Native Sun News: Cartoonist Ricardo Cate brings humor to #NoDAPL movement

A cartoon by Ricardo Cate'. From Without Reservations

Cartoonist Ricardo Cate’ brings support to Sacred Stones Camp
By Richie Richards
Native Sun News Staff Writer

RAPID CITY –– The movement to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline has drawn support from around the world and Indian Country, including actors, activists, authors, singer/songwriters, comedians and most recently a political and satirical cartoonist from New Mexico.

Ricardo Cate’, Kewa (Santo Domingo Pueblo), is the genius behind the Without Reservations cartoon series featured in the Santa Fe New Mexican.

Cate’s humorous cartoons featuring headdress wearing Indians with large, stereotypical noses began on Nov. 17, 2007. These satires have featured everyone from presidential candidates Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, and Donald Trump to famous sports and pop cultural figures such as Muhammad Ali and a special honoring for the recent passing of Prince.

A popular figure in the cartoon series is that of George Armstrong Custer; his presence in Cate’s cartoon series is a comedic representation of the disdain many have towards Custer and a celebratory nod at the victory by Northern Cheyenne, Arapaho and Lakota tribes over the Seventh Calvary at the Battle of the Little Big Horn.

During times of an Indian tragedy, there is always a person who wants to dissolve the emotional response through comedy. This is the basis of Indian humor.

Cartoonist Ricardo Cate' lends his talents to Mní Wičhóni Nakíčižiŋ Owáyawa, the Defenders of the Sacred Water School, at the #NoDAPL resistance camps in North Dakota. Photo from Facebook

On Aug. 24, Ricardo Cate’ let the world know, via Facebook, that he and his “war pony” were ready and prepared for his trip to North Dakota from New Mexico to stand with the more than 120 tribal nations with boots on the ground at the Sacred Stone Camp, as protectors of the water resource of over thirty million Americans.

In a photo posted on Sunday, Aug. 28, Cate’ stood high above the Sacred Stone Camp and said, “I thought people were up on this hill saying their morning prayers. It turns out they were only trying to get a signal on their cell phones! Hahahaha.”

In a highly-contested environment where mainstream media outlets have remained largely silent and accusations of pipe bombs being present at the peaceful demonstration, housing children and elders, visits by persons like Ricardo Cate’ seem to bring a sense of calm throughout Indian Country.

Read the rest of the story on the all-new Native Sun News website: Cartoonist Ricardo Cate’ brings support to Sacred Stones Camp

(Contact Richie Richards at

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