The Missouri River divides the state of South Dakota into two halves
that almost segregates its residents. The people are divided into West
River residents and East River residents and are socially and
geographically different. Those residing on the East River often tend
to the crops and make up a majority of South Dakota's population. Those
residing on the West River often come from ranching communities.
Though most state residents live on the east side of the river, the
west side of the river is known for tourism and brings in non-residents
on a regular basis. Many prominent landmarks dot the western half of
the state and include Mount Rushmore, the Crazy Horse Memorial, Wild
Cave, the Badlands, Custer State Park, and Deadwood.
These two halves make up a whole that is kept by one state government.
The state government of South Dakota makes and keeps laws for the
safety and peace of its people. These laws include labor laws, divorce
laws, expungement laws, bankruptcy laws, gun laws, felony conviction
laws, and others.
South Dakota does not have its own laws in regards to family leave,
medical leave, or maternity leave. Instead South Dakota uses the
federal laws for its employees. The Family and Medical Leave Act allows
employees to take necessary leaves of absence for personal reasons.
Many of these include caring for elderly parents, caring for ill
children, hospitalization, and other psychological or medical
Each year employees are given twelve weeks of unpaid leave that cannot
be broken into several months. While on leave the Family and Medical
Leave Act protects the individuals from termination and guarantees them
employment when the twelve weeks have concluded. Maternity leave and
paternity leave are covered under this federal act and includes
allowing adoptive parents time to bond with their new children.
In South Carolina citizens who are under eighteen years of age are not
legally allowed to possess pistols or handguns. Minors are only
permitted to handle firearms under the supervision of a parent, a
guardian, or an instructor. The reasons for handling firearms come in
specifics and include the purposes of ranching, farming, target
shooting, and while on private property.
Those who have felonious records are also not permitted to possess
firearms. This is the same for those who have committed violent
offenses while using firearms. These individuals may regain their
rights to bear arms after their probation has ceased for fifteen years.
Felony offenses are normally punished through incarceration in state
prisons, while misdemeanor offenses are served in county jails. The
extent of a crime, as well as the sentencing, will be dictated by the
severity of the crime and any previous crimes. Felony punishments also
often include fines of several thousands of dollars as well as
Depending on the offense, an individual can be sentenced to life in
prison for a Class A Felony or as little as two years in prison for a
Class 6 Felony. Multiple sentences can be extended at one time. For
instance an individual can be sentenced to two felony offenses and one
misdemeanor offense for the same crime.