From the Organizers:
As a closing event for the ArtRage exhibition of Robert Shetterly’s Americans Who Tell The Truth portraits, we will proudly host a presentation by Oren Lyons.
The law says if you poison the water, you’ll die.
The law says that if you poison the air, you’ll suffer.
The law says if you degrade where you live, you’ll suffer…
If you don’t learn that, you can only suffer.
There’s no discussion with this law. -Oren Lyons
Oren Lyons is a member of the Onondaga and Seneca nations of the Iroquois Confederacy. As an activist for indigenous and environmental justice, Oren works with communities across the globe. As a Faithkeeper, he upholds the history and traditions of the Turtle Clan of the Onondaga and Seneca. Oren often addresses modern-day conflicts by sharing traditional views on the law of nature. When he says “You can’t negotiate with a beetle”*, he implies that nature will respond to climate change whether or not humans do.
Oren’s dedication to the cause of Native and environmental rights has garnered him many accolades, including an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from his alma mater, Syracuse University. Awards include the Rosa Parks Institute for Human Rights Elder and Wiser Award, the Earth Day International Award of the United Nations, the National Audubon Society, and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. Lyons serves on the board of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development and is board chairman of Honoring Contributions in the Governance of American Indian Nations. He is also remembered for his time as a lacrosse player and is Honorary Chairman of the Iroquois Nationals. In 1989 he was named Man of the Year in Lacrosse by the NCAA. His legendary performance as goalkeeper for Syracuse University, with Jim Brown on the undefeated 1957 national champion team, led to the induction of Oren R. Lyons, Jr. into the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame. He was most recently invited to speak at the funeral of Muhammad Ali.
Download the audio at the a-Infos Radio Project.