The University of Washington Tacoma’s Centers for Equity and Inclusion and Service and Leadership, along with the Urban Studies Department will be hosting an event bringing in two speakers who have bore witness to the widespread movement known as the Dakota Access Pipeline.
The Dakota Access Pipeline has been in no way shy of the news. This billion dollar project has brought a wave of protests, especially from those of the Sioux tribe.
Retha of the Lakota Sioux tribe and Tulámiἠ of the local Okanogan and Wenatchi Salish tribes will be share their experiences as Water Protectors at Standing Rock. They will be sharing months of on the ground experiences along with what this movement means to them as indigenous people.
“I wanted to be a part of history and to stop the government that is doing things under table,” Retha said. “They say they are taking action to help the people, but they really aren’t. Hiring private security and flying planes without lights that are spraying some hazardous gas upon the peaceful protests on their protected land is not taking action. These are the stories that the media isn’t telling and I vow to do so.”
Both of the protectors only wish to tell the truth and remind people to help protect the virginity of the land and its elements.
“The most important thing about this movement is standing up to corporate greed for the protection of mother earth. Now more than ever, we as human beings are causing the devastation of our planet with our mismanagement of natural resources and our disruption of natural order,” said Tulámiἠ. “This was not a goal or our intention, but now that many see what is happening we are trying to put a stop to these things and possibly reverse the effects of our wrongdoing. The sad thing about it is… corporations and politicians do not care about what’s right. They only care for the money involved — and that’s what they don’t understand. It’s no longer about money, it’s simply a matter of global life or death.”
Two events will take place on Jan. 18 in order to accommodate students and their class schedules. The first event is to take place in Joy 117 from 12:25 p.m. to 1:25 p.m. and the second in BHS 106 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Students will be able to ask questions following the events.
Retha wants to give the message, “Victories are danced on the back of sacrifice,” and this battle is far from over.
Those wondering how to help, but may not be able to travel out to the mid-west can visit gofundme.com/heyokawarriors. It has been set up to procure donations in order to support and protect the supplies of warriors on the ground.