Editorial: Arena tries end run on 'Fighting Sioux'
"Ralph Engelstad Arena's decision to reach out to the Sioux people is the right impulse, but the execution is completely wrong.

The arena ran into trouble last week when its envoy persuaded a veterans group at Standing Rock Sioux Reservation to support the Fighting Sioux nickname. In return, the arena would put up a memorial honoring Sioux veterans.

OK, said the veterans group.

Not so fast, said other tribal members. The veterans group rescinded its support.

This development emphasizes what has been clear for some time. Only the elected representatives of Indian people can speak for the entire tribe. This means that any negotiation must be with the Tribal Council.

Most tribal councils have opposed the use of the Fighting Sioux nickname and logo, including Standing Rock. REA's overture to the veterans group was an attempt at an end run around the council. Such maneuvers are doomed.

Not only did REA attempt to negotiate with the wrong party, the arena itself is the wrong party to negotiate.

Indian tribal councils are sovereign governments, and they should be approached by decision-makers. Anything less is insulting."

Get the Story:
OUR OPINION: No more end runs on UND nickname (The Grand Forks Herald 9/1)
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Relevant Links:
University of North Dakota - http://www.und.edu
The Ralph - http://www.theralph.com
Fighting Sioux - http://www.fightingsioux.com

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Tribal member named to North Dakota higher ed board (5/26)
Opinion: UND's divide and conquer on 'Sioux' (05/19)
Standing Rock Sioux Tribe won't back 'Sioux' name (5/5)
Editorial: Seek tribal approval for 'Fighting Sioux' (5/3)
'Sioux' and 'Chief' denied again by NCAA (5/1)
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Standing Rock chairman disputes UND on 'Sioux' (4/28)
Opinion: Native students at UND subject to racism (04/12)
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