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Tuesday, June 25, 2024

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Opponents of latest AR state tax cuts say they benefit wealthy Arkansans; Julian Assange agrees to a plea deal that would allow him to avoid imprisonment in US; Tech-based carbon-capture projects make headway in local government; NV nonprofit calls Biden's student debt initiatives economic justice.

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Charges against fake electors in Nevada are dismissed, Milwaukee officials get ready to expect the unexpected at the RNC convention, and the Justice Department says Alaska is violating the Americans with Disabilities Act.

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A Minnesota town claims the oldest rural Pride Festival while rural educators say they need support to teach kids social issues, rural businesses can suffer when dollar stores come to town and prairie states like South Dakota are getting help to protect grasslands.

Fukushima remembrance event highlights local concerns in Michigan

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Thursday, March 7, 2024   

Bringing together Michigan tribes and environmental advocates, an upcoming event marks a commemoration of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.

While shedding light on the local Fermi II nuclear reactor, the occasion also spotlights traditional wild rice in an engaging cooking competition. The event will highlight the importance of protecting the local environment and the Great Lakes, including the sacred wild rice called manoomin, which is central to Indigenous Anishinaabe culture.

Linda Schuyler, president of the North American Indian Association of Detroit, said cooking with wild rice is not only delicious and nutritious but it is significant to her people.

"In our original teachings, Native people, they were instructed by their creator from their prayers to go where the food grows on the water," Schuyler explained. "The three fires people, they were over on the East Coast. They slowly migrated this way, and lo and behold, they found wild rice growing in the lakes."

The state's Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy has a Wild Rice Initiative, working toward getting wild rice growing abundantly in Michigan waters again. Last November, the Michigan Legislature named manoomin the state's official native grain, the first such designation in the United States.

Kaela Wabanimke-Harris, the 2023 wild rice cookoff champion, said she's coming back to win, however the contest is more about the traditions of the tribal people and making family recipes to share. She pointed out all kinds of wild rice is available online, but it is important for the rice to come from a sustainable source. Finding it is difficult, but with more awareness and events like this, she thinks it will become easier.

"Getting it from actual tribal people that are collecting the wild rice in a traditional way is really important to me," Wabanimke-Harris emphasized. "I feel like the love that went into collecting that rice is just as important as the love that I'm going to put into my food."

An indigenous family from the Upper Peninsula will be attending the event to demonstrate wild rice harvesting and processing methods.


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