Cante Tenza Okolakiciye – Strong Heart Warrior Society
MEDIA RELEASE: June 23, 2015 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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Black Hills “Rainbow” Gathering Denounced, Given Cease & Desist Order by Warriors and Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council
Black Hills – What started out as a planned Rainbow festival of thousands in the Black Hills has come under fire from all directions culminating with a Cease & Desist order from the Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council and delivered by the Lakota Strong Heart Warrior Society in advance of efforts to remove the encampment from unceded Lakota Territory.
The Cease and Desist order follows the flagrant dismissal of traditional treaty council elders and warriors by the Rainbow Gathering who were handed a Notice of Complaint on June 15th denying their gathering in the Sacred Black Hills.
The denial is based on the failure of Rainbow members to follow traditional Lakota protocol in order to get permission to enter the Black Hills as well as the arrogant refusal to leave despite Lakota requests to do so. The Rainbow Family campers are also ordered to appear in front of Lakota Treaty Council elders to answer for their actions.
Despite an aggressive social media campaign by Rainbow members and a few Lakota youth encouraging people to come to the Black Hills, the gathering has been denounced by long-time Rainbow founders and the majority of participants who see the gathering as an attack on Lakota sovereignty and another opportunity for the corrupt Oglala Sioux Tribe Council and its cronies to further marginalize and silence traditional and grassroots Lakota elders and people.
But the Rainbow holdouts refuse to budge claiming a “spiritual vibe with the land” while flagrantly disrespecting the blood, sweat, and tears of traditional Lakota people who have fought for years to win back their unceded territory. Rainbow holdouts are even throwing the promise of money around using divide and conquer to win support of the Hill City Chamber of Commerce in a meeting tonight, but refusing to meet with traditional Lakota elders and Treaty Council members.
Because of these kinds of disrespectful actions, many Rainbow travelers are detouring to gathering locations in Michigan, California, and elsewhere. A group of Rainbow members are also standing with the traditional Lakota and are planning a “peace delegation” to visit the camp and encourage people to leave before Lakota warriors are forced to take action.
The role of marijuana business in this gathering is also being heavily scrutinized. Rainbow Family founder Barry Plunker Adams, many candid Rainbow members, and the Lakota Strong Heart Warriors have openly questioned the financial motives of Rainbow members who are refusing to leave the Black Hills and who are actively working with an Oglala Sioux Tribe that is eyeing legalization of alcohol and pot, and is used extensively by Pine Ridge drug gangs for protection and funding through embezzlement of U.S. funds intended for Pine Ridge’s poor people.
Strong Heart Warriors point out the use of an encampment in the Sacred Black Hills for drug business, and to create an open environment of drug use and partying is a desecration to the sacred mountains and destructive to the preservation and renewal of Lakota language and culture. In a Monday statement they said, “How can we preserve our beautiful Lakota culture if we are despondent, dull, and distanced from ourselves through drugs and alcohol?”
They also call on Americans to stand with the real Lakota explaining, “The disrespectful and manipulative actions of a few rainbow Americans, coupled with the promise of profits from pot sales, are causing trauma and turmoil to Native nations who have done nothing and simply wish to be left alone.”