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Mitakuye Oyasin: all my relations

Another weekend edition of Indian Country Today!
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The Lakota have a saying: Mitakuye Oyasin. Roughly translated it means “all my relations”. Not just our relations to each other, but to our place in the world, We are all interconnected. This week, we hear from people who honor this relationship: a rocket scientist, a health researcher, a chef, and elders in love. All are passionate people.

A slice of our Indigenous world

  • The Biden administration's pandemic plan now includes 20 billion dollars for tribal governments. Proposed is that tribes will evenly split 1 billion of the funding. A formula from the U.S. Department of Treasury will be used to help divide the rest.
  • The Centers for Disease Control is releasing new research which says wearing two masks offers more protection against the coronavirus. Those findings prompted new guidance on how to improve mask fit at a time of concern over fast-spreading variants of the virus.
  • In much of the U-S healthcare workers are involved in a delicate dance--making sure they defrost Covid vaccines at just the right time so the serum doesn’t get too warm, rendering it useless before it can be used. But in Alaska, those in healthcare are facing the opposite problem.
  • Tribes in the state of Alaska are applying for F.C.C. broadband licenses to improve their access to the internet. The licenses are part of a federal push to improve internet access in traditionally underserved communities.

You can find more details on all these stories at the top of today's newscast.

Some quotes from today's show

Aaron Yazzie | Diné, Mechanical Engineer, NASA Pasadena, California

Aaron Yazzie | Diné, Mechanical Engineer, NASA Pasadena, California

"Mars is one of Earth's closest cousins, relatives. They're both rocky planets. We call them terrestrial planets. And what that basically means is that the internal makeup of both the plants are very similar in the way that they developed over billions of years. So that means that they have a core, a mantle across, and the way that landforms and the, the surface of Mars was shaped is basically the same forces that shaped the way that earth looks. So they have a Mars quakes, just like we have earthquakes."

Abigail Echo-Hawk, Pawnee | Nation of Oklahoma Chief Research Officer, Seattle Indian Health Board Seattle, WA

Abigail Echo-Hawk, Pawnee | Nation of Oklahoma Chief Research Officer, Seattle Indian Health Board Seattle, WA

“We have a system in place and as public health communities, I keep telling all of my friends in the state and federal levels like you should have asked an Indian. I had to do this a long time ago. We know what it means to communicate to our communities. We know who our priority people are. We're always going to take care of our elders and youth. We know how to reach them.”

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Sean Sherman | Oglala, Sicangu The Sioux Chef Minneapolis, MN

Sean Sherman | Oglala, Sicangu The Sioux Chef Minneapolis, MN

“Food is the center of so much and we need to protect that. If we can get a control of where our food comes from, especially as tribal communities, if we can start creating food for ourselves, then we can truly create and have so much power to control our own destinies. Because food carries that power and food carries these wonderful stories that our ancestors have passed down and we need to preserve those.”

Elders in love

George McCauley (Omaha), Sandy White Hawk (Sicangu)

George McCauley (Omaha), Sandy White Hawk (Sicangu)

Sandy White Hawk | Sicangu Lakota
Shakopee, MN

“So many nights we've gone to bed and I've said, baby, are we fortunate and blessed to be a couple that enjoys each other's company every day, all day long. And I even have thought to myself, are we what they call enmeshed solely meshed that we don't even know we should be sick of each other. But I think we worked so hard to be where we are that we enjoy every moment.”

George McCauley | Omaha Tribe of Nebraska
Shakopee, MN

“We're so different. She's an extrovert, I'm an introvert. She used to drink Pepsi. I drink Coke. She has a PC laptop, I got an iMac. She’s on the East side of the house. I'm on the West side of the house. So many different things, but it works.”

Mark Trahant, Shoshone-Bannock, is editor of Indian Country Today. On Twitter: @TrahantReports Trahant is based in Phoenix.

Shirley Sneve, Sicangu Lakota, is a producer for Indian Country Today. On Twitter: @RosebudShirley. Sneve is based in Lincoln, Nebraska.

R. Vincent Moniz, Jr., NuEta, is a producer for Indian Country Today. On social media: find him if you dare. Moniz is based on the moon.

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