What constitutes a hate crime in this state?
Some could say it is when one slanders your people because of your race or segregates you because of the color of your skin.
I have found that when one denies racial discrimination is even present in a racial environment, then justifies this behavior for the sake of their ignorance, that this is a sin unto the Lord God himself.
The laws of this state, like all other states, are founded on the moral principles of the Bible or written word of God. In many religions there is a common belief that all men are created equal, yet today we see extremists abusing the words of God to suit their selfish needs or racial supremacy.
Today's times are testimony to just how extreme some leaders can become when they rule over the masses with their power-hungry motives, justifying their oppression over others.
Last week a man of the law found that some white youth shouldn't be charged with a hate crime because he couldn't see race as a cause for the attack. "Race didn't play a role in the confrontation. I don't see it as a motivating factor," Hand County States James Jones stated.
These so-called "white youth" harassed a few American Indian girls after a basketball game in Miller, S.D., calling them prairie niggers, and other racial slurs.
One of the girls threw an ice cream at the car the "white youth" were in. Soon, three carloads of white boys began chasing the girls, trying to run them off the road. As the girls tried to get away from the juvenile terrorists, a semi-automatic shotgun was pulled out and fired at the girls.
It's impossible to believe race wasn't a factor in this attack. Any idiot can see that racial discrimination did play a major role in this racially motivated hate crime. It's an obvious act of unequal, biased justice when a man who is supposed to uphold the law cannot see an act of hate on the basis of race right in front of his face and call it otherwise. I believe it to be redneck judgment on behalf of the Hand County state's attorney.
This crime reminds me of Columbine when "kids" with semi-automatic weapons shot a number of other classmates based on their individual judgments of those they would kill.
Many of these racially motivated crimes go unpunished because of unequal treatment and justice by those who uphold the law in South Dakota. This state is notorious for allowing racism to flourish and though not all white people and red people are racist, they are too few in number to signify any racial reconciliation among Indians and whites.
Today you hear state politicians talking a good talk but seldom talking the truth of just how racist a majority exists in this state. Many state leaders want written, documented proof before they will act to end racial discrimination such as this. They want to hide racism in political red tape before admitting to it like real men, the same way domestic abusers hide their dirty laundry from the public. For what is racial violence if it is not a grand act of domestic violence?
No one can document de facto segregation and racial discrimination on the large scale as it exists here because the majority who are racist toward not only Indians but blacks, Latinos, Asians and white people of other states, refuse to come forward and admit it. They hide behind their immoral high ground.
It sounds to me like racial profiling and racially motivated violence is justifiable in the eyes of leaders who are racist themselves. If the racists of this state don't like the Indians to the point of shooting semi-automatic shotguns at our children, then stay out of and off our reservations, quit leasing our land tax free and overgrazing it.
The racial problem in South Dakota is at an extreme level but we Indians have kept our peace and haven't become violent, unlike some white people of this state. We acknowledge we are civilized under the eyes of our God, we respect His word. Maybe those who are racist should take our example and teach their children some morality.
No, there is no reconciliation! There never was. It's an excuse written down on paper by the hand of the oppressor for the state leaders to wave around to make Indians look bad when we defend ourselves from their racial attacks on our children and ourselves.
It is true when the elders say, "You can always tell the way a community or state is by how the leadership is."
Obviously racism is alive and flourishing in this state.
Editor's note: Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Standing Stone Media Inc., publishers of Indian Country Today.