|Carter Camp on far right at Wounded Knee March 1973.|
In Memory of Carter Camp, Ponca
|Carter Camp on far left. Photo Brenda Norrell|
Carter Camp has passed over to the Spirit World. In memory, a note of thanks for Carter and all of those present for sharing this special day in 2004. Prayers for a good journey, Brenda, Censored News
By Brenda Norrell
Human Rights Editor
UN OBSERVER and International Report 2004
CHAMBERLAIN, South Dakota -- When the Lewis and Clark Discovery Expedition in South Dakota, Lakotas, Poncas and Kiowas were waiting for them and demanded that they turn around.
Surrounded by a heavy buildup of federal agents and police, Carter Camp told the Expedition in 2004 that Lewis and Clark were harbingers of the Holocaust. "What they wrote down was a blueprint for the genocide of my people. You are re-enacting something ugly, evil and hateful. You are re-enacting the coming of death to our people. You are re-enacting genocide."
Carter Camp warned the expedition to halt or they would be stopped. He said the expedition has been told lies and are spreading lies.
Camp said Lewis and Clark are a part of the American lie.
"They had no honor. They came with the American lie. They murdered 60 million people."
After that day in 2004, Mandrell did stop. He left the Lewis and Clark Expedition and formed his own journey, his own adventure that included American Indian friends that he made along the way.
Seated on the radio bus, Mandrell remembered meeting with Carter Camp's son Vic Camp from Pine Ridge, on that day in 2004. "I still have his number on my speed dial."
Earlier, Vic Camp had remembered the victory of hearing Mandrell had left the Expedition. During an interview in April, 2005, Vic Camp said, "That was a great victory for us."
But on the banks of the Missouri River in South Dakota on that day in 2004, Lakota elder Floyd Hand, among four bands of Lakota spoke from the well that was chilling.
"We are the descendants of Red Cloud and Crazy Horse.""I did not come here in peace."Hand said they would not smoke the pipe and if the expedition continues up the Missouri River, the families of the expedition members would suffer the spiritual consequences of small pox.
Referring to the tribal governments who welcomed the expedition, Hand said those tribal governments reflect the same type thinking as the re-enactors and are not the voice of the grassroots people."The tribal governments are not a voice for us. They are imitating us, like you are imitating Lewis and Clark."
"We want you to turn around and go home," Alex White Plume, Lakota from Pine Ridge, told the expedition.White Plume said Lakota are here on this land for a reason."We were put here by the spirits." He said the Lakota never lost their language or ceremonies and now they are making these requests: Lakota want their territory back, their treaties to be honored and to be able to continue their healing ways.White Plume said many Indian people have become assimilated and colonized. "We pray for our own colonized people. We say they are in a prison in the white man's world." White Plume said there was no point in the expedition coming here. "All you did was open up these old wounds."
By Carter Camp
Diane Sawyer asked the question I often am asked when people learn how hard it is to live on the rez. "why don't you leave?" The question has many answers to us. Mainly we are still a tribal people and we want to live among our nations people. We're a people who consider our cousins as our brothers and sisters, our uncles and aunts as fathers and mothers. We have grandmothers and fathers galore and we care about all of them. We like to be there when someone dies or a baby is born. And we love our homelands. We believe the soil and every plant contains the dust of our ancestors. I think the Irish who stayed in Ireland during the great famine would understand, or a Jew who stayed in Palistine before there was an Israel. But Americans who will move away from their family for a better climate or job will have a hard time understanding the strength of the attraction to a specific land. The other reason we don't become 'economic refugees' is that reservation poverty is preferable to living... in an American slum so we always go home. Most of us have actually left at some time in our lives, I was personally successful in California, but I came home. Carter Camp
Carter Camp: Remembering Wounded Knee
published with Carter's permission at Censored News in 2007
By Carter Camp
Ah-ho My Relations, each year with the changing of the season I post this remembrance of Wounded Knee 73. I wrote it a few years ago when some of our brave people had walked to Yellowstone to stop the slaughter of our Buffalo relations. When I did I was surprised at the response from people who were too young to remember WK73 and I was pleased that some old WK vets wrote to me afterwards. So each year on this date I post the short story again and invite you-all to send it around or use as you will. As you do I ask you to remember that our reasons for going to Wounded Knee still exist and that means the need for struggle and resistance also still exist. Our land and sacred sites are threatened as never before even our sacred Mother herself is faced with unnatural warming caused by extreme greed.
In some areas of conflict between our people and those we signed treaties with, it is best to negotiate or "work within the system" but, because our struggle is one of survival, there are also times when a warrior must stand fast even at the risk of one's life. I believed that in 1973 when I was thirty and I believe it today in my sixties. But Wounded Knee 73 was really not about the fight to me, it was about the strong statement that our traditional way of living in this world is not about to disappear and our people are not a "vanishing race" as wasicu education would have you believe. As time has passed and I see so many of our young people taking part in a traditional way of living and believing I know our fight was worth it and those we lost for our movement died worthy deaths.
Carter Camp 2007
Photo by Cat Carnes, thank you
Honoring Carter Camp at White Eagle, Oklahoma today, April 20, 2013.
Photos Carter Camp at Wounded Knee 1973
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