As Standing Rock Fact Checker has noted before, the general lawlessness and unrest in North Dakota is primarily due to the large number of out of state protestors flocking to the Dakota Access Pipeline. Since the protest began nearly 50 days ago, 246 individuals have been arrested as part of the protests – the vast majority, 223, from outside of North Dakota. The federal government appears unwilling to address this fact and the news that local law enforcement officials “lack the manpower” to handle the ongoing protest on their own.
The Department of Justice, the Department of the Army and the Department of the Interior halted the project on September 9th and have been absent ever since. Their inaction has contributed to a devolving situation in Cannonball, ND, which will only end in more lawlessness.
In the government’s absence there has been widespread trespassing on to private land, vandalism, killing of livestock, destruction of equipment, media intimidation, and threats against community members, police and pipeline workers.
It’s time for the federal government to do its job and uphold the rule of law.