Eve Ottenberg

Why 21st Social Movements Are Very Different from the Last Century

In mid-March, a Canadian alliance of First Nation tribes led protests in British Columbia over the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. This action followed other indigenous protests in Canada and the United States over the past few years, over Keystone XL, the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, and the Bayou Bridge. One of the most widely covered of these protests, the anti-DAPL demonstrations at Standing Rock, was led by the Standing Rock Sioux, which unfolded in tandem with their lawsuit against the Army Corps of Engineers. Under President Obama, the Corps finally denied an easement for the construction of the pipeline. With little apparent care for the Sioux’s concerns, President Trump promptly reversed that move.

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