The older I get, the more time is circular rather than linear. I come back to who I was in my beginnings.
I walked my first picket line at age 10, protesting the Vietnam War. We discussed current events around the table at dinner, and awareness of the larger world was built in at an early age.
So I learned very young that people suffer. I never learned how to shield myself from that suffering. Such sensitivity hurts. It’s very easy to become overwhelmed and shut down. Perhaps that explains my own “dark ages” that parallels the Reagan/Bush era. I went to sleep. Marriage and step kids explains some of it. But I think I got overwhelmed with the suffering of the world.
I’m feeling that way again, but I don’t want to go back to sleep.
How old were you when you discovered that America was stolen? That slavery was written into our Constitution?
These facts were glossed over. I had what I consider to be a good education (more because I was taught to think for myself than any amount of facts I learned) but what I learned was that land was acquired from the First Nations by treaty, and it was still called Custer’s Last Stand when I was in school.
Like so many things in life, I started down one path and wound up somewhere else.
Because of the property in Kentucky, I want to learn some Kentucky history. I stumbled onto “A Sorrow in our Heart, the Life of Tecumseh” by Allan W. Eckhert. Most of the action takes place in the Ohio River Valley.
One thing leads to another, and I’m reading a whole lot of U.S. history from contact to present and it is a very ugly picture.
Spain, Britain, France, even the Dutch, came over the ocean after Columbus in a land and resource grab. The extermination attempts began in earnest, as Columbus had provided the model for all those who came later by abducting a few of his hosts and turning them into slaves.
No resistance to civilized diseases like smallpox, measles, cholera and so forth killed millions of First Nations people.
The U.S. government has made 370 treaties with Indians and has broken every one of them. Every one of them.
Nothing Indians tried worked for them. Compliance, persuasion, treaties, resistance, war; none of it made any difference. Their lands were taken.
One of the broken treaties concerns the Black Hills in South Dakota. These are sacred lands and they were promised. But our government took the land and sold it, as they’ve done repeatedly. Now, the current owners are offering the land for sale by auction. The Great Sioux Nations are attempting to buy it back; as much land as they can afford. Buying back their own fucking land.
Most every person in this country is living on stolen land. Reparations are due. Our rotten to the core government, in its wisdom, does not recognize or apologize for its shameful history (and thus is doomed to repeat it).
So it’s up to us to do the right thing.
I’ve made a donation. I’m asking you to do so, too.
Rosebud Sioux Tribe/Pe Sla
11 Legion Ave. PO Box 430
Rosebud SD 57570