In North Dakota, Standing Rock Sioux tribal historian LaDonna Brave Bull Allard has died of brain cancer at the age of 64. Allard co-founded the Sacred Stone Camp on her own land in April 2016 to resist the Dakota Access pipeline. People from around the world traveled to the Standing Rock Reservation in what became one of the largest gatherings of Indigenous peoples in a century. In September of 2016, Democracy Now! spoke to Allard at the Sacred Stone Camp, just hours before the Dakota Access pipeline company unleashed dogs and pepper spray on Native land and water defenders seeking to protect a sacred tribal burial site from destruction.
LaDonna Brave Bull Allard: “We say mni wiconi, water of life. Every time we drink water, we say mni wiconi, water of life. We cannot live without water. So I don’t understand why America doesn’t understand how important water is. So we have no choice. We have to stand. No matter what happens, we have to stand to save the water.”