Over a thousand New Yorkers joined forces with water protectors from Standing Rock on Tuesday night to protest Donald Trump’s executive orders to reinstate the Dakota Access and Keystone XL oil pipelines.
Alice, who declined to provide her last name, is a water protector who stood with the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in North Dakota for two months and was present at the demonstration.“I believe that indigenous sovereignty is very important to our nation. They are our first nation’s people, this is their land, we have to respect and preserve their culture. They have been oppressed for far too long and they get their land and rights taken away so much, and no one talks about it because no one is educated about it.”
Water protectors at the camp in North Dakota faced off with the government and were pelted with rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannons in freezing temperatures.
The Sioux tribe is currently asking people not to come to the camp as conditions are too dangerous. However, there are other actions that New Yorkers can take to support the cause.
“First, google the Sioux tribe, send supplies, send money, there are lists of things on Amazon you can send. You can call your local and district representatives and harass them. You can not pay your taxes, you can not pay your water bill,” Alice said. “It’s going to take everyone in the county who has a passion for civil rights and human rights and enjoying oxygen and clean water to stand up.”
Meanwhile, David Block, a stockbroker from New York, says he came to the protest because he is concerned about the way the capitalist system in the United States is cannibalizing the Earth’s resources.
“Capitalism has no limits. The only limit to capitalism is the Earth’s ecology because it will consume everything until there’s nothing left. There’s nothing more important than maintaining the ability of the earth to sustain people,” Block said