Cultural Genocide, also known as 'Manifest Destiny' By: Apollo Ashcraft

I, Elizabeth Benedicta XIV, United States senator draft this document with my quill and not a well of ink, but a well of tears. Upon first witnessing the egregious acts of our government, my patriotism wept; I cannot sit as a United States senator, or sit as an American and allow atrocities occur to my fellow people, especially if these atrocities are being perpetrated by the government of which I serve.

The first issue that I must address is that of the misunderstanding between the general white population of the United States, and the Native Americans. Firstly, us European Americans see land-ownership as a frigid, set-in-stone system of it is the right and pursuit of all people to purchase and use their land freely; But, our fellow Americans that are native to these lands do not align the beliefs when it comes to land-ownership, as they see the land as solely a resource of everyone and not that it can be owned by one person, except the one who created it.

Secondly, the ever-growing settlers that are moving west are simultaneously pushing the Native Americans farther and farther out of their own land, to the point of having to allocate specific, largely ill-habitable, territories for the Native Americans to live. These reservations then become co-inhabited by white settlers who complain about the Natives, which drives the federal government to relocate the Native Americans and their land.

Lastly, it is imperative that we address the undying issue of Native American citizenship. In the grand scale of our country's great yet tragic timeline, we have slaughtered them to the brink of their existence and suppressed the cultures of those that have survived; we still haven't yet granted them the true ability to gain United States citizenship.

1. Attempts to establish land agreements between the Native Americans and the Union have left the Native Americans in disarray and displacement of their home lands. Constantly moving Native Americans' reservation site is detrimental to their culture well-being and spiritual beliefs and resting grounds. The attempts of allocating land to the Native Americans, while it may have been driven by good intentions, has failed to properly recognize Native Americans' beliefs on land ownership.

2. The Dawes Act has forcefully tried to arrange and displace Native American land allocations across the nation as if they're chess pieces.

3. Our pitiful attempt for the Native Americans to gain citizenship was branded by the motto "kill the Indian, save the man." Although this statement may only occupy six words, it boasts monumentally greater sorrow amongst virtuous Americans. Sending Native American youth through rigorous encampment and white-washing of their cultures, customs, and history.

I propose that we create a department of culture, a federal government-funded organization that we may utilize to patron art and architecture that will influence the public views on our Native American issues. Many other civilized nations across Europe have departments of culture that they use to control the injustices that may transpire within their countries by first addressing public belief, rather than cold-cut laws that the public does not agree with.

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Apollo Ashcraft

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