What does a family have to endure to create a future for itself? In April 2000, Alex White Plume and his Lakota family planted industrial hemp on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota after other crops had failed. They put their hopes for a sustainable economy in hemp's hardiness and a booming worldwide demand for its many products, from clothing to food. Although growing hemp, a relative of marijuana, was banned in the U.S., Alex believed that tribal sovereignty, along with hemp's non-psychoactive properties, would protect him. But when federal agents raided the White Plumes' fields, the Lakota Nation was swept into a Byzantine struggle over tribal sovereignty, economic rights and common sense.
Educational Resources: P.O.V. Discussion Guide
Program Length: 57 minutes
Production Staff: Producer: Courtney Hermann; Director: Suree Towfighnia
Production Company: Prairie Dust Films
The Website for Standing Silent Nation
Public Broadcast Release: July 2007
Lakota, tribal soverignty, drugs, environmental, economic development