FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
While I have been personally mortified upon hearing the details of the recent federal court ruling regarding thousands of boldly illegal acts perpetrated by our state and local government regarding the treatment of Native parents having their children unlawfully taken from them, I feel it is critically important to take an official public stand.
This landmark court decision should have been one of the top news stories across our nation and certainly should have been the top story for many days throughout South Dakota. Instead, the near-silence by most media organizations within our state has sparked even more rightful outrage among thousands of people across South Dakota.
Let us be clear. Thousands of families were denied even their most basic natural human right to due process of law which is specifically guaranteed to be protected under our US Constitution and Bill of Rights! Hearings that have now been proven to have often lasted only 60 seconds in which parents were not even allowed to know the allegations against them, could therefore never have defended themselves even if they had been given the opportunity. Instead, they were not given the opportunity to even speak and lost the most precious gifts in their lives, their children. These were such egregious offenses that all Americans should be absolutely outraged.
On top of the willful and boldly unlawful denial of their basic rights, after the children were stripped away from their parents, our state government and its agents then broke an additional federal law known as the Indian Child Welfare Act with their blatant refusals to allow willing and capable family members to take care of these children. It was for this very reason that the ICWA was enacted over 40 years ago.
We must unite as South Dakotans in defense of our constitution and issue a cry for justice! The worst thing that could now happen is for no justice to come to these families. We issue a call for all officials involved in these unlawful acts and those whose responsibility it was to protect their rights to immediately resign from their positions. An independent panel of citizens should be formed to further investigate all persons that should be held accountable.
We stand firmly with the great tribal nations and all other people that have had their children wrongfully taken from them due to unconscionable abuses of power by South Dakota's government. Millions of dollars that were brought into this state as a result of these outrageous actions against our children is nothing short of evil. For healing to begin, justice must now be served!
Constitution Party of South Dakota