Politics have never been an interest of mine, mostly because my dad hates politicians and my mom bases her opinions off of what the Catholic Church is saying, and msn.com. Needless to say, neither of them are too thrilled when I come home for dinner, and all I want to talk about is the issues going on with the Dakota Access Pipeline. My dad will grunt and say there’s nothing that can be done about it, that it’s just another shitty thing. Once he’s returned to focusing on the meat of the night, my mother will fret herself into a fit over it and then the whole table goes dead quiet. It’s these kinds of conversations that are frustrating to me, for one, because my own parents won’t hear me out, and two, if they can’t handle the facts, then I can’t image how a lot of Americans are feeling about it. I wanted to share this video because it’s short and to the point that Trump is thinking about business goals and making money, which is great and all, but not when it means risking natural resources and digging up sacred Native American land. People are definitely worth more than money, no matter the price. So here’s a short clip from Earthjustice on Youtube:

It’s disheartening to know that President Trump isn’t listening to the people. In my opinion, a great leader is someone who knows what their people need and can take time out of his day to listen, discuss, and be honest. The people South Dakota are theoretically screaming to get some attention from Trump. The Cheyenne River Sioux tribe even attempted to file a restraining order against Energy Transfer Partners to stop construction of the pipeline. Judge James Boasberg of the U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., ruled “that as long as oil isn’t flowing through the pipeline, there is no imminent harm to the Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Sioux tribes,” (Hananel and Nicholson, Associate Press 2017). The building of the Dakota Access Pipeline alone violates sacred land and is a disturbance to their cultural practices. If Judge Boasberg was thinking in terms of human rights, then perhaps he would understand how wrong his statement is.

In my blog discussion yesterday, I was telling one of peers how I think people get wrapped up in what’s going on in their lives that they don’t take the time to educate themselves on what’s going on in their own backyard. I am insanely guilty of this myself. This pipeline is going to be affecting the Missouri River, a river that is insanely close to home for many people,including right here in Nebraska, and if it leaks, then what will we do? Drink oil? I’ll pass! I think President Trump would too. The world is already heading towards a shortage of water, and there is no need to risk the few good sources that we do have just to transport oil. We should be looking for safer and cleaner alternatives. We should care that big businesses are calling the shots in favor of themselves. While it’s important to make a living and support ourselves, we also need to take care of the resources we have and the people depending on those sources.

I believe it was Amanda Gailey, or perhaps Jennine, that said something along the lines of, “If everyone picked one thing to fight for that meant something to them, then those issues could be easily resolved.” I absolutely love this advice, and I’ve heard it from several professors in my two years at UNL. In terms of looking at someone like Lizet, from Make Your Home Among Strangers, then we could all learn a lesson about jumping out of our comfort zone to accomplish something. To me, that’s what activism is all about. Fixing one thing at a time is the best way to success. Bringing people together to fight for justice is such a beautiful and admirable thing. So let’s fight injustice! Let’s band together and have peaceful protests. Let’s make the world a better place to live in, a place that we can be proud to call home. Let’s be able to look back on our accomplishments and say, “Wow, standing up really worked.”

I fully support those peaceful protestors at Standing Rock, even if my family doesn’t, and my friends think I’m a lunatic. So be it! Fighting for Native American writes is worth it.

Link to the Asscoiated Press article, “Judge denies request to halt Dakota Access pipeline work”by Sam Hananel and Blake Nicholson.  {https://apnews.com/68dd709cfa074bb2864ccd14b7f9c740/Judge-to-hear-arguments-on-Dakota-Access-pipeline-work?utm_campaign=SocialFlow&utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=APCentralRegion


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