I am grateful for the video at the end of this that my friend Christine Nobiss and the Great Plains Action Society created about the work of so many to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). A decision is expected any day regarding whether the flow of oil through the pipeline should be stopped while TC Energy does a more complete environmental assessment as ordered by a Federal judge.
Great Plains Action Society put this video together for all the warriors in Iowa that have been fighting this atrocity since 2014. For all those that stood against the state and colonial-capitalism in Iowa over the past 7 years. Among those organizations listed is Iowa Quakers, including the American Friends Service Committee.
It is significant that the struggle is framed as opposing the state and colonial-capitalism in Iowa. The land seized through eminent domain abuse throughout Iowa for this pipeline was already stolen from Indigenous Peoples who have long been in battle with colonial capitalism.
Calling attention to eminent domain abuse was one of the things the First Nation-Farmer Climate Unity March was about. Christine Nobiss (Indigenous Iowa at that time) and Ed Fallon (Bold Iowa) organized that March along the path of the Dakota Access pipeline in Iowa. The NoDAPL IOWA video below includes video clips from the March. This website contains many photos, videos and blog posts about the March. First Nation-Farmer Unity – First Nation peoples and farmers working together
Christine and Ed also organize the Climate Crisis Parade Climate Crisis Parade May 1, 2020. The parade included a covered wagon with a sign saying Colonial Capitalism.
Great Plains Action Society has held several events to call attention to the monuments to White supremacy.
We demand that all white supremacist, misogynistic and, homo/transphobic historical monuments, names, and holidays be removed from all Iowa state grounds and facilities. By removing these monuments, we are not erasing history—we are correcting it. These depictions fall into the realm of hate propaganda and human rights violations because they make specific segments of the population feel unwelcome in public spaces.
This propaganda is everywhere but many do not realize it depicts enslavement, land theft, violence, and genocide. Indigenous, Black, Latinx, and many other oppressed folks in this country must face these images every day in their neighborhoods, commutes, or at their places of work. It is important that Iowans demand that their government carry out a genuine act of truth and reconciliation on stolen land by removing all depictions of white supremacy.Great Plains Action Society
Great Plains Action Society also organized Indigenous Peoples Day. Voter registration was part of the event.
We are not demanding that we take down statues in order to erase history, we are doing so that we can finally start to restore and celebrate the history that for many generations has been purposely and forcefully erased. We are decolonizing. We are asking for liberation. Some people choose to migrate, others don’t. But that decision should no longer be in the hands of the colonizers.
For the past year I’ve been blessed to learn about, and participate in the work of Des Moines Mutual Aid (DMMA) which is supported by Great Plains Action Society. My friend Ronnie James is part of Great Plains Action Society, and has been teaching me about the concepts of Mutual Aid. I’ve been participating in the food giveaway project, which is a continuation of the Black Panther’s free breakfast program in the 1960’s. Following is a story he shared with me.
So I work with a dope crew called Des Moines Mutual Aid, and on Saturday mornings we do a food giveaway program that was started by the Panthers as their free breakfast program and has carried on to this day. Anyways, brag, brag, blah, blah.
So I get to work and I need to call my boss, who is also a very good old friend, because there is network issues. He remembers and asks about the food giveaway which is cool and I tell him blah blah it went really well. And then he’s like, “hey, if no one tells you, I’m very proud of what you do for the community” and I’m like “hold on hold on. Just realize that everything I do is to further the replacing of the state and destroying western civilization and any remnants of it for future generations.” He says “I know and love that. Carry on.”
Following is from a speech Ronnie gave at a teach-in for Black Lives Matter, the Police State and Why We Must Resist.
Historically, the police and other law enforcement were formed to protect the interests and property of the moneyed classes from the rest of the People. This “property” included the bodies of the enslaved and was the justification for brutally repressing the righteous and inevitable revolts born from the atrocity of slavery. This same philosophy of endless possession was the bloodlust that fueled the “Indian Wars” and the theft of Indigenous land and bodies that continues to this day. (Wampanoag, 2020)
Today, this same war of conquest, the repression of the many for the benefit of the few, continues.
All this work is in nonviolent opposition to the state and colonial-capitalism in Iowa.
This for all those that stood against the state and colonial-capitalism in Iowa over the past 7 years. I love you all and have a deep respect for all that has been done in the land of the Ioway, Dakota, Meskwaki, Omaha, Winnebago, Kickapoo and so many more. We live on the land between the Great Missouri and the Mighty Mississippi and it deserves our respect and protection.
Biden, Iowans Still Want You to Shut Down DAPL .Folks have been fighting the Dakota Access Pipeline in Iowa Since 2014. Indigenous Organizers, Farmers, Environmentalists, and concerned citizens. Biden, keep your promise to the people and act on the climate by shutting down DAPL.
The land seized through eminent domain abuse throughout Iowa for this pipeline was already stolen from Indigenous Peoples who have long been in battle with colonial capitalism. Thousands of Iowans stood with the ancestors to resist this continued exploitation despite what the state did to deter our efforts. And, this resistance built on love and solidarity won’t back down.
Great Plains Action Society put this video together for all the warriors in Iowa that have been fighting this atrocity since 2014.
We see you and love you,
100 Grannies for a Livable Future, 1000 Friends of Iowa, Allamakee County Protectors, Bold Iowa, Citizens’ Climate Lobby, Climate Action Iowa, Drake Environmental Action League, Des Moines Catholic Worker, Des Moines Student Activism Network, Divest Grinnell, Food & Water Watch, Iowa350, Iowa Audubon Society, Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement, Iowa Climate Advocates, Iowa Farmers Union, Iowa Interfaith Power & Light, Iowa Ornithologists’ Union, Iowa Pipeline Abatement Group, Iowa Physicians for Social Responsibility, Iowa Renewable Energy Association, Iowa State University ActivUs, Iowa State University Sustainable Agriculture Student Association, League of Women Voters of Iowa, No Bakken Here, Occupy the World Food Prize, Quad Cities Waterkeeper of the Upper Mississippi River, Science & Environmental Health Network, Sierra Club (Iowa Chapter), Women, Food & Agriculture Network, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom Des Moines, Vets for Peace, Mississippi Stand, Little Creek Camp, Possibility Alliance, Iowa Quakers, Ní Btháska Stand Collective,