Regain control of our destiny

April 26, 2012

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I t is very encouraging and heartening to realize that Navajo water rights, Navajo sovereignty has taken a center stage in the Navajo conscience and discussions.

For many years our voices for our water rights and our sovereignty was nothing more than voices in the wilderness. The recent outcries and demonstrations against the Jon Kyl and John McCain legislation to extinguish our water rights to the Little Colorado River is a good example of Diné standing up for what is rightfully ours by treaties and by our sovereignty.

For too long our Navajo leaders have given away our land, our resources and our treaty rights for next to nothing. Part of these losses is the result of we, Diné, not standing up for our rights.

As a former Council delegate and former staff to the Navajo chairman, I know a day does not go by with someone standing at the door, promising all kinds of goodies (jobs) in exchange for our valuable resources and our sovereign rights, including treaty rights.

That's how mining and power plants were established to benefit those who live in big cities like Phoenix, Tucson and Los Angeles. The only tangible benefits our people got are jobs and some paved roads and, in the case of uranium mining, many of our people died from exposure to radiation.

Therefore it is important that we regain control of our destiny as it was before Fort Sumner, before the Spaniard and English invasion into our land.

Not only is our water and natural resources being sought by the outsiders, but our sovereignty including our sacred mountains are under attack.

Some of our own people believe that our land is only limited to those identified in the Treaty of 1848 and 1868. Our homeland is all the land outside the Treaty of 1868, those lands that are within the Four Sacred Mountains (actually six sacred mountains as in the songs and prayers of our medicine men and women).

At a rally in Tuba City the people called for President Shelly to resign or be recalled for supporting the Little Colorado River settlement, from which he later tried to backpedal.

This is not leadership, this is a leader without a backbone. There are those in the Council who believe that we have already lost our sacred mountains, that ski activities on San Francisco Peaks are beyond our control.

Are we saying the songs and the prayers of our medicine men and women are no longer effective?

As a medicine man, I personally experienced the healing of the prayers and songs based on our sacred mountains and shrines.

We elect leaders to defend our sovereignty, our treaty rights and our rights to go to these sacred mountains, sacred sites and sacred springs and rivers, to maintain harmony for our people.

We cannot compromise what is rightfully ours, given to us by the holy people. Any leader that compromises on our basic rights as Diné has no business being a leader.

We put our sacred trust in our leaders and those leaders who are willing to compromise must be recalled or not get re-elected.

Let us stand strong as one people, not go in different directions, not have doubts about what is rightfully ours.

Daniel Peaches
Kayenta, Ariz.

Qualified Navajos iced out while crooks thrive

I am writing to you here this late hour, in concerns to job availability on the Navajo Reservation. I am a veteran, I served four years and was honorably discharged. I currently reside here in Norfolk, Va.

I have been continuously trying to find a job on the reservation (homeland to me). I am a full-blooded Navajo veteran accomplished with two degrees and another one currently in the works.

I have asked and sent letters to the (our) tribal Council from time to time in request and pleaded for help with tuition or books, the day that I received any funds or help from my own government never came.

How and where do we as servers of our Navajo Nation get help? Yet, people like Priscilla Littlefoot who scandalously worked their way into the works of the chapter house in Tuba City is allowed to have a job, and steal from her own people. Where does it end?

We have heard continuous allegations and people like Littlefoot have frequently cycled throughout our chapter houses and government officials all ending in betrayal and money pocketing.

All these officials are elected without any background checks and without educational standings. What about the new generation that is really educated, and has a broader mindset of the ways of the people and the security of our lands?

Do such people, who care for the livelihoods and ways of the Navajos exist? Yes, they do. But, they are shut down and left unanswered in cities like Norfolk, Chicago, and San Diego.

So, where does one go who is a veteran and educated fully fit and well to serve his or her government in the Navajo Nation?

Nizhoni Ward
Norfolk, Va.

Shocked by horrific condition of horses

I know I'm speaking out for many concerned New Mexicans who were shocked by the horrific condition of horses brought into the Los Lunas auction. It was a devastating sight!
What especially saddened me was one younger horse who was pawing the ground with his last bit of energy as he was too weak to stand. It broke my heart as did the skinny gray horse - also too weak to stand.

Not only should District Attorney Martinez prosecute the Los Lunas auction for accepting horses in such poor condition but, of equal importance, the people who brought those poor horses in to be sold at the auction should be charged with animal cruelty and suffer a heavy penalty.

Hopefully a prosecution will set an example to others who neglect and abuse animals.

I hate the fact that our beloved horses, who were once a national treasure, are being sold and trucked to Mexico and Canada where they are stabbed in the neck before given the final blow.

There is no regulation by our government to prevent cruel treatment at the slaughterhouse. The horse meat is sent to Europe and Japan for human consumption. This would be an unhealthy and unappetizing choice for us due to the possible chemicals, worms and lack of nutrients because of their previous poor diet.

It's atrocious that our government allows the slaughter of our horses in foreign lands under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management at our taxpayer expense.

Thousands have voiced their opposition but it falls on deaf ears. The government does not listen to the people.

Anyway, back to the devastating condition of the horses that we witnessed on television - I applaud the Animal Angels Rescue Group for exposing this sad situation. You can go on their website if you have the stomach or heart to view the heartbreaking cases they uncover in their investigations.

I feel that animal abuse should be a felony in New Mexico and every other state. Here's a few quotes from famous people:

  • "You can tell a lot about a country by the way they treat their animals."
  • "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
  • "If you treat an animal badly you are less than human."
  • Front Range Rescue, P.O. Box 8807, Pueblo, CO 81008-8807 saved 800 horses last year and is accepting donations for critical rescues. I commend Gov. Martinez for her stand against the slaughter plant in the process of being opened in Roswell.

Front Range is also campaigning against the Valley Meats Co. who have applied for a food and safety inspection license so they can open a plant in Roswell.

How sad that we will be the first state to kill horses. Why is Congress allowing this? Ask Albuquerque's Martin Heinrich, Santa Fe's Ben Ray Lujan, and Gallup's Steve Pearce for the answer. I wonder how they voted on this issue?

Barbara Kelly
Ramah, N.M.

Hurting someone is not our way of life

I am sad and angry to see Mr. Gibson Jones (our fellow military veteran) spending most of his time trying to remove Eunice Begay, our newly hired Western Agency veteran service officer, by organizing protests like the march from Tuba City to Window Rock and making news on April 18.

This act of hurting someone for no reason is not our way of life as a veteran and Navajo.

What happened to the teaching of the elders and the military creed about respect, honor, and to defend the people? Have we become a nation of hate and jealousy where we are consistently attacking each other?

Who among us will stand up and tell us enough is enough, our elders who used to preach these wisdoms are gone now but we must rise to the occasion and carry on the teaching of kindness not hate.

In the military, many Navajo veterans have faced death during their time in the various wars throughout our history to present time. As veterans, sometimes we discuss our past experience in the military and agree that war is a horrifying experience but we will always be ready to serve when we are called upon to defend our nation.

Our wartime in the military has taught us to be humble. When you are far away in a foreign country, you go through a self-actualization experience thinking about life at home and make a commitment to love your people to the fullest when you return to your homeland.

We are the poorest of the poor here on the Navajo Reservation and when funding is approved for veterans, we make sure everyone is taken care of even though it is never enough to meet our needs.

We see the need for a strong veterans service officer who can seek more funding for veterans and there should be no discrimination against any one of our people working at our veteran's office, especially female workers. The unemployment rate on our reservation is over 50 percent and it does not make sense trying to remove someone during these hard times.

Records will show Eunice Begay has done more for our veterans than anybody, to my knowledge. For example, recently we saw her working diligently with the local veteran organization where she demonstrated her administrative and management skills in planning and organizing the honor bike ride for May 16.

Ms. Begay is not a stranger to the veterans' community because she comes from a family with a long line of military service and has a deep knowledge about the needs of our veterans.

As the acting commander for the Tuba City Veterans Organization and a member of the honor riders, we support our VSO, because she is qualified for the position with the required education, administrative and management experience. I commend her for doing a great job.

Andrew Kelly Jr.
Tuba City, Ariz.

Shelly is a modern-day fort Indian

As a concerned Dineh citizen I wish to voice my extreme displeasure at the current meetings hosted by President Ben Shelly and designed to cater to the two Arizona U.S. senators regarding SB 2109, the give-away water rights bill.

President Shelly has no business subverting the comprehensive wish of the Dineh electorate regarding long-established Dineh water rights. Mr. Shelly is playing "look good politics" in order to make himself favorably acceptable to the U.S. Congress.

One hundred twenty-five years ago a Navajo (the military gave him that demeaning name) Indian lived at Fort Defiance. He served the U.S. Cavalry as an Indian scout against his people.

The army gave him a horse to ride on the frequent searching campaigns, a place to live, and he ate white man's food. Other than that, he did not do anything else. Today Ben Shelly is a modern-day fort Indian.

I have known Shelly since the middle 1980s when we tried to work as members of the Dineh Rights Association on some issues involving a proposed Dineh Nation constitution.

I knew Shelly well enough to confront him face-to-face when I was publically demeaned after I spoke in June 1990 at the Thoreau Chapter House when I campaigned as a candidate for the office he now holds.

He told the people that I couldn't speak the Dineh language appropriately. Later I took him aside and told him I had the proper credentials to evaluate his broken English as being "barely passing." I asked him if he could speak German and Spanish, as I can.

Today we have a figurehead president who is totally unaware of how precious water is. As a scientifically trained Dineh I can offer the following as to how Mother Earth (plants plus soil) uses water to support all living things. It is called photosynthesis.

Here is how it works: photosynthesis has two parts as it uses the products produced by sunlight at two different locations of each chlorophyll protein molecule, which make all plants green.

1) Photolysis: Chlorophyll captures sunlight and uses solar energy to split water into three parts: a) Two oxygen atoms (which are thrown away to become oxygen gas and which is breathed in and used by all animals, fungi, and most bacteria) b) two hydrogen ions which are thrown away and combines with water to make acid water, and finally, c) two electrons removed from the two hydrogen atoms which yielded the two ions which originally were the two hydrogen atoms of a water molecule.

2) Carbon fixation: The two electrons convert low energy chlorophyll to high-energy chlorophyll, or chemically-energized chl. The chemistry that follows allows carbon dioxide to be taken out of the atmosphere to make glucose (chemical food) and ATP (adenosine triphosphate) molecules which all living organisms use to grow, multiply, and/or move molecules within all cells.

You see, the fort Indian is not interested in becoming more educated in order to move his people into the modern world. He is only interested in where he lives and kept warm and is fed three times a day.

Meanwhile, his people away from the fort at times eat only once a day and do not have plenty of good clean water to drink and make into army/cowboy/fort Indian coffee.

As a recent headline stated "Kill the bill!" I add, "But allow the fort Indian to stay at the fort" - away from Da Rez because he is no longer one of us and is totally incapable of seeing things like we do.

Tacheeni Scott
Flagstaff, Ariz.

Put 2109 into the 100 File

I am still listening to KTNN radio, and I can tell that you are making some progress. You have bought a little bit of time.

What I think needs to be done now is to put the bill 2109 in the 100 File. That means to kill the bill now and get it off the floor in Washington, D.C. That way it can be looked at closer and a decision does not have to be made right away.

By killing this bill you have a lot of breathing room to put together a good defense and a plan. The Navajo Nation alone probably cannot kill this bill. It will require help from other states, senators and congressmen.

On March 26, during the talk show, there was a lady from Red Rock or Red Mesa, I believe her name was Irene, and she said that we need to get a petition going, and she is correct. A petition signifies that you as individuals are against this settlement, that you are not approving and accepting this settlement, which is true.

There are meetings being held all over the reservation, which is a good place to start the petitions. I believe these meetings are held so you can sign the petitions. The petitions alone cannot kill this bill. You need to have some senators who will help you get this done in Washington, D.C.

To get this started, you need to start with congressmen and senators who can help. I believe the Navajo Times said there is a senator in Flagstaff, and there are congressmen in Arizona that may be willing to help.

If not, try congressmen in the neighboring states of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, and California. Try Nevada and California even though they have an interest in the water. You can also try Texas and Florida, but realize that they are powerful states and carry a lot of weight in the House and the Senate.

If you want to be heard and have support among the Indian tribes, you need to invite congressmen from all over the U.S. where there is Indian leadership, like from Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Oklahoma, New York, and Florida, to help you kill this bill.

You cannot wait around in hopes someone will come to your rescue and do it for you. If you want these people to be in your corner to help you kill this bill, SB 2109, you have to invite them to your table.

I guarantee you that these congressmen have heard about this while in Washington, D.C., but you have to ask them. When you invite them you need to write a one-page letter that will draw attention to the issue and send them copies of all these petitions, so that they can see that you as individuals are against this settlement and that you are not willing to accept this type of water settlement.

I can see that the Navajo Nation president has no intention of killing this bill, so as the Navajo people, you will have to kill this bill with help from other states.

In February 2012, this bill was presented, I think in Phoenix. The Navajo Tribe sent two representatives to this meeting, but when they reported to the Navajo president, they did not relate the true meaning of what they heard.

The water commissioners are appointed by the president, based on family relationships, good friends, good girlfriends, or popular individuals, whether they have the ability to do the job or not. They do not always have the knowledge or understanding to manage or rebuttal a bill of this nature.

This bill has to be killed to give the Navajo people time to put together a plan to protect all our natural resources, which the Navajo Tribe must protect themselves because no one else will do it. They must organize a group that will handle the water rights for the tribe, and it cannot be the president and his appointed commissioners.

The Navajo Nation president should not be handling land and grazing permits, doing range management or management of mineral and water rights. The Navajo people must have a clear say and clear understanding how these natural resources are being used.

The Navajo people must also reopen the bill about reduction of livestock and repeal it, as the people in the Navajo Nation have a need for livestock. They cannot afford to be dependent on outside support. They must be independent and have a way to support their families.

I hope you agree with me that I am glad John McCain did not become the president of the United States. I do not know him personally, but I think he has a tail, I cannot see it, but from this bill, I can hear it rattling.

Byron Allen
Richfield, Utah

Let's not be led like sheep on water pact

I was in attendance at Ganado Chapter for the water rights forum, April 19. As I approached the chapter I managed to count the amount of uniformed Navajo tribal policemen (20) and about 10 uniformed (black suits and ties) security/secret service types in and around the chapter house.

Have the Navajo people begun to live in a police state? Who were the policemen protecting? What is expected to happen during these informative water rights forum meetings?

Ben Shelly was in attendance, what is he afraid of? Is he afraid that the truth will eventually be told?

As a member of the Ganado Chapter I was appalled at the blatant misinformation being told to the greater Ganado community chapter members. What we Navajo do not understand or realize, is the many "un-truths" being spoken about the water rights settlement.

Propaganda handouts about how the settlement will benefit the Navajo, when in reality it will only serve those in the Navajo tribal government offices now. Ben Shelly, Rex Lee Jim and the 24 Council are Navajo Bilagana politicians, fleecing the Navajo people of our basic rights. We voted these Navajos in to serve the Navajo people, we can also recall them.

We, in essence, are like sheep out in the fields who just graze and let the sheepherders (Shelly, Jim, the 24 Council delegates) lead us to where we will be fed and watered. And ultimately we are led to the "slaughter" - our water rights being sold to the highest bidder.

We ask no questions, we just let these "leaders/sheepherders" make our decisions for us.

The Navajo people need to awaken our consciousness to our traditional values. The headmen and headwomen (the original Council of 24) were respectful of the wants and needs of our people. We once again need respectful and accountable leadership.

Do any Navajos bless the water, Tó Asdzáá, before we take a sip? Do we give thanks and appreciation for the life giving powers water provides for us? If it were not for the water, T— Asdzáá, we would not have plant, animal or human sustentation.

Ben Shelly and John McCain (among others) are engaged in a "pas de deux"- a dance for two to steal the water from the Navajo people by signing the water rights settlement. An act that would monetarily benefit Ben Shelly, John McCain, Jon Kyl and leave absolutely nothing for our Navajo people, their livestock and the groups of Navajo farmers.

Ben Shelly, Rex Lee Jim, the 24 Council delegates, the Navajo Water Commission, John McCain, Jon Kyl, Stanley Pollack, the bilagáana lawyers working for the Navajo Tribe and outside bilagáana firms who say they are protecting our water and our rights, are concerned only for their own legacy ... they will be labeled "destructionists - one who delights and advocates destruction; in this case the destruction of our most precious resource, T— Asdzáá."

We, Navajo, will cease to exist as a united group, while the bilagáanas live off the water for their swimming pools, golf course and green lawns.

Ben Shelly will have his pockets lined with blood money; the life blood of the people is Tóh - water.

Maralyn Yazzie
Flagstaff, Ariz.

SB 2109 designed to strip rights

As concerned members of the Navajo Nation, we would like to express our opposition to Senate bill 2109, the Navajo Hopi Little Colorado River Water Rights Settlement Act of 2012.

First of all, what this bill is designed to do is to strip the water rights of the Native tribes forever. It gives non-Native communities and operations first priority of water for our use.

Without our water rights, life cannot sustain here on the reservation. Thus meaning, water is life and SB 2109 will be destroying our way of life... again!
Secondly, the tribes would be forever regulated on the use of water. This means tribal members will not be able to sustain their agricultural operations, which is an essential part of our culture and heritage.

As Native people we have always relied on our livestock and crops to retain our self-reliance, this bill will take these rights away.

SB 2109 also states that the tribes will get $800 million for groundwater delivery projects for reservation communities "If funds can be appropriated by the federal government." Meaning the tribes will or will not receive the money.

As Native people, we cannot put a price on natural resources, and trust the government with a past of deceit and empty promises.

Overall, SB 2109 is a bill with no promises or guarantees that Native people will continue to prosper. It will mark an end to tribal sovereignty and make life more difficult to sustain on the reservation. Senators have come up with little to no facts that would make this acceptable.

Jordynne Black
Holyan Sandoval
Wayne Nez
Larold Manymules
Adonis Goldtooth
Dwanisha Johnson
Tuba City High School
Tuba City, Ariz.

Students oppose water bill

We are students who are attending Tuba City High School. We are writing this letter regarding the Senate Bill 2109.

We, the youth of the Navajo and Hopi tribes, strongly oppose the SB 2109. If this bill passes, it will strip us of our water rights.

We, as Native Americans, understand that this would be a great loss to both the Navajo and Hopi tribes, because giving up our water is like giving up life because water is life.

Our water is one of the last rights we have left. Not only by law is the water ours but also heritage - our ancestors drank the same water. It was given to us way before all the treaties.

We must preserve and protect our water for future generations. With this letter, we hope that our voices will be heard because we are not able to vote. The decisions on this Senate bill will effect our future generations, our children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. It literally is a decision of life and death.

Doria Kootswatewa
Dilyla Tapaha
Michael Polacca
Deidre Nez
Franklin Holmes
Keenan Dixon
Neil Salt
Tuba City High School
Tuba City, Ariz.

Diné need their own experts on water pact

Yá'át'ééh shi Dine'é. Most of you may be aware that our nation is discussing water. Whether it is water rights, water settlements, or water agreements, every Navajo should be concerned.

We live in a desolate place, high desert, atop the Colorado Plateau. Through years of searching and persecution, we learned that this place was the ideal and safest for us. We began to establish ourselves and no matter where we traveled we knew this place would always be our home.

We lived harmoniously with our neighbors, the Hopi and Zuni. We live in a beautiful area and have gained more neighbors who also enjoy this land.

Water is the most important resource we have. We give thanks to Mother Earth and Father Sky for the replenishment of the land. We depend on rainfall. Water from natural springs and wells nourish our bodies, as it has for thousands of years.

We survived with the limited resources this land provides, never asked for more, and never took any of what we obtained for granted. Yes, we have been recycling for centuries.

As discussions begin in Tuba City, continuing to Pinon and to Ganado, I urge every Navajo citizen to request their chapter house officials and Council delegate hire an experienced lawyer, to review with them every part of the proposed water settlement.

The Little Colorado water rights settlement involves the exchange of hundreds of millions of dollars. With that kind of funding exchange, and budgeted amount, I am very skeptical that seven meetings lasting two hours on average will give any corporation or tribal entity the amount of time required to make a justified decision.

That is 21 hours to discuss major projects affecting large areas of the Navajo Nation. As discussions continue, I urge all attendees to request that the proposed settlement agreement be interpreted in English, Navajo and Hopi.

This land is home to many of us, whether it is reservation or non-reservation, we share the unique appreciation of our surroundings. As United States citizens, we have a right to know how the settlement and agreement will impact all of us.

Renaldo Benally Chapman
Gallup, N.M.

4 reasons water bill should sink

On April 5, 2012, Arizona senators visited the Navajo Nation to persuade tribal officials that they should agree to waive most Navajo claims to the Lower Colorado River in order to receive $350 million worth in water development projects.

In this letter, I offer four critiques of the settlement: 1) this is a poorly planned settlement; 2) it fails to address climate change; 3) it is the product of political and economic blackmail; and 4) scale, sustainability and planning for future water are not considered in this settlement.

1) SB 2109 is the product of a poorly planned settlement. The nation tends to haphazardly agree to random acts of development without a larger strategic plan or vision of how energy projects will impact communities. This settlement is a case in point.

The particular water development projects that have been proposed will benefit select communities, but it has no vision about how it will integrate water for the whole nation or even most of the Western portion of the nation. We are forever relinquishing claims to the LCR for a one-time offer of $350 million in water development projects.

Within SB 2109, we do not even have an idea about how "wet" water made available through these projects will be used. There does not seem to be a plan about how these specific piping projects fit into a larger vision of the Navajo Nation.

Is industrial-scale residential piping a pressing water issue for Navajo? How will building this infrastructure serve community members outside of Leupp, Dilkon, Ganado?

Perhaps piping at this scale is not an appropriate solution for Navajo communities. It might work for small Arizona towns, but Navajos live differently.

Before we settle our water claims, we need to do the hard but necessary work of determining chapter needs and arranging a settlement that addresses these.

2) The nation has to strategically think about how it will respond to climate change. Since the 1970s, Navajo has had continued drought that has led to increased desertification.

The Navajo Nation should demand aid for climate mitigation and adaptation for Navajo communities as part of any water settlement. Climate mitigation is an action taken to reduce or eliminate the long-term effects of climate change.

3) One of the most troubling aspects of SB 2109 is the way the state of Arizona and the Central Arizona Project are holding Navajo water hostage for coal and energy from the Navajo Generating Station.

Kyl told the Council the CAP would not release water from the Navajo Gallup Pipeline until the nation waives all of its claims to the Little Colorado River and guarantees an extension of leases for the NGS for another 25 years. This action likely violates international law and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Holding water hostage from Navajo peoples is a form of collective punishment and the state of Arizona is not negotiating "in good faith." The fact we have not filed complaints under international law demonstrates how outdated and timid our water negotiating strategy has become.

4) Finally, thinking long-term and about the future sustainability of all communities connected to this settlement, Navajo should demand the cities of Phoenix, Tucson and their surrounding communities implement sustainability plans before we give up any more of our water to them. Their actions have direct consequences on our lands and water, and it is important for us to address their usage within our settlement.

In settlements, both parties are free to include "conditions." The sustainability plans should include a strategy to transition the CAP and the NGS toward renewable energy. It is time the Nation demands these metropolitan areas to start living more like Navajos - who use water much more efficiently - rather than Navajos trying to modernize to waste water like them.

Nikke Alex
Dilkon, Ariz.

Ditch the waivers in SB 2109

I want to preface my comments about SB 2109 currently supported by President Ben Shelly and Vice President Rex Lee Jim, the Denver-based lobbying firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, and Sens. Jon Kyl and John McCain.

"Ninety-seven percent of the world's water is salty or otherwise undrinkable. Another 2 percent is locked in ice caps and glaciers. Only 1 percent can be used for all agricultural, residential, manufacturing, community and personal needs." - Drinking Water Week Magazine
That is an astounding figure! Water has become more precious than gold and any other precious metal on the planet. I say the Navajo people should voice a loud opposition to this paper bill that is being scuttled through Washington, D.C., like sheep through a sheep dip.

Our federal government has allowed corporations such as Nestle to drain the Great Lakes, which holds 21 percent of the fresh water supply or 21 percent of that 1 percent of drinkable water. The water is transported to China by ship, bottled, then shipped back to the U.S. and sold at all fine Walmart, Sam's Club and Costco stores.

SB 2109 will do the same. The Navajo Tribal Utility Authority and the Navajo Nation will have to pay for water or worse, the Navajo people relocating away from Dinétah for a second time. Is this what the Shelly-Jim administration want?

I assume the T. Boone Pickens in the SB 2109 scenario is a coal baron wanting to slurry coal again to the Mohave plant. That would be a good question for tribal leaders to answer. Who profits?

Oh yeah, T. Boone Pickens owns the most water of any person in America - down in Texas. McCain and billionaire Pickens run in the same circles of old conservatives with Pickens thinking up his next scheme to get richer. Wind energy!
Migratory birds run right into them sharp blades. Shhh, the media doesn't want you or I to know that.

The media doesn't want you to know why the federal government is pushing all the aboriginal water claims through Congress either.

The FCC doesn't want us Indians to be seen on TV; the EPA doesn't want us to practice our spirituality or deal with reservation consumer waste; the BIE wants to keep our children stuck at home on snow days; the BLM wants us to shoot the last of the wild stallions; the Department of Homeland Security wants to watch us;

The Department of the Justice doesn't want to protect our children from sexual abuse by prosecuting crimes on Indian lands; the Department of the Treasury wants to loan our paid taxes to banks who glare at us as they charge us sky-high fees;
And the Department of Defense wants to scare/kill our livestock by testing their aircraft over the Navajo Nation - off of runways at Nellis AFB, Edwards AFB and Area 51.

I leave you now with some quotes of some voices:

"Each of us is put here in this time and this place to personally decide the future of humankind. Did you think you were put here for something less?" - Chief Arvol Looking Horse

"We have to get back to the spiritual law if we are to survive." - Oren Lyons

"America's one of the finest countries anyone ever stole." - Bobcat Goldthwaite

"We are all about to go on a journey, We are the ones we have been waiting for!" - Thomas Banyacya Sr.

"Corporate planes landing in Window Rock is a bad sign, a bad bad sign." - Injun iPat

Patrick Murphy
Window Rock, Ariz.

Thanks to retiring teachers

I'm a former employee who worked at Chinle High School.

I would like to thank Lenny Reed, John Hull and Caren Coor for their work at Chinle High School. These teachers have been with Chinle High School a number of years. They are retiring from Chinle High School this May.

I applaud and thank you for your hard work and dedication. Thank you to the teachers at Chinle High School.

To the teachers leaving Chinle Unified School District in May, thank you for your work and dedication.

Congratulations to the class of 2012.

Howard Kayaani
Chinle, Ariz.

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