"Is it wrong for me to love my own? Is it wicked for me because my skin is red? Because I am Sioux? Because I was born where my father lived? Because I would die for my people and my country? God made me an Indian."
Chief Sitting Bull
"Our wise men are called Fathers, and they truly sustain that character. Do you call yourselves Christians? Does the religion of Him who you call your Savior inspire your spirit, and guide your practices? Surely not. It is recorded of him that a bruised reed he never broke. Cease then to call yourselves Christians, lest you declare to the world your hypocrisy. Cease too to call other nations savage, when you are tenfold more the children of cruelty than they. No person among us desires any other reward for performing a brave and worthwhile action, but the consciousness of having served his nation. I bow to no man for I am considered a prince among my own people. But I will gladly shake your hand."
Joseph Brant to King George III
Joseph Brant (Thayendanegea), Mohawk - 1742-1807
The whites were always trying to make the Indians give up their life and live like the white men - go to farming, work hard and do as they did - and the Indians did not know how to do that, and did not want to anyway….If the Indians had tried to make the whites live like them, the whites would have resisted, and it was the same with many Indians.
Wamditanka (Big Eagle) of the Santee Sioux
"We did not ask you white men to come here. The Great Spirit gave us this country as a home. You had yours. We did not interfere with you. The Great Spirit gave us plenty of land to live on, and buffalo, deer, antelope and other game. But you have come here; you are taking my land from me; you are killing off our game, so it is hard for us to live. Now, you tell us to work for a living, but the Great Spirit did not make us to work, but to live by hunting. You white men can work if you want to. We do not interfere with you, and again you say why do you not become civilized? We do not want your civilization! We would live as our fathers did, and their fathers before them." . . . .
Crazy Horse Tashunca-uitco (1849-1877)(1845?-1877)
…The white man says, there is freedom and justice for all. We have had "freedom and justice," and that is why we have been almost exterminated. We shall not forget this."
-From the 1927 Grand Council of American Indians
I did not know then how much was ended. When I look back now from this high hill of my old age, I can still see the butchered women and children lying heapen and scattered all along the crooked gulch as plain as when I saw them with eyes still young.And I can see that something else died there in the bloody mud, and was buried in the blizzard. A people dream died there. It was a beautiful dream. . . the nations hoop is broken and scattered. There is no center any longer, and the sacred tree is dead.
-Black Elk, Lakota
The Great Spirit is in all things: he is in the air we breathe. The Great Spirit is our Father, but the earth is our mother. She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us.
- Big Thunder (Bedagi) Wabanaki Algonquin
"The first peace, which is the most important, is that which comes within the souls of people when they realize their relationship, their oneness with the universe and all its powers, and when they realize that at the center of the universe dwells the Great Spirit, and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us."
Black Elk - Oglala Sioux
Only after the last tree has been cut down, Only after the last river has been poisoned, Only after the last fish has been caught, Only then will you find money cannot be eaten.