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Clean Our Own House First

Henry Lafferty Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe

CRST Chairman Harold Frazier’s address to the SD state legislature is reminiscent of previous historical attempts at social reform between city, state and federal governments and Indian Country. Literally we are a microcosm of global, national and regional state of affairs. We feed out of the same trough of adversity that others do as well. In the trickle down affect we are near the bottom. First and foremost, co-existence amongst our own is paramount.

As direct products of documented root causes, our people exist today in a symptomatic lifestyle of extreme generation poverty, social, economical and health care devastation, inequality and injustice. Beneath the quagmire of deficiencies we face is the debilitating factor of generation divide.

 Our generation divide is a large, diverse mix between those who maintain a life of Lakota cultural, traditional and spirituality, those segments of our community and reservation that choose to live in a more mainstream lifestyle of the modern world and those who try to live a balanced life of ideology difference.

Generation divide creates gridlock and polarization because of vast differences in life philosophy and principle. Deviation from the attributes of balance and harmony has created the inability to identify, address and mitigate critical concerns and issues.

If the challenge for co-existence is to be seriously considered by others, we must “clean our house first” in order for others to reciprocate. We must bring about change for the better through tribal government reform, social cleansing, eradicate health epidemics, elevate education expectations and seek economic stability. Anything less is unacceptable and perpetuates the demise for our future generations. Without a succession plan that charts our future, we are destined for failure to our future generation. To build a better future implores an astronomical paradigm shift.

Voices of our ancestors and present day grass root people can no longer be just “cries in the wind”. Combined voices of the generation divide must perpetuate that cry for positive change and advancement through a sense of urgency and a collective effort of intellect, respect, understanding, and cooperation.

We need to acknowledge and accept the challenge faced by all demographics of CRST. Public outcry substantiates the need to institute a “think tank” of a diverse mix of the generation divide and kick start the advancement for an intellectual movement toward a better future and the continued co-existence in our communities and reservation and for our future generations.

To ignore an opportunity to bring about positive and proactive change and advancement, we have failed those countless individuals that fought and died for who we are and what we have today. We in turn perpetuate a dominant society’s subtle objective of eventual genocide of the Lakota People and Indian Country.

Henry Lafferty P.O. Box 184, Eagle Butte, SD                                                                                                                                                                        (605) 964-2033  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Henry Lafferty is an enrolled CRST member, a Mnicojou of the Wakinyan Maza Tiospye with 40 yrs. of work experience specializing in diverse areas of organizational management with city and tribal governments and the private sector, and as a consultant, with an emphasis in Quality and Internal Control.


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