(Blogger's Note: I am honored that Queen Yonasda, a woman whom I greatly admire, has invited me to be apart of this Hip-Hop 4 Pine Ridge mission. Here is the official press release.)
Hip Hop 4 Pine Ridge in association with the Indigenous Nations Alliance - Millions More Movement and Kings N Queenz LLC is the vision of artist, activist, and Lakota tribe member Queen Yonasda Lonewolf. The project gathers a delegation of influential artists, community leaders, activists, land developers, spiritual leaders, and members of the press on a journey to the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota to understand the conditions in which Indigenous Americans, our First Americans are living in.
Hip Hop 4 Pine Ridge will take place in Pine Ridge, South Dakota from January 26-31, 2012. Sponsored by The Hip Hop Caucus, Wiconi Wakan Organization, Oglala Lakota Tribe, Indigenous Nations Alliance - MMM, Boston Anonymous Organization, and the Def Def Boutique, the trip will include visits with the local schools and colleges, community members and the children’s shelter. A warrior tribe, the Lakota people are descendants of Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse and Red Cloud and the delegation will visit the battle ground of Wounded Knee and the Crazy Horse monument. The group will also attend a traditional sweat lodge ceremony. In addition, the delegation will meet with tribal government and elders to gain understanding of the specific issues that are plaguing the Lakota tribe and determine solutions and a course of action.
Confirmed participants are hip-hop artist Cormega, Captain Dennis Muhammad and the Peacekeepers, Hakim Green, Malik Yusef, DJ Young Native, Kenny Muhammad “The Human Orchestra”, Jesse Muhammad, Toussaint and Reverend Yearwood’s Hip Hop Caucus.
The entire journey will be filmed for a documentary by Iftii Productions in which a portion of the proceeds will go towards the Hip Hop 4 Pine Ridge project.
Queen Yonasda Lonewolf has made it her mission to bring awareness to the injustices that people of color face, especially indigenous people. After a successful 32 city fundraising event called “Hip Hop 4 Haiti” and participation in Martin Luther King III’s poverty tour to several Native communities, including Pine Ridge, Queen Yonasda began to conceptualize Hip Hop 4 Pine Ridge. When visiting Pine Ridge, MLK III stated that "I been to many poor communities in Africa and Pine Ridge is in a far more worst condition and I can't believe its here in our backyard."
Pine Ridge is one of the poorest communities in the United States with many living below the poverty line. Struggling with 85% unemployment, Pine Ridge does not receive any government aid for basic necessities, because their land is sovereign land outside of the U.S. jurisdiction. Living in dire conditions, our indigenous people are secluded on reservations, far from the eyes of the average American. Hip Hop 4 Pine Ridge aims illuminate their plight and to help find solutions through the cooperative collaboration of the Lakota tribe and the hip-hop community.
“The reason why I'm doing "Rez Tours" is because we must learn how to go back to our Indigenous roots; red, black , yellow, white & brown! Especially in these times, we must learn from Indigenous people how to heal and live on Mother Earth because the same planet we are destroying, will destroy us!!” - Queen Yonasda Lonewolf
(From Queen Yonasda Lonewolf via Marcy S. DePina(917) 664-7948 / firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information visit www.indigenousnation.org and / or contact email@example.com)