"Young people and Indian people need to know that we existed in the 20th Century. We need to know who our heroes are and to know what we have done and accomplished in this century other than what Olympic athletes Jim Thorpe and Billy Mills have done"
- Russell Means
About this Quote
This quote by Russell Means speaks to the value of acknowledging the success of Indigenous people in the 20th century. He highlights the need for young and also Indigenous people to understand their heroes and also to be aware of the accomplishments of their people in the 20th century. He particularly discusses Jim Thorpe and also Billy Mills, two Olympic professional athletes, as examples of the successes of Indigenous individuals in the 20th century. Nonetheless, Means is suggesting that there are many more achievements of Indigenous people in the 20th century that must be identified as well as commemorated. He is motivating young and Indigenous people to find out about their background as well as to acknowledge the achievements of their people in the 20th century. By doing so, they can acquire a higher feeling of pride and also identification.