We are a Nation in a crisis. The Seneca Nation is in the crosshairs of the US and NY State again.
Over the past 10 years, the State of New York and Phillip Morris have worked hard to pass a bill that will attack and erode the sovereignty of the Seneca Nation. Over the course of this decade our Councillors and Presidents have insisted that the passage of such legislation will be a violation of our Treaties, deny the Seneca Nation a legitimate revenue source, and devastate our economy. In spite of these efforts, the US has passed the PACT Act, and now there is no doubt that the enforcement of it is a Treaty violation, criminalizes our people, will eliminate funds needed for legitimate Seneca programs, and eliminate over 60% of commerce occurring on our territories.
The passage and implementation of the PACT Act has targeted the Seneca Nation economy, and the passage of this Act has been at the behest of the State of New York. Just as New York pressured all credit card companies and carriers like UPS, FED EX, and DHL from freely interacting with our Nation's economy, now New York State is preparing to implement a plan that will force every Seneca to pay NY State taxes. A report issued on June 10th, 2010 states clearly that the Treaties between the US and Seneca do not preclude the State of New York from collecting taxes on everything but "land".
New York State will implement this plan on September 1st, and they are planning on the implementation of the PACT Act as a measure that will destabilize our Nation--weakening our ability to use resources to defend our economy and preserve our culture. Clearly, our deadliest political enemy is our neighbor: New York State.
These facts are clearly known, so the question is what can we do about it? One option is to do nothing and simply allow the US and NY State to slowly eliminate and terminate our Nation. This option would show that the Seneca Nation agrees with NY State politicians that Senecas are "terrorists", "smugglers", "criminals", and that our economic activities are "illegitimate." More importantly, doing nothing would in essence show our acceptance of the colonial control of our destiny and our submission to the law of perpetual genocide. The PACT Act is not unique; the PACT Act is only the most recent example of colonial control by the US and NY State. The passage of this act now joins other historical events like the construction of Kinzua, I-90, I-86, Salamanca Lease, Thomas Indian School, forced relocation, compromised Treaties, land theft, Sullivan's Campaign, and the countless other colonial measures that sought to eliminate our "free use and enjoyment" of our lands.
Another option is to resist and refuse to accept NY State politicians' determining our future. Didn't we tell the US and the State of New York, "Never Again" after they flooded 1/3rd of our Allegany Territory? Isn't this why we protested NY State's invasion of our lands in 1992 and 1997. This was a time when peaceful protests on our lands were met with several thousand NY State shock troopers. Less than 20 years ago, the defense of our territories by Seneca Warriors effectively resisted the two month long NY State Trooper occupation of I-90 and I-86.
As in 1992 and 1997, the Seneca Nation in resisting the PACT Act has used every method available and like other times in our history, these efforts have fallen short. And like times in our history, the defense of the Seneca people and Nation rests in the abilities, fearlessness and strong will of Seneca Warriors to stand up and resist.
Resisting New York State has been an activity that has consumed our resources since the 1600's.
Resisting New York State this time mandates that we also resist the passage of a New York inspired law from the US. Make no mistake, NY State takes pride in proclaiming that they are behind the PACT Act.
While the United States Postal Service stance is they are simply "following orders" of the US Congress. The US Congress and US leaders have insisted that this law does not impede on the sovereignty of the Seneca Nation. Yet how do these US leaders explain away that the "main sponsor" of the PACT Act is from New York State: Anthony Weiner - US Congressman from NY? They cannot. We need to prove to the world that these people are anti-Indian. This act seeks to profile Seneca people as automatic criminals. The legislators that passed this act have positioned themselves as our enemies with their anti-Indian legislation. When the US Postal Service follows this act they will abide by anti-Indian laws and racially monitor our economic activities.
What do we do to stop New York State? We develop a plan of action to address this issue internationally, nationally, and locally.
We need to make this an international issue. Now is the time to insist that our voices are heard over the din of New York State's greed. The world is on our side, and international media will pay attention. We can get their attention by proving the PACT Act as an attempt by NYS to blockade our economy and this economic blockade must be exposed for what it is: economic terrorism. The perpetrators of these actions will be exposed as anti-Indian, and making this case will be easy in a time when Arizona is suppressing brown people in the South West.
On the national level, any plan must include the formation of a Seneca Nation postal service and the complete elimination of all US postal activities on our Territories--especially all addresses that insist on the colonial occupation of NY. This means that your address will be known as the Cattaragus Territory, SN or Allegany Territory, SN. This will send a clear and precise message to the US and NY State that the Seneca Nation refuses to remain under the passive or active control of the US and NY.
Locally, we need organized and visible protests that include the people of Western New York, during which time we need speeches, signs, and of course the local, regional, national, and international press. Our claims need to make it clear that the PACT Act is imperialism, colonialism, genocide, and the actions of NY State over the past 5 years is tantamount to an economic embargo. These protests need to be on our Territories and we need to say under no uncertain terms will we turn our people into criminals, nor will we allow outside colonial agencies to use evidence gained through racial profiling to come onto our territories to arrest and criminalize Seneca people.
Seneca Warriors are here to defend this Nation during times when America's colonial experiment enters the realm of outright oppression. Now is the time.