Territories and Borders: For seemingly as long as there have been both we natives and you settlers on the same soil, there have been land disputes and issues of borders. Take, for example what happened to the Sioux People. They were moved to the Black Hills, only to be removed shortly after because word of gold being there. The United States government, with their almost natural and innate greed, proceeded to move the Sioux. Not only this, but such others as those in the Oklahoma Territory. Prior to the horrendous “solution” to this issue known only as the Dawes act, natives were allowed to almost all the territory. After that Dawes disaster, my fellow natives owned approximately a third of what they once had.
Settlers moving west and into native land: As settlers move ever westward, tensions between us and them rise more and more. As settlers move into our land, violence and bloodshed increase on both sides, both sides fear one another. Both sides have extremists, however this makes us viewed as “blood thirsty savages”, making all whites and the government, even if they have been in no way effected by we natives, live in fear of us. Thanks to this, we aren’t trusted, we’re seen as less than human, and in some more extreme cases, rounded up and brutally slaughtered.
Different Beliefs about land ownership: Believe it or not, we natives have different beliefs and views on the world, specifically in this instance, on the soil beneath our feet. The whites have the firm belief that land can be owned and by singular person. We, however, view it as much, much more than that. This land is a precious gift to all living things and we must treat is as such, this land simply cannot be owned and it must be shared between us all, man and man, man and beast, as it was intended for us to do.
Reservations: It may or may not come as a surprise to you to read this, but the reservations you forced us on to did not work as a viable solution to our conflict. Our ancestors and our people helped your ancestors and your people to survive, giving them some resources and even some land, and this is how we are repaid? Stealing our resources and land, giving us petty fractions of what our people once had? Not only this, but you also move us from place to place if you seemed it fit. The Sioux, just for an example. You forced them into the Black Hills, but shortly after you forced them off. Why? Gold. You moved people, forcibly, possibly going so far as to kill them, just for metal.
Dawes Act: The utter disaster known as the Dawes Act was arguably much worse than just the mere reservations. After you take our land, you offer the individuals small sums of it, but at a price: we are to turn our backs on everything we know and everything we hold true, our beliefs, our tribes, everything, and swear our allegiance to the nation that cut us down so low that even the very dirt below our feet it seen as more valuable than the lives of our men, women, and children. We are seen as objects, to be used and abused and moved whenever it is deemed necessary by the government. Even the tribes that you deemed civilized and held so highly were cut down thanks to the Curtis Act of 1898. There governments were dissolved, there land was stolen, and they were treated no better than the rest of us.
Assimilation: Not only did your people try to rob our land and resources, you tried to rob us of our culture and heritage. You took our children, forced them into your specialized school, and the education they received was to turn them against us, they’re own people, make them see us as bloodthirsty savages, as you whites do. You wanted to completely rid of our ways and everything about us. You wanted to believe that you could tame us, turn us from wild and savage wolves to your loyal and obedient dogs. At least when you people tried to assimilate and decimate our culture, you recognized that we are human and not wild animals that need to be sent to the slaughter.