Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Black History Month 2014 | Chief Crazy Horse

As the noted preeminent scholar, Egyptologist and Professor of African American Studies at Hunter College, Dr. Yosef Ben-Jochannan affirms, African Americans are only one-fifth African. The other 80% is Native American, if European lineage is not involved.

February is Black History Month and this is the Year of the Horse. Since Native American and African American ancestry is so closely entwined, Black History Month 2014 is dedicated to Chief Crazy Horse.

Eyewitness accounts of the Chief’s military acumen were that he rode his horse close to his enemies in battle, but he was never hit by their bullets. He rode buck naked and bareback. As a tactical leader at Little Big Horn and the Battle of the Rosebud, Chief Crazy Horse killed General Custer.

There are no official pictures of Chief Crazy Horse; he would not allow himself to be photographed. But, there is a sculpture in his honor eight miles from Mt. Rushmore on Thunderhead Mountain called the Crazy Horse Monument. The likeness of Crazy Horse stands 27 feet larger than the presidents of Mt. Rushmore.

During the time that Mt. Rushmore was being sculpted, the Native Americans asked Gutzon Borglum to remember that the Black Hills belonged to the Lakota ‘Indians’ by the Treaty of Fort Laramie signed in 1868, which granted the natives rights to Mt. Rushmore in perpetuity. A Lakota holy man, John Fire Lame Deer said that the faces on Mt. Rushmore would ‘remain dirty until the treaties concerning the Black Hills are fulfilled’. The Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation rejects offers to be federally funded. The Department of Transportation commemorates Chief Crazy Horse with two memorial highways named in his honor, US-16 and US-38 both run through South Dakota.

A first-ever investigation into the conditions of Native Americans living in the U.S. was conducted by United Nations’ in special report on the rights of indigenous peoples in May 2012 by James Anaya. He recommended that the United States return land to the tribes including Crazy Horse’s home, the South Dakota Black Hills where Mt. Rushmore and Mt. Crazy Horse are seated.

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