Sacred water for the Ojibway: Stopping Dump Site 41

Photos and Narrative by Danny Beaton
Turtle Clan, Mohawk Nation 6-09

On a clover field in Tiny Township Ontario, Canada, across the road from where the County of Simcoe is now in the process of draining and raping some of the world’s purist water on Mother Earth, is the Protest Camp set up by five Native women against what is known as Dump Site 41.

Local farmers, fishermen, Native, and non-Native citizens, organized as “Citizens for Safe Water,” are trying to convince Honorable Dalton McGuinty and Minister of the Environment John Gerretsen or any one else who will help to STOP Dump Site 41.

Scientist William Shotyk, a geochemistry professor at the University of Heidelberg in Germany states, “It’s the best water on Earth. This is an area of artesian wells, where water frequently rises out of the ground under its own pressure.”

“This is kind of like the old growth forest of natural water,s” Shotyk was quoted saying in a Globe and Mail article by reporter Martin Mittelseadton Dec. 16, 2006, “Earths cleanest water creates thorny issue.”

The machines are roaring and clanking away in the distance as I sit on a pine stump in the clover field across from Dump Site 41, writing.

We had just finished a traditional ceremony at our Sacred Fire which was lead by Leon King, brother of Spiritual Elder, Gloria King, of Beausolei Island, First Nation, across from Cedar Point Sacred Ojibway Territory, for thousands of years.

As a Mohawk I have witnessed and experienced the healing of the land after feasting on lake trout, white fish, fresh strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, venison, corn soup and the power of mineral waters from the Alliston Aquifer; which clean and rejuvenates our wounded bodies from Western Diets.

Henry Lickers, Environmental Science Officer for the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne, says the Alliston Aquifer appears to be one of the most pristine water sources in Ontario, Canada. Protected over centuries by forests and natural occurring barriers; this aquifer has survived in this time of industrialization and massive resource utilization.

The building of a landfill site on this aquifer does not make ethical sense.

Money, politics and waste are poor substitutes for pristine water, health, and clean environments. I hope that the Ontario and Canadian governments are extracting very large long term liability insurances for this site, since the clean up cost will be enormous, when the barriers fail. The building of Dump Site 41 on this Sacred Alliston Aquifer is short sighted, foolish and irresponsible.

Wilmer Nadjiwon of Cape Croker, Georgian Bay, understands the Sacredness of the Waters because his nation survived from the resource of the fish for their very existence.

The biggest concern is that the Dump Site 41 is so close to the creeks which run into the rivers which run into Georgian Bay. This should be of the interest of every Canadian that depends on Georgian Bay – for their drinking water, for their livelihood through sports and tourism activities, for fishing opportunities, and for inspiration to clear thinking about what is really important for our welfare on this Sacred Mother Earth.

Our children deserve to have a good life for their children and their children,                       

Clean water Is LIFE!

Gloria King: Speaks Out For Mother Earth:

“My birth place was Midland, Ontario; my parents were Wilson King and Lavina Sylvester. My Dad never had a middle name, he was Podawadami and my Mom was Ojibway. We come from Christian Island; originally my Dad and his family came from around Wisconsin area where the red dirt is. I am here because I come to do Water Ceremonies with the women here; this is my role as an Anishnabia Kwe to speak for the water and pray for the water. I was told that when I pray for the water it turns to medicine.

“I really love what my niece Vicky Monague is doing here to stop the dump site. I taught her how to care for the Water and Mother Earth. The people who are coming here to join us all care about what is happening, they are coming to protect Mother Earth from harm. When the people first came here they were not at all happy, but all through the Sacred Fire and our ceremonies with our Sacred Teachings that we shared, are changing them into happy people; the youth are changing, you can see a difference. They are looking shinier, they are looking shinier than I’ve ever seen them

“I am very proud of our youth. I am happy they are here helping our camp, helping with fire keeping, helping with all the chores of making this camp work. I am happy that they can help us protect Mother Earth.

“When I was young we grew up surrounded by water. We would go down to what was known as “Douglas Lake” and we would swim all day. Soon as we had something to eat we’d be gone all day, we’d be swimming like fish all day long. We knew the lake, but we were surrounded by water, we were able to go to the main village and swim off the dock there. Water has been our Life.

In the old days we could play without worrying about contamination. I truly believe today, if you offer your tobacco the slime on the water will float away; I have seen it with my own eyes. Our ceremonies are very powerful, our people have always maintained them, we respect our medicines, we have a way of life with the Creator and Mother Earth by giving thanks throughout our life time.

“This has been passed on to us from our ancestors. I think about my grandmother; we used to haul water a ways down from the road. My Mom and I would be carrying a big washtub in between us and a pail in each hand beside us to get it to the house so we could do laundry. I truly believe when my grandmother was younger, she would go down to the waters edge, put her dipper in that water and they could drink that water.

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“Today we can’t do that and I’m sorry to see all this happening here. It’s such a beautiful place here; if you would ever look at this area where we are you would find we have valleys here. The land that they want to build the dump site is our home too; it is the home of my ancestors. I hope for myself that this dump site never happens.

“We have been told, by our prophesies, that the water is going to be forever flowing and I believe that. Being a Water Speaker is being able to see that water and we as women can do praying for that water, that the Gift of Life that is going to flow through us. This is not good what is happening here.

“Almost everything we ate when we were little came from the water and the bush; my father used to travel to our three islands here in the winter to feed us. We lived a good life here for many years. The water for us is very important. I myself have diabetes; I need clean water everyday to clean the diabetes out. If I drink our water, it cleans my system out, the more water I drink it cleans me out. Water is my peoples main source as we make a lot of our juices and teas with it.

“Fish is something our people eat a lot of – all the water is so important. Being one who lives by myself, and am getting older, I cannot fish any more; my sons bring me my fish now.

“We have a water treatment plant for many years here but, when I found these surface springs here in Elmvale just across the Bay and down the road the springs I found, I began to pray for that water and when I tasted that water it was so good; it was the most beautiful water that you have ever tasted. There is nothing in it to change it; they never put anything in that water to clean that water.

It is completely natural water from a natural spring with no pump. It’s just pure water; it is medicine for our people.

“If most of our people drank this water, I am sure they would not have much diabetes. This water would clean their system and the sugar would leave their bodies.

“Everything grows with water. If you have a garden you have to spray your plants with water. I believe when the waters come from “Spiming,” up above where the thunders come from.  I believe what it does is, before we come out and walk on Mother Earth the Water comes and purifies Mother Earth before we walk there. The sky, the Manados, cleanses you, the water that comes from there cleans you, purifies you as well as your gardens.

 

“When it rains on us or my girls, I know that the Creator is blessing us, he is blessing us with his water, that is what is happening. Rains clean everything and purify everything when we do our ceremonies; that’s the way I Iook at it, before we step on Mother Earth when we’re doing ceremonies.”

Conclusion by Danny:


We have been camped out across from Dump Site 41 since May 8, 09. We are watching machines rape the most beautiful farmland and water, perhaps in North America, and it hurts us deeply. We have decided to protest peacefully without intimidation or violence. We need support from Native studies and environmental studies, teachers and students, using their computers and networks, to pressure, The Premier of Ontario Honorable Dalton McGuinty. His email address is: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Also contact, the Minister of the Environment of Ontario Mr. John Gerretsen. His email address is: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Anyone willing to help, are of the most important to us. Please Contact National Chief, Phil Fontaine at AFN, to unite all of our chiefs to stop this eco-genocide to the Ojibway people’s homeland.

Or help us by signing online petition at www.dannybeaton.ca there are over 5000 signatures at this time.

Contact Ontario Chief, Angus Touloise, for further strategy, or come and visit our peace protest camp at Elmvale, Township of Tiny, across from Dumpsite 41.

Further information
at ‘Citizens for Safe Water’: Mr. Stephen Ogden: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (705 )322-2398, and

Mr. & Mrs. John and Anne Nahuis
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or

Mrs. Vicki Monague,
Ojibwe, Wolf Clan, Beausolei Island
(705) 247-2636

This is a call for all people of Good Minds, to speak out for our children’s future now. We are all witnessing the mismanagement of our Sacred Mother Earth. We need to organize now with Native spiritual elders, to defend what belongs to our children. It is a crime to rape the Alliston Aquifer and Sacred Surface Springs of Georgian Bay.

Leachate / contamination will seep into the Alliston Aquifer and under to the Laurentian River, travelling along on top McDonald Creek to the Wye River, then into the Georgian Bay. This is hypothetical to government analysts. Our fish, berries, cedars, pine, herbs, and our plants, Sacred Springs will become polluted, possibly our clean air will become toxic, our traditional native diet, is all we have left to heal with will become poisoned, say our elders.

This is why I am here to support my Ojibway relations and relatives to defend our children's’ Water. Please help me, please help us.

Your support is called.

Thank you for listening.
All My Relations

Danny Beaton
www.dannybeaton.ca

 

 

 

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