2000? WHAT OR WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR FARM DECLINE?
Issue Number 32
Greetings, Spring is here. The time for hard work is fast approaching. It will be a relief to go out into the wide open spaces, surrounded by the mesas, hills, and mountains after the long winter months. We missed our fields and are anxious to once again work the land and plant. Other people around the country with green thumbs will be turning their best efforts toward self-sufficiency. The right direction, we say. We wish them luck.
Meanwhile we here in Hopi land wonder how our crops will be this year. Will there be enough moisture in the soil to bring the young plants to the surface? Will it rain so the plants will grow strong and healthy for a good harvest? These are our main concerns because we live in an arid land. No matter, Hopi will plant to keep culture and tradition alive. Sadly, up to this time, Hopi life in many ways has been hooked into the materialistic society along with the rest of the Bahanna countries. Those who have adopted materialistic ways desire a hard cash income in order to keep up with the Joneses. This attitude also robs most Hopi of the ambition needed to farm. So also goes the educated Hopi who is not willing to help the traditional Hopi without cash payment. If this situation continues the fields will lie idle when the devoted traditionals pass on.
Most of us don't know how important Winter is in Hopi land. We shiver and complain when our houses fail to warm up the way we want. Perhaps we begin to run short on coal and firewood. Soon we being to complain to the snow clouds to stop dumping snow on us. In this we are acting silly, snow is a must. Without snow the Spring months will be dry and can cause problems in planting. So we were concerned and sad when snow failed to come. This Winter has been mild and Springlike. The fruit trees bloomed a month early, a beautiful sight they were. We had hoped the weather would not turn cold and ruin the fruit. Sadly, we lost out to a more powerful force than man, that is our Mother Nature. We take it as though she has boxed our ears for being deaf to her environmental laws. She has snatched the food from our mouths as punishment. For four days and nights now a freezing cold wind has been beating on our doors and windows.
Most people will not think much about this kind of incident, but to the Hopi this means much in the light of traditional prophecy. For one thing this cold spell could continue late into Spring. This is unusual and would shorten the growing season. It is said we will clear away the snow with our moccasins before we plant and finger sacks (gloves) will be worn. This prophecy may sound impossible, so let us wait and see if Grandpa's prediction will come to pass. The question is: will this occur the world over? This would depend on the geographical areas, in the regions with different climate things will happen in different ways. For instance, tropical land could become a land of ice, the Arctic region could become tropical. This may occur due to a pole shift according to Bahanna's concept. But this need not happen if we, the people, get our leaders to do something about the harmful things being done to the environment.
While we are on this subject, let us review some of the ancient teachings passed on to our ancient fathers from the Great Spirit. These teachings say we were put on this land to protect or defend it from harm so that it will always be here to nourish us. As time passed on things became clearer. The Great Spirit was right when He said we have many evil ambitions in our hearts that we would pursue throughout our long journey through life. At this age one need not go far to see the evidence of this. Some of these ambitions are harmless and others are harmful so the Great Spirit says we must be aware of this and avoid pitfalls.
Now, let Grandpa speak from his knowledge and wisdom and advise us. "What I say will not be my own words. They were passed down to me from my great uncles and grandpas. I hope likewise that when I pass on you will pass my words on to your children and grandchildren so that they will receive and understand as they grow.
"We are heading toward a difficult life. We have hastened our steps and are far ahead of time. I may not be here to share the excitement with you. It saddens me to think we may never recover our normal way of life. I also mean this for people everywhere. I think the world leaders carelessly tangle all the solutions for the betterment of the world in a web, like the spider, and I wonder if mankind will ever untangle the web. This is a sign of danger and I think the world leaders have strayed off the trail to peace. It was said if the leaders come to this point the people themselves are to take steps to shoo them back into the right path like animals. Then the people must awaken the leaders, the people of ability and those marked by greed, pinch their ears and make them open their eyes to the injuries they are doing our Mother Earth. They must be awakened to the consequences of the way they are leading the world's people. We must awaken them so they will cease their activities in developing destructive weapons which can destroy all life on earth. Awaken them to good thoughts of peace, happiness and love so they can be instruments to serve the world with loving kindness. Awaken them to protect and defend the earth, not destroy it, for there is no spare available for replacement. Awaken them to put away all evil thought and greed for this is the enemy of man. Write my words in your hearts so you will not forget."
We think our old Grandpa is great. He knows.
RELOCATION OF THE NAVAJO
The first thing we want to make clear is the definition of Hopi.
The Progressive Hopi Tribal Council is a governing body elected to represent each Hopi Village if that Village chooses to do so under the Constitution by-laws adopted from bahanna.
The Traditional live under or in His ways according to the Divine Laws of the Great Creator. The Traditional Hopi are independent of the progressive Council and do not support the progressives in relocation.
Since the inception of this publication some years ago this paper has never published anything about the Navajo and Hopi dispute over the land to inform the outside world about what is happening between the progressive Hopi and the Navajo. The Editor of this publication found this to be an impossible position to maintain. After a survey among the Hopi leaders and people opinions to support the Navajo problem are mostly negative. A finding that the Hopi should take a position of a "wait and see attitude" and not get involved too deeply. What we have gathered is that there is not really opposition but a sense of a modest way based on the agreement the Navajo and Hopi smoked over long ago which obligated the Navajo to matter they must fulfill. If they have forgotten there are less chances of this being fulfilled.
All in all, once Navajo depart the area the Hopi progressives will take over and the Traditional Hopi will be left out, unless we join in and get a piece of the pie or at least some of the crumbs.
As it has been for past years the editor of this paper has been on the fence in order to avoid unpleasant decisions and stay away from controversy. This also has been due to a lack of understanding of the bahanna ways of political dealing. Also the fear that if once he involves himself he may become the image of a devil's advocate creating a nasty situation for Hopi and himself.
It is not easy keeping up with the relocation problem, however here is the latest news. I will quote some lines hoping it will give some insight for you.
BIA AIMS TO SOFTEN NAVAJO RELOCATION
"The agreement which was signed by BIA and the Relocation Commission put the BIA in charge of the fate of hundreds of Navajo Indians who now face relocation and may mean that none of them will be forced off the land against their will. The immediate objective within the BIA is to try to persuade as best we can the 238 families still on Hopi-partitioned land that we can help them replicate their life style. In Washington, DC Representative Udall, D.-Ariz., introduced a bill that would change the 1974 law that made mass relocation necessary in the first place. The bill, in effect, would nullify the BIA agreement. The bill would require the Navajo to pay the Hopi about $300 million from royalties on coal leases, would allow about 700,000 acres of land be exchanged between the two tribes and would settle all outstanding legal disputes over Navajo and Hopi Tribal Lands. The Hopi Council made no comment.
"A memorandum of understanding signed set up procedures under which the BIA will provide housing and infrastructure for relocatees. Its role in providing those services was mandated by an appropriations bill by Congress. The BIA will take over the controversial job of convincing families that a decent future awaits them if they move. Humanely and sincerely they would work with them and not force anything on them they don't want. No one will be pushed off the land. There are a few older folks who probably will not want to move, but something will be worked out for them, something like leases. But there will be nothing happening on July 6, the deadline set by the Court for relocation. Because of the slow process of relocation it has built up a natural rebellion.
"This may be a bad law. A bright future could await them if they move to the new land. Only 30 families say they will not move. The area has been described by Anti-Relocation Activists as the home of hundreds of Navajos who are determined not to move. We want to start taking people down to the new land and grazing lands, if they agree to go, in two or three weeks we can start building there. But we have to treat these people like human beings. If they want we have to find them good homesites. We think people will be thankful for relocation if we build a home with water and other conveniences that are at least as good. We support the Memorandum of Understanding if the law has to be carried out, that is the way to do it. Too bad that it wasn't done long ago, so all the suffering would not happen."
Now you got the information on relocation of the Navajo straight from the horse's mouth after long months of waiting. Now the question is will the Traditional Navajo fall? If so, brace yourselves for the Traditional Hopi's reaction. Good day.