Riding through the first frigid days through South Dakota, Chainbreaker camped out in Howard, home of the Howard Tigers (who won their homecoming game!).
Meanwhile at the Rosebud Native Reservation a federal grant is helping expand the jail. With all the new beds being added the jail the facility plans to contract for more federal inmates. Economists tout the jobs both in construction and in the jails administration. Some reformists may be excited to have a more “native friendly” facility where sibling guards sibling and those locked in cages are at least physically closer to home.
Before leaving Minnesota I spoke with Bill Means of the American Indian Movement (AIM). He shared the sentiment that when the colonizer persuades the colonized people to guard each other with guns the process of colonization is complete. There is something almost ironic – putting a federal inmates on a reservation in a surveillance society. A prison in a prison in a prison.
The cold weather blowing across the state pushed us south and diverted us from intended path through Pine Ridge, the site of the death of two federal agents in 1975 that sparked the case leading to the incarceration of Leonard Peltier. South Dakota has a lot to teach us about the both preemptive (mass imprisonment) and proactive (as a tool to attack resistance when it flairs) use of prisons for social control.
Originally, I was going to quote here from Peltier on “Indigenous peoples day” to wrap up this neat little package about colonization, but I decided you should just read it later and instead take this moment to honor and remember comrade Russell Means who passed last week.
Love and Solidarity.