11 Things To Know About Native Resistance To #DAPL

It's not Burning Man.

The Standing Rock protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline (#NoDAPL) happening at the Sacred Stone Camp near Cannon Ball, North Dakota, have been in and out of News Feeds on Facebook for months, but they made headlines again as things took a violent turn this weekend.

This week on BuzzFeed’s podcast Another Round, we got back in touch with our friend Dr. Adrienne Keene, who has been working to raise awareness about what's been happening at the Standing Rock protest site.

The professor and creator of the website Native Appropriations just returned from North Dakota where she participated in the movement against the Dakota Access oil pipeline. She shares her experiences, and we hear from reflections from other Native people on the front lines.

Here are 11 things you need to know about the protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline:

1. People are rejecting the pipeline because they say it potentially threatens Native communities' drinking water supply — and disturbs sacred areas.

2. The water protectors' direct actions are peaceful.

3. This week's high-profile intervention was not the first time unarmed protesters have encountered police violence.

A member of the Ponca tribe describes police violence that he and his community have faced. (From our latest episod… https://t.co/ywHPowW8pe

BuzzFeed/ Another Round / Via Twitter

4. Native people from tribes across North America are coming together in solidarity.


And it's not just Native people coming together — people from all over the world have come to stand in solidarity with #NoDAPL protesters.

Keene says part of the reason for the strong solidarity among Native tribes across the country is because the dispute over the the pipeline is part of a long-standing fight to have the sovereignty of their nations respected by the US government.

“To me, this is really about the fundamental connection between us as native peoples and our homelands," Keene says. "So for the community of Standing Rock and all of the other Lakota Sioux communities ... These lands that the pipeline is cutting through right now are their homeland from time immemorial.. The land right now that the pipeline is building through on the river crossing has documented burial sites, has documented sacred sites, and so it’s just a blatant disregard for that connection to the land and that connection to place and space."

5. Winter is a huge concern.

6. Wellness teepees are helping campers deal with their mental and physical stress.

7. This is not a Burning Man vibe. “Vision quest” vacationers are discouraged.

8. Celebrity involvement is...complicated.

one week ago, I was arrested while protecting water against the #dakotaaccesspipeline ... my article on it. https://t.co/hrgF97qHLl

Shailene Woodley / Via Twitter

Divergent actress Shailene Woodley brought a lot of attention to the movement when she was arrested for protesting last month.

But Keene says celebrities speaking for the movement can be a "a double-edged sword": "You want the attention, but I feel like sometimes the attention goes to the wrong people and doesn’t get the right message out when you’re just talking to celebrities and not talking to folks who are on the ground actually doing the work in the space day in and day out.”

9. President-elect Donald Trump has financial ties with the company leading construction.

After reviewing Trump's financial disclosure forms, The Guardian reported last month that the president-elect has "close financial ties" to Energy Transfer Partners, the company building the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Records also show that Energy Transfer Partners CEO Kelcy Warren donated $103,000 to Trump's campaign: $3,000 to his presidential campaign and another $100,000 to the "Trump victory fund."

Keene also reminded us that in the ’90s, Trump questioned the authenticity of Native Americans competing with his casinos in Connecticut, saying, "They don't look like Indians to me."

10. Nixon was surprisingly helpful on Native issues.

10. But Obama...not so much.

11. But where there's a will...there's a way.

Hear more in the latest episode of BuzzFeed's Another Round podcast:

How to listen:

1. Search for Another Round in your podcast app of choice, like Overcast, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Acast, Apple’s built-in Podcast app, and more.

2. Or, click the above embedded link to stream the show directly from this page.

3. Be sure to subscribe, so you never miss a new episode!

If you like the show, please rate and review it on iTunes. Questions? Comments? Email anotherround@buzzfeed.com.

Skip to footer