I learned about this on my twitter feed about three days ago. I’m still trying to process how this is happening and how it’s like no one is reporting this important issue and story, except for citizen activists, donor-funded sources like Democracy Now, and little-known news blog sites like this one.

Privately contracted security forces are using a surface-to-air missile launcher (albeit an outdated model) to intimidate the water protectors at Standing Rock, North Dakota. When people tried to ask questions about why the Avenger launcher was there, those people got maced.

#NoDAPL is still happening. People’s freedom of speech and assembly, their dignity, and the livelihood of their environment are still being threatened and violated by security forces that are directly funded by U.S tax payers. This was not okay six months ago. This is not okay today.

No matter what your stance on whether the pipeline should be built or not, I hope you can agree that unarmed activists and protestors being threatened and attacked by weapons that are normally used in military operations is not something this country should condone. This is an instance of the country struggling to answer a basic yet fundamental question: do we want a country that’ll do whatever it takes to protect the interests of multi-billion-dollar corporations even if that means using war weapons and attack dogs against citizens, and natives and immigrants that stand opposed to those corporate interests? Or do we want a country that stays firm in respecting the rights and liberties of its people as outlined in the Constitution, even when those people stand united against the energy interests of the country’s most influential corporations?