Andrew Jackson's Response To The Trail Of Tears

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As a part of the Indian Removal Act of 1830, Native American people were forcefully assembled and made to endure one of the longest walks from Georgia to Oklahoma on what has become known as the Trail of Tears. President Andrew Jackson’s motives for movement of the Native people to a new territory was to eliminate the Native race by stripping the victims of their vital resources needed for basic survival. After 178 years of expansion and growth in the United States of America, the circumstances for Native Americans remain unchanged. President Jackson’s sentiments have permeated the present society in issues associated with the physical and emotional fight to decolonize. Decolonization is both the individual and communal effort to regenerate…show more content…
Taiaiake Alfred discussed targeting the new generations who are impressionable and open to change to gain power by spiritually accepting the warrior path, the spirit of wasáse, to ultimately combat colonial attitudes. The hierarchical structure of society and the feelings of living in a third world nation can be reversed by embodying “the spirit of the ancestors who went to war against the invaders [in a] compelling and honourable [manner]”. To effectively find true peace Native Americans have to become self-sustaining from any governmental aid, including food, land to live on, and other survival necessities. Alfred notes, “We still depend on others to feed us and teach us how to look, feel, live. We still turn to white men for the answers to our problems; worse yet, we have started to trust them. There are no more leaders and hardly a place left to go where we can just be native.” Although colonial powers have the monetary resources for total control, Native people have a spiritual relationship with their ancestors that can, and must, guide independence. Through traditional knowledge of appropriate land use, life will thrive. Organizations such as La Plazita Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico have created a space for change to flourish. La Plazita Institute is a unique organization that focuses on teaching ethics and values to young people who have been involved in street gangs or violence. To many young Natives on reservations, power only seems attainable through violence. The physical fight is not productive. La Plazita alternatively provides guidance and tangible activities for the members to reconnect with traditional values and become independent. One of the main opportunities provided by the organization is the garden, where the members learn to cultivate their own food to understand the benefit of being self-reliant. La Plazita promotes Alfred’s discussion of how a violent fight only
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