I went to Santa Fe, NM this week for a US Climate Action Network conference. During the conference we covered decolonization and how Santa Fe/NM has been stolen from Indigenous, first by Spaniards and then by Americans. Several of us decided to attend a rally in opposition to re-erecting a statue of Juan de Onate, a particularly odious Spanish Conquistador who massacred an entire pueblo and cut off the right foot of every able bodied male Native. His statue was taken down in 2020 by Indigenous activists but the county of Rio Arriba was supposed to take up, on 9/28/2023, an agenda item of re-erecting the statue. We USCAN folk, including my friend Jacob Johns who is Indigenous, showed up to support. It was a lovely, peaceful, prayerful rally. (The county shut down its building and kicked the agenda item over a week.)
For two hours I observed a Trumper in a MAGA hat harass, troll, and disrupt the rally. Toward the end of the rally, the speaker asked for all the children to gather. At that point the Trumper tried to charge the group. A scuffle broke out; they pushed him back behind a low stone wall; he jumped over the wall, pulled out a gun, and shot. My friend Jacob took a bullet to the chest, likely intended for the children.
Jacob was rushed by ambulance to a local hospital and airlifted to Albuquerque. He had his spleen removed, but he's young and strong with the heart of a warrior and was in stable condition undergoing surgery last I heard yesterday.
The Trumper was arrested and charged with attempted murder. We all gave statements to detectives, and one of my twitter pix is evidence showing that the Trumper was harassing us for two hours. (Twitter thread here
USCAN is working with local Indigenous groups to amplify their voices, make sure this statue doesn't go up again, and bring the shooter to justice. I will have an additional ask in the coming days; this is an AND, not an OR request. Thank you.