Indian Country 52 #9 – Jackson Genocide
“It was unfathomable that thousands of Native American men, women, and children were forced to march West, sometimes freezing to death or starving because U.S. soldiers wouldn’t let them bring extra food or blankets. It was hard to hear that the Choctaw Nation lost up to a third of its population on the death march. It was disorienting to learn that what amounted to ethnic cleansing had come at the insistence of an American president.
But then it was lunchtime, and we pulled out our wallets in the cafeteria. Andrew Jackson was there, staring out from every $20 bill. We had been carrying around portraits of a mass murderer all along, and had no idea.
Andrew Jackson engineered a genocide. He shouldn’t be on our currency.
Symbols matter. Many people, for example, are inspired by the symbolic implications of Jackson’s path to the presidency: He was born two weeks after his father’s death to a widowed immigrant mother and, despite his poverty and lack of education, reached the highest office in the land. That’s a powerful story. So is the more precise telling of how Jackson climbed the American socioeconomic ladder. Jackson was the only president who worked as a slave trader, and he accumulated much of his fortune that way. In fact, Jackson later pursued his “Indian Removal” policies specifically so that the stolen lands could be used to expand cotton farming and slavery.”
– Slate, Kick Andrew Jackson Off the $20 Bill!
Download the 18″x24″ poster (.pdf), Indian Country 52 #9 – Jackson Genocide.
Indian Country 52
Indian Country 52 is a weekly project by David Bernie that uses the medium of graphic design by creating posters that promote issues and stories in Indian Country.
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This work by David Bernie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. You may download, share, and post the images under the condition that the works are attributed to the artist.