President Trump’s Border Wall Conflicts With Sacred Land, Tribe Says

President Donald Trump's proposed border wall runs along the sacred mountains of the Tohono O’odham Nation, a place where the O'odham creator god is believed to live in a cave below the Baboquivari Peak.

Shelby Sanchez, Staff Writer

President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall runs along the sacred mountains of the Tohono O’odham Nation, a place where the O’odham creator god is believed to live in a cave below the Baboquivari Peak.

The Tohono O’odham Nation is the second largest tribe in the U.S., and they inhabit 2.7 million acres of land. There are about 2,000 members of the tribe who live in Sonora, Mexico. The rest of the tribe, which is now about 32,000 members, is separated by a 62-mile international boundary and resides in the U.S. because of the Gadsden Purchase in 1854. This means that members of the tribe living in Mexico were also cut off from relatives or friends inside the U.S.

“It (the border wall) is going to change who we are,” said tribal member Thomasa Rivas in an article posted on USA Today by Dianna M. Nanez.

Thomasa’s sister, Ofelia Rivas, says her own home is being affected as well. 

“It will be in my backyard — the wall, and all its political policies along with it,” said Rivas.

Ofielia feels that the wall isn’t just about politics, but it also violates human rights and the surrounding ecosystem. Animals who pass by won’t be able to travel effectively and native plants won’t be able to grow properly. 

The tribe continues to protest and fight for their beloved land they call home and won’t back down until they believe justice is served. They believe President Trump’s wall won’t just separate the tribe, but their traditions, values, and culture.

The Tohono O’odham Nation feels that their sacred land might be further separated by the border wall. (Photo by Krisztina Kovari)