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The Rebirth of Red Power

On an early November morning in 1969, Richard Oakes, shirtless but with his boots still strapped on, leaped off the side of the three-masted boat carrying him and a group of Native student activists to Alcatraz Island. Three others followed, racing ahead of the boat that slowly trailed them. It was perfectly cinematic, the kind of thing people might tell stories about 50 years on, which was the point.

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