"It's kind of frightening cause no Indian has ever won in any federal court with these judges here. They got me right where they want me. They're just kinda dangling my little string. I have a life, too, you know. I can't live for this hemp"

--Alex White Plume

Production Notes

Initially, Standing Silent Nation was a film about the movement to legalize industrial hemp in the United States. But in August of 2002, that changed when we traveled to the Pine Ridge Reservation for what was to have been the White Plume family’s hemp harvest, the first to happen on US soil in 50 years. We arrived minutes after agents served Alex White Plume and his brother Percy with federal civil charges and placed a restraining order on the crop. We began documenting their story. Over the years we have worked in collaboration with the White Plumes on this project, we’ve learned a lot about the complicated struggles that are built into life on Pine Ridge. We respect the sovereignty of the Lakota Nation and recognize the value of maintaining Lakota culture for the future generations of both Lakota people and Americans.

"I guess when you want something good, you have to work hard at it, and maybe that’s what this is."

--Alex White Plume