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Tuesday, December 2, 2014


Racial Tensions in American

Ferguson, Missouri is a hotbed of racial tension because there are still racist actions in and around our cities.  When the civil rights movements were raging in the fifties through the seventies people were seeking equalities.  The above picture shows two things that I would point out; first the US Army sweat shirt was being worn because he was a soldier.  The African American people were fleeing the southern states because of the Jim Crow Laws.  These laws were set up mostly in Southern States for the segregation after the reconstruction of the South.  It was for the purpose of keep the Blacks separate but equal but when they moved north, guess what happened?  The White Folk started rioting and because the African Americans were taking jobs and moving into neighborhoods which were usually all white. 


                The Second thing about this picture is it mentions one riot in particular The Watts Riot of 1965 in Los Angeles.  I have the opportunity to be a part of history and it is interesting because I was born in August of 1965 and I was born in LA County and when the riots started my Father told my mom there were going to drive and see the riots.  So you could say as a 9 day old baby my parents took me to the riots.  Wow it is mind blowing when you think about the racial hatred and struggles we have been faced with. 

                Now when we think about what happens today you must seek to understand what it means to be a person who is not European descent or white in America.  I know I have been racially profiled many times and it is part of growing up in all areas of our society.  The conservative network FOX News is one of the worst outlets for news I have ever seen.  When you look for prejudice practices one must only look at hiring practices and bank loans where the minorities are struggling.  The education levels of the poorer districts struggle because of a lack of property taxes.  Look at one point most of the Black People were in the inner city and then were pushed out to places like Ferguson because gentrification where the minorities and poorer people can no longer stay in the older homes because people are coming in and remodeling and then the taxes go up.  So now we have a suburb of St Louis which is mostly Black with a mostly white police force and the police believe it is us against them. 

                So when you realized South Dakota or more exactly is western South Dakota is like the Mississippi Burning.  We as American Indians have more incarcerations in the surrounding county jails and we are only 10% of the population.  But because it hard to get a job, which builds dignity the Lakota people are mistreated and racially profiled.  A couple years ago a young Lakota man was stopped with his friends in North Rapid and a gun fight with three officers and the Lakota man happened and two police officers died along with the young man.  I was saddened and kept watch and tried to listen to the community.  I do not know all of the facts and would never act like I know them, but the paper painted the young man as a repeat offender with lots of problems.  I heard from the community the police previously brutalized him and he was not going to let that happen again.

                Rapid City does not recruit American Indians and it the mentality of Us against Them.  Back in September of 2014 some shots were heard and it took at least 30 officers in SWAT gear and a Humvee to look for a man who was not in the house.  What do you think happens to little children in Lakota Homes Inc. think when they have to see an army come into their communities?  One last comment about hiring practices in Rapid City.  I went to the store with the bull’s eye in red and white and looked around and I only found one Lakota on the floor and one Lakota in the Starbucks.  Wow, it is true but not always as there are some great places where you can find many Lakota working.  Open your eyes.

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