‘the Actions of Native Americans Themselves Contributed Nothing to the Advancement of Their Civil Rights in the Period 1865 to 1992’.

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‘The actions of Native Americans themselves contributed nothing to the advancement of their civil rights in the period 1865 to 1992’. Native Americans admittedly, did surprisingly little in the initial two thirds of the period, despite the Plains Wars and other small-localized armed resistance during the nineteenth century; the massacre at Wounded Knee in 1889 effectively marked the end to such resistance. Whilst it can be argued that their efforts were at best lukewarm during the beginning, in the closing third of the period, the Native Americana ‘movement’, galvanized by the African American civil rights campaign and revolutionary zeitgeist became increasingly active and forceful in the advancement of their civil rights. Thus the…show more content…
As such, not only the physical but also the emotional impact would have eroded the morale of Indians, removing any existing will to resist. Therefore whilst Native American activity may have been limited at best during the first two thirds of the period, this was largely a result of their enforced submission at the hands of the federal government policy of assimilation. The pacifism displayed in the opening half of the period contrasts heavily with forceful campaign and protest movement in the latter. Pressure groups such as ‘The National Congress of American Indians’ and the ‘Native American Rights Fund’ despite slow progress, secured some landmark decisions, partially during the 1960’s and 1970’s. For instance, the successful land claim secured in the 1972 case Passamaquoddy vs. Morton, in which opened the floodgates for similar land claims, resulting in either monetary compensation or less commonly the return of their native lands. The method of campaigning through the courts was considerably successful, yet this alone given its sluggish progress can hardly be solely responsible for the eventual gains made. However this was not the only method adopted by the Native Americans, with a more militant form of protest employed from the 1960’s onwards. The ‘Native Indian Youth Council’ continued these legalistic approaches with more vigor to protect the Native Americans Youths. Whilst AIM took this further, responsible for large-scale

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