‘… language, I’m afraid It’s extinct’

“He never asked to be the teacher of the language; he was more called to be. He was a simple rancher at heart.”
Three Affiliated Tribes Councilman Cory Spotted Bear, discussing Edwin Benson, the last person to fluently speak the Mandan language. He died at 85.
“He said he’d done enough now and he was tired. This language which made Dad so well-known across the world, I’m afraid it’s extinct.”
— Edwin Benson’s daughter, Heidi Hernandez.
I’m never going to give them a deadline or sweep it out. We just want to make sure people are safe. If they’re going to stay, they’re going to stay.”
— Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman David Archambault II, on the main protest camp near Cannon Ball.
Long after the issues surrounding the Dakota Access Pipeline are resolved, the state and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council must work together—
Outgoing Gov. Jack Dalrymple.

“It’s always been a scientific kind of approach, and I was drawn to the approach of the Native Americans, which is to treat nature as sacred. Water is sacred. That’s enough. All that science turns people off. It makes people feel a kind of chill, detached or objectified.”
— Rob Lewis, a 56-year-old house painter from Bellingham, Wash., who has been an environmentalist his whole life, on how he thinks the Standing Rock protests have changed the movement.
“You’re either pro-DAPL or no-DAPL, and somehow it’s transformed into anti-police. We’re finding ourselves in the position where some are treating us as the enemy.”
North Dakota Highway Patrol Lt. Tom Iverson, on dealing with the protest movement. Iverson maintains that law enforcement has acted professionally and with restraint.
“Our transition team is working diligently to assemble a cabinet that will position North Dakota for a bright future by making government more efficient and responsive, streamlining services and balancing the budget without raising taxes.
— Gov. Doug Burgum, in a Monday release announcing Cabinet changes.

“Some of the things we’re doing this go-around are things we should’ve done a long time ago. The open access and the open doors are going to change.”
— Rep. Todd Porter, R-Mandan, on increased security at the Capitol.
“We want to avoid seeing it in (the consent agenda) and having to be like, ‘What? Where did this come from?'”
— Dot Frank, the Bismarck-Mandan Homebuilders Association’s executive officer, on why the association wants to help shape local building code.
“We need the space ready by the fall of 2018, and actually, we probably need it a little bit earlier than that.”
— Bismarck Superintendent Tamara Uselman, on a $57.5 million bond issue scheduled for a March 7, 2017, vote to increase and renovate middle school and high school space.
“It was not an easy decision. There’s something different every day. I enjoy working with the livestock producers and crop producers.”
— Jackie Buckley, Mandan, who is retiring from her 37-year career as an agent of the North Dakota State University Extension Service.

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