Final Call: Longest Walk 2 arrives in Washington
"When militant Native American activists captured Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay, reclaiming it as Indian land more than 30 years ago, the group was referred to in the local White-media as “Red Muslims,” hoping that linking them with not-well-spoken-of Nation of Islam “Black Muslims” would tarnish their reputation.

They continued to organize, and in 1978 marched 3,600 miles from Alcatraz, arriving in Washington 40,000 strong to protect Native rights and sovereignty.

To commemorate the 30th anniversary of that historic march, 1,000 Indians and their supporters arrived here July 11, with drums, and chants and prayers concluding a five-month, combined 8,000 mile march that took one group along the historic 3,600 mile route and another on a 4,400 mile southern course. It was “The Longest Walk 2,” and they carried the message “All Life is Sacred, Protect Mother Earth.”

“The Longest Walk is an environmental walk. It’s also walking for issues of Native American interest, Native issues, the most important being sacred sites and the environment,” organizer Dennis Banks, who participated in the original 1978 Longest Walk, told Pacifica Radio’s “Democracy Now!”

At the White House leaders emphasized the spiritual power which guided their steps. “Renewing the Spirit by Walking in the Footsteps of our Ancestors,” was the focus of one group of Native walkers, who left San Francisco Feb. 11. This Longest Walk 2 took participants once again, across the sacred grounds of living sovereign nations.

The other group walked the southern route in the Clean Up Mother Earth campaign, in which walkers picked up trash as they walked, organizers said."

Get the Story:
Longest Walk emphasizes Native American concerns (Final Call 7/22)

Related Stories:
Longest Walk 2 arrives in DC after five months (7/9)
Longest Walk 2 in final stretch of 8,300-mile journey (7/2)
Longest Walk 2 moves closer to final destination (6/30)
Longest Walk 2 makes way through Kansas (4/30)
Longest Walk 2 about halfway to Washington, DC (4/29)
Walk from Alcatraz to DC begins February 11 (2/5)