Indian Country 52 #7 – Liquid Genocide
“The stores have been facing increasing legal and political pressure, and state liquor regulators are meeting next month to discuss the stores’ licenses.
Still, some activists have their doubts. Olowan Martinez, an Oglala Lakota activist who has led protests against Whiteclay, said she would be thrilled but shocked if the buyout worked as intended. Martinez said she would support replacing the stores with a roller skating rink, movie theater or a park to help entertain young people.
The idea rang hollow to Frank LaMere, a Native American activist who has fought for 18 years to close the stores. LaMere said the beer store owners shouldn’t be rewarded with a payout and wants the state to revoke their liquor licenses.
“Whiteclay sadly continues to be the golden goose to many,” LaMere said.
On a recent day in the Whiteclay, some people were passed out on garbage-strewn sidewalks or begging for change. Others loitered on the streets or in abandoned houses littered with dirty blankets and empty beer cans. Some people wandered along the side of the main highway through town, Nebraska Highway 87, which leads into the reservation, past 1970s-era federal housing, decrepit mobile homes and abandoned cars.”
– WJTV, Group targets beer stores near Native American reservation.
“The Lakota Hope street ministry in Whiteclay is looking to raise at least $6.3 million to close the stores, which are only about 200 yards from the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. The officially dry reservation is plagued by high rates of fetal alcohol syndrome and encompasses some of the nation’s poorest counties.
Whiteclay only has about a dozen residents, yet the four stores sold 3.5 million cans of beer in 2015. The beer stores have remained opened for decades despite state investigations into alleged liquor law violations, lawsuits and protests that occasionally turned violent.”
– The Seattle Times, Group targets beer stores near Native American reservation.
Download the 18″x24″ poster (.pdf), Indian Country 52 #7 – Liquid Genocide.
Indian Country 52
Indian Country 52 is a weekly project by David Bernie that uses the medium of posters that promote issues and stories in Indian Country. Follow the series: Indian Country 52
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