If the fires of freedom and civil liberties burn low in other lands they must be made brighter in our own. If in other lands the press and books and literature of all kinds are censored we must redouble our efforts here to keep them free. If in other lands the eternal truths of the past are threatened by intolerance we must provide a safe place for their perpetuation.
Franklin D. Roosevelt
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The earth belongs to the living. No man can, by natural right, oblige the lands he occupied or the persons who succeed him in that occupation, to the payment of debts contracted by him. For if he could, he might, during his own life, eat up the use of the lands for several generations to come, and then the lands would belong to the dead, and not to the living. No generation can contract debts greater than may be paid during the course of its own existence.
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I had come from wondrous lands, from landscapes more enchanting than life, but only to myself did I ever mention these lands, and I said nothing about the landscapes which I saw in dreams. My feet stepped like theirs over the floorboards and the flagstones, but my heart was far away, even if it beat close by, false master of an estranged and exiled body.
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It is of the nobility of man's soul that he is insatiable: for he hath a benefactor so prone to give, that he delighteth in us for asking. Do not your inclinations tell you that the WORLD is yours? Do you not covet all? Do you not long to have it; to enjoy it; to overcome it? To what end do men gather riches, but to multiply more? Do they not like Pyrrhus the King of Epire, add house to house and lands to lands, that they may get it all?
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The Federal Government has a responsibility to manage wisely those public lands and forests under its jurisdiction necessary in the interest of the public as a whole. ... In the utilization of these lands, the people are entitled to expect that their timber, minerals, streams and water supply, wildlife and recreational values should be safeguarded, improved and made available not only for this but for future generations.
Dwight D. Eisenhower
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But even if ego-death is regarded as the optimum model for human existence, one of liberation from ourselves, it still remains a compromise with being, a concession to the blunder of creation itself. We should be able to do better, and we can. To have our egos killed off is second-best to killing off death and all the squalid byplay that flitters around it. So let all lands be small, and grower smaller and smaller until no lands are left where any human footstep need press itself upon the earth.
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I would like to quote a very prejudicial doctrine that was handed down by the Supreme Court in 1823. It said that the Indian Nations do not have title to their lands because they weren't Christians. That the first Christian Nations to discover an area of heathen lands has the absolute title. This doctrine should be withdrawn and renounced to establish a new basis for relationship between indigenous peoples and other peoples of the world.
Floyd Red Crow Westerman
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Every flyer who ventures across oceans to distant lands is a potential explorer; in his or her breast burns the same fire that urged the adventurers of old to set forth in their sailing-ships for foreign lands. Riding through the air on silver wings instead of sailing the seas with white wings, he must steer his own course, for the air is uncharted, and he must therefore explore for himself the strange eddies and currents of the ever-changing sky in its many moods.
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The word was born in the blood, grew in the dark body, beating, and took flight through the lips and the mouth. Farther away and nearer still, still it came from dead fathers and from wondering races, from lands which had turned to stone, lands weary of their poor tribes, for when grief took to the roads the people set out and arrived and married new land and water to grow their words again. And so this is the inheritance; this is the wavelength which connects us with dead men and the dawning of new beings not yet come to light.
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The wordwas born in the blood,grew in the dark body, beating,and took flight through the lips and the mouth.Farther away and nearerstill, still it camefrom dead fathers and from wondering races,from lands which had turned to stone,lands weary of their poor tribes,for when grief took to the roadsthe people set out and arrivedand married new land and waterto grow their words again.And so this is the inheritance;this is the wavelength which connects uswith dead men and the dawningof new beings not yet come to light.
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Who will find peace with the lands? The future of humankind lies waiting for those who will come to understand their lives and take up their responsibilities to all living things. Who will listen to the trees, the animals and birds, the voices of the places of the land? As the long forgotten peoples of the respective continents rise and begin to reclaim their ancient heritage, they will discover the meaning of the lands of their ancestors. That is when the invaders of the North American continent will finally discover that for this land, God is red.
Vine Deloria Jr.
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Thirty years ago [written 2009], over-regulation, over-taxation, mis-regulation, statism, state corporatism, and economic folly, cosiness and regulatory capture, and a crescent ideological enemy without, who were assisted by enemies - both fifth columnists and useful fools - within, had led to a crisis of confidence in the West, and in all lands that - and amongst all peoples, particularly those who were oppressed in their own lands, who - loved and desired liberty. Of course, thirty years ago, Britain had Margaret Thatcher to turn to.
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A year ago, I was at a dinner in Amsterdam when the question came up of whether each of us loved his or her country. The German shuddered, the Dutch were equivocal, the Brit said he was "comfortable" with Britain, the expatriate American said no. And I said yes. Driving across the arid lands, the red lands, I wondered what it was I loved. the places, the sagebrush basins, the rivers digging themselves deep canyons through arid lands, the incomparable cloud formations of summer monsoons, the way the underside of clouds turns the same blue as the underside of a great blue heron's wings when the storm is about to break. Beyond that, for anything you can say about the United States, you can also say the opposite: we're rootless except we're also the Hopi, who haven't moved in several centuries; we're violent except we're also the Franciscans nonviolently resisting nucelar weapons out here; we're consumers except the West is studded with visionary environmentalists... and the landscape of the West seems like the stage on which such dramas are played out, a space without boundaries, in which anything can be realized, a moral ground, out here where your shadow can stretch hundreds of feet just before sunset, where you loom large, and lonely.
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Children, language, lands: almost everything was stripped away, stolen when you weren't looking because you were trying to stay alive. In the face of such loss, one thing our people could not surrender was the meaning of land. In the settler mind, land was property, real estate, capital, or natural resources. But to our people, it was everything: identity, the connection to our ancestors, the home of our nonhuman kinfolk, our pharmacy, our library, the source of all that sustained us. Our lands were where our responsibility to the world was enacted, sacred ground. It belonged to itself; it was a gift, not a commodity, so it could never be bought or sold. These are the meanings people took with them when they were forced from their ancient homelands to new places.
Robin Wall Kimmerer
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What makes us the strongest tribe on the continent is the fact that a group that opposes these values-a group that would have mankind remain in the new dark ages-is permitted to grow, permitted to exist... and, after it becomes a violent terrorist organization, is allowed to live on it own lands, taken out of the lands of those it has attacked and continues to attack!" He had to stop speaking then-the applause was louder than even his amplified voice. "They expect that fear will drive us to become like them... closed-minded, blind, angry. Our society will remain open and free so long as I am standing upright, " he continued, once the applause died down.
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..the family motto, after all, is 'To Have and To Hold'. We were always a warrior breed, but we don't fight solely for lands and material wealth. There's an understanding, drummed into all of us from our earliest years, that success-true success-means capturing and holding , something more. That something more is the future-to excel is very well, but one needs to excel and survive. To seize lands is well and good, but we want to hold them for all time. Which means creating and building a family-defending the family that is, and creating the next generation. Because it's the next generation that's our future. Without securing that future, material success is no real success at all.
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It is but another instance of injustice, Fray Felipe said. For twenty years we, of the missions, have been subjected to it, and it grows. The sainted Junipero Serra invaded this land when other men feared, and at San Diego de Alcala he built the first mission of what became a chain, thus giving an empire to the world. Our mistake was that we prospered. We did the work, and others reap the advantages. They began taking out mission-lands from us, lands we had cultivated, which had formed a wilderness and which my brothers had turned into gardens and orchards. They robbed us of worldly goods. And not content with that they now are persecuting us. The mission-empire is doomed, caballero. The time is not far distant when mission roofs will fall in and walls crumble away. Some day people will look at the ruins and wonder how such a thing could come to pass.
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The Song of Wandering Aengus I went out to the hazel wood, Because a fire was in my head, And cut and peeled a hazel wand, And hooked a berry to a thread; And when white moths were on the wing, And moth-like stars were flickering out, I dropped the berry in a stream And caught a little silver trout. When I had laid it on the floor I went to blow the fire a-flame, But something rustled on the floor, And someone called me by my name: It had become a glimmering girl With apple blossom in her hair Who called me by my name and ran And faded through the brightening air. Though I am old with wandering Through hollow lands and hilly lands, I will find out where she has gone, And kiss her lips and take her hands; And walk among long dappled grass, And pluck till time and times are done, The silver apples of the moon, The golden apples of the sun.
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