My First Protest

ejmprotest
selfie with my neon NO DAPL Permits sign

Sounds like something a 15 year old would write. I actually DID protest, kind of, during the 1972 election when McGovern tried to defeat Nixon.  I was in high school and my boyfriend (later first husband) and I drove around with NO MORE WAR  and McGOVERN  painted on his muscle car windows.  But, I wasn’t out walking in the street.  I was Tuesday!   I had to support the #NoDAPL —  NO Dakota Access Pipeline (project) that I’ve been railing against on Twitter.  It was not only my duty to join millions in supporting our original Native Americans and protecting THEIR sacred land, but also a minor miracle that I could raise my right arm (after my recent bout with partial paralysis) so I did!  (Let’s not forget it was a Native American Sobadora who healed me!) Also, as a former journalist, news reporter, and government flack (spokesperson),  I could not participate in protests for over 35 years. I’m a private citizen now.

It was scary (in this current political climate) but I’m so glad that participated.

This pipeline project is horrifying on many levels. 1) That a profit-making “energy” company is exploiting tribal land, 2) that the Obama Administration did not already totally deny the permits,  and 3) the ungodly attacks on Native Americans with pepper spray and GUNS!  I feel we MUST stand with the Standing Rock Sioux to protect their land and also protest further drilling in the Dakota Badlands.  Not everyone agrees. Watch this CNN video and read the article about the project.

What IS certain is that our so-called President-Elect* Trump can’t wait to allow the project to proceed. He will grant the wishes of Energy Transfer Partners CEO Kelcy Warren who donated $100 hundred thousand to his campaign. (Warren admits to this and claims it’s “100% certain” they can proceed come January.)  Trump is also said to have invested between 500K and a MILLION dollars to Warren’s company.  (I wonder about this since Trump isn’t a “stock picking” investor. His money is mostly in real estate and a few mutual funds.)  Trump also has big plans to deregulate the EPA along with many other Federal checks and balances against such devastating projects.

Here in Albuquerque I was proud to see nearly 500 peopleprotestgroup show up for a peaceful demonstration and hear Native speakers.  The Army Corps District Office here is the only one within over 400 miles so many people drove long distances to participate.  It would have been perfect except for two things:  1) local cops had blocked all roads and access to the Army Corps office, so we had to park far away.  (It didn’t slow down anyone.  We just marched our way carrying our signs and chanting.  2) I overhead a cop telling a security guard, “It’s the highest concentration of Prius driver’s in New Mexico.”  They both laughed.  I wanted to reply, “and fuzz explosion.”  (Of course, I didn’t.)  Instead,  I survived to write this!

*Footnote:  Trump is NOT yet President-Elect. The vote is still being canvassed and the Electoral College is not final until the meeting Dec. 19.  I remain hopeful we can disqualify him then!  PLEASE contribute Elector info and ideas on Twitter using hash tag #DisqualifyTrump.

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