Alcatraz was 'our civil rights movement'

On the island speakers shared stories discussed the continuing relevance of what took place fifty years ago

The Associated Press

The occupation of Alcatraz began Nov. 20, 1969, and lasted 19 months. Although it ended with people being forcibly removed from the island, it is widely seen as a watershed moment for tribes, reinvigorating them to stand up for their land, their rights and their identities. It also helped usher in a shift in federal policy toward self-determination, allowing tribes to take over federal programs on their land.

On Wednesday, speakers shared stories from the occupation and discussed its continuing relevance, including the inspiration it provides for today’s Indigenous protesters, like those fighting a planned giant telescope on Hawaii's Big Island.

Check out the AP’s complete coverage of the occupation of Alcatraz.

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