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NDN Collective Plans July 4 March in Rapid City; Mayor Frets that Indians Don’t Seek Permits to Protest

The Indigenous-justice activists at NDN Collective plan a “March Toward Justice” on our “so-called Independence Day” tomorrow at 4 p.m. Mountain in downtown Rapid City. Protestors will gather at Kansas City Street and East Boulevard and march downtown “to partake in a non-violent direct action calling out systemic racism, police violence, and high rates of incarceration of Indigenous Peoples in South Dakota.”

NDN Collective, poster for July 4 March Toward Justice, retrieved 2023.07.03.
NDN Collective, poster for July 4 March Toward Justice, retrieved 2023.07.03.

The SB 4 NDN Collective seeks to rescind as one of its seven demands appears to be 2023 Senate Bill 4, a new law that adds three delinquent acts in the past 12 months as grounds for committing a juvenile to the Department of Corrections.

Outgoing Rapid City Mayor Steve Allender, who hands his job off to Mayor-Elect Jason Salamun today, is warning that those darned Indians may make trouble:

The City has a permitting system that allows entities to work with the City to find solutions for marching routes, blocking of traffic when necessary and securing other resources when appropriate. NDN Collective has not applied for a permit, and has resisted cooperating with the City in the past. Likewise, NDN is not cooperating on the upcoming march.

We anticipate the marchers will proceed onto busy public roadways and unlawfully block traffic. This in itself creates a public safety hazard.

NDN has recently been holding training seminars to teach others how to protest through the use of “blockades, tactical media” and “climbing.”

NDN has previously been associated with criminal activity, such as blocking public roads and highways, disorderly conduct and trespassing on and seizing private property.

The City of Rapid City supports and defends the US Constitution, including the First Amendment right to free speech, expression and right to assemble. It is important to note, however, that one person’s free speech cannot create a public safety hazard for other citizens. A major public demonstration such as this can cause a public safety hazard and cause the taxpayers to incur expenses of tens of thousands of dollars or more.

In addition to the expense, it will also result in the depletion of law enforcement resources and potential obstruction of fire and ambulance service. This can create a hazardous situation during the Independence Day holiday.

The City is asking the community to exercise good judgment and obey all laws. We also need the public’s help deterring criminal behavior by paying particular attention to your own building, and the buildings in your immediate vicinity, especially buildings that would provide ease of access for climbers.

The City is also asking NDN Collective to observe all laws and refrain from endangering the safety and lives of innocent citizens.

Please report any suspicious behavior by calling:

Emergencies: 911

Non-emergency: 605-394–4131

Send an anonymous tip by texting ‘RCPD’ to 847411 [Mayor Steve Allender, press release, 2023.06.29].

NDN Collective reminds us that the only permit they need is the First Amendment:

Mayor Allender has repeatedly harped on the fact that we are planning to operate without a permit – to be clear, this is a purposeful choice on our part. Permits are meant for parades. This is an event where we are exercising our First Amendment rights. We are not seeking a permit because we are not being heard. We cannot continue to engage with the bureaucratic nature of the government who ignores us every time we cry out against the injustice they inflict on us [NDN Collective, press release, 2023.07.01].

NDN Collective suggests that suspicion and outrage may be better directed at their violent oppressors:

Mayor Allender suggests our event may be violent, criminal, and a public safety hazard. This kind of language, and the call on the public to be suspicious of their neighbors, is alarming. His words are the continuation of a long legacy of painting Indigenous people as dangerous people who are to be feared and reported on. This kind of thinking is exactly why we are holding this event in the first place. This kind of thinking is what gets our people killed.

If we thought anything would change by merely following the rules, we would be doing that. But we’ve been calling out for change for decades, and the police have just become even more deadly.

We need the outrage being directed at our upcoming family-friendly protest to be directed towards the fact that police are hurting, jailing, and killing our children, parents, uncles, siblings, and friends. We need that energy to be put into urging divestment from policing and punishment and towards community-led solutions, rehabilitation, restorative justice, and alternative approaches to punitive measures and incarceration.

We urge our neighbors to consider the fact that the police here act suspiciously every single day, hurting our people and sweeping it under the rug. We urge our neighbors to consider the fact that for Indigenous people, police are a public safety hazard and a constant threat to our lives [NDN Collective, 2023.07.01].

It would be nice if we could all just go to the lake and have fun on the Fourth of July. But it’s tough to have fun when you’re the victims of systemic racism.


  1. Richard Schriever 2023-07-03 08:02

    Operators of automobiles create a hazard for persons peacefully pursuing pedestrianism. In ND (and some other states more recently), such vehicle operators are actually given sanction to run down such pedestrians.

  2. P. Aitch 2023-07-03 08:11

    Indian culture is the only true gem in your state’s crown of ignorance, white superiority, and racial hatred.

  3. grudznick 2023-07-03 08:11

    For Mr. Ferguson’s sake, let us hope the rough and tumble Mr. Tilsen doesn’t violate any of the restraining orders against him.

    Ferguson is the head of Ending the Silence, a non-profit dedicated to ending “native-on-native” violence. NDN, founded in 2018, aims to “build the collective power of Indigenous Peoples, communities, and Nations to exercise our inherent right to self-determination,” according to its mission statement.

    Those fellows are the true peaceful protestors who work to positive ends instead of just being rabble rousers. And rest assured, Mr. Tilsen has quite a lot of rabble.

  4. e platypus onion 2023-07-03 08:15

    Pretty ironic to accuse Indians of seizing private property. Was Custer and the rest of the US military tasked with seeking permits to march through Indian lands? Who is in charge of naming mountains? You got a Mt Rushmore and now a mountain named 4 PM. Sheesh!

  5. Tom 2023-07-03 08:51

    faux fox says they are off their heads because of the rancid flour given to them to make original ‘fry bread’ from a recipe of our floundering white fathers …

  6. larry kurtz 2023-07-03 10:18

    As the self-appointed savior of my home state and in lieu of a primary I hereby nominate and request Nick Tilsen to run as the Democratic Party’s choice for South Dakota’s At-large US Representative.

  7. e platypus onion 2023-07-03 10:27

    From the little I have seen of Tilsen, I’d vote for him, except he is needed there to keep pigs off NDN collective lands. He certainly knows his rights.

  8. grudznick 2023-07-03 12:25

    Mr. Brandon Fergesen is an award winning film maker from the Piney Ridge.

  9. P. Aitch 2023-07-03 12:39

    You know, white people in South Dakota don’t really have a culture. The third of the people who are awake enough to be woke try to be like they’re from Minnesota and the remaining two thirds aka ‘the depleted gene pool of ignorance” try to NOT be like they’re from Minnesota.
    West Rivers try to be like cowboys but less than one percent of them even know when a horse needs shoes.
    NDN culture is true and honest and historical.
    White people know this deep down and cling to their false culture of claiming victimization and denying individual responsibility.

  10. Carolyn Sanford 2023-07-03 15:40

    I don’t understand what is going on. Everybody matters. Please. Stop this ugly talk.

  11. Bob Newland 2023-07-03 18:00

    I am intensely sorry the NDNs are diverting valuable cop presence from their firecracker enforcement. I am also sorry Elon Musk is wrecking Twitter. I am also sorry that I have to pee about 27 times a day.

  12. grudznick 2023-07-03 18:38

    Ms. Red Bear said on the teevee news in Rapid that they are calling for the removal of school resource officers. I’m sure Mr. H can get behind that one.

  13. larry kurtz 2023-07-03 18:56

    Cops’ lives suck. Little wonder they abuse their families, alcohol, drugs, food, power, detainees and even occasionally murder their wives.

  14. P. Aitch 2023-07-03 19:03

    Cops lives suck because the majority of people who choose to be cops suck.

  15. Angela Leland 2023-07-03 19:41

    Quite frankly, I’m so tired of being treated like crap from white people who don’t know even the basics in human desunsee . Karma is coming .

  16. Edwin Arndt 2023-07-03 20:42

    Bob, if you are taking water pills maybe you can cut back a bit.
    I have had some experience.

  17. Donald Pay 2023-07-03 21:16

    If I still resided in Rapid I would not be in favor of getting rid of School Resource Officers. Schools need some security in schools, and it is best to have trained folks doing that job. Defunding the police ain’t gonna happen, so even if I was for it, which I’m not, it’s just muddles up whatever it is you can do. I can see using community resources (less police) for such things as mental health and welfare calls, substance abuse issues and some domestic disputes. Releasing all footage of police body cameras would violate the rights of all sorts of people, but I can see a more transparent policy as important. I don’t know what SB 4 is, but anyone can initiate a measure to repeal the offending parts of the bill. The other demands could, perhaps, be done.

  18. Scott Ehrisman 2023-07-04 00:59

    Yet another mayor in South Dakota who has no clue what the 1st Amendment is, as he is walking out the door. You don’t need a permit to protest, it is a protected constitutional right. Steve is just trying to bully them.

  19. Bonnie B Fairbank 2023-07-04 06:15

    Rapid City is a scruffy little town and the ex-Hizzoner SHOULD be a political nonentity, but right wing voters selected him. Pity he created so much stupidity and divisivness. I honestly don’t know why any Black or Indian person celebrates July 4th, and I don’t need thirty or forty reasons why today is so glorious from perpetual children who were brainwashed as children.

  20. P. Aitch 2023-07-04 07:11

    Bonnie knows.
    It is a truth that strikes me as both respectful and sorrowful, my dear friends of Indian and Black descent, that the jubilant festivities that mark the Fourth of July rightfully pass by your communities, devoid of mirth and celebration.
    While this day holds significance for countless white Americans, it remains a poignant reminder of a freedom unattainable for many, for it was not until years later that the echoes of liberty reached your weary ears.
    The bonds of oppression and anguish endured by your ancestors, like iron fetters on their souls, have left a mark, tarnished the gleam of patriotic proclamations, and rendered this day a mournful reminder of a pursuit of happiness denied your communities for far too long.
    May we today, as a severely divided, disturbed, and disabled nation, strive to understand the deep-rooted pain and forging of the struggle borne by those who have been deprived of the very thing we extol on this Independence Day.

  21. grudznick 2023-07-04 09:46

    Dear fellow citizens,

    Today, as we celebrate the spirit of our nation, grudznick invites you to reflect upon the reasons why we should all be grateful to call ourselves citizens of the United States of America. The Fourth of July serves as a powerful reminder of the values and ideals that bind us together as a diverse and resilient nation.

    First and foremost, we should be glad for the cherished principles upon which our country was founded. Our forefathers had the audacity, the raw and sheer audacity, to dream of a society built on the pillars of liberty, equality, and justice for all. These ideals continue to inspire us, reminding us that no matter our background, we all have the potential to pursue happiness and reach for the American dream.

    Moreover, we should be grateful for the resilience and progress our nation has displayed throughout history. From the struggles of the Civil Rights Movement to the tireless efforts to expand opportunities for women, and even gnarly old men, we have witnessed profound transformations that have made us a more inclusive and compassionate society. Today, we are better equipped to recognize the strength that lies in our diversity, embracing people from all walks of life as valuable contributors to our nation’s tapestry.

    In addition, we should appreciate the freedoms we enjoy as citizens of this great land. The right to express our opinions, to worship freely, and to participate in the democratic process are not to be taken for granted. They empower us to shape the future of our nation and engage in constructive dialogue, forging a better tomorrow for ourselves and generations to come.

    Furthermore, we can find solace in the spirit of unity that arises during challenging times. History has shown us that in moments of crisis, Americans stand shoulder to shoulder, supporting one another with unwavering resolve. Whether facing natural disasters, economic downturns, or the ongoing pursuit of equality, our shared commitment to the well-being of our fellow citizens unites us and fuels our collective progress.

    Today, as we celebrate our independence, some with fireworks, some with beer, some with fireworks and beer, let us remember that being citizens of the United States of America is not simply about enjoying the privileges it offers. It is about recognizing our responsibilities to contribute positively to our communities, to bridge the gaps that divide us, and to strive for a more perfect union.

    On this special day, let us take a moment to appreciate the beauty of our nation, the strength of our democratic institutions, and the resilience of our people. United, we have the power to overcome any challenge and fulfill the promise of a brighter future for all. Today, and every day, let us be proud to be citizens of the United States of America.

    Happy Independence Day!


  22. Bobby 2023-07-04 11:12

    Some people choose to live a life of victim hood and adopt it as their identity. Some exert the personal power and effort to rise above and go on to happiness and joy and self realization outside of a victimhood identity. No one will ever convince me otherwise. Freedom is here in the USA. Accepting it as your own is a personal choice. Racism is assuming because of anyone’s culture or skin color, that people are less than sufficiently competent to assert themselves to achieve success. Behavior 999 time out of a 1000 is what puts people in contact with the police. I haven’t had contact with the police for anything other than a speeding ticket and a medical emergency. Funny how that works. Failure to take personal responsibility for your life is bound to lead to a miserable existence.

  23. Donald Pay 2023-07-04 11:24

    Grudz, That’s mighty long blogging for a guy with old finger, but it’s a message I appreciate.

  24. larry kurtz 2023-07-04 11:39

    Mr. Sanborn is a member of the South Dakota Nazi Party and is responsible for some of the most sexist and misogynistic Deadwood and Sturgis Rally billboards littering I-90.

  25. e platypus onion 2023-07-04 12:15

    the strength of our democratic institutions, hangs in the balance of a single magat vote on the Suckpreme Court.

  26. P. Aitch 2023-07-04 13:45

    grudznichts has posted an American sized crock o’ crap with no more substance than a Chinese bottle rocket.
    He asserts: Our forefathers had the audacity to dream of a society built on the pillars of liberty, equality, and justice for all.
    All white males only is the actual truth of Jefferson’s intention.
    *Woke NDN’s know that three words are written within the Declaration of Independence to describe their ancestors: “merciless Indian savages.”
    These insidious three words that Thomas Jefferson used in airing a grievance against King George III **— show how racism and Indigenous removal are baked into the nation’s founding document. Racism has been imbedded in American government since July 04, 1776.
    1. These three words, Governor Noem/Ian Fury, show that Critical Race Theory not only exists but is being hidden by your subterfuge.
    2. Come clean and face the music.
    3. You and your white constituents cling to a psychology of victimization instead of individual responsibility.

    ** Jefferson’s reference to Indigenous people as “merciless Indian Savages” was in his 27th grievance against King George, in which he accused the king of encouraging “domestic insurrection” by Native Americans against white colonists.

  27. Richard Schriever 2023-07-04 13:55

    P. Aitch, The American Revolution was led by wealthy land, slave and business owners who didn’t want to pay their taxes. They bought (paid wages to) their army. The “myth” that has overtaken reality is that it was a “band of scruffy frontiersmen seeking freedom”. And so, what has changed in all that? Not much.

  28. P. Aitch 2023-07-04 14:03

    Mr. Schreiver, The myth of American individualism is also embedded in the false history of USA.
    It’s “progressive socialism” that’s saved America at every crisis point.
    If the “Libertarian” enthusiasts ever faced a crisis of stout proportion they’d come a running back under the skirt of the group, pronto.
    It’s “we the group” that’s saved America and will tirelessly continue to tread water, without a life jacket, until we liberals retake the seats of leadership.

  29. Curt 2023-07-04 15:55

    Kudos to Grudz for writing words I can finally agree with.

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