Saturday, February 28, 2015

Younger earth haters warming to cannabis

Does anyone call it recreational alchohol? Of course not.
Pew poll data shows 63 percent of Millennial Republicans -- those born between 1981 and 1996 -- support legalized marijuana. But it's a divisive topic if the applause during Thursday's pot debate at CPAC, an annual gathering of conservatives, is any indication. Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson argued for its legalization, casting it as a safer alternative to alcohol; "Having a debate right now over whether or not to legalize marijuana is kind of like having a debate over whether the sun is going to come up tomorrow," Johnson said. On that same panel, Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle (N.Y.) said marijuana today is stronger and more dangerous than in the past. [Hunter Schwarz]

Friday, February 27, 2015

"The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one"

According to the New York Times actor Leonard Nimoy has passed at age 83.

My little sister was born on this day in 1956. Before she was killed in 1995 she had a poster in the kitchen that read: All I Need To Know About Life I Learned From Star Trek.

Although it wouldn't have saved her life as she was hit by a car while riding her bicycle with her six-year-old on a Moody County road, South Dakota HB 1030, which gives cyclists a 3 foot buffer, passed in the legislature today.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Revolution comes to Rapid City; Ellsworth's last gasp?

Well, let's see: Oglala leaders want the Lakota Nation Invitational out of Rapid City, a march against racism there has gathered American Indian activists, South Dakota's 'small government' GOP congressional delegation is begging for federal cash, the Federal Communications Commission voted to make the internet a utility; and, the commander of Ellsworth Air Force Base is warning of budget cuts.

My day is made.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Bear Butte State Park should be remanded to tribes

A proposed bypass road near Mato Paha is the subject of contention to those who hold the mountain sacred.
Bear Butte, rich in history and religious significance to dozens of tribes, is administered as a state park and is under consideration for federal protection, due in part to its continued importance as a place of worship and celebration of Native American ceremonies. The Prairie Hills Audubon Society Chapter is among detractors of the proposed by-pass road. “It will bring more development and traffic to the area east of Sturgis, near the junction of highways 79 and 34, near where Bear Butte and Bear Butte Lake are located,” said chapter President Nancy Hilding. The butte is not fully held in state, tribal or federal trust, so private properties here could be developed to the detriment of the traditional cultural use of the area, she said. [Talli Nauman, Native Sun News]
Nauman reported on a previous Meade County commission meeting. Here is an excerpt from her piece at Native Sun News via
At a June 8 hearing on the matter, commissioners stopped short of approving a lawsuit. Instead, they voted unanimously to send a letter to state regulators, disputing the decision to hold oil drilling to five wells, instead of 24 initially permitted near the prayer site sacred to dozens of Native American tribes. The South Dakota Board of Minerals and Environment decided on May 18 to reduce Nakota Energy LLC’s 2010 permit for oil drilling in the sacred butte area from 24 to five initial wells, after three public comment periods revealed substantial opposition on religious grounds. “People are tired of coming in here. A lot of people don’t want to talk anymore,” United Urban Warrior Society organizer James Swan testified to county commissioners at their most recent meeting. “They just want to take over the mountain.” Mato Paha, as the mountain is called in Lakota, was noted and reserved as a traditional council site in the 1851 and 1868 Ft. Laramie treaties with the U.S. government.

A 1986 amendment to federal law allows tribes to acquire off-reservation land to serve the needs of its peoples. A recent court case upheld these tribal rights. The Arizona Republic explains:

Luis Plascencia, an assistant professor at Arizona State University, questioned the states-rights argument. "When states joined the union, they agreed to be a state, political entities authorized by the federal government," Plascencia said. "States are given power but it doesn't make them independent of the United States of America the same way cities are not independent.
Arizona Republicans have continued to block tribal efforts to build a casino on off-reservation land.

The Northern Cheyenne, a Montana tribe, is just one tribal nation that owns land near Bear Butte in western South Dakota considered "non-contiguous" reservation land.

April 20 is the deadline for thousands of owners of fractional interests on tribal lands to accept land buyback offers from the feds.

It's time for the State of South Dakota to abandon this land it claimed through colonization and remand it to the tribes for governance.

ip photo.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Montana's Tester, Bullock raising cash for Dems

Montana is the water tower for parts of two countries essential to reintroducing bison and critical habitat in efforts to rewild the western Missouri River basin. She hates the proposed Powder River Training Complex airspace grab, too.

Following policy and politics there is a necessary part of understanding the Eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains. Since the GOP has chosen to plunder the West we have to support Democrats working to preserve her for future generations.

Montana's Democratic US Senator and governor have been elected to key fundraising posts: Sen. Jon Tester is chair of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Gov. Steve Bullock was recently elected to lead the Democratic Governors Association.
For his part, Bullock is unapologetic about his role as DGA chair. “When it comes to the spending of corporate dollars, look, I don’t think there’s any governor in the country that’s fought harder to make sure our elections didn’t have corporate dollars in them. I took it all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court,” Bullock said. “But this is going to be the law of our land, at least until we get a new Supreme Court. That doesn’t mean Democrats should just roll over.” [John S. Adams, Bullock criticizes, is criticized over ‘dark money’]
Of course, the GOP is raising a stink: they're being outraised.
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee raised more than its Republican counterpart in January, bringing in $4.5 million as it begins its efforts to take control of the Senate in 2016. Despite being in the minority, the DSCC said this haul is its best ever in the January of a non-election year. The committee had more than $2.6 million in cash on hand and had $15 million in operating debt at the end of the month. [Alexis Levinson]
Montana and the legislature is being flooded with cash from Koch-backed 'Americans For Prosperity' in a state where the far right-wing is pushing the legislature to seize federal lands to mine, log, graze, whatever to pay back their benefactors.

It's been said countless times that The Last Best Place is not Oregon (even though the states show commonality in the white nationalist bloc) and elects Democrats with Blue Dog credentials: both Tester and Bullock believe that with vigilant environmental oversight they would support TransCanada's tarsands enema beginning in Montana.

Montana's Left has a hard-on for what it perceives as Democrats being GOP-lite who have deserted progressive ideals just to woo centrist voters.

We can stand for that: practical choices beat Democrats in the 2014 because our candidates ran away from President Obama, marriage equality and cannabis rights. But unless money is raised the earth haters of the GOP will keep defining our priorities and buying elections.

Democrats still enjoy overwhelming campaign support from Hollywood: interesting intersection as University of Montana grad JK Simmons wins an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in the 87th Academy Awards and Jeff Bridges once toyed with running for a Senate seat there.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

New Mexico yardbirds enchant

Okay, here is some kinder, gentler kurtz for your weekend especially if you're trapped in the frozen tundra somewhere. Click on any image for a better look:

Thursday, February 19, 2015

New poll: where will Trace O'Connell serve his jail sentence?

Will Trace O'Connell serve any sentence, be incarcerated in the Pennington County jail, languish in friendly surroundings at the Haakon County jail, or something else?

Vote on the new poll.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Jackson: BHSU would be honored to host LNI

You read it here first!

Boasting the highest American Indian enrollment among the regental institutions Black Hills State University is making "strategic changes" in efforts to address a revenue shortfall.
“Our first priority continues to be our students. The budget adjustments are designed to have minimal impact on students,” BHSU President Tom Jackson, Jr., said. “Across the nation, higher education institutions are being challenged to shift the way we operate to meet budgetary limitations while continuing to provide exceptional educational experiences. By taking a proactive and strategic approach, BHSU is meeting that challenge.” [BHSU Communications]
Dr. Jackson's comment comes after repeated calls to move the LNI after numerous racially-charged episodes at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City. The President of the Oglala Lakota Nation is under intense pressure to urge organizers of the Lakota Nation Invitational to move the event.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Minnesota edges closer to legal cannabis

Public Policy Polling has released a survey commissioned by Minnesota NORML from January 18-21, 2015. 49% of Minnesotans want legal cannabis ala Colorado and Washington, 44% are opposed; men embrace legalization 51/43. 76% of respondents condone therapeutic access. Even Republicans showed support at 61% and American Indians showed overwhelming approval at 93%. 54% believe cannabis prohibition is not more effective than alcohol prohibition, 51% think Minnesota’s economy would benefit from market legalization.

Read more from High Times.

A bill in Montana's legislature adding post-traumatic stress to that state's medical cannabis list of debilitating conditions passed without opposition.
Beginning on July 1, 2015, Measure 91 will legalize the possession, private use, and cultivation of marijuana by adults 21 and older. It also requires the liquor commission to license and regulate four types of marijuana businesses to produce, process, wholesale, and sell marijuana for adults’ use. For more information, please see our summary of the new law. [Marijuana Policy Project: Oregon]
Lawmakers in North Dakota are considering House Bill 1430 that would allow people with debilitating medical conditions such as cancer, glaucoma, HIV or post-traumatic stress to receive a prescription for cannabis, up to 2.5 ounces in processed form or up to six plants.

According to Huffington Post, Vermont could legalize cannabis with Senate Bill 95 submitted Tuesday. If passed the bill would legalize the possession, use and sale for those 21 and older.
Adult residents could possess up to an ounce of marijuana and grow up to nine plants (two mature, seven immature) for personal use, including any additional marijuana produced by those plants. Personal cultivation would be limited to secure indoor facilities.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Colorado border church preaching to Wyoming cannabis choir

Chris Christian is director of the Wyoming chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).
Shortly before 4:20 p.m. Saturday, a dozen people gathered in a semi-circle inside a garage furnished with a couch and a coffee table covered in brownies, sunflower seeds and apple slices. They distributed joints. The group ignited their lighters and inhaled. The garage, home to a cannabis sacramental church called Greenfaith Ministries, began to fill with smoke. They were getting high, said the ministries' Rev. Brandon Baker, to demonstrate for marijuana legalization in Wyoming. A recent University of Wyoming poll found 72 percent of Wyomingites support medical marijuana. Thirty-five percent support recreational use. While NORML has rallied and started online petitions, the Cannabis Activists, while regularly rallying outside Casper's Wyoming Medical Center in the summer, can also be seen at political events, gauging candidates’ views on marijuana policy. Members also regularly talk to politicians about sponsoring and supporting bills. The groups don’t always speak of each other in flattering terms. There are personality conflicts, Christian said. [Laura Hancock, Casper Star-Tribune]
Cannabis is the fastest growing industry in the US: Houston Chronicle.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

SDGFP buys cougar food, kills cougars

Update, 1943 MST: 26 cougars slaughtered in state-sponsored derby.


Okay, this is a head-scratcher: South Dakota's wildlife-killing agency just bought some cougar food and released them onto federal land.

The Grizzly Gulch Fire opened nearly 13,000 acres of overgrown and beetle-killed ponderosa pine but invasive weeds and cheatgrass moved in because cars and hunters have killed off the elk, white-tailed and mule deer. Now, the US Forest Service has allowed a state agency known for ecocide to introduce a species prone to disease.
GF&P released 26 head of bighorns trapped and transferred from the Hinton, Alberta, Canada area, somewhere east of Jasper National Park, then hauled them down for release at a high-country place near Deadwood left open by the burn in 2002. Sheep like open country more than dense forest. The project was helped along by the $82,000 raised last year by the auction of one of three bighorn hunting tags authorized by the state Game, Fish & Parks Commission. To say nothing of mountain lions, which of course they would have known up in Canada. They’ll know them here, too. And depending on who you talk to, lions could be a major or relatively minor threat to the well being and growth of the new herd. [Kevin Woster, KELO]
So, Game, Fish and Plunder has learned nothing from Arizona?
In 2013, Arizona Game and Fish began its on-going program to reintroduce bighorn sheep to the Santa Catalina Mountains. At the time, 31 of them were relocated to the area from Yuma. More than half of that herd were killed by mountain lions a few months later - causing the department to eliminate three of them for preying on the sheep. They've been largely criticized for that move, and for the reintroduction as a whole by groups like Friends of Wild Animals. The release gives some background, saying lion killings in the Catalinas were up to a couple of dozen by 2012, then when the bighorns were introduced, this leveled off, and last year the deaths dropped to 12 by hunters, 1 by bighorn program and 1 by a rancher as of December 2014. [Tucson Weekly]
Hunting cougars with dogs has been blessed by South Dakota but not within the Black Hills district.
In 2005 the harvest quota was 25 lions or five breeding-age females. The sub quota was reached in 24 days, faster than anyone anticipated. Today there is a 75-lion quota and a sub quota of 50 female lions. So far this season, 17 lions have been killed including nine female lions. [Black Hills Pioneer]
Is Forest Service Supervisor Craig Bobzien on the dole from the hunting industry like he is from the timber industry? He is continuing the fake pine beetle war for the Niemans, too by telling residents that large diameter trees should be cut for free to stop the bug.

Red state failure on parade.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Grijalva launches reform of 1872 Mining Act

The Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming are not the only public lands plundered by foreign companies under cover of The General Mining Act of 1872.
House Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member Raul Grijalva (D-AZ-3) today introduced the Hardrock Mining Reform and Reclamation Act of 2015 that would rewrite the 19th century law governing the mining of gold, copper, uranium and other hardrock minerals on federally managed lands. "Representative Grijalva’s bill would bring 19th century mining law into the 21st century," said Aaron Mintzes, Policy Advocate of the Washington, D.C.-based conservation group Earthworks. "If it becomes law it would bring badly needed reforms that work for western communities, taxpayers, the environment, and responsible mining companies." [press release, Earthworks]

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Off-reservation Bear Butte properties continue to be Rally battleground; LNI to BHSU?

Update, 17 February, 1512 MST:
The Meade County Commission has scheduled public forums to answer questions about the proposed TIF district to pay for construction of Fort Meade Way, a bypass road connecting Interstate 90 to highways 34 and 79. [Rapid City Journal]

Update, 13 February, 0540 MST: Buffalo Chip taking their incorporation case to the people.


Update, 12 February, 1120 MST: City of Sturgis® likely putting the kibosh on The Chip being a town.


Rod Woodruff could soon be owner of a town. Yep, the Buffalo Chip is taking it to the Meade County Commission and could be a municipality in time for the 75th Sturgis Rally.

Taxation is the latest Meade County stunt to compel tribes to relinquish lucrative Rally properties.
The Rosebud Sioux Tribe owns and operates the Bear Butte Lodge and about 120 surrounding acres acquired in several different transactions over the past decade. Corey Hairy Shirt, Lodge operator and property caretaker for four years explained that the Rosebud property is used primarily to support tribal member spiritual activities. Northern Cheyenne also own Bear Butte properties. The first, a home-site was acquired under the Eugene Little Coyote administration in 2005. Tribal member Eugene Limpy is custodian, assisting tribal members who go there for spiritual reasons. The Tribe acquired the “Free Spirit” campground in 2013, a forty acre parcel. Until tribal Bear Butte properties are put into federal trust, both Tribes must continue to pay taxes. “We’ve had previous experience with the fee-to-trust process” said William Walksalong, Northern Cheyenne tribal administrator. “And will do whatever it might take to get the tribal Bear Butte properties placed into trust so that this sacred area will be protected for generations to come.” [Clara Caufield, Native Sun News, Tribes battle to protect sacred Bear Butte land]
Here is an excerpt from Talli Nauman's piece covering a previous Meade County proceeding:
At a June 8 hearing on the matter, commissioners stopped short of approving a lawsuit. Instead, they voted unanimously to send a letter to state regulators, disputing the decision to hold oil drilling to five wells, instead of 24 initially permitted near the prayer site sacred to dozens of Native American tribes. The South Dakota Board of Minerals and Environment decided on May 18 to reduce Nakota Energy LLC’s 2010 permit for oil drilling in the sacred butte area from 24 to five initial wells, after three public comment periods revealed substantial opposition on religious grounds. “People are tired of coming in here. A lot of people don’t want to talk anymore,” United Urban Warrior Society organizer James Swan testified to county commissioners at their most recent meeting. “They just want to take over the mountain.” Mato Paha, as the mountain is called in Lakota, was noted and reserved as a traditional council site in the 1851 and 1868 Ft. Laramie treaties with the U.S. government. [Nauman, Native Sun News posted at indianz]
After numerous racially-charged episodes at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City the President of the Oglala Lakota Nation is under intense pressure to urge organizers of the Lakota Nation Invitational to move the event.

Dr. Tom Jackson, Jr. is President of Black Hills State University: urge him to offer to host the Lakota Nation Invitational. He is on twitter @tomjackjr

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

"You have pissed me off:" Dems defend Montana earth hater at AFP event

An astroturf group in Montana calling itself 'Americans For Prosperity' has been targeting the Republican lawmakers who have not pledged to resist helping Democratic Governor Steve Bullock expand Medicaid in the state.

Several days ago in Kalispell the Koch-backed tool held a "Healthcare Town Hall" taking aim at House District 7 Rep. Frank Garner.
Garner, who made the eight-hour round trip from Helena to attend the meeting, took umbrage with the postcards and said the group never told him about the meeting, which he learned about from a reporter on the House floor at the Capitol. Following a hasty exchange with AFP State Director Zach Lahn minutes before Thursday’s meeting commenced, Garner took the podium to defend his record before the crowd of mostly supporters, who cheered the lawmaker on. “You have pissed me off,” one man told Lahn. Referencing a quote by Henry David Thoreau on the sanctity of town hall meetings, Nathan Kosted told Lahn the gathering smacked of exclusivity. “Why did you call this a town hall meeting? I didn’t get an invite. I wish I’d been invited, because I want to know how we get the Koch Brothers out of politics. I want to know how we get you out of politics,” Kosted said. [Tristan Scott, Flathead Beacon]
AFP performed a similar stunt in Dillon.

Montana's Cowgirl Blog has more on the story.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Clifford crowdsourcing for reservation feminine hygiene needs

Sunny Clifford is a women's activist and feminist living in the Oglala Lakota Nation:
What is often overlooked is a young woman's need to manage menstruation. It may not seem like a big deal for the average American woman to go out to the store and buy herself tampons, pads, or even the new menstrual cup. But when I was a teenager with no job opportunities and my mom was a struggling single mother, sometimes I went without. It's embarrassing for me to admit even now! I am no longer that teenager who was fearful of menstruating because I didn't have pads or tampons, but I don't want any other young girls to go through that. So, I am asking you for help so I can procure some items to give away to girls on the reservation. [Sunny Clifford]

Friday, February 6, 2015

Obama calls out Christianity for atrocities

Speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast President Barack Obama counseled Americans to remember that Christians have been equally guilty of genocidal atrocities.
What is now known as "spectacular lynching" involved the ceremonial torture, murder--and yes, burning alive--of black Americans by whites. Like ISIS's use of digital media to circulate images of the torturous death of Muadh al Kasasbeh by fire, the spectacular lynchings of the black body were shared via postcards and other media. Will White America ever be willing to fully own its historic ISIS-like behavior against African-Americans and other people of color, and how such violence created the present, where neighborhoods are hyper-segregated, there exists a huge wage and income gap along the color line, and by almost every measure, black and brown Americans have significantly diminished life chances relative to white people? [Chauncey DeVega]
There have even been reports that the Islamic State is recruiting in Indian Country.

As tribal nations unite to condemn racism and call for boycotts in Rapid City some believe as many as 300 million indigenous have been slaughtered since the European colonization of the New World began.
“It was wonderful for the kids until the third [period],” said trip chaperone and school board member Justin Poor Bear. That was when two non-Native attendees seated in the VIP section above the students reportedly hurled racial epithets, beer and a Frisbee at the youths. According to local Native American leaders, the cases represent an uptick in hate crimes against the Native community in Rapid City, which borders Lakota territory. The situation has gotten so bad that Poor Bear told Al Jazeera he’s “afraid personally to come” to the city. [Al Jazeera]
Pope Frank is taking some heat for the canonization of a church leader who participated in genocide.

The Diocese of Helena, Montana is facing a bankruptcy court after decades of clergy sex abuse of American Indians.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

"Everyone knows drought in the West made worse by livestock production"

According to a new Gallup poll: 1) Wyoming 2) Utah 3) Idaho 4) South Dakota 5) Montana are the states where the most earth haters live.
Food production consumes more fresh water than any other activity in the United States. “Within agriculture in the West, the thirstiest commodity is the cow,” says George Wuerthner, an ecologist at the Foundation for Deep Ecology, who has studied the livestock industry. Humans drink about a gallon of water a day; cows, upwards of 23 gallons. In parts of Montana, as much as 90 percent of irrigated land is operated solely for the production of livestock feed; 90 percent of Nevada’s cropland is dedicated to raising hay. Half of Idaho’s three million acres of irrigated farmland grows forage and feed exclusively for cattle, and livestock production represents 60 percent of the state’s water use. One obvious and immediate solution to the western water crisis would be to curtail the waste of the livestock industry. Everyone knows that climate-created drought in the West is made undeniably worse by livestock production. “The capture of the West’s landscape by the cattle industry may be one of the biggest ongoing mistakes of our history,” says Wuerthner. And for what? To protect a mythological hero called the cowboy. Time to smash this idol of the American West and move on. [Christopher Ketcham, The New Republic]
We all know this: unless the West embraces rewilding on portions of the Missouri River basin west of a north/south line at Oacoma, South Dakota water wars will clog the courts leaving violent armed vigilantism to settle disputes.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

EPA urges State Department to revisit KXL's climate impact; pallid sturgeon suit filed

In a likely lethal blow to the proposed Keystone XL pipeline the US Environmental Protection Agency is urging the State Department to rethink the costs to the climate. The oil patch is seeing some panic as prices fall.
The State Department, which is evaluating the project because the TransCanada Corp pipeline would carry oil from a foreign country, is expected to make a recommendation to Obama soon, after reviewing comments from the EPA and other federal agencies. The EPA also said the State Department's final review showed that until efforts to cut emissions from oil sands production are more widespread, development of the resource "represents a significant increase in greenhouse gas emissions." [Reuters]
Few have doubted that the foreign enterprise proposed to ship diluted bitumen mined on lands leased by the Koch Brothers then shipped to refineries half a continent away would ever leave the drawing board.

Water crossings where ice floes bash moorings and flooding causes scouring of fill from river bottoms are particularly vulnerable to failures.

In other environment news litigation is pending in efforts to the save the endangered pallid sturgeon on an endangered Missouri River.
On Monday, the Defenders of Wildlife and the Natural Resources Defense Council sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Reclamation and the Fish and Wildlife Service in a Great Falls federal district court for operating dams on the Yellowstone and Missouri rivers in such a way that endangers the pallid sturgeon. “The current proposal from the Army Corps is essentially an eviction notice for the pallid sturgeon that has called this river home for millions of years — but it doesn’t have to be. We need the federal government to refocus and return to a solution that will give the sturgeon a fighting chance to not only survive, but thrive. Doing so would be a win-win for all,” said Marcus Griswold, water resources scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council. [Laura Lundquist, Bozeman Daily Chronicle]

Hey, Brendan Johnson: where are you guys?

Update, 4 February, 0845 MST: Interview with Justin Poor Bear.


Update, 3 February, 0800 MST: American Indians in Rapid City were subjected to yet another racist incident.
Friday night during the PRCA Xtreme Bulls Tour event, three Native American women, two Lakota elders and an older white couple were twice doused with beer. Rapid City Police Department spokesman Brendyn Medina confirmed late Monday that investigators were in the early stages of a probe of the incident, had taken a statement from the videographer, and were actively pursuing the matter. “The sad part is the rest of the world is now hearing how racist South Dakota is,” said Little Spotted Horse, an activist who runs a mentorship program called “Independence through Music” in Oglala. “None of us wants to show South Dakota in a bad light. This is dragging us backwards. What can be done to change the mentality?" If it continued, the activist said the economic consequences could be dire. [Police probe second incident at Civic Center]


Update, 1414 MST:
A justifiable anger has resulted from a headline that appeared in the Rapid City Journal on Saturday, Jan. 31. The Rapid City Journal deeply regrets the pain this headline has caused to our community and pledges to continue our efforts to fight racism and other social ills. [Bart Pfankuch Journal editor]

Update, 2 February, 0700 MST.

Top commented stories at the Rapid City Journal this morning:

Police probe opened in Rush racism incident (93)
Source: authorities focus in on one man in racism at Rush game (83)
Native students racially harassed, sprayed with beer at Rush game (67)
Jegeris: Police have identified one person suspected of insulting Native American students (62)
New, more focused civic center campaign coming soon (33)

Stupid town. More at Last Real Indians.

Dear Governor Dennis Daugaard, Attorney General Marty Jackley, Mayor Sam Kooiker, Police Chief Karl Jegeris, President John Yellow Bird Steele, Tribal Councilman Ron Duke, and Tribal Councilman Rich Greenwald:
Read it here.

Brandan Ecoffey here:
If Pennington County State’s Attorney Mark Vargo cares so much about Native children that he is willing to so vigorously defend the illegal taking of them from their homes, I would hope that he cares enough to step forward and prosecute those who committed these crimes.
Tim Giago said it like this:
Every Native American in South Dakota knows what would have happened had the situation been reversed. Every Indian in that private box would have been arrested, handcuffed and taken to jail. That didn’t happen to the white provocateurs, and there is not an Indian in Rapid City who expected it would. [Sioux Falls Argus Leader]
The expansion of the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center is going to voters in a town trapped between survival and boycott. Hold it accountable for these crimes.

It's time to move the Lakota Nation Invitational to Black Hills State University.