Trump's plan to visit Mount Rushmore for July 4th draws criticism from Native Americans

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  john-russell  •  2 weeks ago  •  24 comments

Trump's plan to visit Mount Rushmore for July 4th draws criticism from Native Americans
im Giago, a journalist who is a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe, said he doesn’t see four great American leaders when he looks at the monument, but instead four white men who either made racist remarks or initiated actions that removed Native Americans from their land. Washington and Jefferson both held slaves. Lincoln, though he led the abolition of slavery, also approved the hanging of 38 Dakota men in Minnesota after a violent conflict with white settlers there. Roosevelt is reported to...

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — President Donald Trump's plans to kick off   Independence Day   with a showy display at Mount Rushmore are drawing sharp criticism from Native Americans who view the monument as a desecration of land violently stolen from them and used to pay homage to leaders hostile to native people.

Several groups led by Native American activists are planning protests for Trump's July 3 visit, part of Trump’s "comeback" campaign for a nation reeling from sickness, unemployment and, recently, social unrest. The event is slated to include fighter jets thundering over the 79-year-old stone monument in South Dakota's Black Hills and the first fireworks display at the site since 2009.

But it comes amid a national reckoning over racism and a reconsideration of the symbolism of monuments around the globe. Many Native Americans activists say the Rushmore memorial is as reprehensible as the   many Confederate monuments being toppled around the nation .

"Mount Rushmore is a symbol of white supremacy, of structural racism that’s still alive and well in society today," said Nick Tilsen, a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe and the president of a local activist organization called NDN Collective. "It's an injustice to actively steal Indigenous people’s land then carve the white faces of the conquerors who committed genocide."

While some activists, like Tilsen, want to see the monument removed altogether and the Black Hills returned to the Lakota, others have called for a share in the economic benefits from the region and the tourists it attracts.

Trump has long shown a fascination with Mount Rushmore.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem said in 2018 that he had once told her straight-faced it was his dream to have his face carved into the monument. He later joked at a campaign rally about getting enshrined alongside George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. And while it was Noem, a Republican, who pushed for a return of the fireworks on the eve of Independence Day, Trump joined the effort and committed to visiting South Dakota for the celebration.

The four faces, carved into the mountain with dynamite and drills, are known as the "shrine to democracy." The presidents were chosen by sculptor Gutzon Borglum for their leadership during four phases of American development: Washington led the birth of the nation; Jefferson sparked its westward expansion; Lincoln preserved the union and emancipated slaves; Roosevelt championed industrial innovation.

And yet, for many Native American people, including the Lakota, Cheyenne, Omaha, Arapaho, Kiowa and Kiowa-Apache, the monument is a desecration to the Black Hills, which they consider sacred. Lakota people know the area as Paha Sapa — "the heart of everything that is."

As monuments to Confederate and colonial leaders   have been removed across U.S. cities , conservatives have expressed concern that Mount Rushmore could be next. Commentator Ben Shapiro this week suggested that the "woke historical revisionist priesthood" wanted to blow up the monument. Noem responded by tweeting, "Not on my watch."

Tim Giago, a journalist who is a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe, said he doesn’t see four great American leaders when he looks at the monument, but instead four white men who either made racist remarks or initiated actions that removed Native Americans from their land.

Washington and Jefferson both held slaves. Lincoln, though he led the abolition of slavery, also approved the hanging of 38 Dakota men in Minnesota after a violent conflict with white settlers there. Roosevelt is reported to have said, "I don't go so far as to think that the only good Indians are dead Indians, but I believe nine out of every ten are..."

The monument has long been a "Rorschach test," said John Taliaferro, author of "Great White Fathers," a history of the monument. "All sorts of people can go there and see it in different ways."

The monument often starts conversations on the paradox of American democracy — that a republic that promoted the ideals of freedom, determination and innovation also enslaved people and drove others from their land, he said.

"If we're having this discussion today about what American democracy is, Mount Rushmore is really serving its purpose because that conversation goes on there," he said. "Is it fragile? Is it permanent? Is it cracking somewhat?"

The monument was conceived in the 1920s as a tourist draw for the new fad in vacationing called the road trip. South Dakota historian Doane Robinson recruited Borglum, one of the preeminent sculptors at the time, to abandon his work creating the Stone Mountain Confederate Memorial in Georgia, which was to feature Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis and Stonewall Jackson.

Borglum was a member of the Klu Klux Klan, according to Mount Rushmore historian and writer Tom Griffith. Borglum joined the Klan to raise money for the Confederate memorial, and Griffith argues his allegiance was more practical than ideological. He left that project and instead spent years in South Dakota completing Mount Rushmore.

Native American activists have long staged protests at the site to raise awareness among the history of the Black Hills, which were taken from them despite treaties with the United States protecting the land. Fifty years ago this summer a group of activists associated with an organization called United Native Americans climbed to the top of the monument and occupied it.

Quanah Brightman, who now runs United Native Americans, said the activism in the 1970s grew out of the civil rights movement of the 1960s. He hopes a similar movement for Native Americans comes from the Black Lives Matter movement.

"What people find here is the story of America — it’s multi-dimensional, it's complex," Griffith said. "It’s important to understand it was people just trying to do right as best they knew it then."

The White House had no immediate comment on criticism of the president’s planned visit.


Tags

jrDiscussion - desc
smarty_function_ntUser_is_admin: user_id parameter required
[]
 
JohnRussell
1  seeder  JohnRussell    2 weeks ago
Trump has long shown a fascination with Mount Rushmore. South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem said in 2018 that he had once told her straight-faced it was his dream to have his face carved into the monument. He later joked at a campaign rally about getting enshrined alongside George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. And while it was Noem, a Republican, who pushed for a return of the fireworks on the eve of Independence Day, Trump joined the effort and committed to visiting South Dakota for the celebration.
 
 
 
Suz
1.1  Suz  replied to  JohnRussell @1    2 weeks ago

John, you are obsessed with this man and that isn't healthy. 

He cares enough to go.  It might help people to remember that the U.S. has wonderful places to visit. 

If it helps the tourism industry, that's a plus for them.

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
1.1.1  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  Suz @1.1    2 weeks ago

Trump would just have other tourists there removed for a photo op.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
1.1.2  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Suz @1.1    2 weeks ago

Donald Trump is not fit for office. He should resign today.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2  seeder  JohnRussell    2 weeks ago

I have never been to Mt Rushmore, never had any real desire to see it in person, but I did watch a video about it taken by a tourist who filmed it from the closest point the tourists are allowed to get. I can't say I was real impressed with it as a "wonder of the world". 

I also watched a video about a monument that was being created nearby . 

5f09891590c58f8a3da63b99b67dff56975fec6263cba43960c9e82495f72fea.jpg

Korczak Ziolkowski began work on Crazy Horse Memorial in 1948. Once complete, this tribute to the Lakota leader will be the largest mountain carving in South Dakota and the world. The on-site Indian Museum of North America and the Native American Educational & Cultural Center also provide educational and cultural programming.

https://www.travelsouthdakota.com/explore-with-us/great-8/crazy-horse?utm_actcampaign=26355&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=MI+South+Dakota+Search+Brand&utm_term=crazy+horse+monument&utm_content=Crazy+Horse+Memorial

 
 
 
Suz
3  Suz    2 weeks ago

How does anyone not know the background to this story.   The completion of this memorial is long overdue.

 
 
 
Suz
3.1  Suz  replied to  Suz @3    2 weeks ago

  About the criticism, people are always upset about one thing or another. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
4  Perrie Halpern R.A.    2 weeks ago

Wow, what a wonderful memorial to Crazy Horse! I never knew about it!

 
 
 
zuksam
4.1  zuksam  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @4    2 weeks ago

It's awesome. The Federal Government offered to help fund and finish it but the owners refused so it's funded by private donations and visitors fees. It's a long way from finished though it might take a few hundred years at the pace they're going. There's a smaller statue there that depicts what the main monument will look like when finished and it shows that the monument isn't even 10% completed after 72 years so it's unlikely we'll live to see it completed.

 
 
 
JBB
5  JBB    2 weeks ago

In a thousands years will Crazy Horse and Mount Rushmore seem as mysterious and enigmatic as the Sphinx? 

 
 
 
Tacos!
6  Tacos!    2 weeks ago
Native Americans who view the monument as a desecration of land violently stolen from them and used to pay homage to leaders hostile to native people.

Excuse my hostility, but that is just too fuckin bad. I'm sorry (not really sorry), but I have no sympathy for shit like this. Mt. Rushmore is a great monument and we're not changing it. Neither are we going to apologize for it. Fuck that!

Mount Rushmore is a symbol of white supremacy

No. It's not. That's bullshit. It is a tribute to four of the greatest Americans who ever lived. 

The White House had no immediate comment on criticism of the president’s planned visit.

I have a comment: Get over it. And don't waste your time being offended on me. I do not care.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
6.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Tacos! @6    2 weeks ago

If these are four of the greatest Americans who ever lived and at least three of them thought Negroes and Indians were inferior , and two of them owned slaves all their lives even though they knew it was wrong, what does that say about America's past? 

 
 
 
bugsy
6.1.1  bugsy  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1    2 weeks ago

It was the way things were during those times. It was the way it was in many countries, including Africa whose many tribes captured and sold the inhabitants of other tribes to each other and to the Dutch, Americans and pretty much anyone who would purchase them.

Since then, most Americans have evolved on many different issues, including slavery.......well, except most democrats, who require blacks to continue to reside on the plantation of servitude to the democrat party.

If one dares to escape, terms like "Uncle Tom" and "token" come to mind when democrats talk about those people.

What do you think about the more than 180 black slave owners documented in South Carolina alone? Should we erase the memories and documentation about them, too, or would that be racist somehow?

 
 
 
Tacos!
6.1.2  Tacos!  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1    2 weeks ago
what does that say about America's past?

It says things were different. It says people need to get educated about history. People had different understandings about all sorts of things. Judge the people of the past on their own times and not on the standards and practices of the present or future. Recognize, also, that no one is perfect. Nevertheless, these four men were all excellent men and worthy of the monument.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
6.1.3  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  bugsy @6.1.1    2 weeks ago

Both Washington and Jefferson knew slavery was morally wrong, but kept slaves all their lives for financial benefit. Washington because he liked being rich and Jefferson because he blew through a lot of money living an upper class lifestyle. These things will forever be black marks on their record. Neither of them objected to swindling the Indians either. 

Teddy Roosevelt said 

“I don’t go so far as to think that the only good Indians are dead Indians, but I believe nine out of ten are, and I shouldn’t like to inquire too closely into the case of the tenth.”

and Lincoln had racial prejudices against both the Africans and the natives in America. 

Mt Rushmore has a lot to answer for in terms of race. 

 
 
 
bugsy
6.1.4  bugsy  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1.3    2 weeks ago

Again..simply the way things were.

The fact that they owned slaves is far outweighed by the vast positive things they did for the creation of and succession of this early country, otherwise you would be bowing to Queen Elizabeth today. .

Same thing with Roosevelt.

The monument is perfect the way it is.

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
6.1.5  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1.3    2 weeks ago
Mt Rushmore has a lot to answer for in terms of race. 

Well you sit it down and have a real tough talk with it.............

 
 
 
charger 383
6.1.6  charger 383  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1.3    2 weeks ago
Lincoln had racial prejudices against both the Africans and the natives in America. 
So not liking them outweighs leading  war that freed them? 

 
 
 
loki12
6.2  loki12  replied to  Tacos! @6    2 weeks ago

Weird? I read somewhere from a TDS suffering fool about how can America have statues of losers, and here we are giving shit what one of the losers think? Some might call that hypocrisy? Now I think southern rednecks are entitled to their opinion as much as an Lakota nation member is to his, I guess I can never be a narrow minded progressive bigot who demand everyone conform to their retarded group think.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
6.2.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  loki12 @6.2    2 weeks ago
Now I think southern rednecks are entitled to their opinion as much as an Lakota nation member is to his,

About what? 

 
 
 
loki12
6.2.2  loki12  replied to  JohnRussell @6.2.1    2 weeks ago

Anything John, if they want to be racist/democrats they are entitled to that, if they want to hate the founding fathers for kicking their ass in war, they are entitled to that.

so John, what kind of thoughts and opinions are going to be forbidden in the new world order?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
6.2.3  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  loki12 @6.2.2    2 weeks ago

Of course they have the right to say any stupid racist thing they want. And others have the right to object and call it out. 

 
 
 
bugsy
6.2.4  bugsy  replied to  JohnRussell @6.2.3    2 weeks ago

Exactly...that's why the racist democrats are being called out for what they were today.

 
 
 
charger 383
7  charger 383    2 weeks ago

Apparently. the only thing important now for anybody in history is were they nice to blacks, every other accomplishment means nothing

 
 
Loading...
Loading...

Who is online


Heartland American
shona1
Raven Wing
Gazoo
Tessylo
arkpdx


33 visitors