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Don’t Wait – Reach Out! September Suicide Prevention Month
SDDVA Secretary Whitlock’s September Column

September is “Suicide Prevention Month.” It is a great opportunity for all of us to reach out and do our buddy checks!

There are many reasons that veterans in particular feel like there is no way out of a difficult time – whether its PTSD, MSD, survivor’s guilt, financial strain, family problems, or a combination of these. But it’s up to all of us to help veterans realize that that they are not alone, that help, and resources are available.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, now known as the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, is a free, confidential crisis resource that veterans and their families can access any day, any time. Trained responders are ready to listen, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. It’s three quick digits – dial 988 and then press 1.

The VA also has a website and app called “PTSD Coach.” This tool provides education about PTSD, information about professional care, a self-assessment for PTSD, opportunities to find support, and tools that can help veterans manage their stressors. Visit: https://mobile.va.gov/app/ptsd-coach.

South Dakota’s Departments of Social Services, Health, Education, Tribal Relations, Ag and Natural Resources, and Veterans Affairs have been working together for the past three years on a statewide suicide prevention plan. This group has collected data, developed education and training programs, and developed communication messages. The South Dakota Suicide Prevention website provides a lot of information and resources. Visit: https://sdsuicideprevention.org/.

South Dakota has two VA medical centers, two Vet Centers, eight Community Based Out-Patient Clinics, numerous mental health care facilities, and 11 community mental health centers to assist veterans and their families.

In addition, we have county and tribal veterans service officers in every corner of the state, we have over 20 veterans service organizations located within the borders of South Dakota, and we have our team here at the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs.

Remember, we are all in this together. Support is just a call, click, or text away.

Veterans, don’t wait – reach out!

For more information, contact: Audry Ricketts (South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs) at 605-773-8242 or audry.ricketts@state.sd.us
--Department Of Veterans Affairs

Post Date: 2022-09-20 08:16:15Last Update: 2022-09-20 17:31:26

    


Inflation: How-To Prepare and Protect Your Small Business
Leaders Of Industry Segment

How does inflation impact a business, and how can you build an inflation-proof business by making critical changes to boost revenue? The reasons and the remedies might surprise you, but they can be critical to preparing for inflation and surviving its impact. In fact, how your company reacts to small business inflation can become a sustainable competitive advantage! Here's how:

Is inflation ever normal? In less turbulent economic conditions, inflation is a normal and manageable fact of business life. In short, small business inflation can be defined as:

A continual rise in the pricing of goods and services.

Of course, inflation impacts buying power for the consumer, too. When inflationary price increases across the economic landscape are small and expected, preparing for inflation is somewhat easily accomplished in one (or both) of two ways:
  1. Raising prices of products and services to cover the cost of goods and cost of operations
  2. Cutting source material and/or operating costs
It's when unexpectedly high inflation prevails that businesses often lack the confidence and agility to respond.

How Does Inflation Impact a Business?

Preparing for inflation and executing steps for protection against inflation first requires understanding how inflation impacts businesses. Again, in stable economic times, inflation is less troublesome for business owners. In fact, research shows that inflation barely registers as a concern for most. But when inflation spikes, worry grows.

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Specific Small Business Inflation Challenges

Inflation certainly brings its share of big-picture concerns. It can also manifest with specific challenges which may include: How Inflation Impacts Businesses ... Positively

Although inflation is often seen (rightly so) in a negative light, it can spawn some positive outcomes as well. These include: How to Respond to and Protect Against Inflation by Focusing on Sales

After cutting costs and raising prices, what can the small business owner do to turn inflation's business impact into a competitive advantage? One way is to focus on sales. Here are some strategic and tactical ways to make sure your sales operation can be more effective, efficient, and profitable in response to inflationary influences:

Enhance Your Sales Plan

A new economic landscape can change industries and marketplaces almost overnight. Is your Sales Plan still relevant? If you're not sure, take steps to: Improve Your Sales Process

Does your current sales process still work in the altered competitive landscape? If not, be sure to: Execute and Grow Sales

Beyond strategy and processes, empower your sales operation by: For a clearer picture of how inflation impacts businesses and how to "inflation-proof" your business, contact me today (DM or johnlee@salesxceleration.com) to learn more.



Help Support The Dakota Leader... DONATE TODAY!

--John Lee CSL- Contributing Writer

Post Date: 2022-09-20 08:10:13Last Update: 2022-09-20 17:16:15

    


Live Social Studies Standards Review


--SDPB

Post Date: 2022-09-19 09:25:30Last Update: 2022-09-19 11:10:13

    


BREAKING- “Gender Identity” Incorporated as A Protected Class Under Title IX
“Girls in Sports,” May be Moot For Schools Receiving Federal Funding, or COVID Dollars

September 19, 2022 By Breeauna Sagdal

Comments were due by Monday September 12, 2022 to address proposed rule changes published in July by the Department of Education. According to the Federal Register, those rule changes were adopted and incorporated Friday September 16, 2022.

The rule change clarifies the term "sex" under Tittle IX, and applies to any educational facility that accepts federal funding. The new clarification reads, "schools and institutions that receive Federal financial assistance eliminate discrimination on the basis of sex in their education programs or activities. The Department therefore proposes that the current regulations should be amended to provide greater clarity regarding the scope of sex discrimination, including recipients' obligations not to discriminate based on sex stereotypes, sex characteristics, pregnancy or related conditions, sexual orientation, and gender identity."

The rule change also increased the scope of applicability to include educational activities, like sports.

"Further, the Department proposes that the current regulations could better account for the variety of education programs or activities covered by Title IX, which include recipients' education programs or activities serving students in elementary schools, secondary schools, and post-secondary institutions."

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The Department of Education requested these new proposals, after what they call an "extensive review of its regulations implementing Title IX, as well as the live and written comments received during a nationwide virtual public hearing on Title IX held in June 2021."

In addition, the Office for Civil Rights held numerous listening sessions with a wide array of stakeholders on various issues related to Title IX, and considered input from stakeholders during meetings held in 2022 under Executive Order 12866.

As noted near the end of the 1,000 page document, the newly adopted definitions have also replaced the term "primary schools" with "LEA" (Local Educational Agencies), in order to include private pre-schools, elementary schools and beyond. Federal funding has also been expanded to mean COVID-19 relief funds, previously received, in addition to federal funding currently being received.

The newly adopted definitions will likely impact state policies, and potentially nullify state laws like last year's "girls in sports bill," signed by Governor Kristi Noem. The Dakota Leader has reached out to the Governor's office for comment, but has yet to hear back at this time.



Help Support The Dakota Leader... DONATE TODAY!

--Breeauna Sagdal- Health and Policy Journalist for The Dakota Leader

Post Date: 2022-09-19 08:59:42Last Update: 2022-09-19 10:25:30

    


LEADER BEE “Well This Aged Well....”
*Language Warning* Leader Bee is satire intended for entertainment only

On November 04, 2019- Leading up to the 2020 "most secure election that ever took place," John Oliver discusses "how voting machines work, how they don’t, and how we can fix them."

Were they fixed? Naaahhh, but after Biden won the 2020 election fair and square it's just those sore MAGA-Trump-insurrectionist losers complaining. Even in the states that Trump won, anyone who dares to question the integrity of these machines, are the biggest threat to democracy today!


--HBO- News You Can Trust

Post Date: 2022-09-17 08:29:01Last Update: 2022-09-17 16:59:42

    


Interview with Shirlee Meier of SDCOS
235 Years Later, We Discuss the Ratification of the U.S Constitution

[The Dakota Leader spent a morning interviewing SD Director of Convention of States Shirlee Meier from her home in Sioux Falls, SD, during September, the month when the US Constitution was ratified in 1787].

TDL(The Dakota Leader): Hello, Director Meier! Thank you for joining us today!

SM (Shirlee Meier) – Thank you for having me. I appreciate the interview and spreading the word about Convention of States.

TDL: Well, this is September, and it’s the month when the US Constitution was actually ratified back in 1787. So, we thought we’d talk to you about Article V, Convention of States, as we have previously reported on at TDL. But before we get to that, please tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got involved in this movement here in South Dakota.

SM – I retired from federal service after about 49 years and I was looking for something to do with my time. I checked out some different groups to volunteer with. I came across this
Convention of States group and I went in, signed the petition, and volunteered. At that time, I did NOT hear back from anyone for 4–5 months. So I signed it again and volunteered and STILL didn’t hear back from anyone. Then I found a number for COS and contacted Ginny Rapini and told her I signed the petition and wanted to volunteer and still hadn’t heard from anyone. I then heard from David Schneider (regional director for COS), and then I became a volunteer, district captain, grassroots coordinator and then state director.

TDL: How long?

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SM – I signed the petition in 2015 and joined then. And at that time we had a state director, but he wasn’t very active. Also at that time there were only two district captains (two brothers) and they weren’t very active, either.

TDL – What’s a district captain?

SM – Someone in charge of a certain district. Call people, follow up with people who’ve signed the petition to see if they wish to volunteer, organize events about Convention of States, anything to spread the word about Convention of States and get people involved.

TDL – And then you just kind of went up from there?

SM - Actually, when I became grassroots coordinator, I didn’t put in for it; our regional director basically MADE me the grassroots cordinator.

TDL – Obviously you didn’t fight it.

SM – No, I just went ahead, took some courses from the COSU
(Convention of States University) and just … did it. After a while as GC, I asked Dave, “Are we ever going to get a state director?” Dave literally told me, “Oh, didn’t I tell you: you ARE the state director!” I said: “Oh, ok!” I was already doing the work of all of them anyway, and so – there it goes.

TDL – And what time was this?

SM – I don’t remember. But in 2016 that was the first time I went to the capital (Pierre) with Dave Schneider, and we were the only two there for Convention of States. I remember as district captain, he said, “Go talk to that legislator.” I said, “Are you crazy! I’m not going to go talk to them!” But eventually I got over that, and now I can talk to legislators without being intimidated. Gradually, I got to know legislators, and talked to them, and wasn’t so scared stiff. It’s a learning process, but if you just do it slowly, gradually, and get to know people and let them know you.

TDL – Is it true that you send Christmas cards every year to legislators, whether they voted for COS or not? SM – Yes, and I also send them thank-yous, whether they voted for us or not, to honor their legislative service. Even if I disagree with their vote maybe [laughs].

TDL: Interesting, thank you. So where do you go to promote this and how do you do that, or have already done that? SM – We do different things. We are in parades, at fairs, town hall meetings (if it’s an hour or so away I usually get a volunteer to help figure out where to host it). We print out fliers to post in towns. Much of it is word of mouth from our volunteers in different districts. Back when we had the Shopping News I used to put an ad in it. I suppose if you knew all of the small newspapers you could put in an ad in all of them. But, really, word of mouth is the best.

TDL: Does everyone agree with your argument of Article V in South Dakota?

SM – No. We have those that oppose us. The John Birch Society and Eagle Forum oppose it. Most of the time it’s because of bad information that they have been given. But if you read Article V of the Constitution, there are only two ways to make amendments to the Constitution: one is Congress in Washington, or state legislators can do it if they vote for the resolution. It’s calling a Convention of States for PROPOSING AMENDMENTS to the Constitution. It’s not opening up the Constitution.

TDL: Ms. Meier, why is an Article V Convention of States even necessary? What about the argument that we just need to interpret the Constitution as it’s written, and that’s what we need to do and that’s it. Why go the extra mile of the process of an Article V Convention of States?

SM – Number one, that came about as the Founding Fathers were signing the Constitution, and George Mason said wait a minute: we have given Congress a way to make amendments to this Constitution, but we have not given the PEOPLE a way to make amendments to the US Constitution, and he wanted that in there, and so it was put in there. Otherwise, ONLY Washington, DC, and your legislators would have the power to do that, and no power at all for the people themselves to do that.

Also, with the idea of interpreting, we’re not living under THAT Constitution, so to “interpret” the current one is to have nothing like what the Founders actually wanted us to live under. The one the Founders gave us is 39 pages. The one that we actually live under NOW is 2,000 pages, when you add in the Supreme Court rulings and Administrative Rules from the Executive Branch.

TDL: That’s a sizable difference.

SM: Mmm-hmm.



(Pictured. The US Constitution of 39 pages and the 2010 version with all Supreme Course decisions, over 2000 pages. SD Convention of States Booth, Turner County Fair, August 16, 2022).
TDL: How many states does it take to call a Convention of States, by the way? In fact, can you explain the
actual process for all TDL readers?

SM – OK, in order to call a Convention of States for proposing Amendments to the Constitution, you need to have 34 state legislatures pass a resolution which is basically the same resolution (only a few words difference) for each state, because they (Washington) will throw it out. Now, they’re (Congress is) notified, and they get a copy of it, and if a resolution differs substantially from all of the others (with subject matters being different) it’ll get thrown out. So, Congress does have the power to throw it out IF it does. Ours has only three topics: (1) Term limits on Congress in Washington, DC; (2) Fiscal responsibility; (3) Rein in the power and scope of the federal government. That’s it. Those three.

TDL: How do you that?

SM – How you do that is you get 34 state legislatures to pass the same resolution. Once a resolution is passed in 34 states, Washington – and this is the only part that they will play – will set a time and place for the meeting. They cannot wait 2–3 years. They have to set it immediately. But even if they don’t, the state legislatures CAN pick their own time and place of meeting. And, also, the state legislatures, once they’ve met in one place, they can change the venue at will. Then the state legislatures select their state delegates. They can send 1 or they can send 15. It doesn’t matter, though, because it’s always one state, one vote. And the states HAVE to pay their delegates’ room and board and expenses while they’re at the meeting. So when they come together to make up the amendments, they would divide up into like into three different committees covering the three different subjects. They’d discuss this and discuss the wording of each amendment that they look at. They may come up with 1 or 20 amendments. That’s up to them.

TDL: But only on those topics.

SM – Yes. If any other topic is brought up, like gun control or abortion, or anything that is not part of those topics, that person (delegate) CAN be sent home by the Convention. That’s up to the state legislature. And each state gives their delegate a COMMISSION – which is a formal charge they have to obey …

TDL: Just like in 1787.

SM – Yes, just like that. They did send some home in 1787, too. So once they come up with their amendments, each of their amendments has to be approved by 26 states in order to come OUT of the Convention itself. Once that’s done, if that’s done, they have to go back to the states for ratification. Each of the amendments has to be ratified by 38 states in order to become a direct part of the Constitution.

TDL – So, directly. The Supreme Court, or Congress, or the president has no say at all?

SM – No say. This is a function of the states. Remember, the states created the federal government, and not the other way around.

TDL – So at that point, those amendments are now officially a part of the Constitution, like the 27 we have?

SM – Yes.

TDL – Thank you for that explanation. And this Article V process has always been there?

SM – Yes, it’s always been there.
George Mason absolutely made sure that it would be in there.

TDL: Have many
legislators in South Dakota agree with you regarding an Article V, Convention of States?

SM – Not enough. Many, but it’s hard to know, as it’s an election year. We’ve lost some supporters, but we’ve also gained some new ones that support it. It’s hard at this point, right now, to tell you exactly where we stand. We won’t know until the election’s over in November, but right now I’d say 50–50.

TDL: Director Meier, South Dakota elected, overwhelmingly, both President Dwight Eisenhower in
1952 and 1956, and also President Ronald Reagan in both 1980 and 1984. Although Convention of States is nonpartisan, were you aware that both of these Presidents advocated, either as President, or before being elected [audio included on both links] an Article V Convention of States to restrain government?



President Eisenhower – National Endowment For Humanities; President Reagan - Wikipedia


SM – Absolutely.

TDL: Let’s clear this up: is the
Article V, Convention of States organization, either nationally OR here in South Dakota, funded by George Soros, The Open Society Institute, the World Economic Forum, The Government of Communist China, The Government of Russia, The Government of North Korea, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, The United Nations, Michael Bloomberg, The Council on Foreign Relations, The Rockefeller Foundation, The Ford Foundation, Apple, Inc, Blackrock, or Hydra?

SM – No, we are not [laughing]. We are funded by donations from volunteers, large and small. Some on a regular basis (monthly) and some not so. We are just volunteers, but we don’t have any high-paying people just support us.

TDL: Tell us about
Convention of States South Dakota organization itself. Who IS it made up of, and how does it function?

SM – OK, we are all volunteers. We do not have any paid employees!

TDL: None?

SM – None. None of us. Our regional director (not in the state) is paid. We only have, nationally, about 50 paid employees (people who do our website, our attorneys, etc.). Everybody else is a volunteer. They volunteer their time, talents, and treasures and that’s it.

TDL: Is there any possible way that the organization that you’re president of in South Dakota in any way misinterpreted what Article V reads or means?

SM – No, because I can get the Constitution and I can read exactly what it says, if you’d like me to.

TDL – No, ma’am, that’s fine.

TDL: On another topic, as
we previously reported, didn’t the John Birch Society itself, with the US Congressional record, didn’t they support a Convention of States back in the day?

SM – Yes, they did.

TDL: If that’s true, why are they
against it now?

SM – There was a change and there was a, how do I say, a difference of feelings among individuals, and they turned against it. It was a personal feelings thing. Not anything substantial.

TDL: As an aside, wasn’t the John Birch Society the organization that
erroneously called Dwight Eisenhower a “Communist” during the late 1950s?

SM – Uh-huh, yes.

TDL: What’s the term
“Con-Con,” and who came up with it?

SM – “Con-Con” stands for Constitutional Convention. And there are those who say that if we use Article V that we are using a Constitution Convention. This is not true. Big difference between a Constitutional Convention and an Article V Convention with the States proposing amendments. The original Con-Con was to repair the Articles of Confederation. They realized that they couldn’t repair them. So they rescheduled their meeting and came up with our US Constitution. If you read Article V, you see that all that is is a proposing of Amendments to the Constitution. And it still has to go through the process that we mentioned. You’re not rewriting the Constitution. You’re just adding amendments to the 27 that we have now.

TDL: Is it true that
stateseven colonies – got together all of the time to solve problems throughout US history in order to solve problems?

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SM – Yes, they did it all of the time. Sometimes it was two colonies, sometimes three. It was for various issues: taxation, or various things.

TDL: And they did this even as colonies?

SM – Yes, even as colonies. They didn’t all come together. Sometimes it was 3¬–4, depending upon the issue.

TDL: How about the
“runaway” convention idea? You want to deal with that? Can that even happen?

SM – No, it cannot happen. And where they come up with this is when we got our Constitution, we got it because it was a “runaway Convention.”

TDL: You’re saying that other people think that our 1787 Constitution process was a “runaway convention?” What were we “running” from or to?

SM – Because there are those who believe that the US Constitution we have is illegal. They still believe that we should STILL be under the
Articles of Confederation. This is because they didn’t read history, and so they’ve put on this myth and attached it to not only 1787, but also to now. And they also say that those colonies that met, they didn’t have the authority TO meet to construct the Constitution. However, all but two had the authority to do “whatever was necessary” to come up with a Constitution and to make it work.

TDL: And this was because, under the Articles of Confederation,
we’d just had Shay’s Rebellion a few months before, and the government, such as it was, was worried about even lasting at all.

SM – That’s right. So, anyway, some of these believe that the very Constitution we’ve been living under that our Founding Fathers gave us is illegitimate.

TDL: Very interesting. What, if you know, is the solution that the John Birch Society, or even the Eagle Forum, has for our out-of-control government, if not an Article V COS? Article V itself is only
143 words.

SM – They basically do not have a solution. It’s basically leave things as is and it’ll work itself out. That’s basically it.

TDL: Do you think they can articulate a solution without using the word “not” in it?

SM – No [laughing].

TDL: Why
hasn’t South Dakota passed the resolution, even though above us, in North Dakota, they passed it years ago, and just below us, in Nebraska, they passed it earlier this year. Even Wisconsin, a much “bluer” state than South Dakota is, passed it in 2022 as well. Why the reluctance here in South Dakota, which is supposedly much more conservative (certainly than Wisconsin)?

SM – Well because in South Dakota – and I’m going out on a limb here, and some might not like this – but we have a lot of RINOs. They may have an “R” behind their name, but they vote like the opposition. They’re not true, real conservatives. Because if you talk to them and ask them why they vote on some things, their answer is not clear. And also, there are those who are more worried about their careers and being IN the legislature and living up to their true values. They can basically be bought off or scared, and I don’t think that’s right that legislators should be threatened by other legislators. People should vote their conscience. And if they can’t do that then they shouldn’t be in the legislature. That’s my honest opinion.

TDL: You’ve gone all around the state at various venues. What are you hearing from South Dakotans on this issue, generally?

SM – Well, I can tell you, especially at the fairs, etc., they’re not happy with the COS being voted down, and the legislators that opposed us and what they did. I heard that so many times, and they named names. And they’re not happy. The people in SD want a COS passed here. I can tell you that. There are more for us than against us. Some are more timid in their statements than others, but they want it passed and think it should’ve been done a couple of years ago.

TDL: You take people on bus tours to Pierre to lobby for this every year during session. Has that changed over the past few years? SM – I can tell you that when I first started going, there were only two of us there, myself and Dave Schneider. This year (2022) we had 120 people. We are growing more and more people, and we have to have more people to have this. And even some legislators are coming around. Some legislators will never change. They think they know best and that’s that. But more and more people are coming and showing up and supporting Convention of States. And we have almost 17,000 petition signers here in South Dakota.

TDL: Let’s say South Dakota passes the resolution this year. What does Article V Convention of States here in South Dakota, or nationally, do in that case afterwards?

SM – OK, if we pass it here (hopefully we’ll be state number 20) we will stay active because there are those who’ll try to have it rescinded, and we’d have to start all over again. But regardless, we will be active with the legislature until a Convention of States is actually called. And then we’d stay active listening to the Convention itself!

TDL: What do you think about the
recent poll by the Trafalgar group that showed that most people – including 81% of Republicans and 50.2% of Democrats – support an Article V Convention of States?

SM – I think that’s right on target. We do have many Democrats that like it, but their leadership won’t let them vote for it or speak for it. But that’s about it. There’s a lot of independents and Libertarians that support us as well.

TDL: Who was
Senator Tom Coburn?



SM – Senator Coburn was a senator [from Oklahoma] in Washington, DC, and he left because Washington, DC, was so corrupt, and he joined COS as an advisor, and he advised us on different things, and unfortunately he passed away from cancer in 2020.

TDL: Wasn’t it true that he once asked now Supreme Court Justice (then nominee) Elena Kagan
whether the US government had the power to require people to eat vegetables?

SM – Yes [laughing].

TDL: And isn’t it true that the late Senator Coburn, when he was in the US House in the 1990s, was part of the 1994
“Contract With America” wave election, producing, if not a balanced budget by 2000, at least the smallest deficits nationally we’ve had in decades? I mean, was there anyone in Congress who did more to cut spending in Washington, DC than he did?

SM – Not during the time he served, no. Not that I know of.

TDL: And yet
he left the US Senate early before his second term ended in 2015 and joined Convention of States as an advisor. Speaking of former US senators, what do you make of the fact that former Senator Russ Feingold, Democrat from Wisconsin, is writing a book opposing an Article V Convention of States? What do foes on the conservative side think of being aligned with him, who famously tried to limit the First Amendment via the McCain–Feingold law, which was ultimately held as unconstitutional?

SM – It’s like a lot of things. Probably a lot of people do not know this. If people would really check into the history, and in their state, they’d be surprised at some things they support, or don’t support, in the past.

TDL: Speaking of books, what books do you recommend people read in order to understand the actual Article V of the US Constitution, or the Convention of States itself?

SM – I would recommend Professor Robert Natelson’s
“The Original Constitution: What It Actually Said and Meant” and “The Law of Article V.” These are both excellent books on what our Constitution actually says and what Article V actually means.

TDL: I see you did a
Convention of States Christmas tree last year in Pierre. Are you and SD Convention of States going to do another one this year?



SM – Yes [laughing], we have applied. We’ll see. We haven’t heard back yet.

TDL: Do you think that, if you do put up the COS Tree again in Pierre this year, that the John Birch Society or the Eagle Forum or others opposed will have a “we’re against that tree over there” tree at the State Capitol in Pierre?

SM – [Laughing] – It wouldn’t surprise me. I don’t think they’d be allowed to do that (laughing).

TDL: Article V COS supporters, either here in South Dakota or elsewhere, do they have
“rocks in their heads?”

SM – Ha-ha-ha. No. We do not have “rocks in our heads.” We think, we do our research before we go forward. We don’t just shoot from the hip like, ahem, the author of “rocks in their heads.”

TDL: Do you think that’s an appropriate way for SD politicians to speak about regular South Dakota voters?

SM – No, I do not. I do know that the person who said that, he really doesn’t care about South Dakota voters. He only cares about his own ambitions.
He’s said other things about South Dakota voters as well.

TDL: Director Meier, I know you won’t debate, but
do you think our politicians in South Dakota will debate someone like, say, Mark Levin on this subject?

SM – No. And I can tell you that Convention of States will not debate politicians, etc., because it has been proven to us is that they will take things that we say and turn that against us. If anyone wants to hear it, there was one between
Michael Farris and the John Birch Society, and that’s on YouTube. That’s the last debate that we did and that we will do.

TDL: So I take it you’re going to
travel to Pierre yet again this next legislative session in 2023, and keep on advocating for SD to pass the Article V Resolution?

SM – Yes, we will be there.

TDL: You’ve mentioned more people are coming every year in support of Article V. How about those opposed to it?

SM – Umm, it varies. They’re losing ground as to why they oppose us. It’s becoming more and more evident, as more are learning the truth about Article V, and there’s less and less opposition to it. I do know that those opposed are getting more vocal and outspoken to you in person. I think it’s like someone who’s losing a battle: they get more aggressive.

TDL: Who’s your favorite Founding Father, generally?

SM – George Washington. My next one is Abraham Lincoln (though he’s not a Founding Father).

TDL :Why Mr. Washington?

SM – He was a very Christian man. He stood up for what he believed, even in opposition, and he didn’t back down. And he wasn’t in it for himself; he was in it for his country and his fellow man. His whole character, he just stands out in my mind.

TDL: Are you going to
keep on doing this, even though you’re retired and this is all volunteer?

SM– As long as I can I plan on it!

TDL: Director Meier, thank you for your time, and Happy Constitution Month!

SM – Thank you! Happy Constitution Month to you, too!

Editor's Note: The Dakota Leader neither endorses or opposes COS. This segment is intended for educational value during the commemoration of the 235th year, post ratification of the U.S Constitution.



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Post Date: 2022-09-17 08:12:29Last Update: 2022-09-17 11:29:01

    


Major Fight Brewing Over Proposed Social Studies Standards in South Dakota
Educators are bristling under the weight of expanded curriculum content, and expectations--Parents are fed-up

September 16, 2022 By Breeauna Sagdal

Every seven years the Department of Education is required, by law, to review and update public school curriculum standards. The Social Studies standards, previously led by Chiesman Center for Democracy and implemented in 2015, are now due for revision.

Last year, a similarly comprised committee to that of the 2015 committee, was created to offer a new proposal. However, sources on the Board of Education have told The Dakota Leader that the product was a total flop, sparked outrage and had more than 600 people testify against the first draft.

"For whatever reason, Native American history and culture was stripped out of the proposed standards, and the entire thing turned out to be a nightmare," our source shared on the condition of anonymity. At issue, was the removal of over a dozen references to the Oceti Sakowin tribe, which led to public outrage, and a march on the Capitol in September of last year.

The Board of Education put out a statement regarding the first draft, and said that the process should start over and be, "free from political activism and agendas." In response, Gov. Kristi Noem agreed, then announced a new committee would be created. The new committee was chaired by Noem's former Chief of Staff, Mark Miller in consultation with William Morrisey, a former Hillsdale College Professor
and various Tribal Leaders.

Professor Morrisey led the work group, and placed an open invitation for educators, and tribal leaders to help craft the new standards. In August the new group released their draft standards. Within 24 hours the South Dakota Teacher's Union (SDEA)
released a statement deriding the new draft as not being age appropriate and employing memorization over critical thinking skills.

In an effort to try and better understand both sides of the argument, The Dakota Leader reached out to Utah Professor Connor Warner.
Professor Warner authored a published study in 2015, in which he analyzed the Social Studies Standards of 14 states. Hoping to end harmful stigmatizations of Indigenous peoples, that he shares in the study have impacted his wife, Warner set about trying to find root causes of bias.

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"She doesn't look like an Indian!" Warner shares that new acquaintances often carry stigmas about how his wife "should look." "I tell new acquaintances that my wife is a citizen of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. Such a statement is, of course, untrue. My wife “looks” exactly like an Indian; she is an Indian, which is a complex social, political, cultural, and ethnic identity," Warner shares anecdotally.

The study claims that schools have played a large role in creating stigmas and bias, as they serve as "vehicles of assimilation and deculturalization." Most notably, the study found that Native history and culture was mainly being taught in elementary school, and limited to historical representations of Indigenous people like Pocahontas.

The study offers that bias is likely created due to the fact that living representations of Native people, life on or off the reservation, and important socioeconomic cues, are largely left out of the conversation.

Professor Warner reviewed the newly proposed South Dakota Social Studies Standards, and compared them against the 2015 standards at our request. "The 2015 standards are much less specific, leaving it up to districts or even individual teachers to decide what knowledge and skills to use in order to meet those standards. As with anything in education, there are pros and cons to both approaches," Warner responded.

"The proposed standards show a significant increase in reference to Native peoples and nations, probably more comprehensive than most states in the country," Warner says. Adding, "however, from an educator’s standpoint, I can envision the proposed standards receiving pushback because they are very detailed and prescriptive. The proposed standards are knowledge heavy—that is, they prescribe very specific things that students need to know (e.g. the lists of people, etc)."

Warner continues, "the field of social studies education, as a whole, has moved away from this approach to emphasize disciplinary thinking skills and processes." As an example, Warner cites the new standards of the National Council of the Social Studies.

According to a statement put out by Michael Kroll of the Warner School District, Professor Warner is right on target. "The standards have moved away from higher order thinking skills like 'compare and contrast', 'analyze', and 'explain the importance of'," Kroll writes to educators and parents in the district before giving examples.

Kroll also acknowledges that the volume of course material has greatly increased for all grade levels. Although the course heavy standards
are exactly what the public asked for, have been given an additional budget, and two years for districts to integrate prior to being implemented, some say it's just too much work.

Others appear to be more divided on the standards along political lines, as evidenced by the comment section of Gov. Noem's social media accounts.



The proposed standards are based upon Hillsdale Curriculum, currently being taught nation-wide. As a result, many have taken aim at the involvement of William Morrisey, and say the standards are part of a "culture war."

However, the 2015 standards were led by the Chiesman Center for Democracy, which fueled criticism and allegations of political pedagogy in the previous curriculum. Chiesman is the political science division of the University of South Dakota, and in
2017 Chiesman engaged in a campaign to get people to "blindly sign initiative petitions, without disclosing who had funded it."

Last week
Breitbart gained access to exclusive emails sent from Dr Becky Guffin, chair of the Education Commission, who has tried to "torpedo" the standards from behind the scenes. The Dakota Leader has also been made aware that various curriculum directors state-wide have sent out emails, or held in-person meetings with staff, to mount opposition to the standards.

Meanwhile, a coalition of parents have told The Dakota Leader that they are hopeful, and look forward to the challenges of "more rigorous content focused on factual history, without politics involved." Parents say they intend on being at the meeting Monday, in an effort to "counteract the teacher's unions," who they say "are pushing CRT." (Critical Race Theory)

Monday, September 19, 2022 at 9am, the Board of Education will host the first public comment meeting at the Dakota Event Center, 720 Lamont Street South, Aberdeen. The deadline to register for public comment ends Friday September 16, 2022 at 5pm. Testimony can be given in-person, or via zoom, and as tensions run high, officials say they are anticipating large crowds during both public comment periods.



Help Support The Dakota Leader... DONATE TODAY!

--Breeauna Sagdal- Editor At Large

Post Date: 2022-09-16 08:49:36Last Update: 2022-09-16 11:12:29

    


Open Letter to Educators
[OPINION] “The Hillsdale 1776 Curriculum was made by professors and teachers—not bureaucrats, not activists, not journalists—teachers.”- Dr Kathleen O

Dear Teacher,

As you know, teaching is one of the most important professions in human history. As an institution whose purpose it is to teach, we at Hillsdale College are acutely aware of what it takes to teach and to teach well, especially today. We thank you for taking up this charge in general and this curriculum in particular. We hope and trust that it will serve you and your students in the ways that you and they most deserve.

The pursuit of truth is an unapologetic pursuit. For those who strive for honesty, it cannot be otherwise. As such, you the teacher should be aware of the truths which Hillsdale College holds to be accessible to human reason, proven through the ages, and true of all people and all times. This curriculum is based on these truths. They are as follows.


The Plains, Grand Opening in Watertown

September 15, 2022 By Breeauna Sagdal

The Governor's Office of Economic Development announced today that Alliance Management Group has opened the first of three new apartment buildings in Watertown. Alliance Management Group broke ground on a new development located in northwest Watertown called The Plains, earlier this spring.

The apartment buildings will consist of 72 units along with a clubhouse, providing an additional 216 total residencies in Watertown. The second and third buildings are currently underway, and projected to open by the summer of 2023.

The Plains were created in order to address work force housing needs. Apartments range
between $1,035 per month for a one bedroom, to $1,745 per month for a three bedroom two bath.

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According to Commissioner Steve Westra, “the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) was able to participate in this project with a Revolving Economic Development and Initiative (REDI) loan. The use of this funding makes it easier to finance this kind of project in communities like Watertown.”

“We appreciate the investment by Alliance Management Group in our community. This project helps fill critical housing needs for both our existing and future workforce,” said Michelle Kakacek, executive director of the Watertown Development Company.

“Housing availability is key to workforce growth throughout South Dakota. The partnership between the state, the Watertown community, and Alliance Management Group on this project is a great example of what can be accomplished,” said Lieutenant Governor Larry Rhoden.

“We appreciate Governor Noem’s leadership at the state level and the city of Watertown working with us to make this development a reality,” said Rick Berg, owner of Alliance Management group. “My hope is this new development will help address Watertown’s housing needs. We are excited to open this project and be a part of Watertown’s growth.”



Help Support The Dakota Leader... DONATE TODAY!

--Breeauna Sagdal- Editor At Large

Post Date: 2022-09-15 08:17:34Last Update: 2022-09-15 10:16:45

    


Biden’s “Bioeconomy,” Hacking Humanity Through Genetic Engineering
Federal Funding Far From Free Money...

The solution phase of COVID-19, and supply chain shortage Hegelian Dialectics, have begun to take shape. On September 12, 2022 President Biden signed a new Executive Order titled "Advancing Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Innovation for a Sustainable, Safe, and Secure American Bioeconomy."

This
concept is linked to bioeconomy strategy, which was adapted by the European Commission in 2012 as Innovating for Sustainable Growth of "circular cities," or smart cities . Following this, the bioeconomy strategy was updated in line with the objectives of the U.N. 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Paris Agreement, as the "EU Updated Bioeconomy Strategy" of 2018.

While the White House acknowledges that the bioeconomy is mostly known in the context of health today, the E.O, outlines the need for biotech manufacturing as a means to help "achieve our climate and energy goals, improve food security and sustainability, secure our supply chains, and grow the economy across all of America."

The Executive Order goes on to describe how biotech will be used, and why this private industry warrants the focus of federal dollars and all agencies.

"For biotechnology and biomanufacturing to help us achieve our societal goals, the United States needs to invest in foundational scientific capabilities. We need to develop genetic engineering technologies and techniques to be able to write circuitry for cells and predictably program biology in the same way in which we write software and program computers; unlock the power of biological data, including through computing tools and artificial intelligence; and advance the science of scale‑up production while reducing the obstacles for commercialization so that innovative technologies and products can reach markets faster."

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The new Executive Order comes on the heels of Biden's cashless society and Central Bank Digital Currency pledge, which may provide insights as to why South Dakota State lawmakers argued against taking federal ARPA dollars last legislative session.

Many
have sounded the alarm starting with 9/11, only to be shrugged off as "conspiracy theorists," for their cited concerns related to data collection used to create digital dictatorships, similar to Orwell's 1984. Dr. Yuval Noah Harari of The World Economic Forum, on the other hand, now says we should just get used to the idea because it's already here.



“In the past, many tyrants and governments wanted to [hack millions of people], but nobody understood biology well enough,” Harari stated at a recent conference. "And nobody had enough computing power and data to hack millions of people. Neither the Gestapo nor the KGB could do it. But soon, at least some corporations and governments will be able to systematically hack all the people,” he goes on to say, adding, “We humans should get used to the idea that we are no longer mysterious souls. We are now hackable animals.”

But Dr. Harari says this merger of human life with technology will not benefit the average person so that he or she may improve their own future. Instead, Harari claims a handful of “elites” will not only “build digital dictatorships,” for themselves but “gain the power to re-engineer the future of life itself. Because once you can hack something, you can usually also engineer it.”

While the White House gives a nod to human rights, it's done so with respect to
Executive Order 13985 signed on January 20, 2021, "Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government." Biden's 13985 Order revoked two Trump era E.O.s, specifically the "1776 Advisory Commission," and "Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping" Executive Orders.

In addition, E.O 13985 pledges significant federal funding specific to minority and undeserved communities, in order to study and provide recommendations for identifying inadequacies in existing Federal data collection programs, policies, and infrastructure across agencies and implement actions that "expand and refine the data available to the Federal Government to measure equity and capture the diversity of the American people."

According to
The World Economic Forum's Internet of Bodies, we're quickly approaching a world run by A.I, where everything we do, think, and feel is monitored by implanted, ingested or wearable devices that collect our bio data in real-time. Applications for biotechnology range from; Elon Musk's neural-net brain interface, to FDA approved remote sensing pills.

According to the U.N. and the World Economic Forum, biotechnology will help to monitor and regulate how citizens participate in the world around them. A 2017 Forum, hosted in Stockholm, Sweden, outlines some of the pros and cons of human rights in the era of the internet of things, and smart city infrastructures in which bio-technologies and the internet of bodies will be integrated.



The creation and stakeholders behind smart cities have been largely shrouded in secrecy, until recently. Opponents point to this lack of disclosure as a barrier to understanding whose definitions of human rights will be adapted. Considering the rapid implementation of these policies in the wake of COVID-19, concerns and rumors have already began to circulate on social media, related to the virus and mRNA vaccines.

For example, social media posts cite a 2013 Supreme Court Case, which granted Myriad Genetics a patent on the company's synthetic cDNA sequence.
The Court's ruling stated that DNA manipulated in a lab is eligible to be patented because DNA sequences altered by humans are not found in nature. The Court specifically mentioned the ability to patent a type of DNA known as complementary DNA (cDNA), a type of synthetic DNA that is expressed as a protein, after receiving cellular instructions from messenger RNA (mRNA). While this theory of patenting humans, post vaccination, has largely been debunked by online sources, critics argue that grey areas exist in the law related to privacy, access, and implementation of the bioeconomy.

Building out the infrastructure for bio-security now appears to be a race against time. However, with
trust in the government at an all-time low, individuals from across the political spectrum are voicing concerns for centralized control in the hands of a few. Time will tell how these policy adaptations will impact South Dakotans, farming, business, and day-to-day life.

Stay tuned for this Friday's Dakota Leader Radio Show at noon central time, to learn more.



Help Support The Dakota Leader... DONATE TODAY!

--Breeauna Sagdal- Health and Policy Journalist for The Dakota Leader

Post Date: 2022-09-14 09:12:06Last Update: 2022-09-14 11:26:57

    


Legal Cases Against Mandates Gain Teeth After FDA’s Court Ordered Disclosure
When State Legislatures Fail to Act, Due Process is Left Open to Interpretation and “Rational Review” of Liability.

This issue of mandatory medical intervention is being called into question, as is the way COVID-19 has been handled by U.S regulatory agencies. On September 12, 2022 researchers at Harvard, University of San Fransisco, Oxford, Edinburgh, John's Hopkins et al Medical Schools published a study in which researchers assert that the COVID-19 vaccine and boosters are 98 percent worse than the virus itself, for young adults. In addition, the authors challenge coercive policies, making five arguments against "ethically unjustifiable" mandates on campus.
  1. "No formal risk-benefit assessment exists for this age group;
  2. "Vaccine mandates may result in a net expected harm to individual young people;
  3. "Mandates are not proportionate: expected harms are not outweighed by public health benefits given the modest and transient effectiveness of vaccines against transmission;
  4. "US mandates violate the reciprocity principle because rare serious vaccine-related harms will not be reliably compensated due to gaps in current vaccine injury schemes; and
  5. "Mandates create wider social harms. We consider counter-arguments such as a desire for socialisation and safety and show that such arguments lack scientific and/or ethical support. Finally, we discuss the relevance of our analysis for current 2-dose Covid-19 vaccine mandates in North America." - quoted from the study's abstract.
Challenges have come on the heels of full disclosure, compelled by a court ruling last year. A group of highly qualified and credentialed scientists and doctors filed a Freedom of Information Act with the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), to release the documents they received prior to granting EUA (Emergency Use Authorization) for Pfizer's BioNTech biologics. Although the FDA had promised complete transparency through their licensing period of the COVID-19 biologics, the FDA refused to release the documents, initially stating they would need 75 years to produce the clinical trial data, or about 500 pages per month.

The team of scientists took the FDA to court, and in September of 2021, a
Texas Judge ruled that the FDA had until March of 2022 to release all documents publicly. As the evidence used to issue EUA status is slowly being revealed, challenges of ethical and medical malfeasance mount.

Now, a group called Nations in Action,
has filed an Amicus Brief in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals citing the Liberty Clause. Plaintiffs Katie Sczesny, Jamie Rumfield, Debra Hagen, and Mariette Vitti allege the state of New Jersey via Governor Philip Murphy, violated their due process, fourth and fourteenth amendment rights, by conditioning the benefit of employment upon the relinquishment of a constitutional right.

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"The fact that the government in this case conditioned the benefit of employment on the relinquishment of a constitutional right does not alter the Liberty Clause analysis. Pursuant to the doctrine of unconstitutional conditions, the extraordinary level of coercion involved in the COVID-19 injection mandates render them presumptively unconstitutional and subject to the same judicial scrutiny as laws of general applicability," the Amicus Brief states.

Law Professor and lead author of the Amicus Brief, Deana Sacks, says she is frustrated that other attorneys have failed to argue these cases, or practice the law on the basis of "strict review."



Sacks asserts that the burden of proof falls upon each attorney, and up until this point, the history of bodily autonomy has yet to be laid out or shown to be a constitutional right through proper pleadings, and arguments.



Help Support The Dakota Leader... DONATE TODAY!

--Breeauna Sagdal- Health and Policy Journalist for The Dakota Leader

Post Date: 2022-09-14 08:40:57Last Update: 2022-09-14 14:17:34

    


Hay Shortages Are Affecting Food Security
Op-Ed on The Importance of Hay

Hay does not feed Americans in the way that other crops do like potatoes, wheat, corn, beans, and other commodity crops. Even though we don’t have hay at our dinner table, its production is vital because it feeds livestock, and that livestock in turn feeds us. Without hay, we find ourselves with a break in the food security supply chain.

Farmers and ranchers across the United States are currently facing a hay shortage due to extreme drought and inflation. These issues have led to increased costs of fuel, fertilizer, and other inputs. The general population may not notice this issue right now, but the shortage of hay will impact our food security in America as it becomes more apparent in the colder months.

The hay shortage will have a three-fold effect. It will first hit the bank accounts of farmers and ranchers who grow and sell hay. Then the shortage and subsequent high prices of hay will impact those who feed hay to their livestock. Already there have been reports across the country of long lines at sale yards where ranchers are selling their herds because they do not have feed available at affordable prices. Lastly, the hay shortage will impact the general population that enjoys a glass of milk or a hamburger. The scarcity and skyrocketing cost to feed livestock will ultimately result in a higher cost at the grocery store.

While some American consumers may be able to absorb these price increases, many will not. Those unable to afford these products will be pushed into purchasing food items that may not be as nutritionally dense as animal protein.  

FOOD INSECURITY

Food insecurity is not new. In 2013, roughly 14% of our nation’s families were facing it at some point. In 2019, the number of families experiencing food insecurity had dropped by 3%, down to roughly 11%. Unfortunately, in 2022, due to inflation and policy, food insecurity for families across the country has spiked. As of this spring, 64% of American families were struggling to afford the cost of living. Crop shortages causing food insecurity are not new either.

DROUGHT

While this may just be another hot summer for some, for farmers and ranchers who grow hay, it has been devastating. Many regions across the country have experienced severe drought this spring and summer. The drought has impacted crop yields because many people who farm rely on regular rainfall to water their crops. To make matters worse, a select few states rely on irrigation, but many of those areas have had their water use cut by governmental policy.

During a typical year, the United States on average (excluding Hawaii and Alaska), gets about 30.21 inches of moisture. This year (2022) we are approaching record lows after the long hot summer across the nation. This lack of precipitation has caused farmers and ranchers to grow less hay because there is simply not enough water. Additionally, hay crops are dying much earlier than they would during an average crop cycle. Ultimately, this leads to a lower yield for farmers and ranchers who have planted and harvested hay this season.

Hay production this year has decreased by 17.9% in Oklahoma and 22.5% in Texas. Overall hay production this year has decreased by 10.1% when looking at the past ten-year average (2011-2021).

HIGH COST OF INPUT

In terms of man-made factors affecting hay production in 2022, inflation caused by policy and the rising cost of fuel can be listed as the biggest. Not only does the high cost of petroleum products affect the cost to run equipment, but it also raises the prices of goods across the board, including fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides. This year alone, the cost of fuel has risen nearly 60%. Despite news stories reporting that the cost of fuel has decreased in recent months, the price is still more than double what it was last year.

When prices for inputs rise sharply, like herbicides and fertilizer, many farmers and ranchers simply cannot afford to utilize them to maximize crop yield per acre. The high cost of fuel to run planting and harvesting equipment has also caused some farmers and ranchers to leave fields fallow.

According to a study done by John Baffes and Wee Chian Koh for the World Bank, fertilizer prices have gone up nearly 30% since the start of 2022, putting them at a record high. This rise in cost has made it nearly impossible for the average hay farmer to afford fertilizer in order to maximize crop production per acre and yield.

Pesticides that keep crops from being consumed by insects (like the locusts and grasshoppers ripping through nearly every field in the Eastern South Dakota currently), have also spiked upwards in 2022. It appears there is a battle on all fronts for farmers and ranchers as they try to scrape by without losing their livelihoods.

HOW HAY IMPACTS FOOD SECURITY

In 2020, the meat and dairy industries took large hits from Covid-19 shutdowns. Since then, food industries have worked hard to recover and start on an upward trend.

However, due to drought and inflation, this year the crop yield for hay is critically low. The hay shortage is impacting the dairy industry and the meat industry (specifically beef) which rely on hay as a food source for livestock.

Meanwhile, the need for hay grows as more food is needed to be produced. Agricultural experts across the country have expressed concern that farmers and ranchers will not have enough hay to sustain livestock this winter. The early sell-off of cattle by many farmers and ranchers and the coming winter will ultimately mean shortages in grocery stores as well as rising prices. Shortages of food products will directly impact foods that make it to dinner tables across America.

Consumers are already starting to see a rise in the cost of beef products. In 2020, a pound of ground beef cost $4.12 on average. In 2022 that number is roughly $4.78 and much higher in many areas. The price hikes have brought us past a $0.50 increase in under two years. At the current rate of increase, the average American family may not be able afford to buy steaks or even ground beef for dinner on a regular basis. Other staple products have also risen dramatically in price.

Continue Reading HERE...



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--Protect The Harvest- Republished With Permission

Post Date: 2022-09-14 08:11:28Last Update: 2022-09-13 19:12:06

    


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