Imitating the Whites, the Indians had black slaves

Imitant les Blancs, les Indiens avaient des esclaves noirs

Protesters have attempted, without success, to topple the statue of Andrew Jackson at Lafayette Square in front of the White House.

The History remembers of this slavedriver, who was president from 1829 to 1837, as the man who signed the Indian Removal Act, which deported him to the west of the Mississippi all Indians living east of the great river.

This brutal deportation of Indians from their ancestral lands has caused the death of thousands of them. I’ll come back to in more detail later.

Trump, who has caught the portrait of Jackson in the oval office from his election, has denounced the protesters, “for the vandalism shameful of the magnificent statue of Andrew Jackson,” before the threat of 10 years in prison under the Law on the preservation of monuments honoring members of the military.

The racial manifestations of current oblige the United States to confront the systemic racism that tainted their past and that filthy still their present.

A little-known aspect, and even more rarely mentioned in american history, for the Indians who were owners of slaves, a reality that still has suites of our days.

On August 30, 2017, a federal court has sided with the Cherokee Freedmen — descendants of slaves and afro-indigenous people who were demanding the reinstatement of their citizenship of the tribal that they had been removed.

The federal court has decided that the Freedmen, blacks or mestizos, were cherokee nations.

In 2011, the second largest indian tribe in America had deprived a majority of Afro-native americans from their tribal affiliation. Some 2800 Freedmen were no longer eligible for the benefits of tribal and could not participate in the elections to tribal because they had revoked their citizenship of the cherokee because of their race.

The five tribes of the southeastern United States (Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek and Seminole) had been encouraged to practice slavery by Whites who felt that their participation in the enslavement of Black people was to “civilize” them.

This is the reason why it was named “the five tribes civilized”. The cherokee nations were the Aboriginal people who had best understood the culture of slave-holding Whites of the South.

In 1835, the cherokee nation had 1600 black slaves. The cherokee nations and the other “tribes civilized” were integrated into the economy based on the cultivation of cotton, which depended on a skilled and laborious work.

At the beginning of the Civil war, the five tribes were allied to the confederates because they wanted the federal government to have driven from east of the Mississippi.

The deportation was known as the Trail of Tears (trail of tears).

The expelled tribes had brought their slaves with them. In total, the deportation had cost the lives of more than 11,000 Indians, of which 2000 to 4000 cherokee nations. On the 4500 to 5000 Blacks who formed a class of slaves in the new indian territory in 1839, the vast majority was mixed.

The federal policy of expulsion of the Indians was not simply an impulse of hate Andrew Jackson, but a campaign approved by the Congress and by the white population that has continued under several administrations.

What motivated the decision of Jackson was the interests of the slave-trading whites who wanted to seize indian lands: the war profiteers, white are immediately seized.

In 1863, shortly after the emancipation proclamation Blacks of Lincoln, as the war turned to the advantage of the forces of the Union, the cherokee nations have seen fit to proclaim “the emancipation immediately” of all their slaves. But the discrimination against the cherokee nations Freedmen continued until our days.

The former senior chief of the cherokee nations, Wilma Mankiller wrote in her autobiography: “The truth is that the practice of slavery rush to never a shadow on the great cherokee nation.”

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