Mike Wilson: Tohono O’odham Chairman Lacks Moral Authority to Speak Against SB 1070

Mike Wilson and his life saving water

By Mike Wilson, writing for Censored News. Mike is a Tohono O’odham who puts out water for migrants, says Tohono O’odham Chairman Ned Norris has no moral authority to speak on behalf of migrants, since Chairman Norris and other elected O’odham officials encourage the deaths of migrants on a daily basis.

TUCSON — U.S. Congressman Raul Grijalva, Dist. 7, had a protest rally in Tucson against SB 1070 at one of his campaign offices on Saturday morning, April the 24th.

Guess who was the first speaker? Tohono O’odham Nation Chairman Ned Norris, Jr.!

I’m insulted and angry that the Chairman was invited to speak, given the Tohono O’odham Nation’s fatal anti-immigrant history. The Tohono O’odham Nation has a 10 year demonstrated record of allowing hundreds of Indigenous and Latino migrant men, women and children to die by dehydration on tribal lands.

The Tohono O’odham Legislative Council, the Executive Branch, and specifically Baboquivari District, not only do nothing to prevent inevitable migrant deaths, but worse, continue to confiscate and/or destroy my 4 water stations in the Baboquivari District, the deadliest migrant trail in the U.S.

To destroy or remove life-saving water in the Sonora Desert is a deliberate, universal crime against humanity for which the Tohono O’odham Government and its leaders must be held accountable.

I’m curious as to why Congressman Grijalva invited Chairman Norris to speak. Was the invitation an exercise of political favoritism that shows Congressman Grijalva chooses to conveniently ignore the fact that the Tohono O’odham Nation has migrant blood on its hands?

But now, speaking as a Tohono O’odham AND as a registered Democrat, I’m more suspicious than curious as to how much the Tohono O’odham Nation and/or Desert Diamond Casino has or does contribute directly or indirectly to the Democratic Party of Arizona, the Pima County Democratic Party and to Congressman Raul Grijalva’s political campaigns.

I don’t understand why Congressman Grijalva would share the podium and attempt to present Chairman Norris as a friend of immigration, as a champion of human rights and as a distinguished Native spokesperson of the oppressed.

Chairman Norris has no moral authority to speak against SB1070.


Posted on May 15, 2010, in Immigrant Struggles, Indigenous Struggles. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. my apologies for writing somewhat off-subject, but i’ve been wanting to write and thank Mr. Wilson for his and the Tohono O’odham people for distributing water to undocumented travelers who cross their lands. Last year, i received a phone call from someone i knew who was trying to return. he had hurt his foot and couldn’t travel any further. He wanted me to send word to his uncle [a friend and neighbor of mine]. He said he couldn’t go on, and the coyote had leant him the phone to say goodbye. He has never been heard from again. So thank you Mr. Wilson and all Tohono O’odham for having the courage to recognize that we are all people just passing thru somewhere, and we are all equal. In the end, there’s not much else we can be judged by except how we treat our fellow travelers. And you all have a lot to teach us about being human. Thank you.

    pete veilleux
    oakland, ca

%d bloggers like this: