Last year’s Idle No More flash mob round dance at Mall of America – PHOTO Courtesy: Dirk Whitebreast
BLOOMINGTON, MINNESOTA — Two Minnesota Idle No More organizers threatened with arrest by the Mall of America, joined by their legal counsel Jordan Kushner, will share the Mall’s response to a letter urging the Mall to work with the women to create a welcoming climate for the round dance, a dance of renewed relationships, deeply connected to Mother Earth, Medicine Waters and in the spirit of all people of all walks of life joining in ONE circle of friendship and peace, and certainly not a protest.
This announcement was released this morning in a news release.
The round dance is planned for 4:00 pm – CST on New Year’s Eve at the Mall of Ameria.
The Idle No More New Years Eve Round Dance is in honor of healing and renewal of relationship between our American Indian communities and in honor of the Dakota 38, Wounded Knee, Chief Theresa Spence, and the four founding women of Idle No More: Nina Waste, Sylvia McAdam, Sheelah Mclean, and Jessica Gordon.
The women reached out to Mall management again Monday, but were refused a meeting with Mall officials one of whom wrote in response to a local attorney insisting the women that a round dance held last year at the MOA was a “… demonstration [that] caused signiﬁcant disruption to our customers, tenants, and employees” and implied the Mall was not “… inhospitable to genuine Native American cultural events…”.
Patricia Shepard (Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation) one of those who received the letter from the Mall, is undeterred.
“The global disconnection and historical pain within our communities and Mother Earth has called for healing, and renewal for the coming New Year, 2014,”states Shepard, adding with respect to Mall management:
“We will be offering these gifts of tobacco, sage, cedar, sage and water to the MOA management team and invite them to join with us in our dance for healing and reconciliation.”
Legal observers from the National Lawyers Guild will also be present.