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FW: "Agency apologizes to Indians"

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  • Popplestone, Ann
    ... From: Jesse S. Cook III [mailto:jesse_cook@JUNO.COM] Sent: Sunday, September 10, 2000 10:50 AM To: ANTHRO-L@LISTSERV.ACSU.BUFFALO.EDU Subject: Agency
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 11, 2000
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      FW: "Agency apologizes to Indians"

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Jesse S. Cook III [mailto:jesse_cook@...]
      Sent: Sunday, September 10, 2000 10:50 AM
      To: ANTHRO-L@...
      Subject: "Agency apologizes to Indians"


      Associated Press

      WASHINGTON--The head of thr federal Bureau of Indian Affairs apologized
      Friday [September 8, 200] for the agency's "legacy of racism and
      inhumanity" that included massacres, forced relocations of tribes, and
      attempts to wipe out Indian languages and cultures.

      "By accepting this legacy, we accept also the moral responsibility of
      putting things right," Keven Gover, a Pawnee Indian, said in a speech
      marking the agency's 175th anniversary...[H]e is the highest ranking U.S.
      official ever to make such a statement regarding the treatment of
      American Indians.

      The audience of about 300 tribal leaders, BIA employees, and federal
      officials stood and cheered as a teary-eyed Gover finished...

      Gover recited a litany of wrongs the BIA inflicted on Indians since its
      creation as the Indian Office of the War Department...The misery
      continued after the BIA became part of the Interior Department in 1849,
      Gover said...Now, 90 percent of the BIA's 10,000 employees are Indian,
      and the agency has changed into an advocate for tribal governments.

      "Never again will we attack your religions, your languages, your rituals,
      or any of your tribal ways," Gover promised.  "Never again will we seize
      your children nor teach them to be ashamed of who they are.  Never
      again."

      [This was the lead story on NBC Nightly News Saturday.  When I saw and
      heard Gover speak, I thought: who else but Clinton would appoint a Native
      American to head the Bureau of Indian Affairs.]

      Jesse S. Cook III

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