Saturday, March 6, 2010

06 Mar 2010: Statement of Leonard Peltier


I hope this finds you all well, and like the weather, looking towards warmer days and sunnier skies. I am excited about our upcoming art exhibit at the Trickster Art Gallery in Chicago on March 6. This event is called “Art for Haiti” and proceeds will benefit the victims of the recent earthquake there. I’ve been asked why we would do such a thing while Indian people remain in such a state of need. I need only direct you to history, where our people have always given to others, even when we had little.

There is a shrine in Ireland thanking the Choctaw people of Oklahoma who gave grain and money to those suffering from the potato famine in the late 1840’s. These Indians had just recently suffered all manner of brutality and suffering during their own removal on the Trail of Tears, and yet they still sought to help others in need around the world. No matter our own station, we should always keep open hearts and be willing to do what we can for others who suffer. It is part of what makes us who we are. And bear in mind our own campaigns to feed and clothe the needy in Indian communities have been in place for years, and they continue as well.

I want to take a moment and mention that one of our greatest warriors, Wilma Mankiller, of the Oklahoma Cherokee, is very ill. This magnificent woman has fought for Indian rights every since she took part in the takeover of Alcatraz in 1969. Please include her in your thoughts and prayers.

As always, I am thankful to all of you who continue to keep my case in the public eye, and campaign for my eventual freedom. Your efforts are not in vain I promise you. Keep up the good work, and I look forward to speaking with you all again.

In the Spirit of Crazy Horse,

Leonard Peltier

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