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American Indian Movement of Colorado

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Monday, January 31, 2005

ICT article about columbus day acquittals

This article appears in today's web edition of Indian Country Today.

Columbus Day protesters victorious in court
Posted: January 31, 2005
by: Brenda Norrell / Indian Country Today

DENVER - The Denver City Attorney dropped charges against protesters who blocked the Columbus Day Parade, after eight organizers argued that the celebration of Columbus represents hate speech and encourages the theft of land and loss of language and culture in Indian country.

''Our acquittal last week and the dismissals today are a great victory for historical accuracy and for the power of our spiritual ways - both the pipe and the drum were present in the courtroom and I believe that our trial was the first time in history that the AIM song was sung in open court,'' co-organizer Glenn Morris told Indian Country Today on Jan. 23.

''It was amazing. This set of developments is a total surrender by the City of Denver, and a complete vindication of our confrontation of the hate speech that is embodied in Columbus celebrations,'' Morris said.

''The trial was also a powerful consciousness-raising tool that the legacy of Columbus is alive and well in the theft of Shoshone treaty territories in Nevada, the trust fund thefts, the continuing destruction of Indian languages, culture and young people's lives - all of that was offered as evidence in our case.''Full article

Also, further down in the article, Brenda Norrell reports on the general backlash(among the mainstream media coporations and their "opinion shapers")that resulted from the acquittals.


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