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The Story of Richard Oakes Activist


Richard Oakes was an American activist, who was born on May 22nd, 1942 in Akwesasne, New York, that got the attention of the people after campaigning for the rights of the native American people. In other words, he was known so well because of his tireless works on the Mohawk Indian reservation in Akwesasne. He demanded the government of the United States of America to provide equal justice to the native people. Aside from that, he also did so many remarkable things that made the story of his life so inspiring somehow. The, if you are so interested in the story of Richard Oakes Activist, you better keep reading below.


His Early Life

He spent his childhood time in Akwesasne, New York where he was born as a native Indian in the United States of America. He lived his life in a traditional way just like the other natives do, such as planting crops and fishing. Yet, he had to end it as the construction of St. Lawrence Seaway began. So, he had to work at the steel company. Then, when he worked on Rhode Island Bridge, he met an Italian-English girl named Annie. They became a family and had a son in 1968. Unfortunately, he has to split up with his wife as he wanted to enroll at university in San Francisco when he was 18 still. This specific fact made him the first Native American student in the United States of America and also made him so passionate about encouraging other Native American people to get a better education.

His Career as an Activist

As he began his life as a university student, he also started his work on campaigning justice in his community. He convinced al people in his community that they deserved the better treatments. In simple words, they started to demand the government of the country to give the federal out of use land of Alcatraz to them. Even, in order to make their dream come true, Oaks and his community settled on the island and used the various facilities in the prison of Alcatraz to support the occupants. Then, there were some students for the UCLA that helped him to make up the whole Indian American community that lived on the island. So then, they would be able to set an electoral council that announced that Oaks was not only the leader of the community but also the major of the occupants.

His Death

Richard Oakes really encouraged his community to make a change for real when he lead a wave of people to the country. Even though there were so many offers that suppressed. Unfortunately, he did not have a chance to experience the results of his works because he got shot by Michael Morgan who was an employee of YMCA. They were involved in serious arguments after Oaks alleged Morgan of abusing the young Native American attendees. Nevertheless, the jury decided to set Morgan free as he defended what Morgan did was a kind self-defense action.