Bernie Sanders Calls on President Obama to Stop the Pipeline by Declaring Standing Rock a National Monument

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A traditional Sioux teepee at sunrise in the overflow Sacred Stone Camp at Cannon Ball, North Dakota: Walter Simon

By Glynn Wilson –

Bernie Sanders’ new political revolution is calling on the American public to get involved to help stop the Dakota Access Pipeline in Cannon Ball, North Dakota, by putting pressure on the Obama administration to designate a “Standing Rock National Monument” on the site of the protest by the Lakota Sioux reservation at the confluence of the Missouri and Cannon Ball Rivers.

“The Dakota Access pipeline would carry some of the dirtiest oil on the planet across four states, putting at risk farms, native sacred places, critical water sources, and our flight against climate change,” the organization said in an e-mail blast on Friday calling on people to sign a petition to help the cause.

Authorities have already attacked the peaceful resistance at Standing Rock in North Dakota and arrested journalists and water protectors in the path of the pipeline, the organization points out.

“Even though the Obama Administration put a temporary hold on construction on one section, the company building the Dakota Access pipeline will be aggressively moving to finish construction before Donald Trump is president,” the announcement continues. “This means the best shot we have at stopping the Dakota Access pipeline is through bold action by President Obama to declare a ‘Standing Rock’ national monument that prohibits pipelines in, over or underneath the land and water. We must protect the Great Sioux Nation’s homelands.”

With a little more than two months left in President Obama’s term, there is very little time to organize and convince the president to declare the site a national monument.

The Vermont Senator who many believe could have defeated Trump in the presidential election if the Democratic Party had nominated him instead of Hillary Clinton, is using the spotlight he gained in his candidacy for president to continue what he is calling a “political revolution.” In a new book called Our Revolution, the same name as the new organization he has formed, Sanders tells his story in his signature, no-nonsense style, from his humble origins in Brooklyn, N.Y. to his career as a Vermont senator, his decision to run for president, the complex and daunting challenge of organizing a campaign, and finally, the issues before us that desperately need fixing.

Now on a speaking tour accross the country to promote his book, Sanders continues to point out that the corporate media is a crucial part of the problem in the U.S.

Had the major networks and newspapers taken him seriously a year ago and lavished him with as much attention as Trump and Clinton were given, he says, the country might be in a different position today.

In interviews with independent journalists, Sanders says, “Corporate media is not going to talk about the real issues facing this country,” he says. “Let us not be naive — corporate media is owned by large, multinational conglomerates.”

While the first half of the book tells how he ran his campaign, the second half offers a deep and clear-eyed analysis of what is wrong with the U.S. economy, how it is fractured along racial and gender lines, and how corporate America and the federal government have screwed over workers.

To Sanders and his followers, the election of Donald Trump as president means the stakes are higher than ever in the fight against climate change.

“It means we need to be vigilant about any threats to our environment, and we must be ready to advocate for bold action,” he says. “Tens of thousands of members of Our Revolution have stood up to oppose the construction of the pipeline, and you’ve helped contribute more than one hundred thousand dollars to groups fighting the pipeline,” he tells follwers.

Tribal chairmen from Standing Rock, Cheyenne River, Oglala, Rosebud, Crow Creek, Santee, Lower Brule, Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate and Flandreau Sioux Nations have all endorsed this bold idea to get President Obama to protect the land, water and his legacy with a Standing Rock Monument.

“Our work up to this point has helped bring attention to the threat of this pipeline and the stakes in our fight against the effects of climate change,” Sanders says. “But in less than two months, our president will be someone who believes climate change is a hoax perpetrated by China, who says land can be taken by private corporations against farmers and Tribal Nations legal rights, and who wants to do all he can to increase the use of fossil fuels.”

To add your name to the petition to President Obama asking him to declare a “Standing Rock” national monument in order to stop the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline, click here.


A wide angle view of the overlow Sacred Stone camp where the Cannon Ball and Missouri Rivers converge in Cannon Ball, N.D.: Glynn Wilson


The entrance to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in Cannon Ball, N.D.: Walter Simon

© 2016, Glynn Wilson. All rights reserved.

  24 comments for “Bernie Sanders Calls on President Obama to Stop the Pipeline by Declaring Standing Rock a National Monument

  1. November 18, 2016 at 9:15 am

    It’s not been fair to the indigenous peoples that this has been happening. If this were a long time ago, before polluting pipelines were being installed across wide range, this never would have been started.
    No matter how advanced their technology is.
    And if the Native Americans were mainstream Christian and decedents of European settlers, the desire to protect holy ground would have been given every proper consideration and there would be prominent backers of hallowing the ancestral burial grounds, as soon as the conditions of the land’s legacy came to light.

    • Mary
      November 27, 2016 at 9:13 am

      Totally agree with your comments. This is totally disrespectful in this day and age. No one bothered the stand off of the white men in the national park out west wanting to use the national park as their personal grazing lands for their own cattle. Nothing much as done and they were pretty much left to their own, even going into town to get more supplies to re-up their illegal stay.

  2. Adrienne Brietzke
    November 18, 2016 at 7:23 pm
    • Ben Welgoed
      November 23, 2016 at 3:11 pm

      A..e, Go whine somewhere else. This thread is not at all about your favorite topic.

  3. November 20, 2016 at 4:45 pm

    Mni wiconi Water is Life

    Standing with Standing Rock water protectors, defenders of the sacred source of life.

    Umax jakanataki

  4. Cliff
    November 21, 2016 at 5:48 pm

    Isnt the reservation sovereign land? How can the Feds declare it anything?

    • Riverlady
      November 23, 2016 at 9:15 pm

      It could be done like Canyon de Chelly, a national monument on the Navajo Nation that is operated by the Dine.

  5. November 21, 2016 at 6:00 pm

    Interesting question. I suspect he means the location of the pipeline and the camps, which are outside the reservation, the site of the battle, like the bridge in Selma. It seems Standing Rock is now a special place, not just the name of a reservation.

    • dunder
      November 24, 2016 at 1:38 am

      Yes, pipeline and camps are just outside reservation…but water protectors say this is on land that belonged to the tribe by treaty with US government and was never ceded to either the government or private owners…rather it was taken–illegally…but this remains legally tribal land by treaty.

      • M L Marvin
        November 30, 2016 at 12:34 am

        Please look for this young lady on FB ~ Lyla June Johnston. Watch her video regarding how we can help facilitate 3 steps being taken toward helping our Water Protectors (legal).

  6. Lori Ritchie
    November 21, 2016 at 6:02 pm

    President Obama, we are calling on you to stop the violence at Standing Rock. Make your legacy a great one by being the president that stopped the madness and greed.

    • Stephen Morgan
      November 24, 2016 at 10:24 am

      President Obama stop this don’t let it happen…..

  7. Michelle Moss
    November 24, 2016 at 11:46 pm

    President Obama. Do the right thing. It will be your legacy.

  8. November 25, 2016 at 8:06 am

    60 million genocided Native Americans and counting.

  9. Margo alderson
    November 25, 2016 at 1:56 pm

    President Obama, pleas use the powers you have at your disposal to put an end to the situation at Standing Rock, N.D. Cease all work on the NAPD, secure the sacred lands og the Native Americans on that reservation, and put in place a national monument as proposed by Bernie Sanders to commemorate this latest struggle of Native Americans, and the fact that for once our government will not again betray what was granted to, and accepted by the indigenous peoples, as their sacred land and home. As it stands now, Native Americans have been temoved from nearly all of their original territories due to the greed snd ignorance of europesn immigrants. It is time for the current U.S. government to be done with breaking treaties of this kind and recognize the sovereign nations and homelands of the peoples who were long before any european ever knew this continent existed. PLEASE TAKE ACTION IMMEDIATELY!

  10. Anna Maria
    November 26, 2016 at 6:11 pm

    Hear our cry!!!!

  11. Pat
    November 27, 2016 at 7:52 am

    Standing along side you

  12. November 27, 2016 at 9:25 am

    President Obama, This is such a righteous cause. Please stop the progress of the pipeline. Please send the oil folks home. Please choose the sacredness over the profit. Please choose the will of the people.

  13. Theresa Hillman
    November 27, 2016 at 9:28 am

    The danger of NOT doing this is enormous. The wolf is at the door.

  14. November 28, 2016 at 12:57 am

    Please stop this pipeline. Please do not break the treaty that was agreed upon many decades earlier. Native Americans are trying to protect a sacred place and the water that many, many Americans depend on.

  15. Terri Russell
    November 28, 2016 at 11:46 am

    If you can’t do anything else make standing rock a national monument. Thank you Bernie Sanders for the idea. Water IS life!!

  16. November 29, 2016 at 1:19 am

    Designating a national monument does not revoke existing rights-of-way. I like Bernie, but if he’s calling for this he needs to learn more about land management law. The right-of-way has been approved by the Army Corps of Engineers. That doesn’t mean it can’t be revoked, but it does mean it would be a valid pre-existing right-of-way, and therefore grandfathered in, if a national monument were designated.

    The other issue here is that if the current route of the pipeline were killed, one way or another, it seems very likely it would just be re-routed. So we still have the pipeline, it would still cross the Missouri River, and, with reference to the folks at Standing Rock, it would most likely be re-routed upstream than down–and therefore still affect them should a leak occur.

  17. November 29, 2016 at 1:23 am

    I assume, but do not know for certain, that the president does have the authority to revoke an existing right-of-way directly. I also assume that the president has the authority to either prevent the use of governmental force against the protestors or to call in federal force (presumably the National Guard) to protect the protestors and oppose state or other lower-level governmental forces that may be out of his control. Either of these–and I think the latter is particularly needed–seems to be a better avenue for the president to pursue.

  18. December 7, 2016 at 4:47 pm

    President Obama: It’s Time to Send in the National Guard to Protect the Water Protectors:

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