The gathering scheduled for next week in Grassy Narrows is gaining steam. This note of support came from Steve Fobister, a Band Council Member. Pictures from a visit to Steve’s trapline can be found here.
Today was a feast day at the blockade organized by our visitors who have been with us for the few last weeks, people from Forest Ethics, Rainforest Action Network and other environmental groups. Our people, the youths and elders have been teaching how fish is smoked and to make smoked bannock. They just love the smoked bannock and couldn’t resist eating it all before the others were done. They are vegetarians and the elders told them that it’s all right to eat moose meat–the moose is a vegetarian too! The mosquitoes have been very cooperative this year, but the sand flies are terrible and they bite and sting harder.
The OPP (Ontario Provincial Police) showed today at the blockade taking pictures of the area and some of the environmental people there. I suspect they think that the property was being used for some kind of terrorist training ground. It’s actually a place to train people to make smoked bannock and fish.
Leah from Forest Ethics had a chat with them and I guess they wanted names of all the people here other than from Grassy. I will be taking the group to my trap line this Sunday to have a first hand look at the heavy clearcutting that has taken place there by Abitibi and Weyerhaeuser. Some of the trappers are also concerned of all the mining exploration that’s going on there on Willie Keewatins trap line. There has been silver reported there for many years. If a mine is built there, the long legged river next to it flows right to Grassy.
However, there are a lot of preparations happening for the upcoming youth conference starting June 13 to 15. The pow-wow celebration then kicks off from June 16 to 18–a time when all our situations, differences and problems are set aside.