The Natives: This is Our America

Very happy to have helped director Frankie Fathers with this.

What’s it really like to be a young Native American? Beset with alcohol and drug problems, this South Dakota reservation is desperate to revive ancient traditions and joins the protest against the Dakota Access oil pipeline which they say threatens their land.

Pine Ridge is home to the Lakota Sioux and is one of the poorest areas of America with many struggling against drug and alcohol addiction. The Lakota were forced onto the Rez in the late 1800s, their customs and religion stripped away over the decades. But things are changing. Schools are now reviving traditional ceremonies, banned by the government until 1978, and young people are returning to Lakota ways.

The Natives: This is Our America follows a symbolic buffalo kill at Little Wound High and eighteen year-old Arthur’s journey as a new father. Transgender teen Sky and his friends join thousands of other Native activists at the Standing Rock protest camp to protect the Sioux Tribe’s water supply which they say is under threat from the Dakota Access Pipeline.

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