Oglala Sioux ban Gov. Noem from tribal reservation over remarks on border-related crime

Sovereignty disputes have pushed South Dakota’s governor off the reservation after her stance on the southern border soured tribal relations.

Republican governors from across the nation have flooded Texas with support as the Lone Star State’s Gov. Greg Abbott took a stand against President Joe Biden’s open border policies. However, as the varied states promoted their sovereignty independent of the federal government, so too did the Oglala Sioux Tribe as they banned South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem from Pine Ridge Reservation after a recent statement.

“We do not belong to South Dakota. We are older than South Dakota. Due to the safety of the Oyate, effective immediately, you are hereby Banished from the homelands of the Oglala Sioux Tribe,” OST President Frank Star Comes Out said in a press release.

Star Comes Out had directly pointed to Noem’s remarks from Wednesday during a Joint Session of the South Dakota Legislature, with a particular note to the executive’s comments on “Ghost Dancers” and their sacred ceremony, which he accused her of referencing with “blatant disrespect.”

“We see the effects of Joe Biden’s failures at the border every day here in South Dakota. The drugs and human trafficking pouring over the border devastate our people,” said the governor. “Make no mistake, the cartels have a presence on several of South Dakota’s tribal reservations. Murders are being committed by cartel members on the Pine Ridge reservation and in Rapid City, and a gang called the ‘Ghost Dancers’ are affiliated with these cartels. They have been successful in recruiting tribal members to join their criminal activity. On the other side of the state, there is documented evidence of cartel activities on the Sisseton Wahpeton reservation and others.”

In his official response to Noem, the OST president deflected blame from Biden to House Republicans and former President Donald Trump as he defended the foreign nationals illegally entering the United States, saying, “In closing, I believe that many of the people coming to the southern border of the United States in search of jobs and a better life are Indian people from such places as El Salvadore, Guatemala and Mexico and don’t deserve to be dehumanized and mistreated by people like Governor Abbott and his cohorts.”

“They don’t need to be put in cages, separated from their children like during the Trump Administration, or be cut up by razor wire furnished by, of all places, South Dakota,” added Star Comes Out.

Friday’s ban of Noem was not her first as she had previously butted heads with the OST regarding permitting the Keystone XL pipeline.

In response to the ban, the South Dakota leader issued a formal statement of her own that maintained her stance on the cartels negatively impacting tribal reservations and encouraged Star Comes Out to work with her toward a peaceable agreement.

“It is unfortunate that President Star Comes Out chose to bring politics into a discussion regarding the effects of our federal government’s failure to enforce federal laws at the southern border and on tribal lands,” said the governor. “My focus continues to be on working together to solve those problems.”

Noem concluded, “As I told bipartisan Native American legislators earlier this week, ‘I am not the one with a stiff arm here. You can’t build relationships if you don’t spend time together.’ I stand ready to work with any of our state’s Native American tribes to build such relationships.”

Kevin Haggerty


We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. If a comment is spam, instead of replying to it please click the ∨ icon below and to the right of that comment. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.

Latest Articles