Posts Tagged ‘murders’

Marchers again protest White Clay alcohol sales

Wednesday, June 15th, 2005

Published June 15, 2005

Tom Poor Bear, one of the Lakota speakers Saturday at an annual march from Pine Ridge, S.D. to White Clay, Nebraska to protest alcohol sales in the tiny village, told the crowd of about 300 demonstrators how he was greeted in White Clay at the first march six years ago.

Poor Bear spoke about snipers on the rooftops, trained attack dogs and tear gas. “The only weapon we had marching in here was wisdom, the wisdom of our elders, strength, the strength of our women and our future, the future of our children,” said Poor Bear. “We were not the criminals that day, we were the heroes.” (more…)

Senators: More needs to be done at Whiteclay

Friday, June 10th, 2005

Published June 10, 2005

A group of 15 state senators took a stand together Thursday, signing a letter in which they called upon the state of Nebraska to do more to address the devastating effects of alcohol sales in the border town of Whiteclay.

The letter was to be delivered to Oglala Sioux tribal leaders at a Saturday march from Pine Ridge, S.D., to Whiteclay to mark the sixth anniversary of the unsolved deaths of two Oglala men, said Mark Vasina, president of Nebraskans for Peace. (more…)

On Pine Ridge, a String of Broken Promises

Thursday, October 21st, 2004

Published Thursday, October 21, 2004

Politicians’ Talk Means Little on Troubled S.D. Reservation

PINE RIDGE, S.D. — When the president came to town, Geraldine Blue Bird was lucky enough to be living in a four-room shack with 28 other people.

Had she been better off, President Bill Clinton’s 1999 summer “poverty tour” to the Oglala Lakota Sioux reservation might have overlooked her house among all the other cabins and trailers doing hard time in her neighborhood. But even in the poorest patch of the poorest place in the country, the Blue Bird residence stood out. (more…)

Brother of man found dead near Pine Ridge suing Nebraska

Wednesday, July 9th, 2003

Published July 9, 2003

A South Dakota man whose brother’s and cousin’s mutilated bodies were found in a ditch near Pine Ridge in 1999 is demanding Nebraska create a task force to investigate those deaths as well as some 50 other unsolved homicides at the Oglala Lakota reservation.

Thomas R. Poor Bear, in a lawsuit filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Omaha, also wants the state to better regulate liquor sales at the nearby village of Whiteclay, which his lawsuit likened to the infamous 19th century “whisky ranches.” (more…)

Bruning, Nesbitt promise help for Whiteclay

Sunday, June 8th, 2003

Published June 8, 2003

WHITECLAY, Neb. (AP) – Enforcement of liquor laws would increase in this border community under an agreement being pursued by Nebraska’s attorney general and State Patrol superintendent.

Attorney General Jon Bruning and Col. Tom Nesbitt announced plans Saturday to pursue an agreement deputizing police from the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation across the border in South Dakota. (more…)

Whiteclay focus of talks, march

Monday, March 3rd, 2003

Published March 3, 2003

Nebraska’s commitment to breaking what some would call the death grip Whiteclay liquor stores have on a nearby Native reservation came under fire Saturday.

At a panel discussion at the Nebraska Union, several panelists argued the state would have addressed the issue long ago if the retailers’ customers were affluent whites. “People ask, `What would happen if they shut down Whiteclay?’” said panelist Frank LaMere, a Winnebago from South Sioux City. “They’ll just move down the road.” (more…)

Camp Justice (Part III of “Alcohol: A tool of oppression against Native Americans”)

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2002

Published October 23, 2002
HOCAK WORAK: Newsletter of the Ho-Chunk Nation

On July 4, 1999, some members of the Oglala Lakota Nation declared independence with the development of Camp Justice. Tom Poor Bear organized and set up the beginnings of the camp, and invited others to join him there. Tipis were erected, and the camp situated on both sides of the “border” between the Oglala Lakota Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, and the State of Nebraska. Just below Camp Justice, in a culvert a memorial stands for Ron Hard Heart and Wilson Black Elk Jr. At Camp Justice, flying next to a flag from the Swiss people, and the POW / MIA flag, flies an upside down American flag symbolizing distress. Tom Poor Bear stated that they would occupy the camp until those involved in the murders of Ron and Wilson are brought to justice. Camp Justice, also has taken on a symbol of the justice that all Native people seek in the endless atrocities against them. (more…)

Alcohol: A tool of oppression against Native Americans

Wednesday, September 25th, 2002

Published September 25, 2002
HOCAK WORAK: Newsletter of the Ho-Chunk Nation

Alcohol has been labeled cunning, baffling and powerful. But how about oppressive, to Native Americans? There is not one Indian Nation that does not struggle with the problem of alcohol. Sometimes it can be a touchy and uncomfortable topic. To calculate per capita the cost of alcohol to our Native people would be overwhelming at best.

One Indian Nation dealing with the negative effects of alcohol is the Oglala Lakota Nation located on the Pine Ridge Indian reservation in Southwest South Dakota. Pine Ridge lies within Shannon County, the poorest county in the United States. The reservation has a population in excess of 7000 people. The unemployment rate is 75% – 80%, while the national unemployment rate averages around 5%. The lack of jobs and the desire to drink opens the lid on a can filled with other social problems, among them assault, robbery, prostitution, and murder. Since the Siege at Wounded Knee in 1973 there have been in excess of 95 murderers, almost all of them still unsolved, and other crimes mostly burglaries are at an all time high. Though the people that drink often use government issued checks to purchase alcohol, in some cases it’s not enough money. The first of each month has been nicknamed Veterans Day, when the Veterans receive their checks, and the second of each month called Mothers Day, when mothers receive their support checks. (more…)

Walk to Whiteclay: 300 people gather for memorial march

Sunday, June 10th, 2001

Published June 10, 2001

Whiteclay, Neb. – A red bandanna held Roy Johnson Helper’s long, straight, black hair in place Saturday as he walked with hundreds of Native marchers along a 2-mile stretch between the villages of Whiteclay and Pine Ridge, S.D.

This wasn’t the dark, weathered-faced man’s first trip to Whiteclay, but it was one that evoked hurt, pain and troubled emotions. It had been a week, he said, since he had had a drink, and on this day he was marching for a friend, one whose life ended near Whiteclay two years ago. (more…)

Tensions raised by SD Indian killings

Friday, September 3rd, 1999


PINE RIDGE, S.D. {AP} It’s been nearly three months since two Sioux men were found slain in a culvert near the Nebraska line, and many Indians doubt authorities even care whether they solve the crime.

In fact, some Indian activists say the apparent standstill in the investigation only confirms their suspicion that white Nebraska lawmen helped kill Wilson Black Elk Jr. and Ronald Hard Heart or helped cover up the crime to make it seem as if Indians were responsible. (more…)