A while back I wrote a commentary on the current conflict between nomadic and settler culture in my ancestral homeland of Ireland. In that commentary, I opined that the drive to control free peoples and wild landscapes might have something to do with resenting loss of one’s own freedom.
Reading Indian Country Today this morning, I thought of that notion as it applies to two of the indigenous icons of North America, the salmon and the bison.
The Penobscot Nation of Maine on December 20 completed the purchase of three dams on their river, two of which will be removed, while a third will be bypassed in order to restore wild salmon, shad and other indigenous species. Meanwhile, efforts to save the Yellowstone descendants of the bison that escaped the government-sponsored mass slaughter in the 1800s still struggle against remnants of nineteenth century prejudice against the wild.
The library is dedicated to the memory of Secwepemc Chief George Manuel (1921-1989), to the nations of the Fourth World and to the elders and generations to come.access here