Other Group

American Indian Movement Southern California

Website:

aimsocal.org/

Location:

Santa Barbara, CA

Formation:

Unsanctioned by American Indian Movement in 2020

Type:

Native American Advocacy Organization

Director:

Walter “Graywolf” Ruiz

American Indian Movement Southern California (AIM SoCal) is an unsanctioned, autonomous, left-of-center Native American activist organization. [1] AIM SoCal is an inter-tribal organization has brought lawsuits against the federal government on Native American sovereignty and treaty issues,[2] worked to remove the statue of Christopher Columbus from the California State Capitol,[3] called for legalization of all illegal immigrants in the United States,[4] and worked for “sacred sites protection,” preservation of Native American language and culture, and other issues. [5] AIM SoCal was unsanctioned by the grand governing council of the national American Indian Movement (AIM) on June 16, 2020. [6]

AIM SoCal co-hosted a rally to remove the statue of Christopher Columbus from the California State Capital in June 2020 with left-wing groups such as Black Lives Matter Los Angeles, Bayan SoCal, GuateMaya LA, California Poor People’s Campaign, far-left socialist organization Struggle for Socialism (La Lucha por el Socialismo), White People 4 Black Lives, Harriet Tubman Center for Social Justice, the Statewide Coalition Against Racist Symbols[7] and the radical left-wing group Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER Coalition). [8] It seeks the removal of Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva (D) as a member of the left-of-center Check the Sheriff Coalition. [9]

History and Leadership

American Indian Movement Southern California (AIM SoCal), also known as AIM Santa Barbara,[10] is an unsanctioned, autonomous, left-of-center Native American activist organization. [11]

On June 16, 2020, AIM SoCal was unsanctioned by the grand governing council of the national American Indian Movement for disrespecting numerous members and former members; lack of communication with leaders of neighboring AIM chapters and infringing in their area; lack of accountability for chapter leadership’s speeches against other California tribes and in support of the oil industry; and endorsement of non-sanctioned AIM chapters. In a letter removing AIM SoCal’s sanctioning, AIM national leadership also ordered the group to stop representing the American Indian Movement and threatened legal action. [12]

Walter Ruiz was the director of AIM SoCal at the time of the organization’s removal of sanctioning by AIM. [13]

Activities and Funding

Despite being unsanctioned by the national AIM leadership in June 2020,[14] AIM SoCal has continued to use the name AIM SoCal as it engages in activism on Native American issues. [15]

In 2021, AIM SoCal co-hosted an “emergency rally” in Los Angeles to end the U.S. blockade of Cuba and demand no military interventions in Haiti;[16] partnered with the radical left-wing group Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER Coalition), Harriet Tubman Center for Social Justice, and Bayan USA for a caravan event to honor “lost children and survivors” at the Sherman Indian School Cemetery;[17] and co-sponsored a May Day event with other left-wing organizations that called for legalization of all illegal immigrants in the United States. [18]

In 2020, AIM SoCal co-hosted a rally to remove the statue of Christopher Columbus from the California State Capitol with left-wing groups including Black Lives Matter Los Angeles, Bayan SoCal, California Poor People’s Campaign, far-left socialist organization Struggle for Socialism (La Lucha por el Socialismo) White People 4 Black Lives (within the far-left network Showing Up for Racial Justice),[19] and the Harriet Tubman Center for Social Justice. [20]

Also in 2020, AIM SoCal promoted an event called “Indigenous Peoples Day of Rage Against Colonialism.” [21] This event called for “autonomous, anti-colonial, anti-capitalist, and anti-fascist actions” to combat a “plague of colonialism” that allegedly destroys Native American lands; addressed missing or murdered “womxn,” girls, transgendered, and “two-spirit” relatives; opposes “resource colonialism,” colonial borders, and the “settler colonial state” in support of “total liberation.” [22]

On May 8, 2020, AIM SoCal hosted an event led by “Resist US-Led War Movement” on a people’s teach-in on “Revolutionary Women and the History of Mother’s Day. [23]

AIM SoCal supports the removal of so-called “racist mascots” from sports teams,[24] has shared posts from the left-of-center Indigenous Environmental Network,[25] and seeks the removal of Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva (D) as a member of the left-of-center Check the Sheriff Coalition. [26]

References

  1. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived February 11, 2021. Accessed July 26, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20210211194554/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  2. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived June 21, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20200621165645/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  3. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived June 21, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20200621165645/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  4. Facebook Post. May 1, 2021. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/2123130941160115/?type=3&source=54&ref=page_internal. ^
  5. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived June 21, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20200621165645/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  6. Tweet. June 19, 2020. Accessed July 25, 2021. https://twitter.com/AmericanIndian8/status/1273997717526597633. ^
  7. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived June 21, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20200621165645/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  8. Facebook Post. AIM SoCal. July 9, 2021. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/2178944415578767/?type=3&source=48&__tn__=EH-R. ^
  9. “About.” Check the Sheriff. Accessed July 28, 2021. https://www.checkthesheriff.com/about. ^
  10. Facebook Post. American Indian Movement of Central Texas. Posted June 18, 2020. Accessed July 27, 2021. https://www.facebook.com/aimcentraltexas/posts/statement-from-the-new-leadership-of-aim-national-lisa-bellanger-and-frank-paro-/3047237772032174/. ^
  11. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived February 11, 2021. Accessed July 26, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20210211194554/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  12. Facebook Post. American Indian Movement of Central Texas. Posted June 18, 2020. Accessed July 27, 2021. https://www.facebook.com/aimcentraltexas/posts/statement-from-the-new-leadership-of-aim-national-lisa-bellanger-and-frank-paro-/3047237772032174/. ^
  13. Parker, John. “International Human Rights Day actions condemn U.S. crimes.” Struggle for Socialism / La Lucha por el Socialisimo. December 30, 2019. Accessed July 27, 2021. https://www.struggle-la-lucha.org/2019/12/30/international-human-rights-day-actions-condemn-u-s-crimes/. ^
  14. Facebook Post. American Indian Movement of Central Texas. Posted June 18, 2020. Accessed July 27, 2021. https://www.facebook.com/aimcentraltexas/posts/statement-from-the-new-leadership-of-aim-national-lisa-bellanger-and-frank-paro-/3047237772032174/. ^
  15. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived June 21, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20200621165645/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  16. “Emergency Action: No U.S. Intervention in Cuba or Haiti.” Facebook Event. July 17, 2021. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/events/642571470039499?acontext=%7B%22source%22%3A%223%22%2C%22action_history%22%3A%22null%22%7D&aref=3&__tn__=HH-R. ^
  17. Facebook Post. AIM SoCal. July 9, 2021. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/2178944415578767/?type=3&source=48&__tn__=EH-R. ^
  18. Facebook Post. May 1, 2021. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/2123130941160115/?type=3&source=54&ref=page_internal. ^
  19. “Who We Are.” White People 4 Black Lives. Accessed July 27, 2021. https://www.awarela.org/white-people-4-black-lives. ^
  20. “American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter.” American Indian Movement Southern California Chapter Webpage. Accessed Via Web Archive. Archived June 21, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20200621165645/https://aimsocal.org/index.html. ^
  21. Facebook Post. AIM SoCal. October 8, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/1945549122251632/?type=3&source=54. ^
  22. Facebook Post. AIM SoCal. October 8, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/1945549122251632/?type=3&source=54. ^
  23. Facebook Post. AIM SoCal. May 7, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/1786234038183142/?type=3&source=54. ^
  24. American Indian Movement of Southern California. Twitter Header Image. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://twitter.com/AIMSo_Cal/header_photo. ^
  25. Facebook Post. AIM SoCal. May 6, 2020. Accessed July 22, 2021. https://m.facebook.com/AIMSoCa/photos/a.1033547440118476/1785432438263302/?type=3&source=54. ^
  26. “About.” Check the Sheriff. Accessed July 28, 2021. https://www.checkthesheriff.com/about. ^
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American Indian Movement Southern California


Santa Barbara, CA