My name is Sandra Bermudez and I'm writing to thank you for reporting the attack on the Longest walkers in Ohio. I have 4 family members on the Northern route and I was deeply distressed to learn of the attack. I am completely outraged as are many many in this Native American community. My sister Arlene Austin and her two children Keisha and Kolton and my aunt Leona mean very much to us and I will not sit still and have them abused or attacked by anyone. I have sent emails to the Governor of Ohio and all of the Ohio Senators as well as the City of Columbus. I have encouraged everyone I know to do the same. I've also contacted Senator Barack Obama and John McCain since they are both needing the Native American vote. I sent them all copies of the articles concerning the Ohio attack. I have received some replies to look into it further. I called and emailed my state Senators as well. The office of Harry Reid-Speaker of the house took my phone call and was very concerned. I've emailed all the governors and senators of each state that the walkers will be walking through to ask that the walkers not be harassed by local and or state law enforcement for walking through their cities. I am so outraged by this and I am not one to sit silent. I appreciate your reporting and someday hope to meet you in person.
Please let the walkers know that we are praying for them all and that I for one am doing all I can to see that they get safe passage into Washington DC.
Published with permission at Censored News
Dear Brenda ...this is a copy of the letter I sent to the Columbus Dispatch city editor. I hope it helps....Sandra Bermudez
The Ohio Incident
Sunday, June 8, 2008 3:40 AM
From: "Sandy" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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This email is directed to Carol Ann Lease-city editor-Columbus Dispatch...
My name is Sandra Bermudez and I live here in Fallon Nevada. I have 3 family members who are participating in The Longest Walk 2 - A spiritual Walk across America. My sister Arlene and her two young children were among the people attacked by your city police. My young niece and nephew were traumatized by witnessing the attack on fellow walkers. My sister and her children worked for months holding car washes, raffles, bake sales, yard sales and even cleaning out horse stalls after a rodeo to earn the money to participate in this Spiritual Walk because it is a cause they deeply believe in. Are Native American children less important than Ohio children? How are the children involved supposed to view law enforcement now? I am absolutely outraged over this and I am asking why you haven't reported anything about this incident? It is a violation of human rights and I have emailed your State Governor and the Senators of your state as well as every Governor of every state in this country. Is this how Ohio treats visitors? I've also brought this to the attention of Kerry Kennedy at the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Human Rights, Senator Ted Kennedy, Senator Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Senator Barack Obama, John McCain, Senator Hillary Clinton , The National Congress of American Indians, ABC news, The Reno Gazette-Journal, Senator John Kerry, and many many more people. This is a matter that has deeply affected the Native American Community and will not be easily forgotten. You cannot just sweep this under the rug and expect it to just go away. I am calling on the State of Ohio, The City of Columbus and it's police officers involved in the incident to issue a formal apology to the participants of The Longest Walk 2. This is the absolute LEAST that you can do to rectify this matter.
I would appreciate a reply.