Sorry about the lame title. I wanted to rhyme thirty with my cause (the Earth) and that was the sad attempt.
On October 14th, I enter into the third decade of my life. To celebrate, I am camping out in the desert amidst stunning red mesas on Jicarilla Apache, or Haisndayin (the people who came from below), land now owned by Ghost Ranch, a retreat center.
Also on October 14th, it is Indigenous People's Day, officially adopted by the state of New Mexico this year! Indigenous People's Day is a holiday that celebrates and honors Native Americans and commemorates their shared history and culture. It began as a counter-celebration held on the same day as the U.S. federal holiday Columbus Day which honors Italian explorer Christopher Columbus - because I mean, he was glorified for getting lost and bringing disease, violence, and destruction to the hemisphere... meh...
Fun fact, in 1989, the year I was born, South Dakota established Native American Day in the state legislature at the urging of Governor George S. Mickelson. Governor Mickelson signed a resolution calling for the second Monday of each October to be Native American Day.
In honor of this day, I am raising funds for the Indigenous Environmental Network. The IEN is an alliance of Indigenous peoples whose mission it is to protect the sacredness of Earth Mother from contamination and exploitation by strengthening, maintaining and respecting Indigenous teachings and natural laws. Given our current climate crisis, the fear of children everywhere wondering about their futures, and my work as a youth and environmental minister, this organization touches me personally and I applaud and honor the work they are doing. Please consider donating to them this Indigenous People's Day (which happens to also be my birthday).