Indigenous tribes support restoration of monuments by Biden

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(Zak Podmore | The Salt Lake Tribune) Board members, staff and supporters of the native-led group Utah Dine Bikéyah celebrate President Joe Biden’s decision to restore the boundaries of the Bears Ears National Monument to a lookout point over Cedar Mesa in San Juan County Friday, October 8, 2021.

Senators Romney and Lee recently criticized the restoration of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante monuments on the grounds that native tribes were against it. This is wrong, it is not that the truth matters to them.

Indeed, five tribes support the restoration of Biden – the Navajo Nation, the Hopi Tribe, the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, Pueblo of Zuni and the Ute Indians. The politicians of Romney-Lee, the rich white people, have never lived on an Indian reservation.

I lived on the Navajo reservation for six years when I taught environmental science at Navajo Technical University. My friends, associates, and students were Navajo and other tribes. My wife is a nurse practitioner for Indian health services on the Navajo reservation. She has lost medical professionals and Navajo friends to COVID.

We get a glimpse stuck in the harsh reality of what our Indigenous friends deserve.

The crushing misery, the lack of electricity and water, the morgues without space, the students who have no money for lunch; they all reflect a long overdue retribution.

I’m glad my friends have their monuments. I can tell you that all or most of the indigenous people that I knew, and that I know now, would support what Biden did. And all or most of them recognize Romney and his spineless white friends for what they are – hollow political prostitutes devoid of courage and ethics, for sale for pennies on the dollar.

Bill Mader, Kanab

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