After my watering and feeding his horse, my elder walks me to Grassy Lake back side of our farm. We sit on a favorite fallen pine log to toss pebbles into our lake while talking. He is one of my revered elders, he teaches me invaluable lessons.
This day he tells me a tragic story told a thousand times over across America. This story about his older sister is interpreted from Choctaw to English, some subtle nuance is lost but this tragedy of his story remains powerful.
Christians come and take me and my sister away from our parents and our home. We walk many days to a big house. They take and burn our clothes, cut our hair off then pour kerosene on us and tell us to never speak Choctaw again. Many moons pass and I don't see my sister.
On a day I see my sister being dragged outside by a Christian man with a rifle, she screams, 'Anakfi hatak hoklit aiiassa!' - brother he rapes me! I run to my sister to save her but the man hits my head with his rifle and knocks me down. I remember a gun shot. I never see my sister again.
When finished with his story, there are tears in his eyes. I start crying. We do not talk for quite a time. Our family estimates this tragedy unfolds circa 1895 - 1905.
Around 1850 to 1860, our American government, the Pope, the Vatican, churches, Christians at large, "The Church" in general, agree on a new way to exterminate all Indians, "We will take their children to be confined to boarding schools whereupon those children will be indoctrinated into the righteous ways of God!"
The feds supply funds to open and operate "Indian Boarding Schools". God and the Vatican supply needed tools to teach Indian children including special made handcuffs designed to fit slender wrists of young misbehaving Indian children.
Church leaders and missionaries range out into America and take Indian children away from their homes and families, most often at gunpoint. Estimates are from 1850 to 1900 years fifty-thousand to a hundred-thousand Indian children are forcibly taken away from their parents then locked up in Christian boarding schools.
"Labor Conquers All Things" ... including savage injuns.
Those boarding schools are not for education, forcibly taken Indian children are trained to be slave laborers for white folks.
An advertisement produced by the "Chemawa Indian Training School" up in Oregon. "Laundry Services! Tailoring Services! Cooking Services! All and more at affordable slave labor rates!" Boarding schools train Indian children to perform menial work for elitist socialites and business interests.
Indian children work, no wages ever touch their palms. Money is paid directly to boarding schools for those slave labor services. Staff of those boarding schools use those earned profits to keep themselves supplied with whiskey and whores.
Affordable slave labor laundry services! Money collected by boarding schools is used by staff to keep themselves supplied with whiskey and whores.
Affordable slave labor maid services! Profits coming in are used by school staff to keep themselves supplied with whiskey and whores.
Affordable slave labor for farming! Yes, more whiskey and whores.
There is a horrific account of a nun throwing a young Indian girl out of a second story window to teach her a lesson. This tragic Indian girl is killed instantly when she slams into ground. Word is this nun leans out that second story window, brushes her hands together and yells, "This will teach you to sass me!"
So many Indian children suffer death from being brutalized, raped, tortured and killed, those boarding schools are forced to set aside acreage to use as cemeteries to bury all those thousands of tragic Indian children murdered by priests, nuns and missionaries.
This tragic story of "Sister" my old Choctaw elder tells me is seared into my little girl's mind. I will never forget, none of us Indians will ever forget what "white man" did to our peoples, especially our children.
For us traditional Indians Thanksgiving is a day of remembrance of our tens of millions of ancestors horrifically butchered and slaughtered by white Christians.