We Shall Remain: Wounded KneeAnalysis By Tanner Camp
Tanner CampIn February of 1973 a caravan packed with Native Americans entered the grounds of Wounded Knee museum and park in Pineridge, North Dakota. They were apart of the highly militant protest group AIM (American Indian Movement). The protesters occupied Wounded Knee for 71 days holding off FEDS at gunpoint on multiple occasions. Their goal was to gain notice in order to speak out against racism as well as Dick Wilson, chairman of the Tribal Council, who had been playing favorites and bullying community members. Through the course of this essay I will give more insight into what went on at Wounded Knee, and the effects it had on Native American rights and U.S. politics. Long before Wounded Knee Native Americans have been suffering from discrimination and depression in the United States. In order to better understand the events at Wounded Knee the reader must know some background that led up to the occupation. According to the film the Lakota tribe had been fighting for their land during the 1890’s against the U.S. Army. A treaty was eventually signed sayingthe Lakota was entitled to a certain amount of their land. The U.S. then turned back on their promise and dispersed the tribe across very desolate lands and took the lands in the treaty for themselves. In an act of protest, the Lakota set up a small encampment of 300 on the land they had been promised initially. In the middle of the night the U.S. Army ransacked their camp, slaughtered everyone, and buriedthem in a mass grave. This land became known as Wounded Knee. This was a reoccurring theme throughout Native American history and according to the Custer reading the United states government had signed over 400 such treaties and had not stayed true to any of them. The AIM protesters felt as if their occupation of Wounded Knee was a continuation of their ancestors struggle decades earlier.
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- Fall '11
- Native Americans in the United States, Wounded Knee, Dick Wilson