Wednesday, December 9, 2015

John Trudell, Outspoken Advocate for American Indians, Is Dead at 69

John Trudell - The Framing of Leonard Peltier from S DN on Vimeo.

John Trudell, whose outspokenness and charisma made him a leading advocate of Native American rights, and who channeled his message of righteous defiance into poetry and songwriting, died on Tuesday at his home in Santa Clara County, Calif. He was 69.

The cause was cancer, said Cree Miller, the trustee of Mr. Trudell’s estate.

Mr. Trudell, a Santee Dakota, was national chairman of the American Indian Movement during much of the 1970s, a turbulent stretch in the relationship between Native American activists and the federal government.

His tenure began after the episode at Wounded Knee, S.D., where, in February 1973, Oglala Lakota from the Pine Ridge reservation, incensed by tribal corruption, and American Indian Movement activists, protesting the government’s treatment of their people, occupied the town in a 71-day standoff with federal marshals and F.B.I. agents.


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