Native Americans Say Oklahoma Centennial Not A Time For Celebration
Monday, November 12th 2007, 5:20 AM CST
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- When she was a young girl, Lettie Harjo Randall was rounded up with other children in her Muscogee tribal family and forced into an Indian boarding school. There, she was isolated from her parents and forbidden from talking to her siblings in their native language.
Now 66, Randall and many others in Oklahoma's Indian Country believe their shared experiences are being swept under the rug as the state commemorates 100 years of statehood.
Members of various Oklahoma-based tribes plan to observe Oklahoma's centennial with a march to the state Capitol on Friday to raise awareness of the promises they say were broken when Indians were forced from their traditional lands and marched to what became Oklahoma in the 19th century.
Randall's daughter, Brenda Golden, says Oklahoma was supposed to be Indian Territory. Golden says people should understand what Oklahoma's centennial means from the Indian point of view.