Violence and beauty at standing rock

Community Journalism Student James Frank Describes the Resistance movement as it enters its darkest hour

Produced by Brian Bevilacqua, James frank, and jose perez

After nearly a year of grassroots organizing and civil disobedience, the protests of the Dakota Access Pipeline at Standing Rock appear to be coming to a final conflict between the federal government and the indigenous people resisting the intrusion onto their reservation. 

In Fall 2016 the fluctuating protest, which began as a native movement, grew to upwards of ten thousand people from many backgrounds. President Obama issued a de facto halt on construction in December, which President Trump overruled. Today, February 23, the main campsite used to block construction is being cleared out by the government to make way for the pipeline.

The pipeline runs adjacent to the Standing Rock Sioux’s reservation and passes through their water supply. A leak in the pipeline would destroy the reservation’s ecosystem, which holds immense religious value to the tribe. Numerous proposed pathways for the pipeline running through non-native lands were rejected by the government.

Audio clip from Morton County, North Dakota protests