Friday, September 21, 2012
Blog # 4 Seeking to Stem Endless Abuse of Tribe's Children
By: Timonthy Williams
In Spirit Lake Indian Reservation, N.D, a man who plays Santa Claus is a registered sex offender and a convicted rapist. A brother of the tribal chairman of the Spirit Lake Sioux tribe sexually abused a 12 year old girl. There are 38 registered sex offenders on the reservation. Outside of the reservation Grand Forks N.D only has 13 offenders out of a population of 53,000. In a particular home on the reservation where 9 children live, happen to be under the care of the father, uncle and grandfather and all of them are registered sex offenders. After years of action not being taken by the government and tribal law enforement officials to look into these cases of child sexual abuse including rape, the federal government is not trying to take over the tribe's social service programs. Residents on the reservation say that sexual violence against children are common and are not kept secret. Crimes are rarely persecuted and almost no arrests are made. Since no legal actions are taken place against offenders reports are rarely filed. The social services program on the reservation is very poor and weak. A former social worker said that she oversaw 131 children which is 100 more cases than the state's average caseload. The federal government along with tribal officials should come together and come up with a plan to make sure that children are not in the care of registered sex offenders and that there is a stricter law against crude and sexual violence against children. Perhaps offenders should live in an isolated area after prison. These violent acts are infuriationg and is another example of how the U.S stripped Native Americans of their culture and land and left them with poor autonomy and resources. People say that these acts are common because of alcoholism and poverty and these are only results of not have autonomy and few resources. Another reason why these acts continue to take place without legal actions is because the system of patriarchy and male dominance, especially the acts against done against girls. This story was very heartbreaking for me to read and an issue I hold dear to my heart. I think this story is global in a since because it takes place on a reservation inside of the U.S.
The New York Times
Vol. CLXII.......55,900 Thursday, September 20, 2012