"As young people, we realize that we can’t continue on like this. We need clean air, water, and a viable lifeway for our people. In facing this crisis of our future, the idea of walking to raise awareness was born."
Here are the conversations with those walking for Nihígaal bee Iiná:
Interviews featured on this episode with: Nadine Narindrankura, Dana Eldridge, Makai Lewis, Lyncia Begay, Nicholas Ashley, Orlando Begay and Kim Smith
All music featured on this episode provided by the discotays
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More about the Nihígaal bee Iiná:
"The Navajo Nation sits on one of the richest energy corridors in the United States, and for close to a century, we have been on the frontline on resource colonization to provide cheap energy and water to the cities in the Southwest. Since the 1920's, our land and people have been sacrificed for energy extraction for oil, gas, uranium, and coal, which is poisoning our land, water, air, and people. Despite being at the forefront of energy extraction, our people do not see its benefits; approximately 1/4 of our people today live without electricity and running water on the Navajo Nation, while our economy functions at an unemployment rate of about 60%, and our young people are leaving due to lack of opportunity. Now our people and land are facing the onset fracking and a proposed pipeline, which will transport crude oil through 130 miles in Dinetah in the name of "economic development"."
"As young people, we realize that we can't continue on like this. We need clean air, water, and a viable lifeway for our people. In facing this crisis of our future, the idea of walking to raise awareness was born.
We are walking to honor the legacy of our ancestors during Hwééldi, who, a 150 years ago, were forced to walk hundreds of miles in the winter during away from our homelands in the winter to be imprisoned for four years in the name of American colonization. During this time of great suffering, our ancestors thought of our homeland, mountains, and prayed that future generations would carry on our way of life. It is in their memory and out of this profound love for the land that we are walking. It is time to heal from the legacy and trauma of colonization that we having been living under for too long."
"It is our intention to walk throughout the Navajo Nation to document both the beauty of land and people and how this is being desecrated by resource extraction. We will do this through a social media campaign and a documentary films. Along our route, we will visit communities to listen to the issues our people are facing and share information about the state of water, air, land, and health, as our communities often have very little access to media or information about these issues. Our hope is that we can help to inspire our people to become engage in the care our land, air, and water, and culture so that we will have a future as Diné."
"We are calling out to our people in K'é. We need your support, guidance, and prayers. To our young people, we are calling on you to come home and stand up for our land and way of life.
NihíDiné'e, if we don't do this, no one else will. It's is up to us. T'áá Hwó' Ají T'éego!"
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