NEWS SAFE SPACES As locals reel from election, South County leaders extend supportive hand to immigrants BY CALVIN MEN
WALL FEARS Trump’s pledge to build a wall along the Mexican border and deport millions of undocumented immigrants has definitely hit home in Santa Cruz County. Though the county is still predominantly white, Latinos are the second-largest group, making up a third of the county’s population. The Migration Policy Institute estimates that there are 20,000 undocumented immigrants in Santa Cruz County and more than 3 million statewide. Immigration experts say it’s too early to know what Trump would do >14
BANKS GIVING A thousand people gathered by the Missouri River on Thanksgiving, honoring native ancestors at a
burial ground as armored guards watched from above. PHOTO: LEONIE SHERMAN
Standing Their Ground Indigenous people speak out on Standing Rock BY LEONIE SHERMAN
omorrow, only fasting and praying to stop the pipeline!” declares Dorothy Sun Bear, the night before a national holiday that’s been celebrated with feasting since the Civil War. As she rises to leave the warmth of the Oglala Wounded Knee Dining Hall, half a mile north of the Standing Rock Reservation, 50 eyes turn to her and the bustling army tent falls silent. “We don’t have nothing to be thankful for! They’re still stealing our land, they’re still digging up our ancestors!” Sun Bear spits the words in disgust. “And we’re still fighting
like we have been for 500 years.” Sun Bear, a Lakota woman from Wounded Knee on the Pine Ridge Reservation, saw a video of a grandma getting tackled by Morton County sheriff’s deputies four months ago. The woman was resisting construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), where it was slated to cross the Missouri River. A spill, rupture or leak—there have been 3,300 such incidents nationwide in the past six years— would pollute the drinking water for her relatives on the Standing Rock reservation in North Dakota and for 18 million people living downstream.
“I had to come here to defend her,” explains Sun Bear on Wednesday, Nov. 23. She brought six of her children and grandchildren. “We’re staying until the end, until we win. Then we’ll celebrate Thanksgiving.” On Nov. 24, Oceti Sakowin, the main camp, swells to an estimated 10,000 people. “I think that one of the reasons people are coming here is because Donald Trump got elected,” says Madonna Thunderhawk, a Cheyenne-River Sioux who has been living at camp with her daughter and son-in-law since August. “I mean, where else can you go in this country right now to experience any >12
SANTACRUZ.COM | GOODTIMES.SC | NOVEMBER 30-DECEMBER 6, 2016
At Cabrillo College, anxiety in the November election’s aftermath feels subtle but palpable. A sandwich board in front of the Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) office features a flyer calling out to students that are immigrants, LGBTQ, Muslim, women and others feeling unsafe in the weeks after the election of Donald Trump. “Please know that EOPS will continue to offer each and every one of you a SAFE space to express your fears and anxiety in these times of uncertainty,” it reads. Students walking into the office are met with two stacks of flyers: one advertising counseling programs and healing circles, the other listing the phone numbers of immigration lawyers. Brando Marin, a 24-year-old Cabrillo College student and Watsonville resident, remembers peers expressing their fears in class. One friend talked about her son—who is half black, half white—and how he might be affected by stories of aggression against people of color following the election. Others talked about the uncertainty of what Trump, a candidate who boasted about his draconian immigration plans, will and won’t follow through with. “Right now, it’s a time where people are getting informed. They’re acknowledging what’s happened,” says Marin, whose uncle, a fieldworker, has been joking with his co-workers that their deportation is imminent. The election results brought a wave of anti-immigrant sentiment, prompted protests against president-elect Trump and created anxiety across the nation. But they’ve also brought out a network of support.