A Catalyst for Interracial Discord
By Jay Taber
In Cherry Point to March Point: Deriving an Estimate of the Situation, I observed that corporate funding for organized anti-Indian racism–promoted by Tea Party leaders in the Pacific Northwest–is augmented by the phony, corporate-sponsored, fossil-free activism, devised by public relations people working on behalf of Wall Street. The likely public backlash against this misguided activism–by the Wall Street-funded NGO 350–I argued, provides fuel for the Tea Party to elicit assistance from anti-Indian organizations like CERA, as well as to commission revenge by vigilantes like the Christian Patriot militias toward tribes opposing fossil fuel export.
The Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians (ATNI) have conducted themselves admirably in the fossil fuel export war. Associating themselves, in any way, with the 350 Break Free campaign could easily undo the public good will they have painstakingly built over the last few years.
In Taking on Organized Racism in the Pacific Northwest: The Challenge of Leadership, I noted that anti-Indian organizations–twenty years ago–challenged ATNI and human rights organizers to prevent bloodshed by Christian Patriot militias in the greater Seattle region. Today, with CERA and the Tea Party actively trying to recreate a climate of fear over American Indian treaty rights—that are impeding fossil fuel export plans–the potential for violence and malicious harassment can only be thwarted by the intervention of civic leaders and moral authorities. To date, that has not happened. With a few notable exceptions, the media has been no help at all.
[Jay Thomas Taber is an associate scholar of the Center for World Indigenous Studies and a contributing editor of Fourth World Journal. Since 1994, he has served as communications director at Public Good Project, a volunteer network of researchers, analysts and journalists defending democracy. As a consultant, he has assisted Indigenous peoples in the European Court of Human Rights and at the United Nations.]