Opinion: Storm photos cast Indians in negative light

Storm Photo Gallery (December 7, 2005)

"I wanted to express a concern I see here in northeast South Dakota. I am not from here, but I have lived up here for a little more than two years now. I am a Native American employed by a local tribe.

I have always wondered why people see each other so differently and why some people choose to take it to the next level. In my opinion, that level is based on preconceived ideas, suspicions and/or fears one might have about another. That level I am referring to is prejudice.

I notice little things in life that - individually - are nothing, but collectively they can paint very clear pictures.

Take, for instance, your Argus Leader photo gallery.

I enjoyed seeing them, until I noticed you put pictures of Indians in the shelters in several photos. But when you put pictures of non-Indians, you showed them out working in the storm feeding their cattle. You even had a 92-year-old white man shoveling snow and an elderly woman putting wood or corn in a stove, bragging that her museum never got below 50 degrees.

Those pictures in themselves are not bad things. South Dakotans should be proud of their ability to survive hardships and honor their legacy of hard-work ethic and self-reliance.

But what about the hundreds of Indian men and women in the area who took care of others, delivered wood and food to elders, bought generators and took extended family members into their homes in this time of crisis? I know of one district that had an emergency response team with a phone tree developed with all the people who had four-wheel drives in their district. They helped each other and those less fortunate."

Get the Story:
Dwight E. Howe: Storm photos don't show true Native Americans (The Sioux Falls Argus Leader 2/12)

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