Former mayor of Rapid City talks racial tensions back in the 1970s

RAPID CITY, S.D.(KOTA)- In an era where racial tensions are more visible than ever on social media, looking towards history can help provide context for the path forward.

Don Barnett, mayor of Rapid City in the 1970’s, reflected on the strain of a term which corresponded with the peak of indigenous activism and tensions.

Barnett, who acknowledged racism had a serious presence in Rapid City, said that woman had to run from the business.

Barnett reflected on the indigenous activism of the time.

Barnett shared his message to elected officials relating to contemporary tensions.

Barnett referred to the murder of Wesley Bad Heart Bull and the following events as “one of the most terrible disasters” in state history.