Saturday, May 19, 2018

Russell Means and Angela Davis: U.S. Imperialism, Perpetual War and Global Racism


By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

The incredible words of two great revolutionaries are in my mailbox today, dated ten years apart.
The first is an interview with Russell Means, at the anti-war march at the Democratic National Convention, speaking out on U.S. perpetual war and imperialism. Thank you Govinda Dalton for preserving and sharing this today.
Christine Prat in Paris sends us the words of Angela Davis, former Black Panther, speaking out on racism, and standing in solidarity with Leonard Peltier and Palestinians.
The power of Russell Means words are a reminder that Martin Luther King, Jr., spent the final year of his life, before he was assassinated, leading anti-war efforts.
Angela Davis' words reveal the reality that racism in the United States, and throughout the world, did not end with McCarthyism, but today is a global reality marked with police brutality, imprisonment, and death.

'Perpetual War -- U.S. is a Sham' -- Russell Means Interview on U.S. Imperialism in 2008





'Perpetual War -- U.S. is a Sham' -- Russell Means 2008 Interview on U.S. Imperialism with Govinda Dalton

Russell Means and Martin Luther King, Jr., spoke out against the United States perpetual war and imperialism during the final years of their lives

Article by Brenda Norrell
Audio by Govinda Dalton, KMEC and Earthcycles
Censored News

DENVER -- Russell Means, in this interview in 2008, points out the United States has been in perpetual war -- in war every year -- and the people do not even realize it.
Means said the United States is a sham where Indigenous Peoples have no rights, in an interview with Govinda Dalton at KMEC, Mendocino, Calif., now archived at Earthcycles.
Means, chief facilitator for the Republic of Lakota, describes the events at the Democratic National Convention in Denver in 2008, beginning with the anti-war march he participated in.
The anti-war march was headed up by about 50 servicemen in uniform.
"It was very impressive." 
"They marched all the way to the DNC Convention Center."
The DNC allowed one of the uniformed soldiers to go inside and address their grievances and desires.
"They were willing to be arrested."
They were willing to march through the police line and be arrested, but cooler heads prevailed, he said.
"I'm not a fan of the Democrats or the Republicans."
"It is virtually impossible to guarantee your rights under a two party system."

"You have a one party system, the Republicans, and the weak-kneed Democrats."
"Make no bones about it, America is about the elite who rule."
Means said it is impossible for the Indigenous People to be heard.
Indigenous People have no economic power, regardless of their 
resources beneath the ground.
He said colonialism is the only explanation.
"Colonized tribal governments are demeaning and disorganized."
"They are there expressly so that we never realize our potential."
Means said what people can do is to understand the Constitution,
which is Iroquois law.
"Americans have to understand their Constitutional rights."
"You are free to be responsible."
Americans have become a joke to the world, he said.
"We are a joke."

The U.S. imperialism is based on the U.S. military.
Means pointed out that the United States has been at war every year of its existence.
"The people don't even realize it."
"This country is a sham."
Referring to a slogan, he said, "If voting could change anything, it would be illegal."
Then referring to Einstein's words, he said, "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.
Orwell recognized what was going on in the 1940s, and his later book became a best seller, he said.
Listen to the full interview with Russell Means:
http://www.earthcycles.net/audio/dncmoon/2008-08-28_russelmeans.mp3
Russell Means' words speaking out against the United States and war, are a reminder that Martin Luther King, Jr., led anti-war efforts against the Vietnam War, during the final years of his life, before he was assassinated.
https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/martin-luther-king-leads-march-against-the-war

Thank you to Govinda Dalton, founder of Earthcycles and Spirit Resistance Radio, for his tireless efforts of interviewing and archiving these great historical records.

Audio copyright Govinda Dalton, article copyright Brenda Norrell, may not be used for revenue generating purposes

Angela Davis in Paris: Anti-Racism Solidarity with Leonard Peltier and Palestinians

.

Angela Davis in Paris: Anti-Racism Solidarity with Leonard Peltier and Palestinians

From Christine Prat in Paris
Committee in Solidarity with American Indians, CSIA
Censored News

Transcription/French translation of a speech Angela Davis gave in France at the beginning of this month, in solidarity with Leonard Peltier and the Palestinians. The French translation is at the beginning, English transcription under. It is by Aurélie Journée, CSIA, of Committee in Solidarity with American Indians. 
Angela Davis, former Black Panther in Paris, May 2018
"I would like to thank the International Decolonial Network and specifically Houria Bouteldja and Ramon Grosfoguel for inviting me to participate in this historic conference Bandung du Nord which has as his announce goal of the creation of a decolonial international. I am honored to join all of these speakers and participants as you reflect on ways to generate relations of solidarity against racism, xenophobia, heropatriarchy, colonialism, militarism, and every present threats of global capitalism.
The Bandung Conference in 1955, made of heads of states from Asian and African countries, still looms large in our historical memory. More than anything else, it represents promises of global solidarities among people who have suffered the violence and injustices of slavery and colonialism. It was a gathering of heads of states representing people who in the words of Black American writer’s Richard Wright were quoted as the despised, the insulted, the hurt, the dispossessed and showed as the under dogs of the human race.
Other Black American intellectuals and activists attempted to but in two cases passports were des-authorized by the government. From the vantage point of the US, the Bandung conference not only represented a promise of global anti-racist and anti-colonial solidarities but also a challenge to the hegemonic politics during the McCarthy area that threatened to eliminate the radical communist voices from the public sphere.
One may argue that the conference itself did not produce the lasting effects that one might want to project on retrospectively project onto that this historical moment. But at the same time, it produced a collective learning for global anti-racist solidarities and what was known as the "Third-World", eventually came to be known as the global South. At the same time, the period of the Bandung conference represents this historical moment when activist movements were emerging to call for an end to the continuing effects of slavery and colonization.
In the United States, what we have come to refer to as the mid 20th century Civil Rights Movement that was inaugurated by the Montgomery Bus Boycott took place in the same year as the Bandung conference in 1955. This was what we now refer to as the second abolitionist movement. Since it was dedicated to the disestablishement of white supremacist institutions grounded in slavery, what failed to be taken up in the aftermath of the abolition of slavery had come to ahead by the middle of the 20th century.
At the same time in South Africa in August of the following year 1956 women rose up to protest the including the extension of the pass law to women. We mark this moment by remembering the proclamation of Lillian Ngoyi, Helen Rose Joseph, and thousands of others who said during that demonstration ; « now that you have touch the women, you have struck a rock, you have dislodged a boulder, and you will be crushed ».
And we also remember the life and contribution of Winnie Mandela. More than a half century later, we gather here in Paris to reflect on and strategies about a 21st century radical decolonial challenge to global racism intertwined as it is with capitalism, racial capitalism indeed, and with misogyny that emanate both from the institutions of capitalism and also from actions of heart and actions of comrades. We ourselves often perpetuate that, which we see ourselves to be dismantling.
It is appropriate, I think, that this conference is taking place in Paris, in France, after the elections of...what his name ? (laughts) and in the aftermaths of the election of Macron it is especially important to remember that France has simultaneously offered us the most beautiful slogans of democracy and some of the most enduring and most tenacious forms of racism under the guise of democratic strategies, including the biased notions of secularity that are clandestinely included in judeo-christian epistemology that produces forms of islamophobia that are articulated with sexism and misogyny.
And so as we approach the third decade of the 21st century, the world is discovering that empty muslim racism reinforces the anti-Black, the anti-Asian, the anti-Latino and the anti-Indigenous racisms. It helps to new expressions of antisemitism as it can be seen through the Charlottesville attack and recent displays of white suprematist violence.
Racist violence inflected with misogyny is specially dangerous. Marielle Franco life was claimed by forces in Brazil that want to further erase the movement to gender class and sexual equality. The same forces assumed that the arrest and imprisonment of Lula can arrest the movement of history. We need, we need a decolonial international so that we can join hands around the planet and that our defense of racial, gender, sexual, and economic justice can powerfully echo around the world.
More than a half century ago, more than a half century ago, very few women were present at Bandung. We now know that the failed to address the most of subjugation half the planet the the human population change. Racism, militarism, and capitalist exploitation -- there can be no Racial Justice. There can be no peace, there can be no economic justice, unless we insist on gender justice.
This is not an historical accident. The movements against racist violence, the movement for black lives, the immigrant rights movement, the defense of the earth and its environment led first and foremost by indigenous people, were reinvigorated precisely in time to dispute the assumption made by the president, president of the US (I can’t remember his name) that the historical clock needs to be turned forward and backward.
Struggles against institutionalized police violence in the US are related to similar struggles in Europe, in Australia, and indeed also in Latino America, in Africa, in Asia and in the Middle East. We, in the US, have indeed learned how to value the solidarity of Palestinian activists who tenaciously continue the struggle against the Israeli occupation, and help to spark an international solidarity for protesters in Ferguson Missouri some four years ago which in turn invigorated the Black Lives Matter movement. It is today difficult to imagine the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement without the assistance of the Palestinians.
We in the North who are committed to purging our societies of racial violence have to guarantee that the call for justice for Palestine echos through out our struggles and that the BDS movement achieves the status of the anti apartheid boycott in the 80s.
Our connection with Palestine has told us that if we recall for abolition of prisons, we must also seek to abolish the shaping of our quotidian life by new forms of casuality. Our struggle against police violence we have learned can’t not be won simply by calling for the prosecution of individual police people but rather by questioning the questioning of the very possibility that the police can be entrusted with the security of our communities. We call for the freedom of Mumia Abu Jamal, of Leonard Peltier, of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, we have learned to say "abolish the prison," "abolish the police," or rather imagine a world in which we no longer need to depend on the police and incarceration as the garant tool of security in our societies.
And so as we force solidarities for struggles in Palestine, in Brazil, in Syria, in Turquie, we also reflect on solidarity with connections among antiracist, anticapitalist movements in the global North. The great challenge of our time is to render understandable the migrations of our area as linked to persisting colonialities and the result of racism of our time and to welcome those who have been displaced by war, by capitalist economic restructuring by near colonial corruption to leave their homes and to cross borders in search of a more habitable living space.
Another great challenge of this area is to recognize that the problem of our time exceed the capacity of the nation state to solve them. And that, and that we can no longer think in the narrow and discriminatory terms of documented citizenship. A decolonial approach to internationalism calls for a reconception of global connexions that precisely discenters the nation and imagines future possibilities of a planet in which the nation state is no longer regarded as the most appropriate form of human community.
It is there for up to us to model new relations and to create new forms of solidarity even as we struggle to overcome the old relations. Thank you very much".
Angela Davis, african-american activist, antiracist, feminist, and ex member of the Black Panthers, scholar at the University of California.
Transcription : Aurélie Journée (CSIA-Nitassinan / Groupe de soutien à Leonard Peltier en France, affiliated to the ILPDC)

Thank you Christine Prat for continuing to share your hard work and dedication with Censored News, with translations, articles and news.

Mohawk Nation News 'Shotgun Wedding'

Friday, May 18, 2018

Mohawk Nation News 'Indian Traitors Signing Death Certificates'

Mohawk Nation News 'Our Mother. Our Home.'

Spirit Resistance Radio Readies for Nisqually Mother Earth Conference, June 28 -- July 1, 2018

.
Tiokasin Ghosthorse, Raven Redbone, Spirit Resistance Radio, shown at Oceti Sakowin, Standing Rock, and Censored News team up to broadcast voices and stories.

Super Stars of Native Radio, Tiokasin Ghosthorse, First Voices Radio, WPKN, syndicated to 74 radio stations, and Brian M Frisina, Raven Redbone, Make No Bones About It, Olympia, WA, will be on-air radio hosts for Spirit Resistance Radio, at the Protecting Mother Earth Conference, at Frank's Landing, Nisqually, in the heart of the fishing rights struggle, July 28 -- July 1, 2018. Govinda Dalton, founder of Spirit Resistance Radio, will be producing the show, and I'll be serving in production, with Censored News sharing the voices and stories with the world.

Conference link:
http://www.ienearth.org/pme2018/

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Growing New Mexico concern leads to more public meetings on nuclear dump


Leona Morgan, Dineh



Growing Concern about high-level radioactive-waste dump yields additional public meetings
Contacts:
Karen Hadden, SEED Coalition
Rose Gardner, Alliance for Environmental Strategies
Leona Morgan, Nuclear Issues Study Group
Pat Cardona, Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter
Angel Amaya, Press Officer, Public Citizen's Texas Office

Growing concern across the state about the risks of controversial high-level radioactive waste and public opposition to the facility proposed for Southeast New Mexico has resulted in the addition of two Nuclear Regulatory Commission public meetings and an extension of the public comment period from May 29 to July 30.
The public meetings are set for Gallup and Albuquerque. In addition, the New Mexico Legislature's Radioactive and Hazardous Materials Interim Committee will hold a meeting to address state impacts of the plan on May 18. The dangerous radioactive-waste proposal has also become an issue in the New Mexico governor's race.
Holtec International wants to create a dump for supposedly "interim" storage of the nation's deadliest high-level radioactive waste at a site between Hobbs and Carlsbad, N.M. The waste is unlikely to move again since there would no longer be political will to create a permanent repository or to find funding to do so. The company plans to transport 10,000 canisters of irradiated reactor fuel rods from around the country and store them slightly underground and partly above the surface in New Mexico. This is more waste than all U.S. nuclear reactors have produced to date.
"We don't want to be the nation's nuclear dumping ground. Opposition is growing across the state. At recent NRC meetings, opponents of the proposal outnumbered those speaking in favor by 133 to 49," said Rose Gardner of Eunice, a founding member of Alliance for Environmental Strategies. Gardner attended all the recent NRC meetings about the proposed Holtec project, the first via phone and three in New Mexico.
  • On April 25, the NRC met at their Maryland headquarters and took public comment via webinar and call-in. All 23 people who spoke opposed the Holtec application.
  • On April 30, the NRC held a meeting in Roswell. There were more than 95 in attendance, filling the room and causing the fire marshal to close the doors, restricting additional citizens from attending. Of those who spoke, 45 were opposed to the project, 7 supported, and 1 was neutral.  
  • On May 1, at the NRC meeting in Hobbs, 33 people spoke in opposition to the Holtec proposal. Only 14 spoke in favor, including spokespeople from Holtec and their partner company, Eddy-Lea Energy Alliance LLC.
  • At the final May 3 meeting in Carlsbad, 32 residents spoke in opposition and 28 spoke in favor of the proposal. The supporters included company employees and others who appear likely to benefit economically from the project.
In a May 7 statement in "Holtec Highlights," the company failed to mention that project supporters were the minority at all four of the NRC public scoping meetings.
"Those conspiring to build this nuclear dump have been working behind closed doors for years," said Nuclear Issues Study Group Co-founder Leona Morgan. "Our organization has been working to inform the public by doing presentations, using social media, and talking one-on-one at community events. An overwhelming majority of people do not know about this proposal and the possible transport through their communities. Keeping people in the dark is the only way this project can move forward. Once people learn about it, not only are they upset, they want to know more. Many want to get involved to help stop it." At the NRC meeting in Carlsbad, Morgan hand-delivered more than 1,300 signed letters in opposition to this project from residents across the state.
"This high-level nuclear waste dump is capable of ruining the water, land and crops and wildlife that provide food to New Mexicans," said Patricia Cardona of the Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter. "The waste can cause cancer, birth defects and deaths. Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter does not support the proposal because of its impact on people and the inappropriate location near "karst" formations, which are caverns, bottomless lakes, and brine wells that have already proven to be problematic in storing hazardous waste and create conditions for possible collapse."
In 2016 the Department of Energy held eight consent-based siting meetings around the country seeking consent for storing this waste. There was no meeting held in New Mexico or Texas. Opponents of Holtec's project had to travel to the closest meeting, in Phoenix, to tell the DOE that New Mexico and Texas residents do not consent to bringing the nation's nuclear reactor waste to their communities, despite agency claims to the contrary. The recent ratio of opponents to supporters of this proposed site belies the industry claim that New Mexicans support hosting a consolidated interim storage site.
This issue has become a divisive one in the upcoming race for New Mexico governor.  On May 10, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to pass H.R. 3053, a change to the current nuclear-waste policy that would make the proposed Holtec waste dump allowable under law. New Mexico Reps. Ben R. Luján and Michelle Lujan Grisham voted against the bill that would clear hurdles for interim nuclear-waste dumps, while Rep. Steve Pearce voted to authorize them.
"The Gallup and Albuquerque meetings are great opportunities for those at risk from transportation of this waste to raise their voices and say, 'No!' It's important for people to attend the NRC meetings and to send in comments, especially for those in rural areas along the railroad," said Petuuche Gilbert from the Pueblo of Acoma.
Seven serious rail accidents have occurred in the last three years in New Mexico. A Department of Energy report found that a small radioactive release could result in a 42-square-mile area being contaminated and that the cost of cleaning up a single square mile of an urban area could reach $9.5 billion.
"Recent wildfires near the existing Urenco and WCS radioactive waste facilities show how at-risk this waste is to natural disasters that are beyond our expectations and that are becoming worse as the climate changes,"  said Gardner.
"There is everything to lose with this plan to bring the nation's high-level radioactive waste to New Mexico. The risks to health, safety, security and financial well-being are immense and people need to act now to stop this massive mistake that imperils people in New Mexico as well as those along transport routes throughout the country," said Karen Hadden, director of the Sustainable Energy and Economic Development (SEED) Coalition. SEED Coalition has been working with local allies in opposing this application and a similar one just across the state line in Andrews County, Texas.
Top Reasons To Oppose The Holtec High-Level Waste Site
  1. Radiation exposures can cause cancers, genetic damage, birth defects and deaths. Some of the radioactive waste that could be imported remains dangerous for millions of years.
  2. It's a train wreck waiting to happen. Over 10,000 overweight rail cars would carry irradiated nuclear fuel rods to the site, in a process taking at least 20 years. At least one accident is predicted to occur. The waste would travel on rails very near the Carlsbad sinkhole.
  3. A single rail car would carry as much plutonium as was in the bomb dropped on Nagasaki.
  4. If the project is licensed, New Mexico would likely become a de facto permanent dump site for the most dangerous radioactive waste, at a site designed only for temporary storage. With aging canisters, it is unlikely the waste would move again. Storage casks, canisters and the site itself are not designed for long-term disposal. Leaks, cracks and contamination may result.
  5. When canisters start to deteriorate or if they leak, they need to be repackaged. Currently, there are no hot-cell or repackaging facilities for leaking or deteriorated canisters in Holtec's application plan.
  6. Most low-level radioactive-waste dumps have leaked, and remediation costs have been over a billion dollars.  
  7. Congress won't adequately fund the cleanup if there are leaks or accidents. The cost of cleaning up radioactive contamination could be a financial disaster for the people of New Mexico.  
  8. Those who live near existing nuclear reactors know the risks and don't want the waste to stay near them.
  9. Why should New Mexico or Texas take it? New Mexico didn't receive the power or any benefit from the nuclear reactors that produced it. Dumping the waste on New Mexico would be environmental injustice at its worst.
  10. This deadly waste could have a huge negative economic impact on oil and gas, dairy, pecan and tourism industries, which employ more than 20,000 people in the area. The Holtec project promises only 55 jobs.

Additional NRC Public Meeting Locations:
Monday, May 21
Open House from 5 pm to 6 pm; Public Scoping from 6 pm to 9 pm
Gallup Downtown Conference Center

Tuesday, May 22
Open House from 5 pm to 6 pm; Public Scoping from 6 pm to 9 pm
Crowne Plaza

The "scoping" period for Holtec's application has been extended. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission will take public scoping comments until July 30. Letters can be sent from https://action.citizen.org/p/dia/action4/common/public/?action_KEY=13813. Further information on how to submit comments and a sample letter can be found at www.NoNuclearWaste.org.
--

Ramona Blaber
Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter communications coordinator
(505) 660-5905

Donate to Censored News!



Click PayPal link to donate:
paypal.me/BrendaNorrell

Censored News is now in its 12th year with 18 million page views, with no ads, grants or salaries. We are reader supported news. Small donations help provide live coverage.
Brenda Norrell
PMB 132
405 E. Wetmore Rd., Ste 117
Tucson, Arizona 85705
Thank you, Brenda
brendanorrell@gmail.com

Censored News through the years, 2006 to present.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

At Nevada Test Site, Shoshone Remember Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women on Mother's Day








Photos by Carl Bad Bear Sampson, Western Shoshone

Article by Buck Sampson, Paiute
Censored News
May 13, 2018

"The women are wearing red to show support from the Nevada Test Site in Mercury, Nevada, for the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. The Shoshone Prayer Walk ended today with the men cooking a feast for the women," Buck Sampson said on Mother's Day

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Shoshone Protest at Main Gate of Yucca Mountain, Photos by Bad Bear






















Photos by Western Shoshone Carl Bad Bear Sampson
Censored News
Saturday, May 12, 2018

Buck Sampson, Paiute elder, said, "The Shoshone Runners and Walkers went to the main gate of Yucca Mountain today to protest the way this government has been storing used nuclear fuel rods, and carrying out detonations underground and nuclear testing.
"It is contaminating underground water in aquifers. Sacred sites and burial places have been desecrated in violation of the 1863 Treaty of Ruby Valley, Medicine, and the way of life for Shoshone people who got sick. There is cancer and the wildlife are contaminated with nuclear testing.
One woman was arrested today, and released later, and other women were nearly arrested, today, the day before Mother's Day.
Peaceful Prayer Walkers and Runners are returning to Peace Camp west of Yucca Mountain for continued prayer  ceremonies."



Copyright Carl Sampson, Buck Sampson, Censored News.





Mohawk Nation News 'North American Rape System'

NORTH AMERICAN RAPE SYSTEM

 Mohawk Nation News

MNN. 12, 2018.The rape culture of Canada, US and worldwide spits at us, chokes us, kills us, openly denies us justice and human rights. They keep demanding everything we have. Blatant emotional and verbal abuse like threats, lying and false promises are bad as ever. This evil corporate system protects government agents who violate the Civil Rights of people everywhere. 
Read article: http://mohawknationnews.com/blog/2018/05/12/north-american-rape-system/

Friday, May 11, 2018

Sunset at Peace Camp, Nuclear Test Site, by Bad Bear



Photos by Carl Bad Bear Sampson, Western Shoshone

The Western Shoshone Prayer Walk and Run is camped across from the Nuclear Test Site and Yucca Mountain tonight. It is also called Mercury, Nevada  -- Buck Sampson, Paiute

The Last Train to Los Angeles


Yaqui Ceremonial Leader Jose Matus
Photo by Brenda Norrell, Zapatista Village, Lacandon Jungle, Chiapas
Acoma Pueblo Poet and Writer Simon Ortiz said of Jose Matus, "He was one heck of a fighter, for sure! He kept the Indigenous presence in Tucson region going, no matter what. He was one who believed, No matter what: we are Indigenous. Yes, I believe him. And, yes, we believe him. Why not. We are Indigenous. No matter what. Thank you, Jose."

The Last Train to Los Angeles

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

This is what they called out, on this cold night in Flagstaff, "Last Train to Los Angeles." It has a poetic ring to it. My mind is not on Los Angeles, or the train, but on a writer and a great friend, both who left us too soon.
When Charles Bowden wrote about the Sonoran Desert, no one did it better. When Chuck flopped down for a night's sleep on the desert, in that rattlesnake infested desert, with an eye out for Bighorn Sheep, Chuck made you love and fear the Sonoran Desert. And maybe it made you fear Chuck just a little too. Really, who would sleep on the desert sand surrounded by rattlers.
It was the gracious, and funny, Charles Bowden that I had the gift of visiting with over dinner in a Mexican cafe during the Earth First trial in Prescott in the early 1990s. The Earth Firsters were there, and Charles was just off the anti-whaling ship Sea Shepherd. Someone mentioned that the thrashing open waters in violent weather, and the harshness of fighting whalers, was far from the romantic image that most of us imagined.
Sitting in the El Minuto Cafe the other day in Tucson, I was remembering Charles Bowden, and was wondering why he had laid down and died. He was 69 and had just moved to Las Cruces after a lifetime in Tucson. There were too many writers and friends that had died along the border, and the cause of death never seemed clear enough.
Over the albondigas soup and quesadilla, the lunch special, another wave of sadness came over me as I realized there was no chance my friend Jose Matus was going to walk in the door of the cafe, as he had done so many times.
When he was a young man, Yaqui Spiritual Leaders asked Jose to travel south to the Yoeme villages in Mexico and bring the Medicine People, Deer Dancers, to Arizona to lead the Ceremonies. Jose spent his life doing this, driving six hours to the south near the Pacific Coast, and battling U.S. Border agents at Nogales to bring the Spiritual Leaders across the U.S. Border to lead Ceremonies.
On one of these trips, Jose had a massive heart attack at the border. Still, he survived and kept going a few more years.
Jose took his journey at age 66, while I was gone in December, but together, we had taken journeys spanning 23 years, beginning with a delegation of Tohono O'odham, Yaqui, Dakota and Hopi to the Zapatistas in the heart of the Lacandon Jungle in Chiapas in 1995. The delegation was asked to serve as human shields because the military was assassinating Zapatistas.
Years later, Jose happened off the same plane in La Paz, Bolivia, just before I had a heart attack and helped me make it on to Cochabamba for the Mother Earth Conference in 2010. And in between there was a grand trip to the Yaqui villages in Sonora, and many more journeys, avoiding the border patrol and unjustified arrest.
But this day, Jose would not be happening by while I was eating albondigas. We wouldn't be laughing this day.
Still, as I remember the great prose of Charles Bowden, enticing me one more time to go into that vast desert alone, and as I remember laughing with Jose Matus, there is this richness of memory, and of journeys.
So when the train guy calls out, "Last train to Los Angeles," the memories of their greatness fill my mind, and once again there is this journey.

Simon J. Ortiz, Acoma Pueblo poet, writer,  said, "I learned 3 or 4 years ago from Brenda Norrell's website that Jose Matus passed away. I miss him. I had not seen him in a couple of years I think. Since I did a daytime event in South Tucson 2 years ago. 1 year ago? I'm getting older too, just like him. And I forget too much and too many things too easily.

Jose weathered a heart attack or two in the past as you know, but I guess it was time for him to take a rest. He was one heck of a fighter, for sure! He kept the Indigenous presence in Tucson region going, no matter what. He was one who believed, No matter what: we are Indigenous. Yes, I believe him. And, yes, we believe him. Why not. We are Indigenous. No matter what. Thank you, Jose."

Notes:
The Literary Legacy of Charles Bowden:
https://legacy.lib.utexas.edu/taro/tsusm/00085/tsu-00085.html

Brenda Norrell began as a news reporter at Navajo Times during the 18 years she lived on the Navajo Nation. She was a stringer for AP and USA Today. After serving as a longtime staff reporter for Indian Country Today, she was censored and terminated in 2006. She created Censored News as a result. It is now in its 12th year with 18 million pageviews, with no ads or revenues.

Copyright Brenda Norrell