May 10, 2013
Dear President Andrew Jackson,
Greetings from the Northwestern part of the United States of America: Alaska. I am Rylee Flint—a fourteen year old girl—and I have been learning about you in my small, rural school lately. I know that you’ve accomplished some great things in your lifetime (minus the particular event I’m about to introduce.) I also know some things about the Cherokee: a strong group of Native American Indians no longer residing in Georgia, but now in present-day Oklahoma. Upon my knowledge, though, they did not choose for themselves to live here, but were forced to do so under your command.
You reasoned that the Cherokee were surrounded by whites which would have led to their destruction if they had stayed. You said that they were in a state of decay and that moving them would be the right and just thing to do; they’d have a better chance of enjoying their own government and being independent west of the Mississippi. Also, you argued that the Americans would use the land better than the Indians ever could.
Well, I’d beg to differ and so would Samuel Cloud, a Cherokee Indian child who suffered through your power which brought grief and sorrow amongst their people. He underwent numerous adversities but pulled through them in the end. Sadly, much of his tribe could not stay strong and died along the Trail of Tears. A minute portion of the deceased included little Samuel Cloud’s parents. They weren’t spoken for and were buried in a shallow grave and forgotten. Samuel felt a terrible loneliness and so did many of the other children. The children were so afraid, that they didn’t play any games. They probably wondered why this was happening to them and what they’d done wrong to deserve this. But it wasn’t their fault. Do you want to know whose fault it was? It’s kind of obvious, President Jackson, and I think you can connect the dots.
But if you can’t, the fact of the matter has yet to be uncovered, and I’ll dig the truth up for you. To start off, your view is very wrong. Your reasons for relocating the Cherokee were just mere excuses. They just aren’t believable, and anyone with half a brain could realize how unreasonable you were. To be frank, your actions disappoint me.
In the Worcester v. Georgia case, the Supreme court ruled that no one had the right to move the Cherokee from their homeland. But you went ahead and did it anyway. You seem to be a man of no rules, no limits. I’m surprised you held the United States in order during the time you were president.
In the Declaration of Independence it’s stated loud and clear for everyone to hear: “All men are created equal…they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…”
The Cherokee Indians are human beings just like us, and they don’t deserve any worse than us. Their land means the world to them, and for you to take it away, would just be harsh. I have an alternate idea, though. No, it doesn’t involve the whites taking over their land or treating them cruelly; my idea involves creating reservations for the Cherokee. They keep their land and you move on to somewhere else and find new land. Believe me; there is plenty out there. Plus, the whites and the Cherokee would live in peace with each other. There is no need to be violent or forceful. It’s all about compromise and keeping peace among the people.
Thank you, President Jackson, for putting up with this letter (I hope you read it until the end). Please consider my words, and you just might find them to be somewhat wise.
With attempted sincerity,
P.S. Mull over this letter before making any final decisions.