January 29, 2012
Ethnic Groups and Discrimination
When I think about the ethnic group I identify with the most, I would have to say classify myself as a White person. I have adapted White ways or the ways of my family. I don’t have very many cultural beliefs or views to follow. On the other hand, I am one-quarter Cherokee Indian. My father’s mother was a full-blood Cherokee. I’ve always been intrigued by this culture and the challenges and discrimination the tribe had faced throughout their development.
The Cherokee Indians once settled in the Great Lake region of the United States. The Indians migrated south to the region which is now Georgia. Once settled in the south, the Cherokee tribe prospered. The tribe constructed a written language, built cities which included a capital city, and developed a constitution among the Cherokee people. When the White settlers began settling in the Cherokee lands, they showed much discrimination against the tribes. The settlers believed the Indians did not belong and they had the right to take over their lands. The tribe reached out to the government for assistance, but received no sympathy. The cry for help turned into a treaty to make the Indians move from their already settled homelands to areas west of the Mississippi River (Hicks, 2011). Though other Indian tribes agreed to sign the treaties and move out, the Cherokee tribe refused. This started issues among the United States troops and the Cherokees. The troops forced more than 16,000 Cherokees into camps to await their unwanted evacuations of their lands (Hicks, 2011). In these camps the Cherokees were devastatingly abused; suffering from starvation, disease, physical and sexual abuse. If any Indian attempted to flee and escape the camp they would be shot on sight by the troops. Small portions of the tribe were made to evacuate the land during the heat of the summer. Cherokees endured heat exhaustion,
References: Chiodo, J. J. (2011). Citizenship: The Cherokee Indian Perspective. National Social Science Journal, 36(2), 24-34. HICKS, B. (2011). THE HOLDOUTS. Smithsonian, 41(11), 50. Indian Country Diaries. (2006). Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/indiancountry/challenges/index.html