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Indigenous and American Indian Studies Scholars Speak Out Against SB1070, Call for an Economic Boycott of Arizona



May 19, 2010

Indigenous and American Indian Studies Scholars Speak Out Against SB1070, Call for an Economic Boycott of Arizona

TUCSON—Indigenous and American Indian studies scholars are condemning Arizona Senate Bill 1070 and related legislation.
“Clearly, and bluntly, the state law is racist and discriminatory against so-called ‘illegal immigrants’ crossing the borders from the South, namely from Mexico,” said Simon Ortiz, a Native American studies professor at Arizona State University, in reference to SB 1070. “Many of the border crossers are Indigenous peoples who are directly affected. Without any doubt, the law is wrong-headed; it targets people who fit a certain profile.”

Indigenous and American Indian Studies scholars say that SB 1070 and the recent passage into law of HB 2281, which bans the teaching of ethnic studies in public schools, are violations of human rights. Scholars from nearly 50 universities and communities have signed a statement calling for an economic boycott of Arizona.

“As Native intellectuals, it is important that we not enable this legislative activity,” said Julia Good Fox, who signed the statement. “I’m disappointed in the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association officers because they have chosen to disregard the boycott. SB 1070 and HB 2281 are dangerous for Indian Country so I hope that Tribal governments and organizations will honor the boycott and put pressure on Arizona to overturn these laws.”

These scholars are not alone in calling for a boycott. Since the passage of SB 1070, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., the oldest African American Greek-lettered fraternity, has moved its July 2010 meeting out of Arizona. SACNAS, an association of Hispanic/Chicano and Native American scientists, has formally removed Phoenix from its shortlist of potential 2012 conference sites. In addition, the cities of San Francisco, Seattle, and Los Angeles have approved boycotts of Arizona until the new law is overturned.

Scholars who reside in Arizona or neighboring Tribal Lands plan to attend the “Indigenous Peoples Against SB 1070/HB228” rally scheduled for 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM, Friday, May 21, 2010 at the U.S. Immigration Court, 160 North Stone Ave., Tucson, AZ. This event is open to the public.

(Attached: “Indigenous and Native Studies Scholars of Conscience Statement.” Signatures are in the following order: Name, Institution and/or Community, and Date.)

We, scholars in Indigenous and Native studies, vigorously protest SB 1070, its amendment HB 2162, and HB 2281, a law that prohibits ethnic studies.  Because these Arizona laws instigate vicious attacks on the human rights of Indigenous, immigrant, and peoples of color communities, we seek to honor the economic boycott of the state of Arizona.
Name, Institution and/or Community, Date
1. Joyce Rain Anderson, Bridgewater State College, May 14, 2010
2. Dr. Elizabeth Archuleta, Arizona State University, Women & Gender Studies, May 14, 2010
3. Sonya Atalay, Indiana University Dept. of Anthropology/Anishinabe-Ojibwe, May 17, 2010
4. Laura Beebe, UC San Diego, 05/14/2010
5. Tammy Bluewolf-Kennedy, Syracuse University, Oneida Nation, Wolf Clan, Haudenosaunee Confederacy, May 14, 2010
6. Kevin Bruyneel, Associate Professor of Politics, Babson College,  May 14, 2010
7. Anne Carter Walker, PhD Candidate, Claremont School of Theology, May 14, 2010
8. Venida S. Chenault, Prairie Band Potawatomi/Kickapoo, May 14, 2010
9. Dr. Glen Coulthard (Yellowknives Dene First Nation), First Nations Studies Program and Department of Political Science, University of British Columbia, May 14, 2010
10. Jennifer Nez Denetdale, Ph.D.. Diné, Associate Professor, Northern Arizona University, May 15, 2010
11. Dr. Joanne R. DiNova, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada, May 16, 2010
12. CJ Dosch, Syracuse University, May 14
13. Qwo-Li Driskill, Texas A&M University, May 15, 2010
14. Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Professor Emeritus, Department of Ethnic Studies/Native American Studies, California State University East Bay
15. Larry Emerson, Diné  , Diné (Navajo) scholar, artist and farmer, May 14, 2010
16. Michelle Erai, Assistant Professor, Women’s Studies, University of California, Los Angeles
17. Paul GhostHorse, May 16, 2010
18. Inez GhostHorse, May 16, 2010
19. Zae GhostHorse, May 16, 2010
20. Julia Good Fox, Indigenous and American Indian Studies scholar, Pawnee Nation, 14 May 2010
21. Bryan James Gordon, MA, Joint PhD Program in Linguistics and Anthropology, University of Arizona, 5-16-10
22. Benjamin Grimshaw, Unemployed Scholar in Detroit, 5-15-201
23. Rev. Clyde E. Grubbs, Unitarian Universalist Minister, May 14, 2010
24. Suzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne & Hodulgee Muscogee), President, The Morning Star Institute, Washington, DC, May 14, 2010
25. Mattie Harper (Anishinaabe – Bois Forte Band), UC Berkeley, May 14, 2010
26. George Hartley, Ohio University, May 14, 2010
27. Patricia Penn Hilden, Professor Emerita, Native American History/Comparative Ethnic Studies,  University of California, Berkeley, May 16, 2010
28. Dr. Robert J. Hill, University of Georgia, Institute of Native American Studies, May 16, 2010 
29. Lynne Horiuchi, Visiting Scholar, Institute of Governmental Studies, University of California at Berkeley May 16, 2010
30. Michelle Jacob, University of San Diego/Yakama, 5-14-10
31. Daniel Morley Johnson, University of Alberta, 14 May 2010
32. Val Natonabah Jones, University of New Mexico (NAS/BUS), 5/15/10
33. Neal Keating, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Dept. of Anthropology, SUNY Brockport May 14, 2010
34. Penelope Kelsey, Associate Professor, English Department, University of Colorado, May 15, 2010
35. Lloyd L. Lee, Ph.D.. University of New Mexico, May 15, 2010
36. Amy Lonetree, University of California, Santa Cruz, Ho-Chunk Nation, May 14, 2010
37. Sarah Lozo, Syracuse University, May 14
38. Scott Richard Lyons, Syracuse University, May 14
39. Glenabah Martinez, Associate Professor of Education, University of New Mexico College of Education, Taos Pueblo and Navajo Nation, May 14, 2010
40. Erin McCarley, May 15, 2010
41. Lily Mendoza, Oakland  University, May 15, 2010
42. Michael Miller, Syracuse University, May 14, 2010
43. Angela Morrill, PhD Candidate, Ethnic Studies Department at UC San Diego, 5/14/2010
44. Jenell Navarro, Claremont Graduate University, May 16, 2010
45. Jose Navarro, University of Southern California, May 16, 2010
46. Lucia Orth, Indigenous and American Indian Studies scholar, May 16, 2010
47. Simon J. Ortiz, Arizona State University, May 14, 2010
48. James W. Perkinson, Intercultural Communication Studies , Oakland  University, May 15, 2010
49. Renya Ramirez, Native American Studies, UC Santa Cruz, May 16, 2010
50. Debbie Reese, Nambe Pueblo, Assistant Professor, American Indian Studies, University of Illinois
51. Michelle Richmond-Saravia, Anishinabek Nation, M’Ed. Candidate, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, Ontario Canada, May 15, 2010
52. Kimberly Robertson (Muscogee) , University of California, Los Angeles
53. Dylan Rodríguez, Professor and Chair, Dept. of Ethnic Studies, University of California, Riverside, 5-14-10
54. Kimberly Robertson, UCLA, May 17, 2010
55. Dean Itsuji Saranillio, University of California, Riverside, May 16, 2010
56. Dr. Jeffrey P. Shepherd, University of Texas at El Paso, May 16, 2010
57. Michael W. Simpson, Citizen of the Universe, Brother to All beings, May 15, 2010
58. Andrea Smith, Media and Cultural Studies/Ethnic Studies – UC Riverside, May 14, 2010
59. Dr. Lisa Tatonetti, Associate Professor, English Department, Kansas State University, May 16, 2010
60. Daphne Taylor-García, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California, Santa Barbara, May 15, 2010
61. Christopher B. Teuton, University of Denver, Citizen of the Cherokee Nation, 5/14/2010
62. Patricia Torres, UCLA Urban Planning PhD Student, INCITE! LA member, 5/14/2010
63. Dr. Edward Valandra, (Sicangu Lakota Oyate), Associate Professor and Chair, American Indian Studies, University of South Dakota, May 14, 2010
64. Myla Vicenti Carpio, Jicarilla Apache, Arizona State University, May 15, 2010
65. Jace Weaver, Cherokee, University of Georgia, May 14, 2010
66. Laura Adams Weaver, Department of English and Inst. of Native American Studies, University of Georgia, May 15, 2010
67. Tisa Wenger, Assistant Professor of American Religious History, Yale University Divinity School, May 17 2010
– 30 –


Do “We keep us safe”? Notes on Action Security & Some Resources




“We keep us safe!” is an abolitionist assertion that the state or some paternalistic organization will not protect us from colonial, fascist, white supremacist, queerphobic attacks, so we must organize and defend ourselves and those we are in community with. 

We cannot leave this slogan to be an empty gesture or posture. It must be conveyed with the necessary training and organizing to address the hyperpoliticized and conflictual environments that we organize in. 

While we cannot anticipate and prevent all fascist assaults, if we pronounce that “we keep us safe,” we can and must do what we can to organize and be prepared. Liberal and “radical” non-profit managers constantly decrying the “inactions of cops” does not keep us safe, it only invokes further police violence. Additionally, calling on colonial politicians to respond to fascist violence as a “hate crime,” is really a call to further the carceral state and its institutional violences (courts, prisons, more policing, etc).

On September 28th, 2023 Jacob Johns, an Indigenous persn was shot by Ryan Martinez, a colonial invader and MAGA fascist at an action called to confront the re-establishment of a monument to the genocidal colonizer Juan de Oñate in so-called Española, New Mexico. This shooting occurred under the same watch of an organization that hosted a previous anti-Oñate monument action in 2020 where Scott Williams was shot and severely injured.

From Heather Heyer, Joseph Rosenbaum, and Anthony Huber to many more who have been injured or killed while resisting authoritarian nationalism (aka fascism), these deadly attacks are occurring within a context of historic, ongoing, and escalating colonial violence. 

Since 2020, groups based in occupied New Mexico organizing anti-monument actions have been directly challenged for putting people at serious risk. Calls that have been made for more organized security have been denounced by inexperienced organizers in these groups.

These issues and considerations are not new, the Black Panther Party for Self Defense and AIM initiated armed patrols and armed resistance in the face of state, white supremacist, and colonial terror. Amorphous entities such as Antifa and Bash Back have continually mobilized street warfare in defensive and proactive ways. These groups have long recognized that we cannot merely rely on “safety in numbers,” (though numbers do help) our enemies are more organized than that, so why aren’t we?

We cannot pronounce liberation without simultaneously preparing and mobilizing defense. 

As everyone should be doing mutual aid, everyone should be prepared for mutual defense. We cannot depend on any organizers or organizations to simply do this for us. If “We keep us safe,” we better fucking mean it.

As Goldfinch Gun Club stated, “Community defense has to be about solidarity and uplift mutual aid, not just arming vulnerable peoples. By the time someone starts shooting, everyone has already lost. The best defense is a better world. It’s possible. We have to believe that.”

Support Jacob Johns, his family and community by contributing to the gofundme:

Some recommendations: 

1. Organize and attend street medic trainings. Check these resources: 

A Demonstrator’s Guide to Responding to Gunshot Wounds

An Activist’s Guide to Basic First Aid 

2. Organize armed self defense. Check these resources:

Three Way Fight: Revolutionary Anti-Fascism and Armed-Self-Defense

Organizing Armed Defense in “America”

Gun Clubs: (Note: their founder and a lead organizer of Red Neck Revolt/JBGC is a known abuser).

3. Develop and maintain clear security protocols and presence (if not visible at least organized). 

A note: By security we don’t mean leftist police, we mean skilled warriors who are identified to respond and protect, not police actions. Beware of cis-heteropatriarcal and other oppressive behaviors, substance use, & abusers, etc.
Being prepared can be an escalation in and of itself, it also can be a powerful deterrent. Do what makes sense for your operating environment.

Defend Pride

Forming an Antifa group

Check out all these great resources on Security Culture:

These ‘zines particularly address cop tactics but have great info for overall security:

Defend the Territory

Warrior Crowd Control & Riot Manual

Other resources:

Dangerous Spaces: Violent Resistance, Self-Defense, and Insurrectional Struggle Against Gender

Repress This

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Ox Sam Camp Raid Update: One Arrested as Prayer Tipis Are Bulldozed and Ceremonial Items Confiscated




Thursday, June 8th, 2023

Contact: Ox Sam Camp

THACKER PASS, NV — On Wednesday morning, the Humboldt County Sheriff’s department on behalf of Lithium Nevada Corporation, raided the Ox Sam Newe Momokonee Nokutun (Ox Sam Indigenous Women’s Camp), destroying the two ceremonial tipi lodges, mishandling and confiscating ceremonial instruments and objects, and extinguishing the sacred fire that has been lit since May 11th when the Paiute/Shoshone Grandma-led prayer action began.

One arrest took place on Wednesday at the direction of Lithium Nevada security. A young Diné female water protector was handcuffed with no warning and loaded into a windowless, pitch-black box in the back of a pickup truck. “I was really scared for my life,” the woman said. “I didn’t know where I was or where I was going, and I know that MMIW is a real thing and I didn’t want to be the next one.” She was transported to Humboldt County Jail, where she was charged with criminal trespass and resisting arrest, then released on bail.

Just hours before the raid, Ox Sam water protectors could be seen for the second time this week bravely standing in the way of large excavation equipment and shutting down construction at the base of Sentinel Rock.

To many Paiute and Shoshone, Sentinel Rock is a “center of the universe,” integral to many Nevada Tribes’ way of life and ceremony, as well as a site for traditional medicines, tools, and food supply for thousands of years. Thacker Pass is also the site of two massacres of Paiute and Shoshone people­. The remains of the massacred ancestors have remained unidentified and unburied since 1865, and are now being bulldozed and crushed by Lithium Nevada for a mineral known as “the new white gold.”

Since May 11th, despite numerous requests by Lithium Nevada workers, the Humboldt County Sheriff Department has been reticent and even unwilling to arrest members of the prayer camp, even after issuing three warnings for blocking Pole Creek Road access to Lithium Nevada workers and sub-contractors, while allowing the public to pass through.

“We absolutely respect your guys’ right to peacefully protest,” explained Humboldt County Sheriff Sean Wilkin on May 12th. “We have zero issues with [the tipi] whatsoever… We respect your right to be out here.”

On March 19th the Sheriff arrived again, serving individual fourteen-day Temporary Protection Orders against several individuals at camp. The protection orders were granted by the Humboldt County Court on behalf of Lithium Nevada based on sworn statements loaded with misrepresentations, false claims, and, according to those targeted, outright false accusations by their employees. Still, Ox Sam Camp continued for another week. The tipis, the sacred fire, and the prayers occurred for a total of twenty-seven days of ceremony and resistance.

The scene at Thacker Pass this week looked like Standing Rock, Line 3, or Oak Flat, as Lithium Nevada’s workers and heavy equipment tried to bulldoze and trench their way through the ceremonial grounds surrounding the tipi at Sentinel Rock, and water protectors put their bodies in the way of the destruction, forcing work stoppage on two occasions.

Observers stated that Lithium Nevada’s head of security was directing the Sheriff’s deputies where to go and what to do during the raid.

Lithium Nevada’s ownership and control of Thacker Pass only exists because of the flawed permitting and questionable administrative approvals issued by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). BLM officials have refused to acknowledge that Peehee Mu’huh is a sacred site to regional Tribal Nations, and have continued to downplay and question the significance of the double massacre through two years of court battles.

Three tribes — the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony, Summit Lake Paiute Tribe, and Burns Paiute Tribe — remain locked in litigation with the Federal Government for permitting the mine. The tribes filed their latest response to the BLM’s Motion to Dismiss on Monday. BLM is part of the Department of the Interior which is led by Deb Haaland (Laguna Pueblo).

On Wednesday, at least five Sheriff’s vehicles, several Lithium Nevada worker vehicles, and two security trucks arrived at the original tipi site that contained the ceremonial fire, immediately adjacent to Pole Creek Road. One camper was arrested without warning, and others were issued with trespass warnings and allowed to leave the area. Once the main camp was secured, law enforcement then moved up to the tipi site at Sentinel Rock, a mile away.

There is a proper way to take down a tipi and ceremonial camp, and then there is the way Humboldt County Sheriffs proceeded on behalf of Lithium Nevada Corporation. Tipis were knocked down, tipi poles were snapped, and ceremonial objects and instruments were rummaged through, mishandled, and impounded. Empty tents were approached and secured in classic SWAT-raid fashion. One car was towed.

As is often the case when lost profits lead to government assaults on peaceful water protectors, Lithium Nevada Corporation and the Humboldt County Sheriffs have begun to claim that the raid was done for the safety of the camp members and for public health.

Josephine Dick (Fort McDermitt Paiute-Shoshone), who is a descendent of Ox Sam and one of the matriarchs of Ox Sam Newe Momokonee Nokutun, made the following statement in response to the raid:

“As Vice Chair of the Native American Indian Church of the State of Nevada, and as a Paiute-Shoshone Tribal Nation elder and member, I am requesting the immediate access to and release of my ceremonial instruments and objects, including my Eagle Feathers and staff which have held the prayers of my ancestors and the Ox Sam camp since the beginning. There was also a ceremonial hand drum and medicines such as cedar and tobacco, which are protected by the American Indian Religious Freedom Act.
In addition, my understanding is that Humboldt County Sherriffs along with Lithium Nevada security desecrated two ceremonial tipi lodges, which include canvasses, poles, and ropes. The Ox Sam Newe Momokonee Nokutun has been conducting prayers and ceremony in these tipis which are also protected by the American Indian Religious Freedom Act. When our ceremonial belongings are brought together around the sacred fire, this is our church. Our Native American church is a sacred ceremony. I am demanding the immediate access to our prayer site at Peehee Mu’huh and the return of our confiscated ceremonial objects.

The desecration that Humboldt County Sherriffs and Lithium Nevada conducted by knocking the tipis down and rummaging through sacred objects is equivalent to taking a bible, breaking The Cross, knocking down a cathedral, disrespecting the sacrament, and denying deacons and pastors access to their places of worship, in direct violation of my American Indian Religious Freedom rights. This violation of access to our ceremonial church and the ground on which it sits is a violation of Executive Order 13007.

The location of the tipi lodge that was pushed over and destroyed is at the base of Sentinel Rock, a place our Paiute-Shoshone have been praying since time immemorial. After two years of our people explaining that Peehee Mu’huh is sacred, BLM Winnemucca finally acknowledged that Thacker Pass is a Traditional Cultural District, but they are still allowing it to be destroyed.”

Josephine and others plan to make a statement on live stream outside the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office in Winnemucca on the afternoon of Friday, June 9th around 1pm.

Another spiritual leader on the front lines has been Dean Barlese from the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe. Despite being confined to a wheelchair, Barlese led prayers at the site on April 25th which led to Lithium Nevada shutting down construction for a day, and returned on May 11th to pray over the new sacred fire as Ox Sam camp was established.

“This is not a protest, it’s a prayer,” said Barlese. “But they’re still scared of me. They’re scared of all of us elders, because they know we’re right and they’re wrong.”



Thacker Pass is located in northern Nevada near the Oregon border, where Lithium Nevada Corporation is in the first phase of building a $2 billion open-pit lithium mine which would be the largest of its kind in North America. The lithium is mainly destined for General Motors Corporation’s electric car batteries, which the corporation laughably claims is “green.” Mine opponents call this greenwashing and have stated that “it’s not green to blow up a mountain.”

The U.S. Supreme Court has granted Lithium Nevada corporation and all other business corporations a whole variety of constitutional “rights” that were never meant for business entities. Without these special so-called corporate “rights,” the mine owners would never have been allowed to construct this mine.

Three Native American tribes filed a new lawsuit against the Federal Government over Lithium Nevada Corporation’s planned Thacker Pass lithium mine on February 16, 2023, the latest legal move in the two-and-a-half-year struggle over mining, greenwashing, and sacred land in northern Nevada.

The Tribes notified the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on May 19th that they mean to appeal their Motion seeking a Preliminary Injunction which was rejected by a lower court in early March. Four environmental groups which lost their case in January have also appealed to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, and are expected to be heard in June.

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O’odham Executed by Border Patrol: Statement by Raymond Mattia Family




Raymond Mattia of the Tohono O’odham Nation was executed by US border patrol agents on May 18th at his home. He was reportedly shot 38 times.

A peaceful gathering to support all victims of the
unmonitored violent actions of the Border Patrol and other agencies will be held at The Border
Patrol Station in Why, Az, and Tucson on Golf Links Road this Saturday, May 27th, from

For more information please visit:

Statement by Mattia Raymond’s family:

We have been trying to find the strength to write this statement. This tragedy is so
grievous because it is apparent what had happened. Raymond called for help and, in turn, was
shot down at his doorstep. Raymond’s rights were violated by the authorities whom we trust to
protect our Nation. Improper and unprofessional actions of the agencies involved were witnessed
by family members present near the crime scene. Loved ones sat in agony, not knowing of
Raymond’s condition until they were told that he had passed hours later. Raymond lay in front of
his home for seven hours before a coroner from Tucson arrived.
In our eyes and hearts, we believe that Raymond was approached with excessive and
deadly force that took his life. He was a father, brother, uncle, friend, and an involved
community member. Raymond always fought for what was right, and he will continue to fight
even after his death. This is not an isolated incident, but it should bring awareness of the
oppression our people live through.
We want to thank so many of you for your condolences and support. A GoFundMe for
defense funds will be available soon. A peaceful gathering to support all victims of the
unmonitored violent actions of the Border Patrol and other agencies will be held at The Border Patrol Station in Why, Az, and Tucson on Golf Links Road this Saturday, May 27th, from 10:00am-Noon.

Contact for support:

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