Native Americans

Book pages 47-48


It wasn't long till I had so many death threats against me as a result of my photography, which by the way I had tried to conceal, that I decided to move out to the Indians on the outskirts of town, where I stayed with a young Seminole woman.

I felt it was very romantic to live in such palm-leaf huts, but the romance was not destined to last for long. After just a couple of days, those in town found out where I was and one night someone shouted to me ordering me out of the hut.

I had no choice and stepped right out into the headlights from a pickup truck, from which some men with guns shouted to me in Mexican accents: "You be out of town before sunrise. If not, you will never see another sunrise!"

Then I knew they were deadly serious and the woman did not dare to have me living there any longer, so I slipped out of town like a shadow.

One of the few times I shed my role as vagabond in order to take destiny into my own hands was when I decided to fight together with the Indians at Wounded Knee.

What I had already seen of the Indians' conditions had made me disillusioned and depressed. The heavy shadow of tragedy which pervades the Indians was so overwhelming to me that even when we got drunk together the sense of utter hopelessness remained.

Being with them naturally made me question the relationship I had previously had in Denmark to Greenlanders. Their semi-colonial situation there seems so similar to that of the Indians in America and our excuse that we don't personally have any contact with them due to their tiny numbers I now, on the Indian reservations, realized was totally invalid considering the enormous psychological influence our white cultures have on these minorities.

I sensed more sympathy movement of white youth going to Wounded Knee, it (though often of a romanticized type) in America turned out that all their sympathy amounted to toward Indians than I ever sensed in Denmark toward nothing more than the empty words of their Greenlanders.

Therefore I was disappointed that at the first chance in this century to help Indians fight for their rights, when I had expected to see a mass movement of white youth going to Wounded Knee, it turned out that all their sympathy amounted to nothing more than the empty words of their government's many broken treaties with the Indians.



Copyright 2005 AMERICAN PICTURES; All rights reserved.


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