Skip to comments.In the shadow of Wounded Knee: Inside the life of the Oglala Sioux
Posted on 08/03/2012 9:49:25 AM PDT by Alistair Stratford IV
In the shadow of Wounded Knee: Inside the life of the Oglala Sioux on the Pine Ridge reservation of South Dakota
The Oglala Sioux Tribe occupies a seemingly prime piece of South Dakota a vast, scenic reservation that stands near a crossroads for tourists visiting Mount Rushmore, the Badlands, the historic Old West town of Deadwood and other popular sites.
But don't look for museums, hotels, restaurants or even many bathrooms here on the Pine Ridge Reservation, because the Lakota make little effort to attract visitors or tourism dollars, despite the fact that they are one of the nation's poorest tribes.
A generation after many other native American sought to harness their history for profit, the Oglala Sioux are still debating how much culture they are willing to share.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2182898/In-shadow-Wounded-Knee-Inside-Pine-Ridge-reservation-South-Dakota.html#ixzz22VDCSd60
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
The one thing the people living onthe reservation have been denied is “Basic Property Ownership Rights” Stossle covered this on one of his shows. There is a tribe in Washington State that was denied federal tribal status a long time ago and they have Flourished! Because they stuck togetehr as a people and worked their butts off. Just down the road there is a federal reservation with some of the poorest native around. If you live on a reservation you cannot legally own any land or house, so why bother improving and taking pride in it?
I think the reservations should be dissolved and the land handed back to the tribes as private property to do with whatever they please. It is downright disturbing how much control the feds have over the reservations.
I live in the pacific northwest where tribes control a lot of the politics. They dictate environmental issues and build casinos and resorts at will, yet most of their tribal members live in squalor such as pictured about while white liberals seem to be at the top of their economic ladder as lawyers, managers, commissioners, etc..
I have been to Pine Ridge several times. Seeing the 3rd World here in America was quite a shock..
I thought Federal law didn’t apply to the reservations....
So, Which is it? It’s federal government’s fault or INDIAN law that keeps them from owning their own land and homes???
Ooops or were you puposefully trying to mislead?
That picture does not display poverty. It displays laziness. Just because one is poor, does not mean they have to be dirty...
My daughter and I just took a huge trip through the west. For days we passed clean friendly little prairie towns, endless farms, etc. Then we pulled into Pine Ridge. It looked like we had arrived 5 minutes after a shootout. As we pulled in from the south there were no less than 25 bodies, laying motionless on sidewalks, and even in the street.
Not dead, but drunk. We went out to Wounded Knee and were treated to nothing but more drunks who appeared like zombies, trying to sell trinkets and give grossly incorrect versions of history. It was as though you drove into a bad neighborhood of Atlanta and had people trying to beg money for telling you incorrect stories of the civil war.
We passed back through pine ridge to head to the Black Hills. Stopped for fuel. Walking into the gas station, avoided vomit on the ground. Saw more cops in Pine ridge than in the past 5 days combined. Trash everywhere, abandoned cars and buildings, etc. US Government buildings and propaganda signs were everywhere. The place was a hell hole.
My college age daughter and i discussed how the only difference from the rest of the midwest was that we had crossed into a city that has forsaken the concept of private ownership of property, and was now a socialist enclave. The US government plans and funds this “community”. James Watt was right, “If you want to see the failure of socialism, dont go to the USSR. Go to an indian reservation.”
Yep. Kid is in the sink and she is on her Blackberry. Total nonsense. The poster in the back of the “Indian way” is a nice touch too.
[ I thought Federal law didnt apply to the reservations....
So, Which is it? Its federal governments fault or INDIAN law that keeps them from owning their own land and homes???
Ooops or were you puposefully trying to mislead? ]
I am blaming the Beureu of Indian Affairs. which has heavy ties to the federal government. Also federal policy towards reservations which is nothing more than overt socialism.
Come on, lady - put down the ipod and clean your house and child. I do like the “Dump Daschle” sticker on the door, though.
I'm not too familiar with other tribes and the relationships but there is also the state vs fed problem. Indian land and Indians it seems are in federal trust. The rez system was at times used to protect Indian lands then to force the people to leave them. Laws preventing people from repairing their own homes was one way ensuring that an area would degrade. If they people would not give up the land, they would not see the revenue from the natural resources mined from the land.
Then there is the state. My Navajo grandparents were not allowed to vote. The states did not allow them to vote until the 50's. I do not know exactly what state they were from, the Dinetah is large. My grandfather and other family members fought in WWII for a country they loved and government that denied them the right to vote.
And bleach the heck out of the sink when the kid gets out. Or just install a new one.
They used to own the entire continent at one time and look what happened. Remeber them giving away manhattan for a handful of beads?
Many indians do not understand the concept of ownership of land. I believe the reason they are not given ownership rights is because they would lose their property.
Stripping the trim off the doorway and filling the relatively new cupboards with other stuff while leaving the dishes in a pile on the counter is not a sign of poverty, but of priorities. If people wish to live in squalor, they will.
I have been in homes well away from any reservation where the people were dirt-floor poor, but everything was spotlessly clean and and the house was neat.
Why? You never bathed a kid in the kitchen sink?
A wide body of Federal law does apply to reservations. FBI and US Marshals are there too. The land held in collective is pretty much a tribal law, on top of federal law.
While they are called “nations” they are really more like wholly economically dependent states or US territories.
The federal govenment decided long ago that reservations were cultural collectives. This is why the tribes could not sell off their land. First, they had no desire to with no example of an ownership society. And the US Govt decided that rather than assimailation, the indians needed to stay on one parcel of land. That wouldnt work if they could sell it off.
Essentially, most reservations are essentially collectives, where the indians are wards of the state. The exceptions are found in Oklahoma and a few other places that are structured around ownership of property. It’s a little dishonest or uninformed to imply that the land ownership rules at Pine Ridge did not come from the US government.
But whatever the cause, it would take decades to undo the damage there. The dependency mindset is so ingrained, that it is probably worse than the average Russian had after 80 years of communism. Every advocate of the US govt running our lives should visit Pine Ridge.
Don’t miss the “Dump Daschle” sticker.
Yeah, that's a funny thing that. I dated this NYC lib doctor (she has seen the light, trust me) and while taking classes on paper work and insurance, she informed me that as an Indian, my healthcare is covered under same Fed title that covers the criminally insane.
hmmm, says a lot. Oh and AI's are "managed" by the Department of the Interior just like fed lands and natural resources. I wonder if I can get myself some of the Obama Green loot since I'm a natural resource
“I have never seen a hardware store or a clothing store or even a fast food place. And of course there are no Walmarts or Kroger or Home Depot. For some reason any business that creates jobs and profits seem to be discouraged”
They cant buy the land their store would need to sit on. They would have to lease land, under byzantine federal and indian laws, and only then build the structure on it, which the indians keep when the lease is over. There would be requirements that most employees be indian. A sort of local EEOC. And disputes go through corrupt tribal courts first before going to federal court. No business in their right mind would locate there.
Everybody knows the alcohol & govt aid has caused most of it, no more than modern day genocide; govt wants them all to die off and go away. Who do you think will then get the land?
The Indians think it's just how the system works, White Man's govt takes care of us forever. Yet I have Indian friends who vote Republican all the time, just wish I could get the entire village to see reality. Many Indians get out of the village & reservation & welfare and do quite well; entire families are successful.
Canada does it better. Thirty years back they did the carrot & stick with some of their Indians. Got them, forced them into rehab, training, jobs, helped them buy a house outside the village or reservation away from th alcohol. Many failed 2-3 times but Canadian Govt kept recycling them and most eventually became productive upstanding citizens. We live on the border and Indians in Alaska & Canada are first cousins. Night and day difference. Canadian Indians are mostly high class, doing well, 30 years after the program started. Needless to say villages in Alaska are sad places, dying villages, going extinct; just what our govt wants; dramatic difference.
Just remember, you can't even understand their culture, perspective, problems, and solutions until you've lived around them in their world and seen it with your own eyes. Just don't hate them all, look down on them all, for their situation. Us Whites move in, surround their villages with lodges & package stores; and then wonder why they have problems? Indians keep wondering why we are so successful at displacing them when we are the way we are too.
Yeah, I think I knew that. See John Ford's “Cheyenne Autumn”.
I really haven't heard anything about the BIA for several years. So maybe it has been absorbed into something else.
Old joke about the BIA.
In 1875 G.A. Custer was head of the BIA and when he was reactivated in the Army, he told the staff that since his appointment was not permanent for them to not do anything until he returned. They are still waiting.
I have an indian friend. She doed NOT live on the reservation but she does own indians lands she inhertited from her mother.
We furnish huge sus of money to these tribes. It’s the tribal leaders who are keeping the books.
You got that right about the Interior dept. And royalties from mining, oil, gas, on tribal land all go into a trust fund managed by the feds.
The rest of the story is almost obvious. The US government, managing the trust fund.
People that lived without running water, electric, heat, blahblahblah, were millionaires but could not get the money. Someone started looking, the DoJ got involved, the BIA burned tons of files.
It came to a head under Billy Boy, his goons from the Dept of Interior destroyed the evidence. I'll dig up the links
Thanks in advance. I have a few acquaintances (not really friends) on a couple of the local reservations. Most will not talk about the real problems there. Just kind of in general. If you know what I mean. I am not near as knowledgeable as I would like to be.
No butts in the kitchen sink, neither human nor animal. They make baby tubs just for that purpose.
Last year I was driving up I-90 in New York got off at Fredonia to go to Gowanda...
As I drove north along I think it was 62 I passed through miles of lovely vineyards and farms...
It was all Indian reseervation land...
Nice houses nice cars clean sober neatly dressed people...
The unPine Ridge...
I have a 21 yr old Crow Indian who is part of my packaging staff. Sweet girl and hanging out with success is starting to really rub off. She has always lived in run down trailers and collected a per-cap from the tribe. A pittance.
She looks at our home and property, sees how hard we work and enjoy life, and you can see the lights coming on in her eyes.
We tell her there’s no reason for her to not expect with hard work that she will see the same type of success or better. It’s a free country and so many of these minorities are taught that it is not.
I tell her the same thing you basically said. It’s the government that tried killing them off in the 1800’s doing the same thing now. The proof is in the pictures of how and where they live.
The Indians never believed in property rights to begin with, so maybe that kind of living suits them.
“Don’t judge the Indians like we would judge each other and by that I mean White People in general. They ain’t like us, you’ll only hate them if you do. You have to be the hated no good, dirty White Boy in Native land for a year; then you’ll start understanding it all; and you won’t hate them either, no joke.”
I’ve spent a lifetime interacting with indians. Not a single word i said judged anybody on a personal level. It was merely relaying direct observations. I don’t see them as anything other than tragic victims of a corrupt government. (tribal and federal) But the fact remains, i know quite enough indians to know that they are indeed just like us. Giving into hopelessness is tragic, but rest assured they do know what they are missing, and would love to have a better life. They just correctly know the deck is stacked against them unless they leave the res. And have lived through decades of ward status leaving them utterly devoid of a belief that they can achieve anything. This is why indians have a lot of love for that LA gangsta rap/Compton culture.
The only way to not judge their situation according to civilized standards, is to accept a racist answer. But for non racists, who know they are humans who wish to have better, the answer is to judge those who created it, while keeping a sense of kindness for the ones living it.
Hating an Indian for their poverty, is like having a soviet citizen doing what they did to survive. But is basically racist to adoringly say “they ain’t like us”. The truth is, they are like us. And again, i have a few decades of enough experience to know.
Baby butts can't be any worse than the bacteria laden dirty dishes that go into sinks.
You can say that as much as you can for any group. Collectively, "Indian ways" are very different from others, the strange thing to most people is that they came from here and not somewhere else but still seems so foreign. The Tribes themselves are as different from each other as are their languages. What we all have in common is the Gub'mint.
I have stated on FR in that past that the thing most responsible for the destruction of the AI's is government dependency. I won't write it all out again but when a people are linked to the government for all things they become slaves and not people. The Reservation is the future for anyone and anyplace that falls prey.
Detroit. You cannot build on the Rez, own, gain or grow.
I don't believe the image of AI's portrayed for mass consumption. What I know is that the gub'mint has scr*wed us real good and has no intentions of letting have what is ours by treaty.
“Its the tribal leaders who are keeping the books.”
Tribal leaders keep the books on the stipend the feds send the tribe, and on income from a casino of they have one. But the feds in the DOI BIA run the trust fund in a fiduciary capacity. And the Indians are not allowed to look over their shoulder to make sure the Feds are actually doing it honestly.
Yes, the same feds that gave us freddy, fannie, and the SS administration.
The reservations are demonstrations of "socialism in action": a dominating federal government coupled to a local governing apparat, the tribal government.
The one has supreme power, the other is corrupt beyond belief. The people's lives are bereft of meaning.
Already been done, sort of.
The Dawes Act of 1887 distributed Indian land to the individual Indians. The results were at best mixed. Many Indians sold their land to whites, resulting in a rapid decrease in the amount of Indian land. 138M acres in 1887, 48M acres in 1934.
***Its the government that tried killing them off in the 1800s doing the same thing now. ****
The CROW and the US have always been friendly and allied against the hostile tribes. It was the Sioux and Cheyenne that tried to wipe the Crow out.
The Custer fight took place in Crow territory when the above hostile tribes invaded.
That picture does not display poverty. It displays laziness. Just because one is poor, does not mean they have to be dirty...
Trust me (being you don’t seem to know) Federal laws do apply on Reservations and in fact many State Laws do too. Sometimes a little research helps before posting on a subject you are not familiar with .
As kids they and their dad lived on the reservation for years.
The things she remembers and shares about living conditions and situations are truly saddening. Her high school class of 1976 had 50 kids in the class. 40 of them are already dead or in a hospital. She says they would hold pow-wows with a fire and everything in the middle of their living room houses. Given to them BTW by the "benevolent government". In fact, they were given EVERYTHING except what they really needed-self worth.
In general, they appear to be a broken, beaten and hopeless people.
And we (USA) created it by our indifference and our guilt.
It really isn’t true that they didn’t believe in property rights. In the plains, horse herds were personally owned, bought, sold, traded, gambled with, etc.
There was an active trade culture throughout the Americas.
Tools, luxuries, necessities, hides, etc, were all part of a robust trade culture only limited by the difficulties of travel and transport. Barter yes, but they clearly understood i own this, you own that. Land was held in common, but possessions and property they made were not.
While it was hard for an Indian in 1825 to understand buying and selling a parcel of an immense land as personal property, i think you would find everyone today really gets the concept and would enjoy it.
And it sucks that they have to leave the reservation to achieve it. It would be like someone telling you can have full freedom, if you’ll leave your hometown and go to a very different culture. In this day and age there no reason they shouldn’t enjoy full economic freedom where they live.
That kind of bacteria goes into my dishwasher. Look, call me crazy, but I don’t want fecal germs where I eat.
There sure are trying to kill them off now and believe me they hate white people. We have a funeral home here and there are 20 Native funerals to every white one.
My young employee is Crow/Cree & Lakota. Crow is the least of it but my point was more generic to Indian/Government relations and how Natives trust in the same government that has a history of betraying them. Kinda like the Dems and Blacks.
You eat out of the sink? Barbaric. Maybe think of the sink as a miniature bathub for a miniature person.
Seriously, sane kitchen practices allow the sink to be used to clean anything from dirty boots, baby butts, gun cleaning, mopwater, and then dishes later.
This sounds like Obsessive compulsive disorder.