« You don’t understand why we want to protect our forest? Ask me, I will answer you! Our ancestors were created with it in the beginning of time. Since then, our people have eaten its game and its fruit. We want our children to grow up here laughing. In the past, many of our people perished from your epidemics. Today I refuse to let their children and grandchildren die from the gold smoke! Chase the gold miners out of our home! They are harmful beings whose thought is dark. They are metal eaters covered in deadly xawara epidemic smoke. »
- – Yanomami spokesperson and shaman Davi Kopenawa
30% of what is now recognized as ancestral Indigenous lands are in danger of being «legally» opened to gold mining and other extractive operations as well as logging and industrial agriculture by the Bolsonaro government in Brazil.
Bills under consideration would also allow contact with isolated Indigenous peoples if there is «public utility» and authorize private companies to approach these groups if they are contracted to do so by the Government!
Gold mining and the indiscriminate use of mercury to ferret out gold are turning swaths of the world’s most biodiverse ecosystems into a nightmarish moonscape!
Worldwide, illegal gold mining is more lucrative for criminal organizations, drug cartels, guerrilla groups and mafias than drug trafficking. For criminals posing as precious metals dealers, gold is the perfect medium for laundering illicit money from other illegal activities since illegal gold looks exactly like legal gold and the proceeds from selling it can be placed in the bank…
Brazil’s largest gang, the First Command of the Capital (PCC), is known to operate in Yanomami territory in Roraima, a largely Indigenous region along their gold and drug trafficking routes. These criminals have been hired to protect the gold mining areas, and have been instigating violence against the Yanomami with the use of automatic weapons and tear gas bombs for almost a year!
As much as 75% of the gold extracted each year is used for jewelry, watches and other vain and futile status symbols sold by corporations in the luxury industry as well as discount retailers worldwide.
Tens of thousands of rainforest trees must be uprooted, hundreds of tons of soil mined and mixed with dozens of tons of toxic environmental pollutants that contaminate indigenous lands for that one special gold ring…
Please make shopping choices that don’t destroy nature and the lives of Indigenous peoples!
DON’T MISS this magical 38-second film – “The Yanomami boy’s surprise friend in the jungle”! – Please be a friend, you too, for Indigenous peoples and their forests – Please Boycott ALL products from Deforestation!
It’s an excerpt of my film of instants of the daily life of a Yanomami community in the Amazon Rainforest made to accompany the children’s book series: “Amazon Rainforest Magic” “La Magie de l’Amazonie” and “La Magia de la Amazonia” for ages 8 to 100!
The full 13 minute, 16 second film – (age restricted by YouTube due to ancestral Yanomami customs which include traditional nudity) interwoven with illustrations from the “Amazon Rainforest Magic” books – is here:
Thanks so much for watching my films! Barbara
We can all make a difference in our daily choices wherever we are in the world!
Thank you for caring about preserving a future for the Yanomami and other Indigenous peoples!