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U-S Representative Tom Cole is entering his 15th year in Congress. The Oklahoma Republican is a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, representing his state’s 4th District. We’ll talk to him about where he thinks Native Americans can benefit during the new Donald Trump administration, and what critical Native issues he is working on. We’ll talk with him about health care, economic development, the environment and more. What questions do you have for Congressman Tom Cole?
Tom Cole (Chickasaw Nation) – U.S. Representative from Oklahoma
Break music: Chickasha Alhiha’ (song) Injunuity (artist) Fight For Survival (album)
Michele Gee says
Hello Senator Cole,
My name is Michele Gee I am with Stop Plains Pipeline – Diamond Pipeline LLC I would ask that you express the vital, critical importance of stopping this pipeline from Eminent Domain across Trail of Tears Territory in five locations. Plus what we know, have see and documented is that Pipelines DO leak. Oklahoma needs Clean Energy jobs, Poteau Oklahoma has lost factories. Please bring those jobs here to our small town in LeFlore co. Oklahoma. We have citizens that are ready, and willing to work hard as they have and have been recently ‘laid off’. Let’s shift to Clean Energy before Oklahoma which is Native Land and State since beginning of History, heal herself. Please my three granddaughters 8, 4 and newborn Love this State. Once pipelines are in the ground, they don’t just work all the time, they Leak. We, my grand daughters and I do NOT want them here. Please Stop Plains Pipeline LLC from thrashing across our beautiful native land of Oklahoma. We as the people elected you to stand up for us in Congressional seat in Washington. Say NO to Big Oil. We are Not for Sale.
I will be there Monday to represent my county and my Cherokee people.
Thank you sir and I PRAY you remember who the ‘real natives’ are before the white man got here, but we must live in new times UNITY ..Together we stand for Positive Change for our future generations so they may live in harmony with Mother Earth,
Andrew Martinez (Tohono O’odam, Diegueño, and Yaqui) says
Please see my questions before that I have for Representative Cole:
1. Our tribal cultures have been informed and developed over time by the knowledge of our lands. Since the beginning of colonization to the current day we have witnessed the loss of our lands and subsequently the loss of our cultures. How do our Native nations measure the costs of continued loss of land and culture with the direction that new administration is steering with regard to opening up natural resource reserves for extraction in Indian Country? Who will be responsible for remediation of these extraction sites? I ask this because the land that will be opened up will not be useable for decades, if ever again. Which will have lasting impacts upon our cultures.
2. Also, how can this resource extraction process remain balanced between the tribes that do and those that do not want to take this path? Will our tribes be consulting with the states or the federal government on these projects? So much has happened to our lands, our water ways, our culture, and our people in the past under the term of “progress” for the U.S. The history of Indian Country in the U.S. shows that rising tides do not raise all ships.