As indigenous rights get national spotlight, Acjachemen confront long-standing battles in South Orange County

By Allison Jarrell, Eric Heinz and Matt Cortina

The protests at the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in North and South Dakota have brought the rights of indigenous people to the national forefront. As protesters dig in for a long winter of battling the construction of an oil and gas pipeline under their main water source, American Indian tribes across the country are both sending support and people to the demonstrations, and also revisiting and reopening local battles.

There is no shortage of such issues in South Orange County alone for the Juaneño Band of Mission Indians, Acjachemen Nation, which runs from San Diego to Los Angeles. We talked to tribal leaders about current issues the tribe is facing, and also took a trip to Standing Rock to see the parallels between the rhetoric and motivation of indigenous people there and in South Orange County.

We’ve had to sit back and watch our lands … desecrated.”

November 25, 2016 – Click on the link to view the full article in the Capistrano Dispatch: