"Letter To The World" by Jack Gladstone
"In the days following September 11, 2001, I wrote the chorus of this song as I struggled to transcend both anger and fear. On Saturday, September 15, John Potter, Billings Gazette columnist and Anishinabe Indian, reminded his readers that the emotions now held by post 9/11 Americans are identical to those of 19th Century American Indians whose villages were viciously attacked by the U.S. under the rationale of Manifest Destiny. Downstream of todays Glacier National Park, on the banks of the Marias River, 173 men, women and children with the Heavy Runner band of Pikuni Blackfeet were indiscriminately slaughtered by the U.S. Army. This action was ordered by U.S. Gen. Phillip Sheridan. The date was January 23, 1870. American history refers to this event as the Baker Massacre. In the words of John Potter, Terrorism is not new to American soil nor is our government a stranger to it. This song is a prayer that the worlds people recognize that before race, economics, politics and/or religion, we are brothers and sisters. We are children of God.
John Potters complete editorial can be accessed in the archives at billingsgazette.com (9/15/01)."
[John Potter's artcle is no longer available on the Billings Gazette site, but is archived here: Potter Column: We are all Native Americans today
(original link: Potter Column: We are all Native Americans today)]