This week, in Rosebud South Dakota, the Rosebud Sioux Tribal President made an official announcement, stating that the Rosebud Sioux Tribe considers the laying of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline through their lands to be an “act of war.”
The announcement comes just hours after the U.S. House of Representatives voted for the completion of the pipeline, which would use eminent domain to force individual property holders and Native American tribes to leave their rightfully owned property.
“The House has now signed our death warrants and the death warrants of our children and grandchildren. The Rosebud Sioux Tribe will not allow this pipeline through our lands. We are outraged at the lack of intergovernmental cooperation. We are a sovereign nation and we are not being treated as such. We will close our reservation borders to Keystone XL. Authorizing Keystone XL is an act of war against our people,” President Scott of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe said in a statement.
The proposed route of the pipeline cuts direction through the Great Sioux Nation or “Oceti Sakowin” lands that were defined by a series of treaties made in the mid-19th century.
“The Lakota people have always been stewards of this land. We feel it is imperative that we provide safe and responsible alternative energy resources not only to Tribal members but to non-Tribal members as well. We need to stop focusing and investing in risky fossil fuel projects like TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline. We need to start remembering that the earth is our mother and stop polluting her and start taking steps to preserve the land, water, and our grandchildren’s future,” Sioux Tribe President Scott said.
One of the most effective propaganda campaigns that the government has going for them is the idea that it is somehow their job to protect the environment.
This is said to be accomplished by punishing those who damage the environment. However, situations like this give a much clearer view of reality.
In this case and in most others, individual private property holders are actually personally invested in the land, thus they have a greater incentive to actually take care of the property and be conscious of the environment.
With the Keystone XL pipeline we see how the government is actually taking property away from people who would treat it well and then selling it to people who will undoubtedly disrespect it.
Without the strong arm of the government to expropriate the property, the companies that are building this pipeline would be forced to directly negotiate with these property holders themselves or offer them fair deals in return for their property.
Beings that most of these people have so much personal history invested in this land, the majority of them would refuse to negotiate, making the construction of this pipeline completely impossible.
Sadly, politicians have no problem negotiating with other people’s property, so they can be lobbied to use the guns of government to expropriate land on behalf of a third party, making projects that no one wants in their “own back yard” a reality.
John Vibes writes for True Activist and is an author, researcher and investigative journalist who takes a special interest in the counter culture and the drug war.