Saturday, November 7, 2009

What have we done to the first Americans?



The hard rains from the hills are our father
The soft gentle rains are our mother

Paraphrased : Navajo belief


What kind of thoughts does the words “global warming” conjure up in your minds? We used to hear a great deal about it every day, but now we hear about our two wars, health insurance reform, immigration, education and killings at Fort Hood in Texas and again in Orlando.

Tonight I watched Bill Moyer’s Journal as usual, and the topic was a movie about the Hopi and Navajo Indians in Arizona whose land has been ravaged by a coal mine that has polluted all their water for energy to light up Los Angeles and San Diego and other southwestern cities. They fought that hard and long in court and finally the mine was shut down. First small victory. But they were left with ruined land, loss of jobs, and no way to climb out of their depression.

They have formed a coalition to fight to supply these areas with energy with the use of windmills and solar energy. They have the most sun and lots of wind there to use. They feel they are owed help on this project from California and some of the other states who used their coal. And Arnold Schwarzenegger has signed a bill that they will not let new mines come back to the reservation. Second small victory.

Denmark gets all its energy from windmills and even sells some to other countries. And Germany has done a lot toward using solar energy and mills with some success and they don’t even have a lot of sun or wind. The Federal Government was into using windmills during Carter’s administration, but since Reagan, all presidents who followed have been advocating “clean coal”, oil, and nuclear power. These Indians, even tho the lines crisscrossed their land and the slurry water pipe ran under their land, never had any electricity themselves. Oh, they were paid $20,000 a year but what is that to a whole
Tribe?

But the saddest thing of all is the land being ruined for all future generations of these Indians in addition to their not having anything to live on nowl Some Indians in North Dakota and other states are going ahead with building the solar energy thingies and windmills. Did you know that it only takes 1 or 2 days to put up one mill and you get immediate energy from it and it takes 5 years to put up a coal station?

Seems to me there is no doubt about the proper answer to the problem here. I know many people do not believe in global warming. Even my son often says in the winter,” I just shoveled 12 inches of global warming off my driveway.” But I do. And I am for windmills and solar energy.
Just NIMBY.

8 comments:

Wanda said...

I believe global warming is happening too Bernie. Former Vice President Al Gore has convinced me!
My parents moved away from a coal town in Virginia to Ohio after I was born. I feel a deep connection to nature and the American Indians.
Pocahontas was an 11th generation back grandmother!

I am definitely for windmills and solar energy. I want a safe world for my grandchildren's children!

My Aimless Infatuation said...

I'm with you Bernie and so is the Cherokee in me.

June said...

I would have a windmill here on my hilltop in a New York minute if anybody approached me about it. Husband and I talk about it...they're pretty expensive to install...but boy! wouldn't that be great? Free electricity!

I could not answer, in polite language, the question you pose in your title. But we've been doing it to them since we got here. They had such a good system going before we got here.

Wander to the Wayside said...

Let's ask the polar bears if they believe in global warming! I know I do. My stepbrother is foreman for a company that puts up the wind mills and is convinced that it's got to become the norm. Why we don't make more use of them is a mystery to me. And if ever there was an obvious need for them it would be in a situation like with these indian lands, Excellent reminder, Bernie.

GooseBreeder said...

Hi Bernie, we'r rather see anything other than nuclear wouldn't we? Don't forget wind generation often has a very bad effect on the wild life and on nearby humans.Solar seems good but is inefficient using only 12% of what it takes in,the rest goes into the atmosphere so actually helps the planet to warm.
Reducing our power needs has to be the way to go, we're built to withstand vast differences in temperatures and survive.Let's live more efficiently and economically,stop cutting down forests which might help the planet immensely.
I've seen so many people in your age group knocking this great way of communicating that's it's a joy to find you blogging.I'm following you!

Bernie said...

Great post Bernie, as I drive through Jasper and Banff and view how the damage of global warning it breaks my heart, I feel we may be a bit late in reacting but also feel we must do everything we can to protect this beautiful world for furture generations....I love our native Canadians, their way of life is simple yet respectful of our earth, we could learn so much from them......:-) Hugs

Midlife Jobhunter said...

Before all believe, it will be even harder to correct the problems before us. This is a thoughtful and necessary post. Nice to know that those who are older still care what the world will be down the road.

Jen said...

We have issued few apologies for what we've been doing to the Natvie Americans for 2 centuries. It does make me angry.

People didn't want to believe the world was round, either.

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