What would your reaction be if one day you returned to your home that had been built by your great-grandfather only to find that someone has moved into your house, forced your family out and told you that you had to live in a shed at the far end of the property? Would you be angry? Of course you would be, but having only your lunchbox in your hand and no other form of protection you would be forced to comply. Much the same happened to the Native Americans living here in the United States when the first European settlers started to arrive.
When Christopher Columbus discovered America he not only found a land rich with resources he also discovered a land inhabited by an indigenous population. In an article entitled The Balance of Injustice and the War for Independence, David Lyons (1994) states:
Contrary to the story that European Americans have been all too willing to accept, European immigrants came to inhabited territory in North America. Native Americans were numerous and many dwelt in stable communities. They had cleared land on the eastern seaboard and cultivated extensively. Their nations had established territories which were vital to the hunting component of their economics. These facts were evident to European settlers--especially to those who escaped starvation by accepting as gifts the fruits of Native American agriculture.
These natives welcomed the Europeans with open arms and gave them food, shelter and gifts. This was short lived though.
The Europeans wanted to settle this land and claim it for England. How were they to do this if there were people already living here? The king gave these immigrants permission to acquire this land even if it meant by force. Some of these immigrants had compassion and understanding for the natives that lived there and tried to trade with them for land possession but most of the time these inhabitants were just regarded by these... [continues]
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