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Big Mountain News.

Spring 1985 (interview april 84)

My name is Roberta Blackgoat, and I am living in the Executive Order area, where it is called JUA. I live right here in the middle, and the place where I am is my homeland. Actually my old ancestors have been born and been buried in the place where I am. So this is the real deep deep spot where I am, where I shouldn't be able to leave.

The main thing that is more important to us, my own family used to teach us that this Executive Order is the place where we had the room for the medicine. A Medicine Man was to sit on the south side - the point of the Executive Order - and on the north side, on the corner, there is a patient, a patient should be laying or sitting. And right in the middle is where the medicine that has to be used is placed. And this is the main point. All these people that live there, whatever the tribe, to them it is more sacred. Even our Hopi brothers and sisters are living there. We had no feeling of fighting one another. This is the real special point for my talks, that I had my old ancestors living in the Hopi villages, and buried on the Hopi side of the village. And so intermarriage is most important to us. How are they going to divide the blood back? Back to the fathers side or whatever?

Long before, my great ancestors had some medicine which is called the Sacred Bundle. This is holding part of New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and Colorado, which is Mountain Blanca, Mountain Taylor, the San Francisco Peaks and mountain Hesperus. If you make a circle, then it is going to be a room of this Hogan. And right close to San Francisco Peaks is the place where Executive Order is, this is what I mean. Now inside is the room, we are not allowed to have it bounce. The sacred bundle that we have earned isn't supposed to bounce, even from this far down. And yet all these sacred mountains are bouncing already. Mountain Taylor has uranium mining going on and it is bouncing. Whatever they had down in those mines..... exploding things .... that is where it is bouncing. And also San Francisco Peaks is all scraped on one side and had a big scar, which is called Snow Bowl. And so this was really sacred mountains to us according to our prayers and our songs. And now all these altar spots are ruining, and also Mounain Hesperus, they had oil drilling, pumping and also a lot of other things has been going on. So this is the one main point, I have been having a big concern on that. The whole space is set with coal underneath, and thats what is really being wanted, so that's the place where they really want to destroy.

So we really wanted to know what are they going to do with the winged people. Are they going to relocate them too? And also the animals in the mountains, people that crawls in the ground, what are they going to do? Are they going to relocate these people too? They're people too. We are living with them. And also the plants. We have some for the food, and some for the medecine, and yet they are going to destroy all these things. That is more important to us.

We don't know what they are going to do next. It's hard to really teach somebody else to have the land be alive - it is alive. If it wakes up and then, maybe if it be prayed to, or our heavenly father wanted to have rain on our Mother Earth, and then if it does, then the grass starts waking up, starts growing, and then you could hear the wind whispering in the trees, the plants and everything, they are talking to each other. And also, Mother Earth is talking to our heavenly father, they talk to each other, to have all these ground people, the plants and everything that living on the ground start talking to each other, and start growing. That is how we are, we are like plants.

So this is one main point. According to our people that uses our prayers, they pray to Mother Earth, and to heavenly father and right there in between, right where we live and we walk, we sit and sleep. We are on our Mother Earth's lap, right in her hands, she is holding us, she is protecting us and then we have our fresh air from heavenly father.... He and She arrange how to control the humans and every living thing that had a feeling and that had hearts in them. They are both holding us, watching over us and trying to protect us where we are. We wanted to pass it on, and have our youngsters, and on to generation to generation. We have been taught what to take care of and to have and how to raise animals and so forth, and it has been taught from heaven. We are not talking for ourselves. He made us like that, and so we can't be proud and say 'Idid this myself and I am going to be more stronger'. I can't say I'm above my heavenly father or my heavenly Mother Earth, see? So we can't say we made anything in our own ways, you know, to be strong, get rich, make a living.

Anything that is being dug up from the ground is our Mother earths body, all the streams that are underneath are her veins, and also the liver is the coal, and uranium is the lung to breathe in. Now they are hurting the lung over on that side, and hurting the liver (mining the uranium and coal). So if she's in pain, what is she going to do? If she shakes and starts turning, that is going to be it. No-one is going to be alive and having money in his pocket, nobody is going to do this. She rolls herself like that, then it is going to be the end of every living thing. That is what they are really rushing into to it.

So mainly, these four sacred mountains are more important - to us, we wante to have it known and wanted to have it back to us, and have it more peaceful again. That is what we really wanted, and to have our youngsters use it and live on there, and all these living people that live in the ground and living on the trees, in the mountain and all the springs. We need it to be nature again. We really want to have our holy Altar again, because we pray to the springs, and to the mountain and to the rocks, trees and that nice prairie place. We have been offering all those to be peaceful. Now they are destroying everything. That is what we have been trying to fight for, our Mother Earth, in every way we can to make these people understand.

We seen some maps, right in the back of my hogan there is, I traced it, a point for a strip mine right there. And that is where they wanted to make a windmill. And I said, no way, it is not going to be for me, it is going to be for coal. I know, I've seen the map already. So they took the eqipment back. They tried to call the police, and they tried to call their bosses, but I said your boss and your policeman aren't born here, I am born here so I can't leave. All my ancestors are buried here and there, and I am not able to move. I don't want these skeletons to be in some museum.


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