After the murder of approximately 300 Lakota men, women, and children at the Wounded Knee Massacre December 29, 1890, 20 soldiers were awarded the Medal of Honor. Air Force veteran Bob Smith wants those medals to be rescinded.
“It was the only massacre of Indian’s families where the Medal of Honor was presented to 20 troopers from the 7th Calvary, and we remember the 7th Calvary for what happened to them at Little Big Horn,” said Smith.
Smith is working to support Congressional bill HR 3467 which will rescind the medals if enacted. Titled “Remove the Stain Act”, the bill is supported by US Representatives Denny Heck, Paul Cook, Debra Haaland, Sharice Davids, Daniel Kildee, and Ben Ray Luján.
According to the bill, the Medal of Honor is awarded to military personnel for outstanding deeds “that it clearly distinguishes his gallantry beyond the call of duty.” To allow the awards to stand in a massacre where nearly 2/3 of the victims were unarmed women and children “is a disservice to the integrity of the United States and its citizens, and impinges on the integrity of the award and those who have earned the Medal since.”
Smith will be doing a presentation at the Oneida Veterans Building, 134 Riverdale Drive, Tuesday, October 15 at 5:00pm on the bill and is hoping to get the support of Oneida veterans.
“We want to do it through our military organization,” said Smith. “I want to have a tribal resolution sent to legislators.”