Saturday, October 4, 2008
Bear Butte, SD A SACRED Site That Needs YOUR Help
Our friend Tamra Brennan, of NDNews has been working for years along with many other to protect the Bear Butte sacred site in South Dakota. Maybe the MONGOLS and Doc Cavasos can take the lead with bikers on protecting this site This article on the struggle has many comments from Tamra, who has been so supportive of the disenrolled people of California. Remember her emails to Pechanga cousins Victor Rocha and Mark Macarro, that we wrote about HERE? There are people who are working to protect Bear Butte, but their efforts could be described as loosely organized.Among them is Tamra Brennan, who lives near Bear Butte and identifies herself as a Cherokee tribal member. She runs Protect Bear Butte, an offshoot of Protect Sacred Sites. Both organizations are grassroots in nature and lack official nonprofit status.Protect Bear Butte's activism has so far taken the form of public information campaigns. Group members e-mailed thousands of bikers prior to this year's Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and handed out fliers at the event. The intent was to educate bikers about the sacred nature of the mountain."All we're asking is if bikers come to the area, please use some respect," Brennan said.Brennan also has argued against development near Bear Butte, including plans for bars or other biker-focused businesses in the mountain's immediate vicinity. She and others fear, however, that the privately owned land around Bear Butte could be sold at any time and converted to any use."We could have another 'World's Largest Biker Bar' directly across from Bear Butte, or even at the base of Bear Butte," Brennan said. Brennan said she has hiked to the top of Bear Butte many times. She thinks that if everybody involved in the debates about development around Bear Butte would take time to make the hike, the mountain would win them over."It's a very powerful and spiritual place," she said. "Anybody that doesn't feel that, it just doesn't make any sense."Rep. Olson, who opposed the easement, has been to the summit. She thinks the mountain is worth protecting, but said it is sufficiently protected by the park designation. "There's nobody who's going to be digging a hole in the top of it or trying to tear it down or anything." Both of Tamra's sites are linked on my right column. Please take the time to check them out.