World Premiere - Four Directions and Nevada Tribes’ Native American Presidential 2020 Forum, Las Vegas.

Women trilled. Others cried. Some sat in contemplative silence before they applauded. All were inspired by the MMIW documentary, Somebody’s Daughter, which premiered at the Four Directions and Nevada Tribes’ Native American Presidential 2020 Forum in Las Vegas and provided the stand-out moment of the event.

Chairman David Sickey of the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana introduced Somebody’s Daughter. Sickey’s words moved the audience, as he spoke of the devastation wrought by the MMIW crisis. "After this documentary has been screened throughout the halls of authority, those legislators will know this crisis exists. Violence does not discriminate, and neither should our laws,”   

Chairman David Sickey of the Coushatta Tribe introducing the film Somebody's Daughter

"This documentary belongs to us all and in one voice and with one heart we say to the missing and we say to those taken from us – we will not forget you.  

Chairman David Sickey - Coushatta Tribe 

Chairman David Sickey of the Coushatta Tribe introducing the film.

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Somebody's Daughter was executively produced by the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana

 During his appearance at the forum, independent presidential candidate Mark Charles from the Navajo Nation continued his now customary impressive oratory coupled with historical acumen. Charles, whose presidential platform includes nominating an indigenous secretary of state and having “Native Nations lead the process of reforming immigration law,” doesn’t offer soundbites but education and shows the path from the past to the present and the continuing legacy of colonial domination. Charles explained that he wrapped his tsiiyéél with red yarn “to remind myself of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.”

Presidential Candidate Mark Charles shows his tsiiyéél with red yarn

Presidential Candidate Mark Charles shows his tsiiyéél with red yarn

 “At the last debate, several candidates said they would propose new laws to ensure that this demographic was protected. But when your Declaration of Independence calls Natives ‘savages’ and your Constitution never mentions women, don’t act surprised when your indigenous women go missing and no-one cares. This is a foundational problem,” 

Mark Charles - Independent 2020 Presidential Candidate 

“I deeply appreciated watching the film,” said Charles. “It is very powerful and helps people understand at a very systemic level that these tragedies are not being investigated.”

 Tom Steyer, fresh from the CNN debate where he eruditely sidestepped the Warren-Sanders spat, was the only top-tier Democratic candidate to appear at the forum in person. Somebody’s Daughter  director, Rain, gave Steyer an MMIW pin prior to his appearance. “It’s going to be hard for me to get through this,” Steyer said with emotion, as he attached the pin before taking the stage.

2020 Presidential candidate Tom Steyer has a MMIW pin he received from Rain attached to his lapel

When asked by Councilman Mark Pollock of the Blackfeet Nation if supporting the Reduce, Return and Recover Act – the proposed MMIW legislation tribal leaders advocate for in the film, would be a priority if he was president, Steyer, who is surging in the polls in Nevada, replied, “Yes. I would of course support that specifically.”

Tom Steyer - 2020 Democratic Presidential Candidate

Tom Steyer's campaign supported the film

on their social media platforms.

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Ceremony for women impacted by the MMIW crisis

Immediately after the premiere of Somebody's Daughter, ceremony was held by a local Paiute elder for all women present who had been impacted by the MMIW crisis. Photos below:

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Presidential Candidate Mark Charles shows his tsiiyéél with red yarn