, 8 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
Today, a statue of Standing Bear will be unveiled at the US Capitol in statuary hall.

Standing Bear was a Ponca chief whose homeland covered parts of Northern Nebraska. He brought a lawsuit against the United States Army in 1879 after he was forcibly removed from his land.
At this point in our history, the United States had signed 371 treaties with Native peoples and violated all 371 of those treaties.
At a U.S. District Court in Omaha, attorneys from both sides argued back and forth. Near the end of the trial, the judge announced that Chief Standing Bear could speak. According to an official account, he arose, held out his right hand and stood motionless. Finally he said:
"This hand is not the color of yours, but if I pierce it I shall feel pain. If you pierce yours, you also feel pain. The blood that will flow from mine will be of the same color as yours. I am a man. The same God made us both.”
The courtroom fell silent. Soon, women could be heard weeping from the back. The defendant in the case lept up to shake Standing Bear’s hand and many others joined. The bailiffs asked for order in the court and the judge said he would issue an opinion at a later date.
About 2 weeks later, the judge handed down a decision which had never happened in the 100+ year history of the United States. Standing Bear and others who looked like him were to be considered persons under the law.
Standing Bear then embarked on a speaking tour across the US talking about citizenship rights for Native Americans. His words captivated anyone who listened. Newspaper articles in major cities were written about the plight of his people. Editorial boards argued on his behalf
Standing Bear asked us who we wanted to be as a nation and implored us to live up to the noble aspirations of our country. He contributed to the character of America as much as any founding father. May we honor his legacy by fighting injustice wherever we see it.
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