Monday, July 25, 2016

NEW BOOK: How Political Correctness Is Leading Us To Ignore Abuse on American Indian Reservations

House in Oglala Native Americans Reservation, South Dakota, USA

Earlier this spring, Thomas Sullivan was fired. As Regional administrator of the Administration for Children and Families overseeing the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation, Sullivan issued 13 different “mandated reports” about the problems of child abuse there. These reports were mandated not because his superiors asked him for his input — indeed, he had been instructed not to speak publicly about these matters. Rather, the reports are mandated because teachers, psychologists, and others who work with vulnerable populations are required by law to report abuses. Here’s a sample from Sullivan’s last one:
The Tribal Elder who observed two little boys engaging in anal sex in her yard did call police immediately. No one in law enforcement took her statement. She tried to tell her story at the February 27, 2013 Hearing but she was shushed by the US Attorney, the BIA leadership and all of those on the platform. The US Attorney did say publicly that he would speak to her privately after the Hearing concluded. He did not. Nor did anyone from his office take her statement. How did these actions protect children?
One day later, on February 28, 2013, these same two boys were observed by two little girls engaging in oral sex on a Spirit Lake school bus. The little girls reported this to the bus driver, their teachers and the school principal.
All of these responsible people kept quiet about this incident. None filed a Form 960 as required. How do these actions protect children? On March 14, 2013 law enforcement went to the home of these two boys because one of them tried to sexually assault a three year old female neighbor who is developmentally delayed.
Police were called last summer when adults and very young children observed a 15 year old boy having intercourse with a 10 year old girl on the steps of the church in St. Michaels at mid-day. No one responded to the call.
Sullivan’s reports go on like this at length, each more exasperated (and exasperating) than the last. He details incidents that have been reported to him by one or more reputable sources — including tribal leaders, law enforcement, and even a nun. He notes that either no action has been taken or someone has provided some absurd excuse — people have told him that sex between a man and an adolescent girl hadn’t been further investigated because it was “consensual.” His sources have been threatened. He continued anyway, despite the threats to his career — now made good — and quite possibly his physical safety.
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