Kreun: Vote to keep Sioux nickname, logo allows the voice of the people to be heardRep. Curt Kreun, R-Grand Forks, voted with the majority Monday when the North Dakota House passed, 65-28, a bill to require UND to retain its Fighting Sioux nickname and logo.
By: Herald Staff Report, Grand Forks Herald
Rep. Curt Kreun, R-Grand Forks, voted with the majority today when the North Dakota House passed, 65-28, a bill to require UND to retain its Fighting Sioux nickname and logo.
Here are excerpts of Kreun’s remarks delivered on the House floor:
“There have been those who have indicated if they were elected to power in the Standing Rock Tribe, they would allow a vote of the tribe on this issue. That has never happened. This, in effect, has (also) silenced the majority of members of the Spirit Lake Tribe who voted 2-1 in support of … their Sioux name being used to represent UND. As the Spirit Lake Committee for Understanding and Respect said, 'To lose this identification with UND would be detrimental to our people.'
“Another group of people, many of whom I represent, have not been heard by the NCAA, or any other group with authority over this issue. It is the citizens of the state of North Dakota. They are upset that an outside group such as the NCAA has discriminated against the state. We were labeled 'hostile and abusive' by that group because they assumed that we used the name 'Sioux' in a derogatory way, when in fact no real investigation was commenced by them.
“UND has one of the largest enrollments and numbers of programs for American Indians in the nation. As Sports Illustrated found, there is an aura of respect as the heritage and culture of the Sioux Nation is presented. UND does not sanction the use of stereotypical behavior historically associated with Native American imagery. As these actions may have happened in the past or happen in other parts of the country, we do not tolerate this behavior. But the NCAA made a generalization and labeled us as 'hostile and abusive.' This leads many to feel stereotyped and discriminated against due to this generalization.”