Black Elk's The Earth is All that Lasts

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Black Elk's The Earth is All that Lasts

The U.S. Military played a dramatic role in shaping the west as we know it today. The U.S. Military has mistreated the Native Americans in numerous ways in the past. Also, they have virtually eliminated nearly all the Native American Tribes in the United States. Before the arrival of the U.S. Military, Native Americans lived almost peaceful lives. In the article "The Earth is all that Lasts," Black Elk talks about what happened during General Custard's Last Stand and what it was like to be a Native American during that period of time.

In the past, many things have influenced me of how the Native Americans had to survive. For instance, some types of material that helped me realize just what the Native Americans had to endure in order to survive were history classes, books, the Internet, movies, television shows, and this article. In Black Elk’s article, the account of Custer’s Last Stand only reinsured my views. Black Elk explains some of the suffering and how the Native Americans had to search for a new location constantly. Black Elk also shows that the military drove the Native Americans out of their homelands, and how badly the Native Americans were treated.

The U.S. Military has used many different strategies to eliminate the Native Americans. There were things such as, peace treaties, and battles. Mainly, they did this for power, land, and "yellow metal" or gold. Someone had to suffer if the U.S. Military and United States Citizens were going to take over the west and it happened to be the Native American Tribes, the rightful land and territory owners.

Native Americans tried to come up with peace treaties, but the U.S. Military hardly ever abides by them....

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...eople in return.

In conclusion, I am embarrassed that we, Americans, could have performed such a horrible act toward the Native Americans, who are human beings like the rest of us. I also really enjoyed reading Black Elk’s essay because the person telling the story was a Native American. It was really interesting to hear the views of what happened from a real Native American, and not from someone who went to the library and found a book on Native Americans and started to write not knowing whether or not the information was true or a lie. Overall, I feel that this article really taught me about what the Native Americans had to do to fight for the rights and their lives.

Works Cited

Elk, Black. "The Earth is all that lasts." American Voices: Culture and Community. Ed. Dolores LaGuardia and Hans P. Guth. Mountain View: Mayfield, 1998. 144-156.

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