Mary Ann Eslinger born "Sosti" Groundhog on Wednesday October 23, 1946 to George Washington Groundhog and Sallie Ann (Dick) Groundhog of Tahlequah, Indian Territory U.S.A. and until now with the birth of her daughter, Lisa Christine Groundhog, one of the endangered direct descendants of Sequoyah, the creator of the Cherokee syllabary. Mary authored two books GI-Dee-Thlo-Ah-Ee of the Blue People Clan for her daughters 1974 Christmas present, there are only ten copies of this book made. One belongs to Lisa Christine; two are registered at the Copy-Right Office; National Archives in Washington, D.C.; and one at the Oklahoma Historical Society; and one to the Cherokee Tribal Attorney, Earl Boyd Pierce. Mary also authored Cherokee People exposing the U.S. Government for their illicit exploitation and human trafficking of Native American girls. Sosti (Mary Ann Eslinger) Groundhog is one of the original activists in the American Indian Movement. The American Indian Movement (AIM) is an American Indian advocacy group in the United States, founded in July 1968 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. AIM was initially formed to address American Indian sovereignty, treaty issues, spirituality, and leadership, while simultaneously addressing incidents of police harassment and racism against Native Americans forced to move away from reservations and tribal culture by the 1950s-era enforcement of the U.S. federal government-enforced Indian Termination Policies originally created in the 1930s. "As independent citizens and taxpayers, without good education or experience, most 'terminated' Indians were reduced within a few years to widespread illness and utter poverty, whether or not they were relocated to cities," from the reservations. The various specific issues concerning Native American urban communities like the one in Minneapolis (disparagingly labeled "red ghettos") include unusually high unemployment levels, overt and covert racism, police harassment and neglect, epidemic drug abuse (mainly alcoholism), crushing poverty, domestic violence and substandard housing. AIM's paramount objective is to create "real economic independence for the Indians." While government-directed Indian termination policies were enforced during the Eisenhower administration, hastily executed uranium mining contracts to permit it (even sanctioning it as "economic progress") preceded the imposition of unprecedented-scale government-sanctioned commercial uranium extraction operations from various parts of traditional Indian western North American tribal lands (not so named under the ancient land-use and resource-sharing ways of indigenous former inhabitants) and the uranium mining was permitted. However, the uranium mining contracts were signed without tribal permissions. By executing eminent domain legalistic land reassignment practices, vast federally managed formerly tribal pastoral areas were deemed suitable for coal strip mining and commercial strip mine operators were allowed to capitalize on the products of unprecedented large-scale mineral extraction for the benefit of what Eisenhower described as the military-industrial complex. These corporate forces were directly opposed to AIM's objectives, as the movement came to realize. The original founders of AIM included Dennis Banks, George Mitchell, George Mellessey, Herb Powless, Clyde Bellecourt, Vernon Bellecourt, Harold Goodsky, Eddie Benton-Banai, and a number of others in the Minneapolis Native American community. Russell Means, born Oglala Lakota, was an early leader in 1970s protests. AIM participated in the Rainbow Coalition organized by the civil rights activist and urban leader Fred Hampton, who was elected as Deputy Chairman of the Illinois Chapter of the Black Panthers shortly before his assassination at the hands of Chicago police in Chicago on December 4, 1969. Charles Deegan, Sr. was involved with the AIM Patrol. Like an urban American Indian version of the Black Panthers formed by African American social activists, AIM initially addressed civil rights violations, but later broadened its scope to address human rights violations. Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who also spoke eloquently on human rights issues, reached out to the Indian movement during the planning stage of his Poverty Campaign a few weeks before his assassination in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968. Likewise, Robert F. Kennedy had met with Black Panther representatives in California and met with Indian movement representatives and visited reservations in Montana, New York, and elsewhere before his televised assassination on June 6, 1968 in Los Angeles during his presidential campaign. RFK's son David A. Kennedy was given the tribal-inspired honorary name Yellow Dove after his father's death and before his own. Malcolm X often referred to the human rights struggles of Native Americans in his speeches and in his autobiography, and was actively attempting to introduce a condemnation motion at the United Nations shortly before his assassination. From November 1969 to June 1971, AIM participated in the occupation of the abandoned federal penitentiary known as Alcatraz, organized by seven Indian movements, including the Indian of All Tribes and by Richard Oakes, a Mohawk who was afterwards murdered in Santa Clara, CA, on September 20, 1972. In response to Oakes's murder and "to demand protection of Indians against the widespread vigilante action that had been inspired by AIM's insistence on Indian treaties," various Indian protest groups aligned to march on Washington as Richard Nixon's 1972 reelection campaign was underway. In October 1972, AIM and other Indian groups gathered members from across the country for a protest in Washington, D.C. known as the "Trail of Broken Treaties." According to public documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), advanced coordination occurred between Washington, D.C.-based Bureau of Indian Affairs (the BIA staff) and the authors of a twenty-point proposal drafted with the help of the AIM for delivery to the U.S. government officials focused on proposals intended to enhance U.S.-Indian relations. After the final draft was ready, a four-mile-long cross-country automobile caravan carrying it departed from Seattle, Washington and arrived in Washington, D.C. Assistant Secretary of the Interior Harrison Loesch, overseeing both the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and BIA, suddenly cancelled all coordinated plans, including planned visitor housing accommodations for tribal chiefs traveling with the caravan. While awaiting housing for the chiefs, protestors began an impromptu sit-in protest and suddenly at six o'clock p.m., "Riot squads start busting down the doors trying to evict us, and they grab one of our guys and beat the hell out of him." On February 27, 1973, at large public meeting of 600 Indians at Calico Hall organized by Pedro Bissonette of Oglala Sioux Civil Rights Organization (OSCRO) and addressed by AIM leaders Banks and Russell Means. Demands were made for investigations into vigilante incidents and for hearings on their treaties, and permission given by the tribal elders to make a stand at Wounded Knee. In the decades since AIM's founding, the group has led protests advocating indigenous American interests, inspired cultural renewal, monitored police activities, and coordinated employment programs in cities and in rural reservation communities across the United States. AIM has often supported indigenous interests outside the United States as well. By 1993, AIM had split into two main factions. One faction is the AIM-Grand Governing Council based in Minneapolis. The other faction is AIM-International Confederation of Autonomous Chapters, based in Denver, Colorado. Mary Ann Eslinger is the mother of GI-Dee-Thlo-Ah-Ee Groundhog aka Lisa Christine Christiansen.
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