Ernie LaPointe is the great-grandson of Hunkpapa Lakota chief, Sitting Bull. He is a Sun Dancer, Native American author, orator, and president and founder of the Sitting Bull Family Foundation. He joined host Ian Punnett (Twitter) to provide a new perspective on the iconic legend, Sitting Bull, as well as discuss Native American spirituality and issues. According to LaPointe, much of what is known about Sitting Bull is incorrect because books written about him pulled from an inaccurate source, Sitting Bull: Champion of the Sioux by Stanley Vestal. The author never interviewed the descendants of Sitting Bull, LaPointe revealed. "It's a fabricated story... and all these book authors went to that book and wrote the same story," he suggested.
LaPointe, who belongs to the Lakota Nation, revealed his people and other tribes would sometimes "attack" one another in order to seize horses. "You did raid other [nations] but didn't kill them," he explained, adding the goal was to embarrass one's adversary in front of his people by touching him with a stick. A person touched by the stick would lose their position and have to work back up to whatever position they once held, LaPointe revealed. The victor would receive an eagle feather to honor their accomplishment, he continued, noting Sitting Bull had several dozen eagle feathers for all of his significant achievements. "His headdress could go all the way to the ground, if they put all the feathers on there," he said.
LaPointe described his spiritual views which he learned from his tribal elders as well as his mother, who taught him to be himself and never fear. "Intuition is your spirit helping you to learn who you are," he proposed. The soul inhabits the body and the body is our classroom where we must learn to balance compassion, generosity, humility, fortitude, and humor, LaPointe noted. It is important to understand the earth and how to live with other living things, he added. "We all exist for a reason on this earth, and our souls come here to learn how to balance," he reiterated.
Train Derailment Update
In the first hour, environmental consultant and industrial safety expert Jim Poesl gave an update on train derailments and accidents. During Poesl's previous appearance on Coast he had spoken about the train derailment near East Palestine, Ohio, which dumped hazardous chemicals into the community. Ian suggested the East Palestine disaster may be a precursor to other train accidents since rail companies cut corners on maintenance. According to Poesl, the East Palestine locomotive received a signal there was a problem with one of the wheels, and the train was traveling under the speed limit when the crew began to apply the brakes. The NTSB report revealed part of the pressure relief valves were jammed which lead to overheating and the derailment, he reported. They have removed 300 dump trucks worth of toxic materials and ten Olympic sized pools of waste water, Poesl added.