Treatment of Native Americans In North Dakota Is Yet Another National Disgrace

This evening my wife and I watched a movie that we’d never seen, but always wanted to — Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee. It is about the terrible crimes, including the massacre at Wounded Knee, committed by our country against the Great Sioux Nation — crimes that have never been forgotten, have never been forgiven, and have never been rectified. Yes, a century after Wounded Knees, Congress passed a resolution expressing “deep regret” for the massacre. What it didn’t do and should have done is authorize funds to construct the Native American Holocaust Museum that would educate our children about the systematic destruction of Native Americans by our forbearers.

After watching the movie, I checked the news and read this story from the LA Times detailing the incarceration in dog kennels of Native Americans from the Great Sioux Nation. Their crime? They were and are protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline, which runs through their sacred ground and also poses a threat to their lone source of drinking water.

I want to publicly endorse Senator Sanders’ request to President Obama that he order the Army Corps of Engineers to halt construction of the pipeline pending an investigation by the Department of Justice of the legal status of the Native Americans claim that they were ceded land being used by the pipeline under the 1951 Fort Laramie Treaty and pending an investigation by the Environmental Protection Agency of the danger to drinking water posed by the pipeline.

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