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Commentaries and editorials

Lower Snake River Dams:
Tired of Broken Treaties

by Robb Krehbiel
Seattle Times, May 28, 2021

Graphic: Snake River Steelhead have triggered the Early Warning Indicator of the Federal Columbia River Power System's 2014 Supplemental Biological Opinion Re: "Northwest tribes unite over GOP congressman’s pitch to breach Lower Snake River dams" [May 27, Environment]:

It is astonishing how many times over the last few weeks Democratic leaders in Washington state have turned their backs on tribal governments and Indigenous people in the Northwest.

Gov. Jay Inslee and U.S. Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell voiced their public opposition to a bipartisan Congressional plan that would breach the Lower Snake River dams and invest millions in new infrastructure. Their opposition comes despite united support for this plan from tribal governments across the Pacific Northwest. Then Gov. Inslee vetoed tribal-justice and consent language from the carbon-cap bill that was only passed thanks to the political power of tribes.

I am just a white guy living on occupied Puyallup land, so I don’t feel the impact of these decisions like Indigenous people do, but I am tired of my government continuously breaking treaties, ignoring sovereign nations and perpetuating cultural genocide. I, and many other Democrats in Washington, expect our leaders to honor the promises that were made generations ago to the people who have lived here since time immemorial. If our senators and governor will not do that, then it’s time to elect new leaders who will.

Robb Krehbiel, Tacoma
Lower Snake River Dams: Tired of Broken Treaties
Seattle Times, May 28, 2021

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