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OF BISON SKULLS: This historic photo from 1870 shows just
how brutally efficient European settlers were in nearly wiping
out the American bison. The two men are literally standing
on tens of thousands of bison skulls from the once mighty
herds of the Great Plains. The bison were not only seen as
impeding development, their slaughter was also used to weaken
Native American resistance to American expansionism since
many tribes depended on the bison for food and culture.
sobering reminder on the 40th Anniversary of the Endangered
Species Act why we still need laws protecting our wildlife
and why the restoration of the bison to the Great Plains is
so symbolic for Native Americans.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then this picture
is worth many thousands of bison. This photo from the 1870s
shows a man proudly standing in front of a mountain of tens
of thousands of bison skulls - an iconic American species
that was systematically slaughtered by the millions as European
Americans settled the west.
The US Army actively endorsed the wholesale slaughter of
these animals for two main reasons: to remove any competition
with cattle, and to starve Native American tribes who greatly
depended on the bison for food. Without the bison, the resisting
tribes of the Great Plains would either be forced to leave
or die of starvation.
More than a century after this dark period in our history,
the bison is making a comeback. After living on the brink
of extinction, this American icon is slowly but steadily returning
to the Great Plains - one baby bison at a time. You can watch
a video of how Native American communities and conservation
groups like Earthjustice are fighting to bring back the bison
on our website: http://ejus.tc/Ovv8lV
Chief Arvol Looking Horse Speaks of White Buffalo Prophecy
Medicine Cloud, Sacred White Buffalo, Killed and Skinned
May 4, 2012
to a Fox News report, the extremely rare and sacred white
buffalo born last year has been found dead and skinned along
with its mother.
Medicine Cloud, born May 12, 2011 on a stormy night at the
Lakota Ranch in Greenville Texas, was a natural white buffalo—an
extremely rare occurrence, happening an estimated once per
ten million births. In June, a naming ceremony attracted over
2,000 visitors to the ranch, and a report on the proceedings
cited beliefs held by some Lakota that the calf was the third
white buffalo ever, and the first male in 150 years. Such
a white buffalo is tied to the story of White Buffalo Calf
Woman, and is the most sacred animal, perhaps the most sacred
thing on the planet, to the Lakota people."