Oelrichs graduate will skip ceremony
An Oglala teen who fought a losing battle in court to be able to wear traditional Lakota regalia to his graduation said he won't attend the ceremony now because of the death of his grandfather.
Join the discussion below, or Read more at Argus Leader.
#1 May 20, 2010
All the money spent, uproar caused and effort it seems was for nothing in my opinion.
I would think that the money and effort spent could have been used for far better purposes by all the parties involved.
I wonder who paid for his lawyer, court costs and driving back and forth to Rapid City, SD. I’m sure his family and others made the trip a number of times.
I wonder who paid for the school districts’ lawyer, court costs and other people including school board members driving back and forth to Rapid City, SD.
Now there is the stiffing of feelings on both sides, but I guess its ok to poke the fire once in a while if your side is doing the stoking, but scream holy hell if the other side does it.
Racism is now claimed and pointed to by the side that loses the final decision over an issue that should never have been taken to that extreme. There was a far better way to have dealt with the issue.
There are battles that need to be and must be fought. But there are many issues that one is foolish to fight and wage war over. Many things are better worked out between two parties not yet at war.
Positions can change over time and feet not stuck in the harden concrete of war can still be moved. People who have not been forced to take a position that they must or will stand on can still be moved by good will. I wonder if instead of creating an issue to fight over, Dreaming Bear would have asked if the school board would have allowed the expansion of the Honoring Ceremony to include more things of the Lakota culture, all would have been better served. Maybe even to include other than Native Americans in a Honoring would expand good will and good feelings.
Once a mandated final ruling decision is made by a court ruling it becomes precedent on all similar issues. Instead of promoting good will and race relations between local people who know each other and clearly have been making small steps to work together now they have a different history. Neither side is going to forget the “Cap and Gown” War that never should have been fought in the first place.
I wonder also how the other public school districts across SD would have reacted to a different decision by the Court. Would it have promoted race relations or would it have caused concern and hard feelings?
I also wonder what we would think and how the people would react, if a white student attending one of the reservation schools objected to a similar custom we have and pushed it to a final court ruling and we lost. Would that cause good relationships? Would that cause hard feelings? Would that be racism and would it come to the surface?
Its easy as a Native American for me to look at the issue from just Dreaming Bears point view but there is two sides to this issue and it was not a issue to push to a Federal Court decision.
#2 May 22, 2010
First of all it is sad that this young man lost his grandfather and also that he won't be attending his graduation ceremonies. My condolences to him and his family for their loss.
Now to Opinion, each one is entitled to his or her own opinion, you have yours and i have mine. regardless of what you posted i still do not see why this young man could not wear his native american regalia as he crossed the stage to receive his diploma. From my point of view i can't see where it could have done much harm for a native american student to be proud of his accomplishments and to want wear his regalia on his special day. I understand though that this is a white school and this would not be accepted. Had he been graduating from a reservation school that probably wouldn't have been a problem. Our graduations here always include a drum group which i think is awesome being that we are native americans and proud of our graduates. Iwas raised up on this reservation and i am very well accustomed to my native american upbringing. The white way of doing things is very different from what i am used to. Well, anyway i stood by Aloysius although he wasn't allowed to what he wanted i am still standing by him and i know that he will make it in this world because he has determination and strength. He has shown to all that he is a leader and not a follower.
#3 May 22, 2010
I was approaching the subject more from a legal point of view. I strongly suspected and felt that no court would force a school board and public school into a single demand from a student.
That being said I also feel that the Oelrichs School in the past has been working with the Lakota people who send their children to school there. Some of Lakota honoring customs are already allowed and more was offered.
I like to see people who know each other work together. I want the school board which is probably mostly white to see the desires of the Lakota people as more of a "whole" than a demand of an individual. Individual demands tend to confront a brick wall where requests to include the Lakota culture as a whole is far less confrontational.
Putting two cultures together in a school is far easier than putting individual demands together.
If I knew the young man I would have advised him to not make a personal demand but ask to somehow include more of the Lakota culture into the school ceremonies. When asked what, he could have presented a number of suggestions ranging from allowing the wearing of native dress on the stage, a honoring ceremony for the teachers who taught and the school board who make the decisions concerning the school. Let the board see a range of ideas that were for the Lakota people as a whole and that did not challenge either the authority of the school board or the past culture of the school.
I believe you would see that “old stiff necked rancher cowboy” stop and give that some strong consideration, where a direct demand would be met with a NO. Most people like a good ceremony that all can feel good about.
Had I been setting on the school board and Dreaming Bear made the request in front of me I would have first asked him what the other graduating seniors thought about the idea and if he had any other ideas that could bring in the “whole” of the Lakota culture rather than a individual request. I would have noted that many of the students were Lakota and there is nothing set in stone where we as a public school cannot open up our graduation ceremony to include more than what we have in the past or for that matter change. It is a ceremony for all of us to enjoy.
I personally would have no problem forgoing the Cap and Gown for a native dress but the other culture may not, therefore I would be looking for things that could be done where all were happy and included. I would be looking for ways to let the white people enjoy the Lakota culture and be part of it rather than viewing something as a demand to change their culture or the culture of the school.
I guess I would be trying to move both sides to create new school culture they could look back upon years later and talk about having enjoyed together.
#4 May 22, 2010
I would add one more comment.
Its easy for us Lakota to look at the White people as the "other culture" as a whole. That is not the case as the White people are a blend of races and cultures.
Just as we Native Americans have seperate but similar "cultures" from tribe to tribe, so do the White People. Fact is our customs and cultures differ from your tribe's in many ways although similar in other ways. I would not want to be forced to accept your tribes customs and culture in place of my tribes customs and culture. When we meet we blend and accept the ways of each other.
"White people" came from all over Europe and they had different languages, religions and customs. They did not speak the same language or eat the same types of food but in American they had to adapt and accept compromise and new ways. Fact is they didn't even like each other very well in many cases just as Native American tribes didn't always like each other.
Its easy for us to look at the "White people" as being of one culture and set of customs but they are not just as we are all not of the same culture and customs.
Beyone the "White people" come the Mexicans and African Americans who have their desires for culture expression in public schools.
We should accept that we have to merge as a whole and hopefull take the best of cultures and blend them together where we meet together. If it is a reservation school on your reservation you can do as you and yours wish and on my reservation we will do as we wish. When we leave the reservation and attend a public school there will be different ways for us just as there is for other cultures and races.
We all have the right to ask for whatever but must realize that compromise is more than our own view or individual desires.
#5 May 22, 2010
I'll accept your ruling on this one. But if I went to that prom I wouldn't want to dance with him in drag.
- Associated Press
- May 22, 2010
Male Florida student who wanted to attend prom in dress suspended over parking
PEMBROKE PINES, Fla.
A male South Florida high school student who ran for prom queen in drag has been suspended from the dance because of a parking violation.
PEMBROKE PINES, Fla.(AP)— A male South Florida high school student who ran for prom queen in drag has been suspended from the dance because of a parking violation.
Flanagan High School's principal had two meetings with senior Oscar Bonilla because administrators were concerned about his safety if he wore a dress to prom. Officials say that when he came to the second meeting, Bonilla parked in a visitor space and ignored orders to move.
Broward schools spokeswoman Nadine Drew says Bonilla was suspended for two days for the parking problem, which kept him from attending Friday's dance.
Bonilla says he was running late and didn't hear a security guard tell him to move his car.
The student, who finished second in voting for prom queen, says he was trying to encourage closeted students to abandon their fears and be themselves.
#6 Jul 23, 2010
And your point is? I seriously doubt that Dreaming Bear was trying to encourage closet indians to abandon their fears and be themselves.
#7 Jul 23, 2010
The point is that it was a just a remark.
It was a "pun" on the issue. I believe any normal thinking person would clearly see that.
It was not intended to refer to Dreaming Bear and clearly nothing in the posting so indicated that it did. Neither did my comment in regards to the article that was posted.
Don't be so thin skinned and look for something to get wound up about. It amase's me that you can at once make that jump to infer that it was about Dreaming Bear and closet indians.
Good God woman read and think.
It was just another article about what someone wanted to wear to a Prom. It was posted with a comment about that article.
In addition don't you think its a little late to now wake up and want to beat the bush with a stick after the two months?
Now I suppose you want to have a argument about this. Why not find a current issue to get wound up about?
I have better things to read and argue about that digging up old bones to chew on.
#8 Jul 23, 2010
If you want to comment on something I just posted up another discussion article:
Forming your own Indian reservation
I never made a comment. So you can have at it.
If you are for it I will be against it.
If you are against it I will be for it.
Take your pick since it appears you want to argue for the sake of arguing.
#9 Jul 24, 2010
my opinion , your opinion , lets leave it at that.
#10 Sep 22, 2011
So it's about money, is it, belly-rubber?
#11 Nov 1, 2011
I think you are about a year behind what is happening.
#12 Nov 2, 2011
I rather care for all children and teenagers and will do anything for them,rather then being greedy for money, to hell with it.
It's about all children or about money, which is it?
#13 Nov 2, 2011
Me, I was poor all my life, and never had nothing, so i dont care about money or fancy houses and cars, who needs them?
#14 Nov 2, 2011
Guess as long as it's not your money being spent but the money of the rest of the taxpayers, why would you care.
It seems that you entered the discussion about a year late. Its old history now.
#15 Nov 2, 2011
Yes it is, but it's three months ago and it is old, but since you post here, I think it's ancient history for u to be here!!
#16 Nov 2, 2011
#1. May 2010 is over a year ago.
#2. I just posted here in response to you.
Wake up girl
#17 Nov 2, 2011
And BTW, I guess your caring, more about money and taxpayers, then children.
#18 Nov 2, 2011
You need to wake up, and your right, it is a year ago, but if you keep posting here, well mind as well start a new discussion,
#19 Nov 2, 2011
What do you want to talk about?
You havn't responded on the gay issue.
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