Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

May 9, 2010

Horse Slaughter Pine Ridge 2010

UPDATE: Oglala Court halts auction of sacred horses

Temporary injunction granted to stop the Oglala Sioux Tribe Parks and Recreation Department from auctioning off these horses on Mothers Day

Statement by David Swallow, Jr., Wowitan Yuha Mani
Teton Lakota Spiritual Leader, Sun dance Chief of the Medicine Wheel Sun dance, and a Headman of the Lakota Nation Band of Wana Way Gu (Broken Bow)

For Immediate Release
Statement Date; May 8th 2010
Transcribed To and edited by Keith Rabin

Hau, Mitakuyapi Na Mita Kola.

Mitakuyapi Sunka Wakan Oyate
Lakota Nation, Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota

The Lakota people of Pine Ridge South Dakota continue their struggle to protect their Sacred Horses from the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council and the Parks and Recreation Department.
Since June 2009, the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council and the Parks and Recreation (OSTPR) have been removing horses owned by the Lakota People of Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota without permission, without notice and without any warrant issued or receipt. Despite repeated efforts, continued obstacles have made it impossible for the Lakota People to get their horses back.
The horses were to be delivered to the St. Onge Livestock Company LTD by the OSTPR to be auctioned off on Sunday, 5/9/10 as loose horses.
In A statement from Elder and Spiritual leader David Swallow, on May 7, 2010, based on the grounds of trespassing on private property, a temporary injunction was granted by the Tribal Court to stop the Oglala Sioux Tribe Parks and Recreation Department from auctioning off these horses on 5/9/10 [Mothers Day]. (Further details regarding the injunction to follow early next week).
The ” Mitakuyapi Sunka Wakan Oyate ” is working to establish a designated fund where supporters will be able to donate funds to help return these Sacred horses to the safety and care of The People. Supporters are encouraged not to send any money at this time.
Please watch for updates as to how to help.
Mitakuyapi Sunka Wakan Oyate (Relatives of the Sacred Horses)
Lakota Nation, Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota
Our Horses are sacred to us and they are our relatives.
We are family and we take care of each other and help each other in times of need.
That is the Lakota way.


Bonnice Forshey said...

I have Emailed Gov. Rounds from South Dakota and also PETA.
I am very thankful that a temporary injunction has been filed to stop the auction of these beautiful creatures.
I thank God for this intervention.

Anonymous said...

I too emailed PETA after receiving an email about the atrocity.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand the background of the story.

If not auctioned, will these horses be taken in by someone willing to provide for their care? What exactly makes them sacred? Where were they caught and why are they running free?
Do all stray horses deserve special protection? (If so, why?)

The story seems to imply information unknown to many of us. It is hard to form an opinion without more details.

Oya's Daughter said...

Anonymous: The horses will not be taken in by care - they will be slaughtered and shipped to France as meat. They were NOT "running free" and were not strays but were owned horses, and on the land of the owners. These Park Rangers (who no one has heard of till now) came on without warrants and removed the horses without explanation. The horses are sacred because the Horse itself is sacred to the Lakotah, and has always been. To tend a horse, the kids have something to be responsible for, rather than turning to using drugs and alcohol - which is a huge problem on Pine Ridge. To lose these horses without any explanation, just to be sold to slaughter, is unconscionable.

Anonymous said...

Owned or not, HORSE OWNERS need to take heed and actually take care of their horses. This is the reservation however, there is also law and order versus the lawlessness which has occurred for years. Now that the horse and cattle owners actually have to mend their fences and pay for leases they are all belly-aching. Statistics tell us that over the last decade or two numerous lives were take by cattle and horses on the public highways. Furthermore, there is no such thing as open range units. That is only applicable, if and only if, my land is not fenced off to a neighboring parcel which is being used. I can not charge lease fees since mine is not fenced off. Get your facts before you make needless commentary. PETA has no jurisdiction nor say so on tribal lands. Lastly, I have seen not only the devastation overgrazing by horse and cattle owners have on all the people and lands not to mention the sacred horses themselves. A lot of them suffer from malnutrition. Thanks, thanks a lot for the prairie dogs and mnemonic plague.

Anonymous said...

you are what is wrong with the world today. do u have no understanding for tradition and values. well aparently not.I am not a native however i feal the same way they do. Yes horses are not only sacrid to them but to maney tribes and people period. Horses are an american symbol as are free roaming mustangs.
Who are u to ask why are they sacrid or what makes them sacrid. you are right you know absuluty nothing about what your talking about and shouldnt be talking about it. Oh and its so third grade of u to stupe to racial slures to people who probably deserve to be here more than u do. go ge a life

Anonymous said...

there is alot of park rangers that infact take horses from their owners with no reason at all. i know these people have did numrous things for the animals to get out of the fences. i have been a visitor to the Pine Ridge Resevation for many years. i know the park rangers by name that have shown such acts toward the lakota people. they as lakota people themselve should understand what scared means. WHAT happen to their respect for the lakota way of life. instead of taking the animals from the people why cant you help them by closing the gates behind yourselves and stop cutting the fences. help your people with the money you spend on driving around by fix broken fences and gates. teach the children instead of taking from them. the are lakota a hertiage that is dieing and your helping it instead of stopping it. look back in history what was taken from these beautiful people. NOW YOU want to take their horses. TEACH them and HELP THEM care for the animals if you are so experienced and a expert. dont take another part of the history and culture when your a Native yourselve. Make a program to teach the children and help the people care for the animals. i'm pretty sure that you have money to do this when you have money to drive them big trucks around just looking for a horse you like to let out so you can take it. I THINK IT IS VERY SAD AND DISAPPOINTING THAT YOU DO THINGS TO YOUR OWN PEOPLE. if you do not want to live like a lakota than move off the reservation. live in the city and look back at your people you will respect life a whole lot more. when you see how it is to live in a different world.