It’s Time to Be Honest About the Dakota Access Pipeline Protestors [Opinion] 3.93/5 (105)

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People like to feel like they are a part of something, and the Dakota access pipeline protests are no different.  Opportunistic activists, celebrities and a sleugh of Native American tribes have, with the help of the media, done an excellent job of ensuring that the narrative there reflects their version of events.

Namely, that a small, heroic band of Native Americans (and well-to-do environmentalists who can afford to fly there from around the country) are “protecting the water” from an intrusive government hell-bent on destroying the Sioux’s water supply, and in the eyes of the public, their way of life.

The historical parallels make for a compelling story.  Native Americans were treated poorly by the government in the past, and now the noble Standing Rock Sioux are “standing” up to the evil Army Corps of Engineers, whose only goal is to desecrate sacred burial grounds while failing to inform the tribe of their intentions from the outset.  It reflects the broken treaties and unkept promises to Native Americans of the 19th century.


Unfortunately, the facts simply do not reflect this narrative. The protestors’ tale begins to break down under the kind of scrutiny that any decent journalist should apply to it, a scrutiny which very few honest reporters actually utilized in this case.

No matter how many stories the media prints about young Sophia Wilansky’s arm being blown off by a police concussion grenade, they will fail to convince me (someone who used explosives in the military and knows what an RE Factor is) that it wasn’t Sophia’s own emplacing of a propane tank improvised explosive device that mangled her appendage.  IED emplacers manage to hurt themselves all the time.  She is no different.

Go ahead and google her name.  I’ll wait for any other journalistic article to come up that followed up on her initial claims.

There is absolutely no way that Sophia Wilansky’s arm took the kind of damage it did from a concussion grenade, which the police don’t even use.  The only kind of grenade they might have are flashbangs, which couldn’t possibly do that kind of damage.

She learned a valuable lesson in IED emplacement, though, the same lesson that these three gentlemen in Afghanistan also learned:

Nor will I believe that the Army Corps of Engineers, a bureaucracy of the highest order, along with companies with thousands of employees dedicated to compliance, did not, at any point, consult with the Standing Rock Sioux or other tribes about the course of this pipeline.  The record shows at least 389 meetings with 55 different tribes, and multiple meetings about the pipeline with the Standing Rock Sioux.

These meetings were done in good faith, considering that the pipeline does not, at any point, actually cross onto Standing Rock Sioux land.

According to the Standing Rock Fact Checker website, a publication of the Midwest Alliance for Infrastructure Now, which consists of dozens of unions, corporations and associations in agriculture, business and labor, the Army Corps of Engineers met with the Standing Rock Sioux almost a dozen times to discuss the finalized Dakota Access route.

What the hell is this priest even doing there? Source: Reuters

Concerns about the water supply for the tribe are, in my opinion, overblown.  Besides utilizing state of the art technology and safety measures, the pipeline sits 92 feet below the riverbed, making it unlikely to damage any water supply even in the event of a burst.

These facts are completely irrelevant, though, when you consider that the Sioux have also been given (at the government’s expense) a brand new water intake 70 miles away.

In addition, claims about the cultural, sacred burial grounds that the pipeline flows through are completely baseless; every inch of the pipeline is on private property.  Furthermore, the Corps of Engineers actually employs archaeologists in order to ensure that any discovered artifacts are properly attended to.  Is this the kind of organization that would nefariously “fast-track” a pipeline to get it past the Standing Rock Sioux?

I find it unlikely.

It’s time to come to terms with the Dakota Access Pipeline protests and call them what they are: well-meaning environmentalists who do not have a leg to stand on at best, and IED-emplacing, molotov-cocktail-throwing hooligans at worst (although I’m hopeful these represent a minority.

I do not envy the police officers called in to deal with people who place propane IED’s in burnt-out cars.  We should not let the emotions of our Facebook friends and the pro-protestor media narrative get in the way of the facts.

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  1. Jeremy
    December 3, 2016 at 9:31 am — Reply

    It may or may not be true that there is not a legal recourse to solve this issue in favor of the protesters. Ive felt their legal recourse is tentative for some time, but that does not mean their protest is bullshit. Think this through, If your elected officials are selling you out, and making immoral decisions for their own benefit what do you do? protest and make your voice heard. America continues to sink money in the dying oil infrastructure, because ‘we have not yet built infrastructure to support cleaner alternatives’. If that is true then how will sinking more money and contaminating our environment to prop up the very same institutions that have suppressed clean energy solutions for over 60 years help?

    • Gary Miller
      December 4, 2016 at 5:54 pm — Reply

      Jeremy, did you Wright all that on your computer using solar or wind power electricity. I won’t even touch the part that you computer was built using Petroleum by products. Your car you drive is was built and runs on Petroleum by products. So until you are only using products that are not made with Petroleum by products. Why don’t you just shut the pie hole. Oh and just in case you wondering, even if you only used a horse and buggy there would be Petroleum by products, Coal and iron ore involved all of which you enviromental do gooders don’t like.
      OH, and back to my first sentence, even you so called clean energy such as solar and wind power electricity are manufactured using Petroleum by products.

  2. Natalie
    December 4, 2016 at 12:50 am — Reply

    Eff off withthis bullshit propaganda. Just because some stupid white chick blows off her arm doesn’t make this protest bullshit. I call bullshit on this narrowminded article by someone who clearly puts faith in government and big Co’s “good faith meetings.” Fuck you. “Considering that the pipeline does not, at any point, actually cross onto Standing Rock Sioux land.” Right, well that’s the protest right there. IT IS going on their land. If it weren’t, it wouldn’t be blocked. Just because the Army Corps of Engineers met with the Standing Rock Sioux “almost a dozen times to discuss the finalized Dakota Access route” means shit all. And why are you trying to downplay the environmental impact of a crude oil pipeline? Look into the countless spills that have occurred with other pipelines and tell me these are baseless concerns. Regardless of that, it is encroaching on their land.

  3. Kay
    December 4, 2016 at 8:54 am — Reply

    So, Jeremy. If your elected officials are making immoral decisions…..perhaps Standing Rock has elected immoral officials (Archambeau) who made decisions for his own benefit? Or wrong decisions for what he thinks is the Tribes benefit. After all, there are many tribal members in the area who don’t support this protest.

  4. Jerold
    December 5, 2016 at 5:23 pm — Reply

    All of you forget what the Water Protectors are there for to Protect the WATER… All these companies want is MONEY, but fail to relize in the long run if the pipe burst open… 10+States, Millions of citizens, and 28+ Native American Tribes will be knocking at their door. When this happens, the companies are in No Doubt at risk of being dismantled forever. So these Companies have to watch their actions because that could end up being their down fall! In the End DONT FORGET ALL THIS IS FOR WATER AND NOT OIL…!!!

  5. Dora Glasberg
    December 5, 2016 at 6:47 pm — Reply

    Your entire article is a fiction. Deranged and paranoid.

  6. ConsultantInAction
    December 5, 2016 at 11:47 pm — Reply

    Jerold; What you fail to realize; The Property with which the Pipeline is on, is Private Property. Constitutional Guarantees, clearly protect the rights of us all.

    In fact, we fail to realize a couple of things; Where is the Oil Coming From … ? Now, if the Tribe owned the Pipe Line, it wouldn’t be bad for Water, not at all… This Protest is a Sham and if you still believe this is just about Money, you are kidding yourself.

    This is about Freedom and the Rights of all Americans … This movement has been perpetrated by Environmentalist, the same clowns that Brought to You Hillary R. Corrupt …

    Soon, Donald Trump will be in office and things for the Environmental Wackos will be different …

    I can tell you what it’s like to have lost Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars because of these Creeps …. I’m not sure what you own, probably nothing… Do you Work .. Have a Job .. Pay Taxes .. Buy Fuel/Gas/Diesel .. Do you have anything, that is other than either a Ring through your Nose, where the Environmentalist can affix a Lead Line to you …

    I’m of Chippewa Descent, Wisconsin and I deplore what the Sioux
    are doing … This is not about Water, it is however about more of the Liberal/Socialist Movement ….

    This Pipeline, needs to be built to prevent any more Train Accidents …

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