Indian Summer

Leonard Peltier Freedom Campaign
Maggie —

Greetings my friends relatives and supporters:


I would like at this time say a few words of Thank You and appreciation for the recent donations that many of you have made for my legal fees.   I know with todays economy it isn’t always easy to find the extra funds to send.  I want you to know that all the people working in my committee at this time are volunteers, none of them take a salary or pay.  All the funds that have been donated will be used exclusively for my legal fees.  


This is a pivotal time for me in my life, it is a pivotal time in the possibilities for my freedom.  I don’t like to be melodramatic or seem to lean on your sympathies but I really do feel that if Obama does not free me, I will probably never get out, and I will die in here. I am kind of at a loss for words at this time.   The part of me that is hopeful has atrophied a great deal over the years.  By exposing the constitutional violations that took place in wrongfully convicting me, the inconsistencies of their witnesses and the manufacturing of evidence I retained hope.


The situation now is so very difficult to talk about or even to think about and as I become aware of all of the wrongful things that are taking place with Native people still at this time, that I feel somewhat guilty about talking about MY issues.   All across this land Native people old and young are struggling to not only make their personal lives better, but to have  a better place to live, and to protect our environment in a traditional way and with traditional responsibility.  We must ALL acknowledge the scientific facts that show it is essential that ALL people throughout the Earth take up this cause to protect our earth for future generations. 


 As I watch the news I hear and see things about police brutalities and the militarization of the police forces and from in here you can see that the judicial system in America has become industrialized, and it is all about money. Over the years I have said over and over our need for involvement.  We need to stand up to these wrongs that are perpetrated against the people of the Earth by the Corporations.  When I think of all of the negative things that face so many people I am humbled by the enormity of the problems.  

I get letters and I am told and I become aware of so many people that recognize the wrongdoings of police and government agencies that are systematically taking away our constitutional , human, and civil rights and I am also aware that there are a lot of people who do not even realize these things are happening, they think it is only affecting someone else and not them. We must do our best to make others aware of what we all face.  We must do our best to network with the people that are truly trying to do something.  We must do more than just sit at a computer and hit the “like” button.  We must do something that is tangible and makes a difference that we can see every day.   If each of us just chooses one small thing and takes the responsibility to help a number of others to do the same we can eventually make the whole world a better place.   


The Constitution of the United states was a copy of Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy Law. Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, Benjamin Franklin all wrote down as to where they got the ideas and inspiration from. The main premise of the constitution being, you have the freedom to do anything you want as long as you don’t hurt someone else in your doing. It also advocated community responsibility and of course women’s rights which the original US constitution did not copy. 


Speaking of freedom I want you to know that in all my 39 years in this cell in these prisons I still long for and cherish freedom. The love of Freedom is probably the most common thing that all people share.  Any creature held too long in one position or one place will struggle to be let free, even a baby held in ones arms. 


To be imprisoned for something you are not guilty of causes a pain within you that you cannot imagine, it is not “ like” a wound that doesn’t heal, it IS a wound that doesn’t heal, it is a pain that never goes away.


I apologize for sounding so down, but I do have moments when all this really gets to me. We all need to be encouraging to one another, we all need to stand strong for our beliefs and our spirituality.  We need to seek out the things that make us stronger, physically, mentally, spiritually and network with other people who feel the same.  We need to make sure we are doing the right thing and to choose our fights carefully. We need to put our resources where they will have the longest effect.  


I know there are lots of programs out there for everything you can thick of but as I have said so many times we really need to dwell on programs for our youth.


There needs to be grievance committees that are autonomous from the local D.A.’s where a person can voice their concerns and something will be done about it.  There needs to be cadet programs so the youth can also be part of the judicial system;  not just in prison, but as police and advocates for justice.  The police forces of this country are totally ill trained for the task at hand they display their fear constantly in hurting people. violence is always caused by fear.  In some cases it is the fear of violence itself, that causes violence.   In some cases these officers are in fear of not being validated by their own fellow officers, if they don’t display their strength with violence. Either way, they need to be trained to a level that they are confident about who they are and what their responsibility is to the people they are supposed to serve.   They need to be trained so that they have a relationship with the people that isn’t a  “WE VS THEM “ relationship.


The people should be able to recognize that these officers are there,  FOR  the people, by the concerned behavior they display and the way they conduct themselves. We should not have to fear those that are supposed to protect us.  Every officer should be trained to interact with the public in a kind and gentle way and that violence, for them, is a an extreme last resort and only used to the level of appropriate need.  


Again I want to encourage each and every one of you to be proactive and find a way to be involved that makes you feel good about what you are doing, and brings personal growth in your own life. There have always been wrongdoers and bullies and parasites who attach themselves to the struggles of others with their words, but like Martin Luther King once said “ if a man stays bent over someone will always be trying to ride him, but if you stand up, they will have no choice but to back down” and like Emiliano Zapata, a famous native south american revolutionary, once said, “ I would rather die on my feet than live on my knees.”  I think even in the white mans bible it says “ I would rather be a dead lion than live as a sheep.”  


Perhaps I have kept you too long in reading this, but I was just pacing my cell and thinking about these things and thought I would share some of my thoughts with you. I hope that tomorrow and the next days of your life you will feel good about what you a are doing, and know that in your struggles to do the right thing my heart is with you.   


Again I want to sincerely thank you and I want you to know that the concern you show in helping touches me deeply and I pray that your life will be better, and the Earth will be better for the good things that you do.  If you get a chance write me a letter, I love to hear from you, I don’t always get a chance to write back I hear from people all over the Earth.  But still, let me know what you think and until next time keep the faith. 



Your friend Always and in All Ways

In the Spirit of Crazy Horse

Mitakuye Oyasin




Leonard Peltier



Please consider helping Leonard with his Legal Fees by donating to his INDIEGOGO fundraiser at :




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