The Sun DanceThe Sun Dance
by Helene Smith

A Pesticide poisoning on the Shoshone-Bannock Reservation; investigation of a government investigation. Includes information reflecting Vietnam/Persian Gulf pesticide/chemical abuse.

An unauthorized investigation of the authorized investigation of the Shoshone-Bannock Sun Dance pesticide poisoning at Fort Hall, Idaho. At first glance this book may appear to concern a minority group located on a small geographical site in the West. But in reality the case involves every American living under the sun. The author shows how the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Environmental Protection Agency have set policies that have economic priorities over humanitarian ones. What all Americans need to know about pesticide and chemical abuse. America's veterans deserve our praise and support for their courageous service in giving and risking their lives in wars and conflicts fought under the flag of the United States. But the chemical and pesticide poisoning they have endured is beyond the call of duty. They and their families, burdened by the long-term effects of birth defects, etc., resulting from chemical hazards, need our support and help. We must prevent this from happening in the future.

Updated Notes

During her investigation of a Sun Dance pesticide poisoning on the Shoshone Bannock Indigenous Reservation at Fort Hall, Idaho in 1995 at the request of the Sun Dance leader, the author was intimidated by the non-Indian producer of metam sodium (Vapam) from southeast United States. When she questioned the federal Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D.C., the authorities avoided the issue by delay and saying the substance was still being tested despite evidence that she uncovered, as well as their own evidence. The chemical proved to be toxic as pointed out in her book on the pesticide poisoning at Pocatello, Idaho, especially by graphic photos of rashes on the victims in the 1980s.

In 2011, the EPA listed metam sodium as a highly toxic chemical and a likely carcinogen. At this time, as in the Fort Hall poisoning, numerous residents at Shady Valley in Appalachia were affected by similar pesticide fumes and contaminated ground water. The symptoms included respiratory problems, headaches, nausea, dizziness, severe coughing and blisters. The Tennessee Forestry Commission warned residents about the dangerous contamination.

ISBN 0-945437-18-8
LCCN 95-2799
4" x 6 1/2" paperback
220 pages, illustrated