Thursday, August 14, 2008

Dakota counter genocide celebration in Minnesota

Article by Chris Mato Nunpa
Photo by Pioneer Press
On Saturday, August 16, 2008, a group of Dakota Persons, from the Yellow Medicine Dakota Community, with their allies and supporters, are conducting a Counter Event to the Upper Sioux Agency State Park program. They, the Wasicu (or white man), as part of the Sesquicentennial of the state of Minnesota, are planning a living history portrayal (in 1858) in which the 1st Regiment and the settlers in their costumes will be featured. The wasicu woman, a Ms. Terri Dinesen, is the organizer and planner of the event, which event was planned without any consultation with the nearby Dakota Community, the Upper Sioux Community (the BIA name.) Ms. Dinesen talks about "friendships" between the Dakota and Wasicu and how these "friendship" were "proved during the war four short years later (1862)." She mentions the "numerous accounts of non-Dakota being warned or led to safety by Dakota Indians" and how these accounts are "proof of the trust and friendship." Ms. Dinesen doesn't realize that these same Dakota would be considered "traitors" or "sell-outs" as Benedict Arnold was considered a traitor by the colonists. She says nothing about the massive land theft, the broken treaties, resulting in bitterness and resentment for the Dakota; the genocide perpetrated on the Dakota by the Euro-Minnesotans; the bounties, the mass executions; the two concentration camps; the warfare in order for the military and the Euro-Minnesotans to either exterminate or remove the Dakota, and which warfare allowed the Settlers to safely steal Dakota land; the forced marches; and, finally, the forced removal of the Dakota People from their ancient homelands in Minnesota.
So, we, as Dakota People, are having this counter event to feature a Dakota perspective, in which we'll have our posters and banners. In which we'll have educational/informational handouts re: the newspaper ad announcing the bounties on Dakota People, the 1805 Treaty, a pamphlet on the Sesquicentennial with a Dakota perspective; the pictures of Little Crow's scalp, which scalping was done NOT by the Dakota but by the Euro-Minnesotans; and a pamphlet on the Yellow Medicine area with a Dakota perspective.
Different Dakota individuals, as well as our non-Dakota allies and supporters will be talking on our portable microphones. The Upper Sioux Agency State Park event is, to use Waziyata Win's, "Woman of the North" (or Dr. Angela Cavender Wilson), words, "a continuation of Minnesota's myth-making at the Upper Sioux Agency State Park. Just another celebration of 150 Years of lies in Minnesota." To put it another way, "These lies are perpetuated to cover the shameful, disgraceful and dishonorable history that occurred between the Indigenous Peoples and the white man."
Chris Mato Nunpa, Ph.D.Retired, Formerly an Associate Professor of Indigenous Nations & Dakota Studies (INDS)Southwest Minnesota State University Marshall, Minnesota "
Dakota exercise fishing rights
Chris Mato Nunpa: "Dakota exercised their fishing rights on Sunday, July 20, 2008 on Lake Harriet, a lake in the ceded area of our Treaty of 1805."Watch video:
Read more by Chris Mato Nunpa on Minnesota's genocide and concentration camps:

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