|World War I, or Standing Rock? You tell me.|
If you read this account of the protest (or just about any other) and replace the words "pipeline" with "gold", this could be the account of the conquistadors of the 16th century marching across the new world, or the slaughter of these protestor's ancestors with the gold rush onslaught. What could be more stark than this snapshot: the ragged remnants of our indigenous peoples struggling to keep their last little shred of land free from further exploitation in the face of an empire marching mechanically into the heart of their nation to extract the last vestiges of valueable resources, oblivious to their cries? If any one of us faced the destruction of our cemetaries and water source would we not be on that bridge taking those bullets? Of course the stolen gold is all gone, but a pipeline would move the gold extracted from other more distant victims home more quickly, home to the coffers of the king.
All this is happening under the benevolent reign of Obama, the most compassionate leader we've had in decades. But it's not his fault. It's not the fault of the companies that do our bidding, the figureheads of Manifest Destiny, Inc. This is who we are in the world. This is US, the empire! Now, finally, we must stand up and identify ourselves. There is no more hiding behind the curtain.
But after that––after we have shown our identity––then we have the chance to change. Let's hope it's not too late. A change of heart when the resources are all gone––then or now–– is not going to fool anyone.