I have been watching several children in a dozen families grow up over the past five years. This is one of the hardest parts for me. When I see their father or mother coming home drunk every day, I know what the future holds for them and it hurts me.
I remember calling home to my wife crying because I had just held a beautiful 3-year-old girl on my knee. She hugged me and called me uncle, and I love her so much. But I know that it is only a matter of time until she is broken. Soon she will be drinking, and pregnant, and abused, and dying. Right now she is still perfect, but no one can last in an environment like that [Aaron Huey, interviewed by James Estrin, "Behind the Scenes: Still Wounded," New York Times: Lens, 2009.10.19].
Aaron Huey has been all over the world. He's dodged the Taliban in Afghanistan. He's hitchhiked Siberia. And he says Pine Ridge is "the scariest place I've ever been."
That place is South Dakota. It is as much South Dakota as our cozy little Chamber of Commerce meetings and pancake feeds.
Candidates—Congress, governor, Legislature—read the interview, view the photos, and tell us what you would do to solve the seemingly unsolvable.