Tohono Affirmative – ddi 2015 sws

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The Surveillance of the Border is an extension of the colonization that first assaulted the Tohono Hundreds of years ago.

Redwood Curtain Copwatch no date (based in the north coast of California, is part of a larger movement of self organized CopWatch groups throughout the US. Our local efforts seek to intervene in the drastic rise of the presence, militarization, and violence of the police, and build support networks based on self-determination, caring, and concrete needs, “This Is O'odham Land: No Borders! Free Movement! Indigenous/Migrant Solidarity!,”, //rck)

Movement Demands Autonomy: An O'odham Perspective on Border Controls and Immigration. We want to express as young O'odham, that we oppose the building and structure of a wall along the traditional O'odham territory, The concerns of the villages grow in fear of the on-going tactics that is plainly disguised as a 'part of the rules of conduct for testing censors and technology', have now made the Tohono O'odham people walking targets and criminals in the eyes of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in our own homelands. As O'odham people, we face the ever growing crucial attacks on Homes, traditional routes, and Identity as indigenous people . The O'odham voice still goes underminded by tribal government and the right of passage through our routes have become a killing field and a battle ground. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recent, unprecedented power to waive existing law along the borders of the United States to construct a massive Border Wall and implementations of stricter border crossing regulations, undermines the Tribal Sovereignty, Indigenous Autonomy and Self-Determination of the many indigenous nations whose ancestral lands span into Mexico and Canada. The O'odham people, particularly the Tohono O'odham people, of southern Arizona are one such indigenous nation once again caught in the middle of the United States Border Policies. Policies that have disregarded the history, voice and cultural impacts that any border wall will bring to all indigenous people whose homeland will be further disconnected by the U.S. push to establish the 1,951 mile barrier on the U.S./Mexican Border, 75 miles of which rest on Tohono O'odham Nation southern boundary. In my introductory analysis, I feel the need to state the history and connection the O'odham people have with their ancestral lands, Homeland Security's waiver power on the border and stricter policies and how such power has lead to the militarization of O'odham Jev'ed (O'odham lands). DHS power to waive existing laws to ensure the border wall will have negative implications on all Indigenous Nations whose land is separated by the U.S./Mexican Border and represents the continuation, of the colonization of Indigenous people and land in the 21st Century.

The Notion of Sovereignty is not one that is western, and predates the colonizers.

Cobb 6 (Amanda J Cobb, June 2006, American Studies Journal, Kansas University, pp. 118-119, Accessed 7/19/15, CH

At base, sovereignty is a nation's power to self-govern, to determine its own way of life, and to live that life—to whatever extent possible—free from interference. This is no different for tribal sovereignty, which by and large shares the attributes and characteristics of sovereignty as contextualized above. Native nations are culturally distinct peoples with recognizable governments and, in most cases, recognizable and defined territories. The sovereignty of Native nations is inherent and ancient. For Native nations within the boundaries of the United States, the underscoring of the inherent nature of sovereignty is critical because of the colonial process—a process that continues to dramatically diminish our ability to fully exercise tribal sovereignty. As David Wilkins (Lumbee) and K. Tsianina Lomawaima (Creek/Cherokee) have argued, "Tribes existed before the United States of America, so theirs is a more mature sovereignty, predating the Constitution; in that sense, tribal sovereignty exists 'outside' the Constitution."15 Kidwell and Velie agree that sovereignty "is held to be an inherent right" but emphasize that "its political effect depends upon its recognition by other sovereigns."16 Inherency and recognition are characteristics of sovereignty for all nations; however, the recognition and respect necessary to exercise sovereignty fully has not been consistently accorded Native nations by other sovereigns, particularly the United States. In fact, "[f]rom 1775 to the present, federal and state intentions toward tribes have changed direction in various ways. One could argue that indeterminacy or inconsistency is the hallmark of the tribal federal relationship."17 Because of this inconsistency, Native nations must constantly endeavor to exercise their sovereignty "under negotiation with states, in federal courts, and with the Congress of the United States."18 That dynamic is virtually inescapable for tribal peoples on one level or another. The recognition and exercise of tribal sovereignty is complicated by the power imbalance between the United States and Native nations. The American nation-state is so powerful, so hegemonic, that its cloak of sovereignty becomes almost invisible. The United States is so used to looking through the lens of its own powerful sovereignty—and, importantly, to having that image reflected back to it by other nations—that the United States, including its citizens, too often cannot recognize that what is looked through is merely a lens. Too often, the United States falls into the trap of mistaking that lens for its eye. As Alfred has pointed out, "the Western view of power and human relationships is so thoroughly entrenched that it appears valid, objective, and natural."19 In other words, United States sovereignty has become normalized to such an extent that it rarely questions or is even conscious of any limit to its own sovereign power

The militarization of the border is a colonialist intrusion that infringes on native sovereignty

Rivas, 6(Ofelia, Tohono born and activist fighting for cultural freedom, Immigration, Imperialism and Cultural Genocide: An interview with O’odham Activist Ofelia Rivas concerning the effects of a proposed wall on the US / Mexico border, The Solidarity Project, interviewed by Jeff Hendrix,, Accessed 7/15/15) CH

Imperialism – lately this word has been re-entering debate and speech around the country. For the most part, these days, the word imperialism is being used to describe the actions of the United States government as it seeks to gain control over Middle Eastern governments and economies. The continuing occupation of Iraq by the United States is the best example of this neo-imperialism. But imperialism is not limited to lands across the oceans, and the United States government is currently engaged in the occupation of lands much closer to home. We must never forget that the very lands claimed by the government of the United States in North America are claimed by nothing other than the right of conquest. The United States government is a government of occupation here in North America and the lands that it continues to claim and occupy are in spirit still the autonomous territories of the indigenous tribes that existed here before the first European colonists stepped foot on the continent. Since 9/11 the United States government has ratcheted up its attacks against the indigenous residents of the United States. In southern Arizona, these attacks have come in the guise of borderland defense. The traditional O’odham residents of southern Arizona have become the victims of a joint program carried out by the Department of Homeland Security and the Border Patrol to build a border wall across the entire 330 mile U.S / Mexico border, a 65 mile section of which will run along the southern edge of the Tohono O’odham reservation. This wall, if it is allowed to be built, will effectively cut in half the traditional territory of the O’odham and serve to disrupt traditional migration patterns and isolate O’odham villages that exist on opposite sides of the international border. To justify the building of this wall the government has once again used the fear of terrorism, as has become common since 9/11, to advance its fascistic imperialist interests. In a Time Magazine article dated September 20, 2004, entitled “Who left the door open” one can find a perfect example of the fear mongering about “terrorist threats” being used by the corporate media and government to justify the militarization of the border zone and the building of a border wall. Although the Time article does not specifically mention the proposed wall, it does mention the Tohono O’odham nation as being a specific weak spot in the border defense. The article states that “Law enforcement authorities believe the mass movement of illegals, wherever they are from, offers the perfect cover for terrorists seeking to enter the U.S…” Even the 9/11 commission chimes in on this absurd talking point in its report stating that: “two systemic weaknesses came together in our border system's inability to contribute to an effective defense against the 9/11 attacks: a lack of well-developed counter terrorism measures as a part of border security and an immigration system not able to deliver on 1 its basic commitments, much less support counter terrorism. These weaknesses have been reduced but are far from being overcome.” This last statement is especially ridiculous considering that none of the accused 9/11 hijackers crossed into the United States through its border with Mexico. Despite such evident absurdity, the government obviously feels that it can count on the ignorance and apathy of the American public to give it free reign as it moves to completely seal the border between the United States and Mexico. In fact, it seems that a small minority of deluded and frightened residents of this country have fallen for the government campaign of terrorist fear mongering and economic scapegoating of immigrants. The visible rise of racist vigilante groups such as the Minute Man project and Save our State are part of the very dangerous right wing consolidation of power taking place here in North America. It is essential for every resident of this land who does not agree with the racist nationalism being forced upon us in this country to rise up and stop this tide of fear based fascism before it is consolidated. Hundreds of thousands of migrants from the south have risen in a nationwide movement to resist this new wave of racism and fascistic demagoguery – now it is essential that the rest of us join them to resist the militarization of the U.S./Mexico border. It should go without saying that given the current trajectory of the Bush regime, a sealed border should be of grave concern to anyone living in North America – don’t forget that a sealed border can serve to keep people in just as well as it can serve to keep others out!
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