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Public Statements

Opening of the National Museum of the American Indian

Location: Washington, DC

OPENING OF THE NATIONAL MUSEUM OF THE AMERICAN INDIAN -- (House of Representatives - September 21, 2004)

(Mr. PALLONE asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute.)

Mr. PALLONE. Mr. Speaker, positioned at the base of Capitol Hill, the National Museum of the American Indian rises up out of the ground with its curved limestone walls to celebrate the lives and achievements of our country's first citizens. This museum is a unique addition to our National Mall, in so much as it displays a living history of a vibrant people who exists among us today.

Native Americans are not an extinct people to be catalogued. Theirs is not a culture that can be relegated to the confines of a glass display. Accordingly, the new National Museum of the American Indian does not exhibit archaeological artifacts to be surveyed by passersby, but rather offer visitors a glimpse into a lively and vibrant culture that lives on through the customs and traditions practiced by generations of native peoples.

Mr. Speaker, I would like to welcome the thousands of Native Americans that have come to Washington today to celebrate the opening of the National Museum of the American Indian, and I ask my colleagues to join in the celebration this week and take time to reflect upon the rich culture of Native Americans.

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