! Magazine, and volunteers his time representing DJPC at community fairs, tabling and meeting people to educate them about DJPC and the causes DJPC defends.

Music for the event will be provided by Olivia Blu, David Engelken, Lo Cornejo. Poems will be provided by Ismael Netzahuatlt. The emcee will be Jack Mudry of the local Denver jazz radio station KUVO. Jack is the host of KUVO’s La Nueva Voz.

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