The Plight of Pine Ridge IR, South Dakota.

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posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 01:56 AM
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Mods move if this is not the place please.

I decided to write this thread after this one was posted ATS many people fail to recognize just the severity of the situation here and what these people have went through to get where they are today. My personal experience on this Reservation has been disheartening each time. As a teen I skated anywhere there was pavement we drove around the state looking for the next ledge, set of stairs, or rail to smash on for the day. My first trip caught me off guard, I was 16 an oblivious to the plight in my back yard. The first thing I noticed was there was nobody around the town seemed abandoned to the dogs (lots of dogs Sochi Russia packs) at first. The town of Pine Ridge has around 3500 people living there but no one to be seen. We set up a little skate spot and went to riding, soon there were kids coming out, lots and lots of kids some just babies still in diapers. We spent the day skating and talking, letting the kids ride our boards, and sharing our water that's right the kids had no water. I had NEVER seen poverty like this.....

The counties the make up the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation are the poorest counties in the nation.
Unemployment is between 80-90%
97% are below the poverty line
60% of homes are substandard (lacking power, water, sewage systems, or even proper insulation)
the per-capita income is $4000 annually
Alcoholism rates are as high as 80%
Alcohol related deaths are 3 times the national average
1 in 4 children are born with fetal alcohol syndrome
infant mortality rates are 3 times the national rate
suicide rates are twice as high as the national average and worse for teens
life expectancy is the lowest in the US and second lowest in the western hemisphere (behind Haiti)
teacher turnover rates are 8 times the national average
60% of families have no phone

Pine Ridge can only be described as third world and it is in my back yard.

The Lakota are a proud people they have repetivly stood their ground agisnst the federal government and been treated harshly many times for this dissidence. The Wounded Knee Massacre occurred here, AIM took roots here with the Wounded Knee Incident and Pine Ridge Shootout, Alex White Plume planted hemp, Russel Means has repetitively defied state and local government. They are decedents of American Horse, Crazy Horse, Kicking Bear, Red Cloud, Spotted Elk ,Little Wound, and Billy Mills the only person from the Western Hemisphere to win Olympic Gold in the 10,000 meter run was born on Pine Ridge.

These people foster more of the American Spirit than many so called Liberty lovers, these people understand and understood what they are losing, they have stood up and been beat down, they have cried for help but few listen. I wrote this to encourage everyone that reads it to learn a little about the entirety of the situation here....Why do we send $Billions over seas when we have the third world here? Why do so many donate to charities that do little to help those in need here? Isn't it time we take care of Americans?


edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)
edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 02:18 AM
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a reply to: ParanoidAmerican

Thank you for the information, although it is so sad and upsetting to read about. We in Canada have some impoverished reservations and one in particular had a gas sniffing problem with its youth.

Recovery is not easy and smooth but it can happen if people take an interest and mobilize to help. They absolutely must be given hope. This can be turned around (what is it, 7 generations?) This cannot be allowed to continue.

When the reservation goes dry and the band enforces it, things begin to change. I hope other bands will meet with them and offer support and counsel. I will keep them in my prayers and thoughts.



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 02:25 AM
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a reply to: aboutface

Interestingly enough it was a dry reservation up until this year the legalized sale because a small beer stop town in Nebraska was making all the money....it don't see legalization as a good idea but their elders seemed to think the money was a better idea.

On a side note they are talking about legalizing MJ now too..
edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 02:42 AM
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a reply to: ParanoidAmerican

I cannot believe I'm saying this, but I think MJ presents less problems than alcohol in the community. Alcohol is a definite destroyer of people and families when it controls people instead of the other way around.



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 08:53 AM
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a reply to: aboutface

I would have to agree. The biggest issue on Pine Ridge is poverty, there are no jobs. When people have no way to be productive they become complacent in their situation. I have volunteered for a summer program designed around educating and prevention of Natives youth, their addiction rate are high across the board, higher drop out rates are nearly 100%, their life skills are next to zero in most cases. This prevents them from attending any secondary schools or even learning a trade, when one can not take care of themselves a family is impossible to take care of properly. This has lead to many many grandparents raising their grandchildren for several generations now, some elders are raising their third and fourth generations entirely.
edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 09:02 AM
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This is one of the best documentaries I have ever watched on the Lakota people and Pine Ridge. If someone wants to download and embed they are welcome to.

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edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 09:44 AM
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It is a shame that the US doesn't do more too protect these people and their histories. It's like they're still too embarrassed to make good on reparations. Sure, they will bomb Iraq to protect the indigenous Yazid people, but they pay no attention to the suffering of those who possess the most important and ancient cultural narratives within their own borders.

I'm from MA and my old high school does a yearly trip out there, its messed up if kids on a charity mission provide more assistance than the federal government. They need to acknowledge their responsibility and take action-they treat these people like everyone else, expect them to function normally within a society that erased their connection to the past. Their situation is unlike any other group's, so we need to treat their struggles with poverty differently than we would with poverty in non-aboriginal areas.

as long as reservations face this kind of exceptional poverty, we must assume America remains unapologetic over their history with the native populations.



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 09:57 AM
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a reply to: tAcAnAvAn

It is more than a shame, it is a tragedy. Many tribal nations have fared better than Pine Ridge, this is the poorest place in America. The Lakota are now in their age of self determination (this is what they call it), but how can they self determine when there is no opportunity to learn a skill or even business on the reservation. The youth don't want to stay they leave as soon as they are able, many relocate to Rapid City in hopes of work, but have no marketable skills only a desire to be self reliant in many cases.
edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 10:21 AM
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a reply to: ParanoidAmerican

I want to thank you so much for your op and that video. I always knew the US screwed the Indian people but I did not realize their continual plight.

It gives me cause to just hate our government even more. And the white man for that matter. And I am a white girl. I am ashamed. There is nothing "exceptional" about us.



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 10:38 AM
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a reply to: GrantedBail

Don't hate the 'white man' because not all are guilty nor complicit in the situation. What many of us are is ill informed as to what our government did and does in our name. We learn a skewed view of American history and an even more skewed version of current events. I feel most thing that were done were done to try and help but the ramifications were not thought through. I think this is the hardest part, it is to stop the blame on both sides and move forward as a nation (this goes for many of our issues). There is much we can learn from the ways of the Lakota, of the Native peoples in general, if we broadened our view of normality. I think....I hope this is the direction we take.

An example of this can be found here in the Constitution of the Iroquois Confederacy 273+ years older than our own with many of the same ideologies. It was light years ahead in women's rights.
edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 06:32 PM
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There is a time coming(according to the Hopi) when I cant say, but the remedy for much suffering rests in the hands of the native peoples in the future.....
The society that was constructed for the benefit of a few families many decades ago.....cannot stand for much longer.....the "whites" themselves see the hypocrisy and lies the leaders spew.....
More and more we are coming together in the knowledge thins must change or the world itself is in dire peril.....
We all must learn to do the right thing for the change to occur.....its the hardest transition mankind HAS TO MAKE TO SURVIVE ......
Pine Ridge is the tip of the iceberg.....



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 08:39 PM
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Unemployment is between 80-90%
97% are below the poverty line
60% of homes are substandard (lacking power, water, sewage systems, or even proper insulation)
the per-capita income is $4000 annually
Alcoholism rates are as high as 80%
Alcohol related deaths are 3 times the national average
1 in 4 children are born with fetal alcohol syndrome
infant mortality rates are 3 times the national rate
suicide rates are twice as high as the national average and worse for teens
life expectancy is the lowest in the US and second lowest in the western hemisphere (behind Haiti)


Most of this is because these are the Lakota that never left the reservation.

60% of homes are substandard and most of these were built by the US government and were substandard when they were new.
The government built many homes on the reservation with propane heating and cooking.

But at the time the nearest place to get propane was 40 miles away. and the tanks the government installed were 200 pound tanks, these were to small to last a winter and to big to be taken to town
And the cost to fill one of these tanks were most of what a person got from the government a month..
nativeamericannetroots.net...
indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com...



posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 08:46 PM
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a reply to: ANNED

Actually the majority of those homes are trailers that do not meet city codes, the video I linked covers this. People chose to live in these to get out of the housing blocks due to alcoholism and gang violence. But yes the propane heating is a big issue, many houses in rural areas of SD are heated this way.
edit on 30-8-2014 by ParanoidAmerican because: (no reason given)





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