In keeping with what was said in the Stepping Stones and Art(?) And Informercials blog I felt it was appropriate to expand on what I referred to as Russell Means penchant for being for what he has been against,and against what he has been for as it serves him.
No better example can be found of this reset button than that of positions he took related to his arrest for assaulting his then eighty year old father in law, Leon Grant, on the Dine reservation. Another example of this is the selling of matriarchy accompanied by the studious lack of involvement in the pursuit of justice for Annie Mae.
With the long history of working indigenous issues for personal advancement and monetary gain, years, decades, of railing against the system almost singularly characterized by talk of sovereignty, oppression, and indigenous rights, when push came to shove-when the moment arrived to take responsibility at his own expense to add substance to his purported belief and substance to claims and rights of the nations, he chose instead to denounce the concept of sovereignty and the ability of the Dine nation as a sovereign people to address the issues of crime committed within the boundaries of their land.
In doing so he struck a blow for Government policies of genocide, assimilation, and in the larger picture the ongoing theft of land.
He cast himself in the role of a defacto agent of oppression, a hang around the fort, a provocateur, in an attempt to undermine the Dine and further erode the concept of sovereignty and self governance for all the nations, all indigenous people.
A further reality is here is a would be emperor who has been butt naked from day one-clearly visible to all who refuse to confine themselves to romantic illusions or to be swayed by role playing.
Here’s an “update”, a “commentary”, Russell-the Lakota are not the only who suffer, who are bound hand and foot by repressive policies-anything that affects any nation affects all.
If you want to sell out the Dine you sell out the Lakota and every nation extant as well-you attempt to impose a “colonial existence”of your own making- one that features you as a “facilitator”.
While it is an astonishing reversal of Means purported advocacy, in reality it isn’t a surprise, but rather a recurring pattern of what appears to be a me first philosophy that is driven by an arrogant and self serving attitude, personal goals, and some sense of having a greater value than others.
This right to self governance that sovereignty creates is not a disposable commodity subject to the whim or fancy of anyone- it is not a gift, it is inherent among all people -anything that obstructs it is a crime against humanity-anyone who seeks to circumvent it participates in a crime against humanity.
No “patriot” has ever placed themselves above the welfare of a nation or nations-no true “liberator” has ever sought to liberate them self while further enslaving others.
If attacking an aged one armed elder, participating in an event such as WK2 where indigenous peoples homes were ransacked and razed, property and vehicles stolen, women assaulted, elders taken hostage and threatened, rapes and murders committed, are qualifications to be a liberator and or a patriot, none should aspire to this.
If denying the sovereignty of any nation-the basic inherent right to govern themselves in some meaningful way and address issues as they arise within their own community are likewise requirements or definitions none should aspire to that either.
“I want to pound the final nail of the coffin of our Colonial existence,” he said yesterday. “This ruling, if this stands at the Supreme Court, will definitely separate us from the rest of the America and its Constitution forever.”…Means
How very convoluted a self serving approach wrapped in the usual bs of doing the greater good for the nations. Yet cannot separate himself from this very “colonial existence” when it is seen to work in his favor, when there is some measure of money to had. What’s next-a place for him alongside Jefferson, Lincoln, Washington, and Roosevelt at Rushmore?
Or maybe carve up another mountain for him, Banks, Peltier, and Bellecourt-but we have to check first to determine whether he is for or against carving up mountains and desecrating land at the moment.
Come on now people, we’re better than all this-you know it and I know it. If not, then surely our children are……aren’t they?