The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Unity Concert: Return Black Hills to the Great Sioux Nation
The history of relations between the U.S. and Native American tribal nations is a famously troubled one, involving the government takeover of lands such as the Black Hills of South Dakota. Opening the door to the return of those lands to the Great Sioux Nation is one of the goals of the Unity Concert, taking place at the Elk Creek Lodge and Resort in the Black Hills Sept. 13-14.
The event, whose theme is "The Black Hills Are Not For Sale," will bring together Native American and non-native performers, artists and activists for what promoters describe as "a powerful act of spiritual activism uniting nations to reconnect with the sacredness of nature and honor the Earth so we can sustain our planet for future generations." On a more pragmatic level, the event is advocating for the return of the guardianship of undeveloped parts of the Black Hills to the Great Sioux Nation.
It will open with a traditional ceremony, with participants making statements of apology, forgiveness and conciliation intended, the promoters say, to unite in the goal of protecting the Earth and promoting a peaceful, shared life for future generations.
"There are a lot of beautiful people in this country, we just need to give them a voice," says Milo Yellowhair, former vice president of the Oglala Sioux tribe, in a promotional video for the event. "If good people can get mobilized, good things can occur."
The lengthy roster of performers includes Native American artists from the Lakota, Apache, Cree and Navajo nations, and folk singers long known for their social justice and environmental activism, including Peter Yarrow, Arlo Guthrie and Native American singer/songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie, who was born on a Cree reserve in Saskatchewan.
Among others, the eclectic roster features Tibetan musician Tesering Lodoe, Uran Snyder of the World Peace Prayer Society, Australian electronica artist Deya Dova, veteran jazz/new age musician Paul Winter, Oglala Lakota alternative blues/rock duo Scatter Their Own, and 13-year-old Aztec environmental activist from Boulder Xiehtezcatl Martinez, who is currently working to ban fracking in Colorado and to mobilize young people to protect the Earth.
The concert is free; the promoters are asking for donations to cover production expenses. They are asking attendees to register so that they can properly prepare for the size of the crowd. You can do that here. Free camping is available as well as paid camping with electricity and for RVs. There are also motels in nearby Rapid City; you can find a list at their website.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
The Centers for Disease Control has emphasized that washing hands with soap and water is one of the most effective measures we can take in preventing the spread of COVID-19. However, millions of Americans in some of the most vulnerable communities face the prospect of having their water shut off during the lockdowns, according to The Guardian.
Aerial photos of the Sierra Nevada — the long mountain range stretching down the spine of California — showed rust-colored swathes following the state's record-breaking five-year drought that ended in 2016. The 100 million dead trees were one of the most visible examples of the ecological toll the drought had wrought.
Now, a few years later, we're starting to learn about how smaller, less noticeable species were affected.
Natthawat / Moment / Getty Images
Disinfectants and cleaners claiming to sanitize against the novel coronavirus have started to flood the market, raising concerns for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which threatened legal recourse against retailers selling unregistered products, according to The New York Times.
The global coronavirus pandemic has thrown our daily routine into disarray. Billions are housebound, social contact is off-limits and an invisible virus makes up look at the outside world with suspicion. No surprise, then, that sustainability and the climate movement aren't exactly a priority for many these days.
By Molly Matthews Multedo
Livestock farming contributes to global warming, so eating less meat can be better for the climate.