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a blast from the past...

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  • Eric Stewart
    JOHN TRUDELL SPEAKS AT JUDI BARI MEMORIAL - posted to serendipity-L by Dan Scanlan Friends, A thousand or so activists met at Martin Luther King Jr. School in
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 10, 2001
      - posted to serendipity-L by Dan Scanlan
      A thousand or so activists met at Martin Luther King Jr. School in
      Berkeley CA on Saturday April 26 to commemorate Judi Bari's life and
      rejuvenate ourselves. [S.I.S.I.S. note: Judi Bari was a long-time
      First!er, union activist, feminist, and fiddler. She and Darryl
      filed a lawsuit against the F.B.I. for its involvement in a 1990
      of Judi's car that shattered Judi's pelvis. Judi recently died of
      cancer. The lawsuit against the F.B.I. continues.]
      There were many wonderful moments, and it was, as Utah Phillips
      described it, "Nourishing, just nourishing."
      It is my hope you will treat yourself to a quiet reading of the
      following transcription of John Trudell's speech and that it brings
      clear fuel to your own struggle.
      Dan Scanlan
      Our next speaker burned an American flag on the steps of FBI
      And 12 hours later a fire killed his wife, his three children and
      wife's mother. The FBI declined to investigate. This man had 17
      pages in his FBI file. He's former national chairman of the American
      Indian Movement: John Trudell.

      I'm pleased to be here and I'm glad that you're here and I'll
      to be as clear as I can while I'm up here.
      It's about our D and A. Descendants and ancestors. We are the
      descendants and we are the ancestors. D and A, our DNA, our blood, our
      flesh and our bone, is made up of the metals and the minerals and the
      liquids of the earth. We are the earth. We truly, literally and
      figuratively are the earth. Any relationship we will ever have in this
      world to real power -- the real power, not energy systems and other
      artificial means of authority -- but any relationship we will ever
      have to real power is our relationship to the earth.
      So whatever Judi was doing and what Earth First! does, they were
      establishing connection with the basic reality, that we must take care
      of the earth. Our power comes from the earth.
      And because we are made up of the earth -- our common ground, so to
      speak -- we are all the descendants of tribes. Each and every one of
      is a descendant of a tribe. We have genetic memories. Inside of our
      genetic memories, that power connection exists to our ancestral past.
      are all descendants of tribes.
      But the tribes of the planet earth have encountered a technological
      religious mind set that removes all spiritual value and real value
      life from the earth and puts it into theoretical heavens or hells.
      it does it under a male image of a male dominator god.
      In our tribal ancestry each and every one of our ancestors resisted
      that notion, that imposition. Tribes of Europe, tribes of Africa,
      of here. Every tribe resisted it. It started in different time frames
      different parts of the planet. It's almost like a disease. A virus, a
      virus, a disease that lives in the human. A disease of the spirit.
      almost like a diseased spirit affects the perception of reality of
      carrier of the disease, the human being.
      Power. It's very important that we understand who we are in
      relationship to power, because we have been tricked and lied to,
      in a way one would say, "brainwashed", into looking at authority as
      power. It is very important that we make this distinction because we
      need to have something to pass to the next generations.
      Authority is not power. Authority is authority. All authority is
      usually based upon aggression or implied aggression or active
      aggression. Authority is authority. Power is something else. Power is
      what we come from. It is a part of the natural order of the universe -
      Authority is something that man creates. It's limitation is that it
      was created by man. Power has no limitations.
      Our relationship to the earth, DNA. We are different shapes and
      of the earth. We are different trees. We are no more or no less than
      tree. We are different stones. We are just different shapes of the
      of the earth.
      As human beings we understand in this technologic religious mind set
      that the authoritarian system, the industrial fascism, the industrial
      Reich that we live under, we understand that they can mine the other
      natural resources of the earth, and through refinement processes take
      old dinosaurs out of the ground and turn them into energy to run the
      machine world that we're very addicted to and partly enslaved to.
      We have to make the connection that we are just a different shape
      our value is no more or no less than the rest of the natural
      of the earth, the rest of the DNA of the earth. So it's very possible
      that we are being mined in the same way that the dinosaurs are, out
      the ground. Human being, human physical, being spirit. Human
      being spirit. Human physical, being spirit.
      And we live under an authoritarian system, an industrial technologic
      mind set that has discovered and developed a way to mine, to take the
      being part of human, the spirit part of human and convert it into
      and then use that energy to power their system, to run their system.
      They are literally eating our spirits. Literally eating our spirits.
      Our spirit is eaten when we do not understand the distinction, the
      difference between authority and power. If they tell us money
      power, then whoever has the most money has the most power.

      But that is a lie.

      Whoever has the most money has the ability to get authority. But
      is not power. But if we believe that, if we believe that money is
      or that it can take us to power, then we will always understand that
      power is something removed from us and is not a natural part of us.
      is just so subtle, and so blatant.
      If we believe that political systems are power, they're
      That's all they are: a political system is a way of mining the
      in just the same way as the definition of authority: mining our
      This is where someone like Judi [Bari] becomes a threat, because she
      understands she has power, and she understands the reality of
      responsibility that goes with power. She understands that. We can't
      communicate with her now the way that we used to, but we can
      with her. That's life. That's spirit.
      In the ways of the tribes and in our common ancestry, we understood
      the play with our ancestors. We understood the ones before us, the
      that we were the descendants of. This was our power connection to
      knowledge. This was our power connection to the past and our power
      connection to the future. So as we enter into this, whatever has to
      down in the future -- I don't really have time to go into too far! --
      But the antibiotic to dealing with these people, these vampires --
      it is, it is vampires, cannibalization -- the antibiotic to this
      is our intelligence. We were given intelligence by the creator. We
      intelligence. That is the antibiotic. That is thecure. There is no
      existing cure to the problem other than the one we will create by
      our intelligence as intelligently and as clearly as we possibly can.
      use our intelligence as intelligently as we possibly can.
      To have clarity. Because this beast that feeds and eats our spirit
      does it by the confusions that are in our minds.
      But we understand the pollution of the air, of the water, we
      understand the pollution of the environment has come from this
      plundering and mining of the planet in an irresponsible manner. But
      think about every fear, every doubt, every insecurity, every way that
      ever beat ourselves up inside of our own heads -- that is the
      left over from the mining of our spirit.
      Another word I hear used a lot -- I don't "believe" anything. I
      to believe but there was a "lie" in the middle: B, E, LIE, V, E.
      use our intelligence very intelligently. There are certain words that
      should use very, very, very carefully and I think that's one of those
      words, because either we know or we don't know.
      We should think -- anything in between us knowing and not knowing --
      should think.
      Thank you.
      - John Trudell at Judi Bari memorial and fund raiser at Martin Luther
      King Jr. School in Berkeley CA, April 26, 1997

      If you think you are too small to make a difference;
      try sleeping in a closed room with a mosquito....
      African Proverb
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