Davies. Photo from Native Sun
Technology is coming to Lakota country
We can free ourselves as a unified people
By James Giago Davies
Someday soon technology is going to fundamentally alter our lives. Not happening now. My son was just graduated from high school, and as I sat at his graduation party, I realized nothing had changed from when I was in high school. I had long hair, he has long hair. I liked board games, he likes board games. I liked the Beatles, he likes the Beatles.
Cell phones, computer games, Facebook; none of this technology has made much of a dent in our basic social patterns. Some will claim it has, but these changes are really not that dramatic. A thousand TV channels are impressive, but you can only watch one at a time. When my three boys do watch TV together, it’s very often the same show I watched at their age, Andy Griffith, and the black and white doesn’t bother them at all, in fact, they complain the color episodes, beginning in 1966, aren’t as good as the black and white episodes.
Rapid City has had a ton of cosmetic changes, but there is still the dinosaur on the hill, the buildings aren’t any taller, there are no flying cars or hovering skateboards. Driving across the rez also hasn’t changed much, lots of poorly maintained blacktop leading to run down looking housing projects surrounded by derelict vehicles and barking dogs.
When will technology ever come to this place? What would the average Lakota do with a flying car?—“Eeeee, I can’t even drive this thing...”
We were supposed to be on Mars by now, supposed to have colonized the moon. But the only technology that seems to have been popularized is the technology of convenience and distraction. Our electrical grid is from the 1950’s; our transportation system is from the 1960’s. Bridges are crumbling, there are no bullet trains crisscrossing the country. We still use gasoline to power our vehicles, even though hybrids make more sense and would kill our dependence on foreign oil.
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