Over the last several weeks, I have been watching the Energy Transfer Partners’ Dakota Access Pipeline story unfolding. I will wager not too many of you are aware of the situation—the major new media are not covering it (except, surprising to me, Fox—at least, yesterday. You can find the other side of this story on their website, and, as of an hour ago, on NBC. These are verbatim from Associated Press).
“We ask that supporters keep the attention on the fact that Energy Transfer Partners feels justified in using this level of force against unarmed and nonviolent water protectors AND the state officers that are sworn to protect the people allowed it.” -Red Warrior Camp
The Native Americans and other protesters want to prevent the pipeline from crossing the Missouri River and its estuaries, near Cannon Ball, North Dakota. They are trying to protect the water as well as sacred sites being bulldozed by pipeline workers.
I wasn’t there, so all I know is what the video shows, and I’m sure it’s biased. The protesters definitely crossed a fence onto the private land where the bulldozing was happening. They have filed paperwork to stop construction after finding burial and sacred sites on the unsurveyed land. The court system has promised to review it by September 9. By then (and even by yesterday), the damage will already be done.
From what I could see, the protesters did nothing more violent than yell before being thrown to the ground by security personnel. After that, many people were sprayed with mace/pepper spray, and several were bitten by vicious security dogs. Throughout the video, I didn’t see any protester do more than yell, even after this brutal treatment. They are true warriors.
It presents a powerful “David and Goliath” image reminiscent of civil rights marches in the 1960s. It is important for all of us to pay attention to things like this. Powerful American corporations can do just about anything they desire to increase their profits—and our laws support them, since our lawmakers are supported by the same corporations.
Copyright ©2014-16 Ramona Ridgewell. All rights reserved.