Letter: Tribe should negotiate 'Fighting Sioux'
"The Creator has given our tribes a tremendous opportunity to negotiate for some advantage to help our tribes progress toward self-sufficiency. We need to put a package together and appoint a negotiating team made up of individuals who have the training, experience and integrity of knowing both American Indians’ oral civilization philosophy and the history and culture of North Dakota and the U.S.

This team should be appointed by resolutions passed through tribal referenda, which reflect the will of the people rather than the whims of politically appointed individuals — whims that can change overnight. Then a memorandum of agreement between the tribes and the university can be finalized with a time frame of five, 10 or more years.

Here are several items our tribe could request in return for letting UND use the Sioux name.

** A percentage of all gross sales of clothing and merchandise sold by UND or associates with the Sioux name or logo on it.

** A percentage of the total gross revenues taken in from Sioux athletic events. These revenues should be earmarked for tribal education programs, primarily to expand on our ancestors’ oral civilization philosophy and education system and to manage the agreement. ** Continued support by UND of the Indian Studies Department, as well as a new “Sioux oral civilizations” concentration to be added to the department.

** Recognizing and teaching the Sioux (Dakota, Lakota and Nakota) language as an accredited foreign language.

** An ambassador-type position for UND from the Spirit Lake and Standing Rock tribes. The ambassador would oversee the agreement, have an office at the UND Indian Center and help represent our students at UND.

** Expansion of scholarship programs for tribal members from the Spirit Lake and Standing Rock tribes.

** An alliance between UND and Cankdeska Cikana Community College and Sitting Bull College, forming a big-sister-type relationship."

Get the Story:
Vernon Lambert: Sioux tribes should negotiate with UND (The Grand Forks Herald 10/10)
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