Galesburg Register-Mail from Galesburg, Illinois on June 7, 1973 · Page 40
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Galesburg Register-Mail from Galesburg, Illinois · Page 40

Galesburg, Illinois
Issue Date:
Thursday, June 7, 1973
Page 40
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40 (5alesbura Registe r *Mdif, Gotesburg, Thursday,. June 7, 1973 Little Big Horn: Indian vs. Indian Next? By TOM TIEDE CROW RESERVATION, Mont. (NBA) — The last time there was a war here it was Indians vs. whites, the battle of the Little Big Horn which the Indians won. The next time there is a war here, it may very well be Indians vs. Indians, a battle between moderates and militants Which nobody will win. The second battle is not actually forecast. Right now it is only speculation. Many nervous residents here believe this reservation may be the next target for an American Indian Movement demonstration, protest, disruption, takeover or, perhaps, war. THE SPECULATION has some merit. AIM radicals, who last year seized the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Washington, and who recently lifted a 70-day siege of Wounded Knee, S.D., have repeatedly warned that such activities will continue. Says a spokesman: "The idea has been to focus attention on the problems of American Indians; now that we have the attention we can't just let it fade." Thus AIM will doubtless strike again. And the Crow Reservation seems a likely possibility. Tucked away in southeastern Montana, only a few hundred miles from Wounded Knee, actually, the reservation is 'a national shame, a showcase of historic Indian plight. Impoverished, exploited, aimless, the Crow land and people are ifii- "The idea has been to focus attention on the problems of American Indians ... we can't just let it fade." crocosms of all that has failed in Indian management. TO BEGIN WITH there is the twisting of history! here. Little Big Horn, as every schoolchild knows, is the site of Col. George Custer's "last stand." It has been commemorated in media reports, film versions and textbooks as the courageous Thermopylae of a heroic band of U.S. cavalrymen. In reality, say local historians, it was the Indians' who were courageous and, don't forget, victorious. Says Crow tribal secretary Frederick Left Hand: "Custer was sent out to murder Indians on their traditional and legal homeland. The Indians did what anyone would do in such a case — defend themselves. But do we commemorate the Indian defense of home and property? No, we commemorate 'Custer's death while trying to invade and pillage and murder." True enough. The U.S. government has erected a "Custer National Monument"' on federal land in the heart of this reservation. Graves mark the spots where Custer and his men were alleged to have fallen. There's nary a monument to Indian pluck, wit, perseverance or victory. Indeed, the victory should be institutionalized. If only because it was the last Indian triumph of any sorts in this area. In the more than 100 years since Crows were deeded "eternal" rights to reservation territories, they have suffered a long and unbroken string of defeats. FOR EXAMPLE. According to tribal spokesmen, the Crow were originally (in 1851) assigned 38 million acres of reservation land. "But by 1860," says secretary Left Hand, "it was down to eight million acres." Then came a gold rush in the Black Hills of nearby South Dakota, "and by 1920 we only had 2.8 million acres left." There was more chipping, away after .1920 and so, today, all told, the Crow have lost nearly 36 million acres of home; currently the reservation consists of a thoroughly shriveled 2.25 million acres. "But even the 2.25 is not all ours," says Left Hand. "We have treaty agreements which stipulate .that none of this land is to be owned by outside interests — yet more than a million of our acres are owned by outside people. So if you really want to get down to hard reality, the Indians themselves only own about 1.25 million acres now." AT THAT, Indian ownership is unprofitable. Though several nonreservation corporations do a brisk business on Crow land, Crows themselves do poorly. Left Hand says the average income among the 4,200 reservation Indians is $2,100—that's $8 a day. Forty- two per cent of the working force is unemployed. Says ono man, who hasn't worked in 18 months: I'd like to work in town (Hardin), but they ain't too hot about Indians there. I had one guy tell me ho wouldn't hire mc because I didn't have enough work experience. I asked him how I could get the experience if no"... we should do the same thing to the whites a s they've done to us — wipe them out." body would give me a job, but he didn't answer. I had to laugh at that." THE LAUGHTER here is bitter. Frederick Left Hand says that he sometimes thinks "we should do the same thing to the whites as they've done to us—wipe them out." Yet for all the hostility, the poverty, and exploitation, there is virtually no interest here in becoming another Wounded Knee. Tribal members say they agree with the ideals of AIM activists, but disagree with their : tactics. "We have no sympathy with violence," says Crow tribal chairman Dave Stewart. "I remember when ATM took over the BIA building in Washington. I heard there was a Crow youth among them, so I called him up' to chew him out. But he said it was all a mistake for him. He said he joined the AIM march because he liked what they stood for and, besides, he thought it would be a good chance to see Washington. Then he just got swept up by the building seizure and couldn't get out. I think that says a lot for AIM. They pressure people into obeying. Personally, I don't think they represent many real Indians." NOT HERE, anyway. Times are hard, history is indecent, government is ineffective, yet nobody thinks the solution to Crow problems is loaded in the muzzles of AIM rifles. "The trouble with AIM'S methods," says a Crow official, "is that they may succeed only in doing what Custer never could. One of these dcys those people are going to push the U.S. too far and that'll be it. Everybody will start shooting—and this time it could be the Indian's last stand." GIBSON'S JUNE - WATCH FOR OUR ADS THE REMAINDER OF JUNE FOR MORE GREAT BUYS - MISS BRECK HAIR SPRAY 13 oz. Can > Regular Super Hold Unscented Unscented Super Hold BATHE SAFE TREADS BATHE SAFELY WITH BATH TREADS & BLOSSOMS 8-15 inch J * e 3- $159 '5 Stems DuPONT CAR POLISH Treads $1.99 4 Blossoms 3 Butterflies I Beach Towels Assorted Prints on White (Limited Supply) ALBERTO CULVER GET SET Wave Setting LOTION Regular and Hard to Hold PLASTIC DROP CLOTH and Utility Cover 10 Ft. x 20 Ft. No. 1020 CLOROX Vi Gal. Reg. 45c (Limited Supply) EKCO Campers Cultery Narrow Spatula Tomato Slicer Egg Slicer Sliding Cup Rack Tongs # Ice Pick and Many Others LIMITED SUPPLY ffHEBMDs.- #1 * LIMITED SUPPLY Thermos Bottle Filler WIDE MOUTH Pint Size #62F (Reg. $1.27) (Reg. $1.37) LIMITED SUPPLY THERMOS. LIMITED SUPPLY REPLACEMENT PARTS Replacement # Cup-Quart 84A73 Corks #720 Stopper #762 PONDS Limlted Supp,y Values 89c to 1.10 # Ponds Cold Cream 3.5 oz. Ponds Hand Cream 6 oz. # Dry Skin Condt. 3.9 oz. Dream Flower Talc 10 oz. • Dusting Powder 5 oz. Natural Sea Sponge SPONGE Limited Supply No. GPION HANDY-MAN Hardware (Assorted Sizes) • Screws • Bolts • Anchors Values 29c to 49c (Limited Supply) Baby Sleeper By LULLABY LAND Small Medium Large Reg. $2.59 (Assorted Styles) SEAWAY CANTEEN Two Quart Capacity With Plastic Interior and Blanket Cover Insulator No. PF11 Values from 29c to $1.29 (Limited Supply) Reg. $2.19 Prices Effective thru Mon., June 11th Summer Hats ASSORTED PLAIDS & PRINTS • EASY TO ROIL • SHAPE RETAINING (Reg. $1.88) 169 N. Brood St Galesburg, HOURS: Mon. thru Wed, 9 AM to 8 PM Thurs. thru Sat. 9 AM to 9 PM Sunday 12 Noon to 5 pm Pampers DAYTIME 30's (Reg. $1.47) DOVE BATH - * " SOAP * »™ PINK or WHITE — COMPLEXION SIZE Fishing Tackle Box Assorted Sizes and Styles CUTEX Nail Polish & Remover FROST NAIL POLISH Assrt. Colors (Reg. 61c) POLISH REMOVER 4 or. (Reg. 33c) Both For ALL Concentrated Detergent WITH FREE TOTE BAG §4)9Q Reg. niiin** ' ~ $2.37 JUMBO SIZE FINAL TOUCH Concentrated Fabric Softener With Blueing For Extra Whitener* % Gal, Reg. $1.59 SUPREME Steel Wool Reg. 18c Six Steel Wool Balls

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