This matters because American Indians remain one of the most vulnerable groups in this country, and the cost of ignorance about them is already too high. Just look at this past week.

It began with President Trump joking about a Native American massacre and ended with a crowd of people attending the Indigenous Peoples March in the nation’s capital, hoping to be seen and heard.

People waved signs that read, “We will not be silenced.”

They marched in their traditional garb, demanding that part of their heritage be noticed.

Two women held a white sheet stained with red handprints, bearing the message, “Justice for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.”

“It’s an important time in our country’s history, in our world’s history,” Deb Haalland, one of two Native American women elected to Congress for the first time, told the crowd. “It’s time for us to make a move. It’s time for us to stand up for the environment. It’s time for us to stand up for our people.”

She called on those gathered to make sure people vote, so that the country gets elected officials, “who care about us, who care about our issues.”

Elected officials who know better than to joke about a shameful slaughter.

Through a social media campaign, in which people described why they wanted to march, individuals spoke about personal struggles and broader ones. They spoke about the past and the present.

“There are approximately 1.6 million people living in the US without running water or basic plumbing in their homes,” wrote Emma Robbins, director of the Navajo Water Project. “Many of these folks are Indigenous, living on Native Nations, which is something we need to change. We deserve to have the basic human right to clean, safe running water.”

“I march for the Lakota language that is dying,” wrote Terrance Hollow Horn, a hip-hop artist who is Oglala Lakota from Wounded Knee, S.D. “I march for any and all Indigenous languages. For the youth that feel like they’re forgotten. Rejected. Pushed aside. Told they ‘can’t.’ ”

Responses to "‘We will not be silenced’: Powerful images from the Indigenous Peoples March in Washington, D.C."

  1. Unknown says:

    Thank you for this inspiring report on the strong indigenous presence in DC. May these truths not fall on deaf ears.

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