Call to Action: Forget about being anti-Trump, focus on #NoDAPL

The continuous political distraction

It is frustrating that even after election day, the majority of news coverage still revolves around Donald Tump. The mainstream media is content to focus on ratings rather than on actual hard hitting news.

One cannot help but feel an overwhelming sense of being over fed when thinking about the US politics especially this year. Why is there so much blanket coverage about one topic? Isn’t 2 billon of free media coverage not enough of a reason for reporters to shift their focus to other things that people might need to know.

The mass rhetoric for 2016 is this is the change year, people want their country back. The DAPL is an issue that embodies this fight, if you want to take down the out of touch elite and the rigged economic system, you need to stand with the water protectors, who are protecting their land and water from future environmental damage from a greedy oil corporation.

The water protectors have been camped at Standing Rock with very little mainstream coverage for now almost 6 months. Many still do not know what is taking place at Standing Rock. This is the time to educate themselves, their friends and family on the DAPL, because the people at those camps are running out of time.

Protests are an important civil liberty, they increase the visibility of a cause, they demonstrate the power of the common people, energize participants, build activist relationships and promote a sense of solidarity.
People protest the appointment of Stephen Bannon to be chief strategist of the White House by president-elect Donald Trump at City Hall in Los Angeles. Photograph: David Mcnew/AFP/Getty Images

Unfortunately, the tide of protests that have swept US cities will not change anything. Trump is the president-elect. Nothing can change that fact. He has noticed the protests but they do not seem to have had an effect on his appointments which are right aligned on national and international issues.

When large numbers of people take to the streets in protest, the media, the politicians and other key decision-makers notice. They don’t always act, but they notice. This is why the focus needs to shift to the hundreds of people standing in support with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. They need more attention and we need to direct the attention of the media and politicians to their cause.

Native Americans march to a burial-ground sacred site that was disturbed by bulldozers building the Dakota Access Pipeline near Cannon Ball, N.D., on Sept. 4, 2016.
As the temperatures continue to decline in North Dakota, law enforcement is using rubber bullets, water cannons and pepper spray to attack prayer stick welding activists in hopes to deter them.

In September, the government said it would temporarily halt permits to dig on federal land near or under the Missouri river and requested that the company “voluntarily pause all construction activity within 20 miles east or west” of Lake Oahe.

Drone footage by Dr0ne2bewild clearly shows construction has progressed to less than 5 miles from Lake Oahe.

The Energy Transfer Partners chose to violate that by announcing on the day of the US presidential election, that the final phase of its controversial construction project will begin in two weeks. There is mounting evidence recorded by civilian drones, showing that Energy Transfer Partners is violating the government ordered halt, by continuing with constuction work during the night. There is a drill pad and drilling equipment now in place with very little action being taken by federal authorities to over see if Energy Transfer partners is complying with the law.

Latest drone footage shows drilling equipment has been brought in overnight.

Pipeline construction is almost completed in North Dakota, but the company building it, Energy Transfer Partners, still lacks a final permit to drill under the river. On Tuesday, 15 November, the company went to court seeking to have a judge force the government to allow it to begin drilling immediately. The company is being pushed by stakeholders to complete the pipeline by December 1 2016. How will they ensure safety if they are rushing to complete the pipeline in such a short time?

It is stunning that such a metaphoric battle has received so little coverage from the mainstream media. It is also frightening when real events sound more like a conspiracy theory or a fictionalized doomsday scenario. Hiding from the truth will not make the truth any less bitter should we turn a blind eye to Standing Rock.

There are so many chilling parts to the story. The militarization of the police force in riot gear working clearly on behalf of a corporation against peaceful civilians. Authorities from multiple states in one location rounding up people and arresting hundreds at a time. People being “numbered”, women and minors being strip searched and thrown naked into small caged cells similar to dog kennels. Clergy from all faiths uniting under one cause being pushed to the ground and arrested for trespassing. Rubber bullets being fired at journalists covering the protest and the warrant of arrest for reporter Amy Goodman for “entering private property” to conduct interviews.

It is clear that the Energy Partner Transfers backed by law enforcement has escalated its tactics to intimidate and traumatize the water protectors. With time running out for the Sioux nation they need more voices and more coverage. It is time for all the protestors to take a stand for the Standing Rock.

Law enforcement officers surround demonstrators protesting against plans to pass the Dakota Access pipeline during a standoff at the Backwater Bridge in Morton County, North Dakota, U.S., November 20, 2016. © Morton County Sheriff’s Department / Handout via Reuters
Police mace protesters during a demonstration against the Dakota Access pipeline near the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in Mandan, North Dakota, U.S. © Stephanie Keith / Reuters

Dedicate this article to TYTpolitics crew and TYT Politics Reporter Jordan Chariton for their ongoing and in depth coverage of the water protectors vs. the dakota access pipeline.