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Standing Silent Nation

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PBS Premiere: July 3, 2007


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. A co-presentation of Native American Public Telecommunications.

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TAGS: drugs, economy, hemp, indian, lakota nation, native american, reservation, sovereignty

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Film Information

Standing Silent Nation

Premiere Date: July 3, 2007

Photos: Download Here

Trailer: Link | Embed

Filmmakers: Suree Towfighnia, Courtney Hermann Bio | Interview | Statement

Press: Press Release | Critical Acclaim


Suree Towfighnia
Suree Towfighnia
Courtney Hermann
Courtney Hermann

Film Update

Critical Acclaim

The story of a dirt-poor but enterprising family thwarted by shocking, stupid acts by jerks armed with red tape and guns produces a single effect: umbrage. It’s good umbrage, mostly, that surging, almost euphoric response to a crusading documentary. . . . It is possible that in seeking a viable crop, the Oglala Lakota have found the next best thing: a purpose.”

— Virginia Heffernan
The New York Times

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