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Not Without Our Consent

Not Without Our Consent: Lakota Resistance to Termination, 1950-59

Foreword by Vine Deloria
Copyright Date: 2006
Pages: 320
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  • Book Info
    Not Without Our Consent
    Book Description:

    In a 1953 effort to end the authority of local Native American governments, Congress passed Public Law 83-280. Allowing states to apply their criminal and civil laws to Native American country, the law provided an unparalleled opportunity for the state of South Dakota to crush burgeoning Lakota nationalism. _x000B__x000B_Edward Valandra's Not Without Our Consent documents the tenacious and formidable Lakota resistance to attempts at applying this law. In unprecedented depth, it follows their struggle through the 1950s when, against all odds, their resistance succeeded in the amendment of PL 83-280 to include Native consent as a prerequisite to state jurisdiction. The various House and Senate bills discussed in the manuscript are reproduced in five appendices.

    eISBN: 978-0-252-09270-1
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. List of Tables
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. Foreword
    (pp. xi-xiv)

    World War Two brought frightening times for American Indians. Wartime budgets drastically reduced domestic spending to support war expenditures and the Bureau of Indian Affairs suffered proportionately. A stirring of the civil rights conscience was felt when it was observed that the German prisoners of war were treated better than were African Americans in the South. German concentration camps became the embarrassment of the civilized world, and South African apartheid and American Indian reservations were considered less extreme instances of negative racial policies. Two waves of reform originated in the immediate postwar world: a desire to reduce the size of...

  5. Abbreviations
    (pp. xv-xvi)
  6. Chronology
    (pp. xvii-xxvi)
  7. Introduction
    (pp. 1-16)

    In October 1985, as a newly elected tribal council representative from Rosebud Reservation’s St. Francis community,¹ I recall that modern Sicangu Lakota governance had just undergone substantive and exciting political changes in constitutional reform. One experimental reform included amending the long-standing two-year term to a four-year term of service on the tribal council.² It was during this four-year period of my term, from November 1985 to November 1989, that I became interested in documenting how the Lakota in the 1950s resisted PL 83-280 (appendix A), the infamous federal law that in many states terminated tribal governance and replaced it with...

  8. 1 U.S. Termination Policy, 1945–53
    (pp. 17-70)

    Individuals who are familiar with or involved in Native affairs generally recognize the Eighty-third Congress’s 1 August 1953 enactment of House Concurrent Resolution No. 108 (HCR No. 108) as the political document that officially crystallized U.S. termination policy regarding Native Peoples. The entire resolution is brief:

    Whereas it is the policy of Congress, as rapidly as possible, to make the Indians within the territorial limits of the United States subject to the same laws and entitled to the same privileges and responsibilities as are applicable to other citizens of the United States, to end their status as wards of the...

  9. 2 Lakota Termination-Ready Status: Zimmerman Applied
    (pp. 71-142)

    From Zimmerman’s four criteria, one could safely conclude that the Lakota’s overall readiness or desire for termination lay somewhere in the far-distant future. None of the Lakota reservations and communities were in Group I or even mentioned in HCR No. 108. Only the Cheyenne River (S.D.), Fort Peck (M.T.), and Fort Totten (N.D.) reservations were in Group II, while Crow Creek (S.D.), Pine Ridge (S.D.), Rosebud (S.D.), and Sisseton (S.D.) reservations received Group III status. Notably missing from all three groups were Flandreau community (S.D.), Lower Brule (S.D.), Standing Rock (S.D.), Yankton (S.D.), and Santee (N.E.) reservations, as well as...

  10. 3 The 1958 Lakota Referenda
    (pp. 143-242)

    Whereas the national mood in the 1950s made the United States’ termination policy seem inevitable, the mood of the Lakota was toward greater political and economic activism, challenging the status quo of U.S. colonialism. Because termination’s professed goal was to “emancipate” Native Peoples—an attempt to cover the real landgrab motives—a Termination Era law like PL 83-280 conveniently provided South Dakota with an effective means to suppress if not outright eliminate Lakota resistance and to promote even greater white encroachment into Lakota affairs.

    South Dakota responded quickly and in sync with the national termination policy by invoking PL 83-280...

  11. Afterword
    (pp. 243-256)

    For the terminationists and their sympathizers who had been either heavily lobbying for or supporting complete state jurisdiction over Lakota territory since 1953, the Lakota referenda proved a stinging setback. Indeed, it was hard to believe. After all, the termination forces controlled the state’s entire political apparatus. The LRC, the EHWC, the state health and education departments, the county board of commissioners, the state’s attorneys, and so on—all in full collaboration with their respective constituencies—forged a Native policy whose main goal was to destroy the Lakota politically by eliminating their self-determination.

    When HB No. 721 was introduced in...

  12. APPENDIX A. Public Law 83-280
    (pp. 257-259)
  13. APPENDIX B. Senate Bill No. 278
    (pp. 260-261)
  14. APPENDIX C. House Bill No. 721
    (pp. 262-262)
  15. APPENDIX D. House Bill No. 892 (as originally introduced)
    (pp. 263-264)
  16. APPENDIX E. Chapter 319 (House Bill No. 892 as signed into law)
    (pp. 265-266)
  17. APPENDIX F. Chapter 144 (Senate Bill No. 210)
    (pp. 267-267)
  18. APPENDIX G. Chapter 464 (House Bill No. 659)
    (pp. 268-269)
  19. APPENDIX H. Chapter 467 (House Bill No. 791)
    (pp. 270-270)
  20. Bibliography
    (pp. 271-278)
  21. Index
    (pp. 279-288)
  22. Back Matter
    (pp. 289-294)