Published April 16, 2016
CONCHO, OKLAHOMA – The Longest Walk 5 – War on Drugs and Domestic Violence, was honored at Concho, Oklahoma with a meet and greet by the government of The Cheyenne-Arapaho tribes and a meal. Burl Buffalomeat said the opening prayer and then Eddie Hamilton, the governor of the Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribe, shared these words:
“My name is Eddie Hamilton, governor Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribe. I’m very appreciative this group, The Longest Walk has came through C & A Country. I support them fully on their efforts going to Washington D.C. to be heard. We offer our prayers and anything we can do to help them along the way.”
Dennis Banks, one of the founders of the American Indian Movement, spoke and reminded the crowd that the work of the American Indian Movement continues today. He retraced the origins of the American Indian Movement that began in the Twin Cities in 1968:
In Minnesota, on the reservation, high school graduates and college graduates could not get jobs, in Minneapolis, they were busy mopping the floors, (there is nothing wrong with being a janitor but not when you have a degree and you’re trained to be an electronic engineer). Those kind of seeds (education plus employment) were absent plus the brutality of the police, On July 28, 1968, we formed the first chapter of The American Indian Movement, that quicky spread through St. Paul and cities that were bordering, like Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Rapid City, South Dakota.
We set up a survival school. One of the things we had to deal with was the very racist school board of Milwaukee. We pulled our children out of the schools and started [our own] survival schools. By pulling our children out of school, the schools lost revenue. The money was no longer sent to, in my opinion, a very racist school board. We put a crimp on their big budget. That was one of the ways we began to force the states and federal government to live up to many agreements.
– To be Continued –
This BBSNews article originally appeared on Native News Online.