2018-07-12 / Voices

Letters To The Editor


Dear Editor , Mitakuyepi ,

We on the Rosebud will soon be voting for 10 Council Representatives as well as a President and Vice-President . It is so important that we not waste our votes . Already the booze is flowing and the vote buying is under way as false promises are being made . Remember -this is the usual method of unethical candidates to steal your vote , This is a form of corruption . You are not being truly respected . Take what they are handing out but kiksuya , remember , no one is looking over your shoulder as you cast your all important ballot . Vote for a candidate that will ethically best represent the Oyate .

I personally will be voting for at least 4 of those incumbents who have refiled for the 10 Council seats up for grabs , as they have proven themselves capable . Two others I am considering but with out their being Council voting records or Council minutes available , I am unable to determine their effectiveness. I am happy to share my picks with any Tribal Member as well as discuss my concerns .

I firmly believe that their needs to be a roll call on all Council important actions so as to establish individual and group Council member track records . This is the norm with The American as well as some Tribal

Governments . Also , RST Council minutes should be printed In public media news sources immediately upon Council approval .

While we are at it ; all approved RST Budgets including Council , Officer salary’s must he printed in a manner to be made available to all Tribal Members . This one is a RST Constitutional mandate .

Also of extreme importance is the annual Cherry Todd Electric Cooperative meeting taking place this year In White River , South Dakota on September 22 , 2018 .This yaccording to the July 2018 issue of the Cherry l– Todd Electric ‘’ Cooperative Connections e‘’ publication .On the agenda is the election eof two board members . Last year we created history by voting in and establishing a 50 % gTribal Member CTE Board . This year we can ‘’ break the glass ceiling ‘’ by voting in another Tribal member to join the current Mellette County CTE Tribal Member . We must all join in this effort as we lare poised on the brink of Tribal Voter empowerment history of a majority Tribal Member CTE Board . It is only right as we are at least 85 % of the Cherry -Todd Electric Coop Membership. Finally, This year again the Elders went hungry as The Tribe shut down on Friday May 25th purportedly to honor elders . Once upon a time their existed a celebration on the last Saturday in May at Ghost Hawk Park to honor Precious Elders . This vital event went away but needs to be brought back . There is an imperative need for an effective Tribal Elder organization, group . Will any RST Tribal election candidate step forward to support these efforts ?

Until next time, Toksa !


Ronald L Neiss

PO Box 563

Rosebud South Dakota




Dear Editor

As we are coming closer to another Oglala Sioux Tribal Election I wish to point out several issues to the Lakota people just to remind them that these issues have been there for the past 20 or so years with no real solutions. I would like for the people to take a few minutes to think about these issues.

We are concerned about the future of the Lakota people and the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation as a whole. That is one of the reasons for the Tribal Constitutional Reform that is in progress right now. The problem is that a lot of people are not making the time and effort to learn what changes are being proposed. The Task Force have scheduled numerous meetings in the Districts only to find a handful of people in attendance. It is recommended that the number of Tribal Council Representatives be reduced to only “one per district” and to require a minimum of an “Associate Degree” from college. Our Tribal Government representatives meet with professional State and Federal Government representatives dealing with numerous important issues. Our Lakota representatives must be educated and

Experienced sufficiently to understand and know about the issues being brought out to seek out a workable resolution. This is an important Tribal position and has some criteria that must be met just like any other Tribal job and if the person wishes to be considered for the position they must assure themselves of meeting the job requirements. We have college centers throughout the reservation and everyone has an opportunity to attend the schools to receive the education.

The purpose behind the reform is to streamline the tribal government operations for better results and to create better opportunities for the Lakota people. Spending so much money on our government and receiving very little or no results is not a good government. At least SO% of that tribal travel budget being spent each year can be used to build more tribal homes for our people. More money can be allocated to the tribal housing program to make yearly home repairs for the people. Both efforts will in turn create jobs for our people in construction. It is recommended that reducing the tribal council and not expanding the council with more representatives only to see more money spent for travel and not addressing local issues.

The District Chairperson position need to be updated for more and better requirements in order to get a person with more training and experience to address the district issues. These people can work with the tribal representatives daily to learn the issues and both attend the monthly tribal council meeting to ensure that the issues are being addressed and resolved. This will prevent the time and effort spent

With so many “2/3rd council add-ons” to the meetings with the agenda items not being addressed. Having the District Chairperson’s attend every tribal council meeting will ensure all tribal issues are address. Enrolled Tribal members may vote so if these Lakota people wish to participate in elections they can be allowed to register to vote rather than adding one more District. Without campaigning the

Tribal program employees may be allowed to provide transportation to and from polling places including

People residing in Rapid City. Only thing to consider will be to assure these homeless people are sober and know what they will be doing.

A major problem over the years has been the lack of a Treatment and Rehabilitation Center on the reservation with so many of our people suffering from alcohol or drug abuse, homelessness, or unemployment. We need to be concerned about our people in the city areas who commit a crime and being sent to prison. We need to provide that help for our people rather than allowing the crimes with Alcohol or drug abuses. Rather than depending on the BIA, IHS and other Federal Agencies to try to address these issues it is far better to address the issues within our tribal council. Having a large rehabilitation and treatment center will in turn create jobs for those individuals wishing to work in this environment. Using what Tribal money we now have and putting it to better use for helping our people will be money well spent. Remember the Tribal Chairmen is elected to represent our interests and is the only person who should be traveling when necessary. People in Washington, DC may be thinking that this a poor Indian reservation from South Dakota but spending so much money sending a large delegation to attend meetings in DC seems foolish. Think about it.


Everett Little Whiteman

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