Dec 18, 2020

NGS towers come down, and stop the racism

The Navajo Generating Station smoke stacks in Page, Arizona came crumbling down today.   The smoke stacks were created for the energy needs of Phoenix, Tucson, Las Vegas, and other off-reservation metropolitan cities.  But the demand for energy shifted toward renewable energy over the last years, making the generating station no longer profitable.  2020 has been a strange year with health pandemics, high death tolls, economic hits, and shifts in energy demand.  Peabody Coal made millions of dollars and some of the royalties were paid to the Navajo and Hopi tribes.  All that came to an end in 2020.  As you travel around the Navajo reservation, one begins to see that the pollution-emitting smoke stacks surround the Navajo reservation in the bordertowns.  Besides the Page smoke stack, there are generating stations in Joseph City, Arizona (near Holbrook) and Waterflows, New Mexico.  The smoke from these stations blow over the reservation causing respiratory problems such as asthma to its residents.  

Besides the smoke emissions  from these generating stations, there is also methane gas that New Mexico is known for.  The four corners region has the highest rate of methane pollution in the nation.  The map above shows how severe this problem is.  That is what educated people refer to as  "environmental racism," using the environment for racists intentions such as genocide.  

The federal government, through its mining, also released a lot of uranium into the air and water which to this day contaminates the water and air on the reservation.  And there's still people who want to mine uranium for profit.  This is not to mention the biggest nuclear disaster from 1970's occurring in Church Rock, New Mexico.  That was never really cleaned up by the government.  More recent, the San Juan River was contaminated in the Gold King Mine Spill, and the Trump Administration allowed the disposal of foreign nuclear waste near Aneth, Utah on the northern edge of the Navajo Nation.  America needs to stop this environmental racism.  Although some people may think that the racism is directed at certain groups of people, we all need to realize that this goes around full circle.  

Dec 12, 2020

Nez Administration represents Navajos as racists with virus comment

President Nez has made many poor choices.  The biggest one might be selecting Myron Lizer as his Vice-President because Lizer just committed political suicide by aligning with an unpopular outgoing president’s racist characterization of the Covid-19 virus.  Lizer called the virus the “China virus”, as Trump calls the virus.   Why would Lizer characterize the virus in that fashion and jeopardize the Navajo people by doing so?  During his term as President of the US, Trump destroyed many relationships with foreign countries.  That is exactly what Vice-President Lizer is doing now, destroying the Navajo Nation’s relationship with foreign countries, particularly China, a world superpower.  Lizer is bad for global diplomacy, and President Nez is not saying anything about his selection.  As a leader for the Navajo Nation using racial terms, Americans and other countries can now say that Navajos are racists, even though I don’t think most Navajos hold that view.  In fact, most Navajos (82%) voted against Donald Trump in the recent American election and many attribute Biden’s victory to the Native American vote.  (article)  Based on that, most Navajos probably disapprove of the Nez Administration and probably would rather see a President with real leadership who makes good choices.  It’s time to recall the Nez administration before he digs us deeper.

Navajo death toll at 711

The Covid-19 Dashboard shows we have reached 700 deaths on the Navajo Nation from this virus pandemic.  Everybody on the reservation either knows someone who has or had Covid, or someone who passed from it, or both.  The virus seems to be affecting retirement-age people the most.  We are losing people in theirs 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s.  There is hope with the vaccine, but has not been tested long term.  The health authorities are saying that people are getting the virus by restaurants and bars (indoors) and on the reservation, by visiting and gatherings.  They say that this second wave was caused by family gatherings from the Thanksgiving holidays.  Many families enjoyed their last turkey together.  Many of our people have FOMO (fear of missing out) syndrome.  They get lonely and get their fix with company and visiting with others.  This is how the virus is spreading.  Another cause of the silent spread is the pre-symptomatic and asymptomatic people who go around others.  These people don’t show signs of being sick so many of the 711 made the fatal mistake of thinking that they were safe.  They are gone now and we have to continue on.  It is a hard time, so the best way to stay safe now is to stay home, avoid public places, especially indoor public places, and no visiting.  Remember to wear your mask and keep cleaning your hands and cell phones.

Nez’s true feathers

Maybe be now, more Nez voters are seeing President Nez’s true colors.  Nez and some tribal council delegates are trying to decrease the amount of hardship assistance to the Navajo people.  They went back on the deadline to expend the CARES money.  The deadline was set into Navajo law as November 20.  At that time the unspent money was supposed to go into the fund for the people.  Instead, Nez tried to divert the unspent money into his own projects.   Supporting Navajo law, the Controller would not sign off on the President’s illegal memorandum and as a result, the Controller got some flack from President Nez.  Like Trump, Nez expects his administration to support his corrupt actions.  Some tribal commentators commented that Nez was out of touch with the people.  Nez does not see that the people are suffering!  The wool has been pulled over the Navajo people’s eyes.  Can he be removed immediately if the people want him removed?  

Dec 1, 2020

Ducey mutes Trump

In today's news, Arizona Governor Ducey got some courage to ignore President Trump when Ducey was signing the vote certifying the Biden and Harris ticket.  The definition of "insanity" is doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result.  But today, the definition of "insanity" is not conceding and still thinking "there's still a chance" in an election where all your lawsuits have been rejected.  Now Ducey needs to get on board and issue a mask mandate to #stopthespread.  

Virus spreads by asymptomatic people


Oct 26, 2020

Dine line up for CARES Hardship Assistance Applications

This is what failed leadership looks like, make the people wait in line in the cold snow for application for the CARES hardship assistance.   Our leadership had all summer (when it was warm) to make monies available for our Dine.  Remember this picture when voting time comes in 2022.  More than 500 people already died due to COVID and more is sure to come with this second wave.  Hold tight shi Dine'e.  This is a harsh environment.  Hold on and we will get through this tough time.    

Sep 16, 2020

Trump dumps radioactive waste in Utah Navajo

Most of all, what does Vice-President Lizer have to say about Donald Trump’s environmental policy allowing 136 tons of radioactive  waste from Japan to be dumped on the northern side of the Navajo reservation (South of Blanding, Utah)?  (Radioactive waste dumped).  This seeps into the Navajo aquifer and causes cancer to its residents.  This is what Bears Ears is all about.  What does Lizer, who supports Trump so adamantly, saying there will be a “better way of life” under a Trump administration, have to say about that? What does Delegate Charlene Tso have to say about that?  That is near her area.  Or the community leaders of Aneth?

Aug 26, 2020

Mitchell execution wrong on so many levels

The US Federal Government is determined to execute Lezmund Mitchell today despite the Navajo Nation's request to spare him from the death penalty.  ("Trump prepares to execute Lezmund Mitchell") There's something wrong with this situation at many different levels.  

Two Navajo men were convicted of murdering a Navajo grandmother and her 9-year-old grandchild and stealing their vehicle.  When we go down a reservation road, there are  many hitchhikers with their thumbs out asking for a ride.  Most people don't stop because of violent hitchhiker stories such as the grizzly murders that Mitchell was involved in.  According to Mitchell, he did not commit the killings, Johnny Oslinger (his accomplice) committed the killings.  But his accomplice is not facing the death penalty because he was a minor at the time of the murders.  For some reason, minors committing gruesome murders do not get the death penalty in America.  They only get life in prison.  But Mitchell is scheduled for execution this evening at 6:00 PM Eastern Time because he was the "adult" in the crime.  Oslinger will continue to live with life in prison.

At the international level, the US and the Navajo Nation are suppose to have a "nation-to-nation" relationship.  But in Mitchell's situation, the US rejects the "nation-to-nation" relation by ignoring the Navajo Nation's request to spare Mitchell of the death penalty.  By doing so, the US government weakens itself as a nation whose word and laws are not worth believing and honoring.  One famous judge said "great nations, like great men, should keep their word."  The US passed the Federal Death Penalty Act promising not to impose the death penalty on tribal members whose tribes opt-out of the death penalty.  By finding a loophole in the law, the US disregards its promise, and its relations with other sovereigns.  If carried out by the end of the day, the execution will create an awkward situation between American and tribal leaders.  It will be hard to regard the US as a great nation.  What are the tribal leaders suppose to do?  

As for Mitchell, one perspective that has not really been heard is the voice of Daniel Lee, the father of the slain girl.  In one interview, Lee stated that he supports Mitchell's execution for depriving him of of his daughter.  

"On Sunday, the Associated Press ran a report on the enduring impact of the crime on the community, which quoted Daniel Lee. “He took my daughter away, and no remorse or anything like that,” Lee said about Mitchell. “The Navajo Nation president, the council, they don’t speak for me. I speak for myself and for my daughter.”"

In fact, Lee said that he was going to attend the execution in person in Indiana.  Our Navajo leaders have yet to address Lee's statement. 

Aug 12, 2020

Navajo President slams Christianity

President Nez is asking President Trump to commute Lezmund Mitchell's capital  sentence.  ("Navajo Nation Urges Trump to Commute Sentence of Only Native American on Federal Death Row").    Nez wrote:  

"This request honors our religious and traditional beliefs, the Navajo Nation's long-standing position on the death penalty for Native Americans, and our respect for the decision of the victim's family." 

"Our religious and traditional beliefs"?  Is he talking about Navajo or Christian beliefs?  I thought Nez was Christian. So how can he claim Navajo traditional belief?  Doesn't the Vice-President take offense?  President Nez is a fraud.  He needs to be honest with the United States government, his own Dine people, and his Christian followers.    President Nez is really against traditional Navajo religion, but he uses it to his benefit only when it suits him, like many others.  

Aug 11, 2020

Recall Nez and Lizer 2

Move over Prez Nez!  We want Chairman Frazer from Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe as our president.  While our people suffer and die during this pandemic, you just sit on the money, just get interviewed in your fancy suits, and do a victory dance against your people on Tik Tok.  How disgusting.  Some of us didn’t vote for you.  Others just didn’t want several more years of Shirley.  I hope Shirley doesn’t run again to spare us of more horrible presidents.  Chairman Frazier is protecting his people from those potentially positive bike riders, something that Nez should have done, protecting us from those Covid-19 church gatherings.  We desperately want some real leadership.  He needs to oppose the schools reopening to protect us.  What ever happened to the white collar crime investigation into the Disneyland trips?  

Aug 10, 2020

Lezmund Mitchell set to be executed in two weeks, unless Trump intervenes

Over a decade ago, one young Navajo man tortured  and killed a grandmother and her  grandchild.  He carjacked the vehicle.  Now he is on deathrow for his crimes scheduled to be executed in two weeks on August 26, 2020.  There was a law  that allowed tribes to opt-out of capital punishment for tribal members on death row.  Navajo Nation opted out of capital punishment, but lawyers under  the Trump administration found a loophole in the federal law and are now seeking to get this Navajo man executed quickly.  There is a petition circulating among advocates asking President Trump to spare  this man's life.  On the  Navajo reservation, there are  many violent and evil people.  I hope that these people are looking at this case to see if the Navajo man's life get spared.  Taking a life should not be taken lightly.  People tend to think that what they do does not affect others.  But here, there are a lot of people trying to protect this Navajo man's life, even though he ended two people's lives himself.  From all side, where is the fairness?  

Jun 19, 2020

Start the Recall - Recall Nez and Lizer

Navajo Times Letter to the Editor said it best, there are more intelligent Dine leaders who can do a better job than just passing out food in order to prepare for the next election.  The bottom line is our Dine are dying.  We should not be fighting about the CARES money.  There’s no Ahilna’anish which was promised during campaign.  Let’s vote in someone who cares for our Dine ways.

Leadership has become a Nez-Lizer campaign tool
June 18, 2020

It has become alarmingly obvious that the leadership in Window Rock has segued into a campaign run for President Nez and Veep Lizer.

All of these visits to the chapters/areas of need and the resulting photo ops are just a paid advertisement to support them in the next election. This is the time that they should be spending in a war room with phones connecting them to the Navajo Nation department heads, BIA, IHS, chapters and field reps.

They should also have constant contact with the COVID-19 relief groups in order to help coordinate an effective relief effort. Another obvious sign about the lack of maturity, wisdom, and seriousness about leading our Navajo Nation is the constant infighting within our tribal government. Important logistics issues should be discussed daily, using maps, briefings, and movement of donations.

Most importantly, a daily accounting of the donated funds being used towards helping our people should be made public. Logistics involves the movement of, the storage of, and the delivery of items with an accounting report. We have veterans and retired persons whose résumés include work in logistics. Handing out potatoes and toilet paper is not why we elected Jonathan Nez and Myron Lizer.

Every time I see their pictures in full PPE gear and police officers standing near them with only a mask, I get very worried. We should not be sacrificing Navajo Police officers just so the president and his entourage can look good on camera. Recalling this administration in the middle of a pandemic might fix the problem.

There are other people out there with the qualities of leadership, honesty and wisdom to effectively carry us through. Their love of our cultural history and traditions, their respect for our basic beliefs, their proven leadership qualities, work ethic and résumé must be considered now, before it’s too late. The fiasco in Window Rock must stop.

Barbara J. Morgan

Jun 18, 2020

Santa Fe removes controversial Kit Carson statue

The Black Lives Matter has become a fierce storm in America, so fierce that many American cities are removing racists depictions of American history.  One such historical figure is Kit Carson who betrayed the Dine by leading the American military against the Navajos.  The Mayor of Santa Fe has decided to remove Kit Carson's statue that was standing in Downtown Santa Fe. (Santa Fe mayor calls for removal of controversial monuments, statue of Spanish conquistador) Navajo Historian Wally Brown explains that the Dine rescued and revived a young Kit Carson in the San Juan Mountains.  The Dine adopted Carson and gave him a Navajo wife.  Later on, Carson led the charge against the Dine and executed the Scorched earth campaign against the Dine in Canyon De Chelly.  Like the first Pilgrims that came to America, Kit Carson represents that despicable human being who kills the hands that helped him.

Wally Brown explains that Navajos recued Kit Carson and adopted him

Jun 5, 2020

Medicine man blasts Nez for imposing foreign belief on Dine

The NPR put out an interesting article about loss of Navajo culture during the pandemic. (Navajo Nation Loses Elders And Tradition To COVID-19) The pandemic is impacting the elder community by a ratio of about 2-to-1. For every three deaths, two are elders age 60 and above. This is particularly true for the Navajo. The Navajos are losing many elders due to the pandemic. In this article, Medicine Man Ty David says that he knows about five medicine people who have passed away from Covid. He is concerned that no-one bothered to relearned these medicine people's ceremonies. All the kids are in school learning the white man's ways of western education.

But even prior to the pandemic, the Navajo Nation was in a crisis of losing its traditional culture. The crisis came to head in the 2015 Navajo Presidential Election. Some tribal leaders tried to support the traditional values by putting in a requirement that our leaders speak Dine. However, the Navajo People themselves voted out that requirement by making it meaningless by giving it back to the people to decide by their election vote. Since then the Navajo People have mostly ignored and avoided this culture-loss issue, perhaps because the Navajo People don't want to deal with the loss of language and tradition within their own selves, families, and circles, and it is too hard to relearn. Perhaps the Dine people avoided this issue because their families have switched to other beliefs, or they engage in interracial relationships. After the election, it was apparent that we were losing our language and culture rapidly, but few people took any real measure to save our language and traditions. Meanwhile our elders, the people who are knowledgeable and carry the culture, have been dying at a fast rate, so fast that we are now losing endangered ceremonies to extinction. Like Ty Davis says, the Covid pandemic has exacerbated this trend.

The article goes further highlighting other medicine practitioners who blame colonization and the church. Medicine Man Avery Denny blames President Jonathan Nez for imposing a foreign religion on the Dine by selecting a pastor for a vice-president, having his Monday morning meetings with Church evangelicals, covering up and protecting the virus break-out from the church rally gatherings in Chilchinbito and other western agency chapters, giving exemptions to Church faith groups to meet during the lockdown, disrespecting Dine traditions by going to Israel to praise a religion foreign to our ancestors.

One Navajo Council delegate posted that the virus came to the Dine because President Nez ran to Hweeldi where he broke a major restriction set by our Dine ancestors to avoid Fort Sumner. Our people say thar our people, particularly Dine leaders, should respect our ancestors and our people and going to Hweeldi is plain disrespectful to the ancestors, elders, and people.

 Currently, a lot of people are concerned that President Nez vetoed the Navajo Council's plan to spend the $600 million CARES funding because he claims that the Council's proposed plan was not comprehensive. People are particularly concerned that Vice-President Lizer has been meeting with a national evangelist. (Franklin Graham visits the Navajo Nation to offer support for COVID-19 response efforts) I hope that the President does not pay his Church buddies using the CARES funding. How much more can the Dine people tolerate to have their inherent beliefs trampled on by the most visible Navajo leader? Do the people care? 

Overall, the article was a great article. It highlighted some strong issues that the Navajo are contending with during this world pandemic.

May 22, 2020

Former Dine Bich'eeke' Makes Dine Food Recipe Video

Former Miss Navajo Jennifer  Wheeler is making videos about food recipes.  T'aa Dine Bizaadji yalti'go iyiila.  The Navajo Times ran a story about her Dine Bizaad preservation efforts. ("Former Miss Navajo spends curfew making recipe videos")  In this time of the  Covid Pandemic, we are all quarantined inside with shelter-in-place orders.  "T'aa hoghandi nahasoota," goes the saying.  Please stay at home.  Save lives as the life you save may be your own!  While we are sheltering in place, now may be a time to dust off that Navajo dictionary, to tap on that Dine Bizaad app icon and start learning.  Ohool'aah!  Very great job by Miss Wheeler.  I hope she is very successful with her efforts.  Great job Navajo Times.  Yeego Idahool'aah!

May 11, 2020

Actor Mark Ruffalo advocates for Protect the Sacred

Mark Ruffalo explains the Protect the Sacred effort.  It is an effort started by a young Dine from Farmington to help protect our Navajo elders during this virus crisis because they are the ones who carry the sacred traditional knowledge of our ancestors, and they are the ones most at risk during this pandemic.  Once these people pass away, their knowledge is gone.  Most of our young folks are not relearning  the traditional ceremonies because they are preoccupied with school and work.  This is a real good cause.  But even with this effort, the elders only have a few more years before they reach old age.  So either way, our young people need to start relearning for the Dine to keep its tribal identity.

May 5, 2020

Joseph Austin - upcoming Dine scholar and leader

I would urge our Dine, especially the Christian Navajos, to watch this video and get educated about what Joseph Austin is saying.  These are the real issues.  Try to figure out where the church fits into this lecture.  Excellent job, Mr. Austin!

Page Mayor Levi Tappan retracts racist statement and apologizes

Mayor Teppan and his family when he became Page Mayor in 2018

The Mayor of the City of Page made some controversial remarks about the Dine, that the Dine should address the alcohol problem like it does the Corona virus. Immediately, he reissued an apology saying that he meant to say that the Navajo Nation and Page should work together to address these issues. ("Page mayor apologizes for alcohol comment") This previous statement by the city's leadership and the earlier post by a Page resident calling for the shooting of Navajos because they carry the virus shows us the atmosphere in Page. I repeat,
Shi Dine'e, be aware of your surroundings. There are many racist people in our bordertowns who want to harm and destroy the Navajo People and destroy the Navajo way of life. I hope Frazen gets the max. There's no room for racism in Page. 
As we Dine get more educated into the American mainstream society, we need to remember and reeducate ourselves of our true identity as Dine.

Why Navajos have more Corona Cases than most of the US

Youtuber Jo Jo Jackson here shows us the disparities between Navajo and other areas of the United States. These disparities is one of the major reasons Navajos have more positive Corona cases on a per capita basis than the rest of the United States except for New York and New Jersey. These disparities exist because of historical genocide consisting of broken treaties, disparate treatment, and racism which Jackson talks about. This is what we need to be educated on. Our Dine Youth are starting to come out and be vocal on these issues on a national scale. Excellent!


Apr 30, 2020

Navajo writer's Covid journey signals Hope for Dine

Former reporter Alastair Bitsoie wrote an article for the Navajo Times. ("My COVID journey") He encourages us to value the traditional ways because those ways protect us.
So as long as we stay connected to our cultural identities and the original instructions designated by Changing Woman/White Shell Woman, First Man, First Woman, the Hero Twins, Talking God, Spider Woman, and many other deities like the Air and Fire Peoples, we will get through this as well. As Diné, we know this knowledge, and it must be acknowledged and practiced more than ever, while sheltering in place and following the respective public health orders that help to prevent COVID-19 spread.
Like he says, it is the time to practice these traditions.

He says that Dine values protect us from harm.
As Diné people, our values are what keep us protected from most dangers of the world. Our cultural knowledge, ceremonies, faith and narratives of the natural world are what will help us persevere through this pandemic.

After all, our connection to the fire, air, earth, sky, plants/medicines, water and every living being in our universe, including our animal clan protectors, has helped me heal from COVID-19.

And this knowledge that I acquired comes from you – our Diné people – where I had the pleasure to write for the Navajo Times. You’ve all grounded and taught me the importance of our culture, language, ceremony and lifeways. So, thank you for helping me heal with your stories.
It is wonderful that Bitsoie publicly acknowledges his identity as a Dine. Many of us are Dine, but yet we don't acknowledge our identities. He talks about his clan protectors, something that not very many people talk about.

It sounds like Bitsoie's Covid experience was a life-changing experience that made him realize how vulnerable we are and that we cannot take life for granted. It seems like he obtained a different perspective on life.

Bitsoie most compellingly says: "Having been quarantine/isolated for the last two months as a COVID-19 survivor, I have come to the conclusion that Nature is in control, and she is cleaning up our anthropogenic impacts." It seems like the major religion in America doesn't acknowledge that nature is in control, and instead wrongly instructs the majority to exploit the earth. This causes the majority to adopt an attitude of superiority toward the environment and minorities, some of whom value the world. As a result of this misconception of superiority, our world is being ruined. I've heard a profound statement about Corona, it says "Corona is not the virus, it is the vaccine. We are the virus." The corona pandemic has momentarily stopped our daily life activities on earth. But really, the earth is taking a break from us. Go Mother Earth!

Overall Bistsoi's article was very interesting and good, especially to encourage other Corona survivors to be transparent about their recovery and experience, and writing about it from a traditional perspective. In doing so, he integrates traditional principles like Siihasin into his journalism. This gives me, us, hope as Dine in terms of our people surviving the current pandemic, and our language and culture surviving the current colonization.

Finally, a Navajo government statement from the Dine perspective

Instead of putting pastors in the Townhall press conferences, our leadership needs to acknowledge the Dine perspective. The Peacemaking Department put out a statement about the Corona virus. It is from the Dine perspective. Thank you Peacemaking Program and the Judicial Branch for acknowling the Dine.

When the Twins slayed the Naayéé, certain things were spared for a reason. Cold, poverty, old age, lice—these things were left in the world to teach the Diné to take responsibility and to solve problems.

Now, we are facing a Naayéé that is a monster that kills through invisibility. It hides in cold places and in the dark and harms us when we don’t take responsibility for our hygiene and prayer. The medicine people say this Naayéé will invade us and linger on, building its strength until it can kill many of us.

This was foretold. Our medicine people know of the warnings of the Holy People, that the invisible body would come onto Diné Bikéyah to harm us. We would know it was coming when the dawn and the dusk were red, and when there were meteor showers.

These things have happened, but we were not vigilant. Our ancestors would have recognized the warning signs of danger and fearsome coming, the Yikáí Yiichii’ Red Dawn and Nihootsooi Biyi’ji’ Ni’halchíí Red Sunset, which would cause us to perform protection prayers.

The government has named this disease Big Cough áį Dikos Nitsaa’ígíí- áį , but we know its true names are Invisible Body, Bits’íís Dooyit’íinii and Air that Gives Evil Spell, Níłch’i Bi’iiníziinii. These come to attack the Diné when we are weakened in our spirit. Our weakness comes from losing the strength that is our language and our Diné Fundamental Law. We must coexist with nature by getting up early in the morning to make an offering of white ground corn, at noon making an offering of corn pollen, and making our evening offering of yellow ground corn.

Many people are storing away their Native American Church and traditional paraphernalia, or their Christian Bibles and prayer materials. These things must be brought out of our closets and drawers, from under our beds and used in the open, in the light. Not only is it significant to bring out traditional paraphernalia but also utilize the honeeshgish, fire poker, arrowheads, stirring sticks, with prayers and protection songs.

This disease exists in darkness and cold. Our strength is brought against it when we pray in the light. When we fail to follow our traditions of prayer in the home and performing our ceremonies as they were given to us, these are the things that cause us to be vulnerable.

Some Diné are worsening our vulnerability. Some people who are infected with the virus are still out in the community and among their families, exposing others. This behavior is against the dignity and worth of all individuals, and our responsibility to protect each other. Others ridicule the Diné who are being diligent in their hygiene with masks, hand washing, and social isolation. When these responsible behaviors are ridiculed or not followed, we are not respecting the teachings that were given to us by our ancestors.

Apr 29, 2020

Former Attorney General rejected by Gospel Nez

Isn't it appalling that the Nez-Lizer Administration won't let former Attorney General Ethel Branch's group give supplies to Dine families in need throughout the reservation?  Former President Russell Begay did say that Jonathan Nez can't handle difficult situations. (Begaye endorses Shirley)  Branch raised over one million dollars on GoFundMe to help Dine families in need who don't have easy access to food and supplies during this pandemic.  But the Navajo President is willing to make an exception for the church group to meet while the President's curfew and social distancing order is in effect.  Branch applied for an exception twice and was rejected twice by Jonathan Nez saying he received public backlash for the church organization's exception.  I think this is the real Nez we're seeing, without his advisors, since he is in isolation (quarantine).  But that's what the People voted for in 2018 in a landslide.  I  believe the People were misled.  Here is Branch's petition to the gospel president.

Apr 13, 2020

Don’t sell your soul and try to destroy your nation like Nez

Navajo President Jonathan Nez kissing  the Western Wall in Jerusalem, Israel in 2020, the year of the Covid Pandemic

Many Dine are beginning to realize just how brainwashed our Navajo President is. The Christian Church has brainwashed President Nez to such an extent that he is telling us Dine that we are protected by "the blood of Jesus Christ." This past weekend, a lot of Dine people were upset that President Nez lied about allowing a church group to meet while he ordered all Dine to stay at home, and to practice social distancing.  A lot of people complained about a church gathering in Ganado, Arizona. Initially, President Nez ignored the complaints. Then President Nez stated that there was no gathering that occurred. Then later, he said that a gathering did in fact occur, but that he did not give permission for such a gathering to occur. But there was a letter, with the presidential letterhead, that permitted the Church gathering in Ganado.  Our president straight up lied to the Dine. We Dine need to demand that he, President Nez, come clean with us, the people. He needs to tell the Dine that he favors his Christian groups politically because those same groups put him in Navajo office by paying for his campaign, and for the purpose of continuing the Church's historical destruction of the Dine Way of Life. I don't think many people knew what they were voting for when they voted for Nez in a landslide election against former President Joe Shirley Jr.  By voting for Nez, the Dine People blindly voted against the traditional Dine Way of Life which defines the Navajo identity. Nez is starting to put pastors in his Townhall Updates. Unlike Nez, the Vice-President is less discreet by starting to conduct his sermons on the updates. The picture of President Nez kissing the Western Wall in Jerusalem is an insult to the traditional Dine and the Diyin Dine'e. We Dine need to be educated about the role of the church in the genocide against Native America. We also need education about how some traditional Dine that practice the dark side hide behind the Christian church. These are the reasons the virus has come to the Navajo, starting with the church rallies. I say if we remain silent about the President’s conduct and act like nothing is happening, we’ll be going down that cliff up ahead.
President Nez authorized Church gathering while ordering Dine to social distance and stay home

Bordertown Businesses Depend on Dine - Curfew Realization

The streets of Gallup, NM were empty this weekend due to the weekend curfew

Dine usually race to the bordertowns for the weekend. But this weekend, the Dine were told to stay at home. There was a weekend curfew that lasted from Friday evening to Monday morning. There were some pictures being passed around of eerie empty streets in Gallup and Farmington. Over the next few days and weeks, we will undoubtedly hear about how much this has affected major bordertown businesses such as Walmart, Sam's Club and other money-makers. We will hear about how much these businesses have loss money due to the Dine not being allowed to go to town. This is the reason bordertown businesses will not shut down their operations for a few days even though more and more people are infecting each other with the virus and some are dying. This has made many of us realize our power as a Dine nation, how much the bordertown businesses depend upon the Dine people for their survival. If the bordertown businesses closed down, the Dine People can probably survive without them. Dine are survivors. I truly believe that. The liquor stores such as Sage Brush Liquor store was also forced by the Governor to close down. Yay! The same is true for the State Championship Basketball Games - our Dine support those valley businesses even though our Dine get discriminated against. *SMH* We need to capitalize on our power and make the bordertown businesses cator to our needs, not the other way around. We need to demand better services, products, and to get rid of the racism, or else we'll boycott them. The curfew may be seen as a sort of boycott on these businesses.

Apr 8, 2020

Wild Dine arrested for stealing tribal police vehicle

They say that Pinon is where the wild west starts. In the early hours this morning, two wild Dine in Whipporwill, Jessie Nez and Harold Lee Jr., stole a Navajo police vehicle and weapon while they were arrested. ("Suspects drive off with police vehicle") The radio quickly put out a public alert about the incident, to look out for the stolen police vehicle, and that there were armed and dangerous men in the Pinon-Whipporwill area. This may have led to the quick arrest of these men. Around 11 A.M., the Navajo Police Department announced that these men were caught and arrested. I would suggest to Jessie Nez and Harold Lee Jr. if they want some adrenaline-rushing typing of excitement, then they should join the police department or the military. There they can brandish automatic weapons for a good cause.  These organizations have minimum entrance requirements such as having a high school diploma.

Page man arrested for racist Facebook post

There was a man from Page, Arizona who posted on social media to use "lethal force" against Navajos because they have Corona virus. The Page Police Department posted:'

Facebook Post Leads to Arrest

On April 6, 2020, at 7:53pm, the Page Police Department was made aware of a volatile Facebook post that appeared to have been published by a Page resident. The post was threatening in nature and directed toward Navajo community members due to the suspect’s stated belief that all “Navajo” are infected with COVID-19. An investigation was immediately opened, and the suspect was identified as 34-year-old Daniel Franzen of Page, AZ. Franzen was arrested shortly after having made the unlawful social media post and booked into the Coconino County Jail for attempting to incite an act of terrorism, a class 3 felony.

The Page Police Department recognizes the alarming nature of this incident and shares the justified concern this behavior has caused the Navajo community, and others. The police department wishes to remind community members that unlawful hate speech, especially that which singles out protected classes (race, religion, gender, etc.), will be aggressively investigated and violations will be prosecuted to the fullest extent possible. Additionally, threats toward Franzen, as well as other retaliatory measures will be investigated in a like manner.
34-year-old Daniel Frazen was arrested and charged with Attempting to Incite Terrorism, a Class 3 Felony.

Shi Dine'e, be aware of your surroundings.  There are many racist people in our bordertowns who want to harm and destroy the Navajo People and destroy the Navajo way of life. I hope Frazen gets the max.  There's no room for racism in Page.

Mar 28, 2020

Know your Dine Identity because Trump is starting to eliminate Indian Reservations

The Wampanoag Tribal Chairman just issued a statement that his tribe is under attack by the federal government.  His tribe is the ‘People of the Light’, the Mashpee Tribe of Massachusetts.  Apparently, he received a letter from the federal government that the Department of Interior will be taking away the tribe’s trust status.  This means the tribal land is not being recognized as an Indian Reservation.  In short, the tribe’s reservation is being eliminated.  It could be fake news but I don’t think this is fake news.  Here’s the Notice from the chairman.

Folks, these are scary times.  I said it before and I’ll say it again:

The fearing time has returned.  Our grandparents dealt with it successfully, as a result, we are here. We need to do what they did and use our traditional teachings, methods, and practices.  This is why it is important to know your language and culture.  This is why it is important that our government and people uphold the traditional Dine ways.  Without these Dine ways, we are no longer Dine.  The 2015 elections involved a language vote which voted down the language, and it was not a good thing.  This virus might be the result, a sort of teaching.

I hope this encourages the Dine to start relearning our traditional Dine language, culture, and way of life.

Mar 27, 2020

Can the Navajo Church Rally organizers be charged for murder?

President Nez's Weekly Devotional Prayer Meeting - February 18, 2019

Can the church organizers who held the Chilchinbito revival be charged with murder for causing the death of two members of  the Navajo Nation?  Experts are tracing the outbreak on Navajo to the church rally where many people were infected. The news reports that two people died that attended the rally, but they are not designated as deaths caused by Corona because they were not tested before they died.  However, they died of "respiratory symptoms" after returning from the church rally.  One person was from Chilchinbito and the other was from Lechee. 

The people who caused the Navajo deaths and the Navajo reservation outbreak need to be held accountable and responsible.

President Nez's February 28, 2020 Facebook Post says that there were no known cases of Corona virus on the Navajo reservation at that time. However, the post says:
The World Health Organization encourages people to avoid close contact with others showing symptoms of respiratory illness, such as coughing and sneezing, and to wash your hands with warm water and soap often, stay home if you are sick, and to minimize long-distance travel. The coronavirus has the potential to become severe. Severe cases can also lead to pneumonia, kidney failure, and in some cases, death. The most vulnerable are the elders, young children, and those with compromised immune systems.
Despite this warning, the church organizers held a revival on March 3, 2020 in Chilchinbito where many people from throughout the reservation attended. I heard that the pastor was coughing on everyone in attendance. Thereafter, the participants dispersed back to their homes all throughout the Navajo reservation. Aside from the two deaths and 29 confirmed positive cases out of Chilchinbito, we don't know the extent of harm the Church organizers caused. There could be more people who die.

I heard that there were more revivals held in Western Navajo and in New Mexico. The Christian church is causing too much harm to our people.

I am disappointed that our leadership is not addressing the reckless and harmful behavior displayed by the Christian church. I am disappointed that President Nez, Vice President Lizer, and Council Delegate Nathaniel Brown (Kayenta, Chilchinbito, Dennehotso) are taking no action to make the Church people responsible and accountable.  All President Nez says is he meets with his Christian people for weekly devotional prayer meetings.  But he is not willing to make them accountable for causing the death of Navajo people.  Where is the rest of our leadership?  Hopefully, the Navajo Nation Prosecutor would have more sense.

Navajo Nation Chief Justice Joann Jayne's declaration says that the courts may entertain "violations of quarantines and enforcement of precautionary measures". If people are outside their homes or driving around communities, it is possible that police may enforce the shelter in place order. But can the church rally organizers be charged for murder? We need to demand accountability for harm caused.

(Update:  What I am talking about is not out of the ordinary.  A doctor in Connecticut was charged criminally for intentionally coughing on other health care staff.  ‘Doctor facing charges’.  Also, a third person from Navajo Mountain who attended a church revival has died.)

Averting the First of the Month Disaster

Does the Navajo Nation have a plan for the influx of people, including elders, that will be going to the bordertowns on the first of the month? The people need groceries and supplies. Many Dine get goverment payments on the 1st of the month. These Dine will be flocking to the bordertowns to buy groceries and supplies. There will be many people including elders that go to places like Walmart and T & R. There will be congestion. This is a recipe for disaster. What can we do now to prevent a lot of people getting sick and maybe die? We want to prevent that spike in death. Some American leaders have stated that it's okay for the elders to die because it's better for the economy.  ("Coronavirus has Donald Trump and Dan Patrick ready to sacrifice older people")  

Dine care for their elders.  Our leadership and people can:
  • Start radio announcements requiring people to send minimal people to get groceries in the bordertowns, and if possible, urge elders to stay at home.
  • Set up roadblocks at the outlets (like Window Rock, Shiprock, Leupp, Dilkon, Cameron) and turn away people who have excess people in the vehicle. 
  • Make agreements with bordertown businesses (like Walmart) to limit the number of people that go into the store, to periodically wipe down inventory, to require workers to wear gloves and masks, establish a numbering system at the door, urge people to not bunch up at the entrances, provided hand sanitizing or washing stations at the entrances, and refusing people with fevers from entering by checking their temperature using an electric wand thermometer.  
  • If there is a shortage of police officers to man the roadblocks, then enlist citizen volunteers to assist at the roadblocks.  
Stay alive - Stay inside. 

Navajo Traditional Teachings about Epidemics

This is some very good information about epidemics in the past.  Elder Wally Brown does a good job talking about Navajo terms involving epidemics.  Great Job Wally!  Nizhoniyee'!

The innovative Jini underwear mask

This is some funny practical advice for making a mask.  I would suggest adding a filter.  Someone said use a coffee filter.  I suggest using one or two fabric sheets or dried-out wipes.  Whatever your method, protect yourself and others.  Nizhoni.