This Land Is Your Land

1007 Words 5 Pages
“This land is your land, this land is my land, from California to the New York Island, from the Redwood forests to the Gulfstream waters, this land was made for you and me” (Guthrie). Contrary to the lyrics in “This Land is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie, this land was apparently not made for “you and me.” America was only made for the “me” aspect of the song, “me” being the Americans. Thousands of years ago, the Americas were undiscovered by the Europeans. Now, this land withholds a great country.
However, as settlers and explorers journeyed upon and throughout this unexplored land, a common hindrance was stumbled upon: Native Americans. The Native Americans’ homeland was invaded and taken, almost right from under them, by adventurous and ambition
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The biggest example of this was the Removal Act of 1830 ordered by President Andrew Jackson, the same man who was saved by 500 Cherokee allies at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend (“A Brief History of the Trail of Tears”). Before the Removal Act was passed, however, the Native Americans tried to argue against being forced to move. “Native Americans claimed their right to the land based on their long occupation, as well as the preexisting treaties that granted them specific rights to the land” (Glauner). Because the Native Americans had clearly lived on the American soil longer that the settlers had, they assumed their rights to live on it. Since that argument did not sway the settlers, the Indians also brought up signed treaties. The natives recalled Article VI of the United States Constitution, which stated that “‘once [treaties are] ratified’ they are the ‘supreme law of the land’” (Glauner). The Native Americans thus brought attention to the Northwest Ordinance passed on July 13, 1787, which stated that “‘land and property shall never be taken from [Native Americans] without their consent[,] and, in their property, rights, and liberty, they shall never be invaded or disturbed, unless in just and lawful wars authorized by Congress’” (Glauner). To the Native Americans, the land was rightfully their own. However, the United States government claimed their rights were more important than that of the Native Americans. Treaties …show more content…
Although a lot of Native American deaths were caused by illness and disease, too any also died at the hand of a white man who wanted the Indian’s land. The Native Americans were sitting on a pot of gold, and settlers were willing to do anything to get their stingy hands on it, even if that meant causing the genocide of a group of people. The Native Americans were first categorized by settlers. Then, to make matters worse, Americans gave the natives a symbol that stood for filthy money. Lastly, as if enough had not been done, Americans broke and created laws that caused discrimination towards the Native American people. Americans dehumanized the Indians piece by piece. The natives became unworthy to live wherever they pleased, even if they did have their land stolen from them. Maybe Woody Guthrie songs should have went more like this: “You thought this was your land, but now it’s my land, from California to the New York Island, from the redwood forests to the gulf-stream waters, this land was taken from you and given to

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