The great mistake these people make is that they go to looking after the spiritual welfare of the Indians before securing their physical.
It has been my aim throughout present operations to afford the greatest amount of protection to life and property interests, and troops have been stationed accordingly.
It may be, however, that I am too much wedded to my own views in the matter, and as I have spent nearly eight years of the hardest work of my life in this department, I respectfully request that I may now be relieved from its command.
First, take the government of the Indians out of politics; second, let the laws of the Indians be the same as those of the whites; third, give the Indian the ballot.
If you will investigate all the Indian troubles, you will find that there is something wrong of this nature at the bottom of all of them, something relating to the supplies, or else a tardy and broken faith on the part of the general government.
But we must not try to drive the Indians too fast in effecting these changes.
The buffalo is all gone, and an Indian can't catch enough jack rabbits to subsist himself and his family, and then, there aren't enough jack rabbits to catch. What are they to do?
It demonstrates to his simple mind in the most positive manner that we have no prejudice against him on account of his race, and that while he behaves himself he will be treated the same as a white man.
All the tribes tell the same story. They are surrounded on all sides, the game is destroyed or driven away; they are left to starve, and there remains but one thing for them to do - fight while they can.
The white men in the East are like birds. They are hatching out their eggs every year, and there is not room enough in the East, and they must go elsewhere; and they come out West, as you have seen them coming for the last few years.
During the engagement I tried to throw a strong force through the canon, but I was obliged to use it elsewhere before it had gotten to the supposed location of the village.
We must not try to force him to take civilization immediately in its complete form, but under just laws, guaranteeing to Indians equal civil laws, the Indian question, a source of such dishonor to our country and of shame to true patriots, will soon be a thing of the past.
When once an Indian sees that his food is secure, he does not care what the chief or any one else says.