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Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016 12:17 am

Letters to the Editor 11/3/16

Rapper Tom Barrett Jr., a member of the Red Lake Reservation in Northern Minnesota, takes a stand against the Dakota Access Pipeline, a 1,172-mile-long oil pipeline that will transport more than 570,000 barrels of crude oil per day through North Dakota, S
PHOTO © Richard Tsong-Taatarii/zReportage.com via ZUMA Wire



I was glad to see the opinion piece in the last edition of Illinois Times (“A tale of two pipes,” Jim Hightower, Oct. 27) about the historic event going on at Standing Rock Reservation between the indigenous people and Energy Transfer Partners, the owner of Dakota Access Pipeline. We have seen so little about this in mainstream media that you would think it wasn’t a big deal. We did see a piece a few months ago in The State Journal-Register stating how nice the people at Energy Transfer Partners are to work with and how well-received they have been in Illinois. That seems like a very one-sided view.

It didn’t tell you of the horrors going on in North Dakota. If you pull yourself away from mainstream media, you would see that the police and governor of North Dakota are out of control. They have pulled out all the stops with the National Guard, tanks, dogs, tear gas, rubber bullets and snipers. They are arresting and strip searching people. They are arresting the press and confiscating their footage. These folks do not have guns. They are dancing, drumming, praying and trying to protect their water, our water.

I was lucky enough to travel with a friend to Standing Rock about a month or so ago. We spent three nights at the Oceti Sakowin Camp with people from all over the world who oppose the pipeline and wanted to stand in solidarity with the water protectors. We met women from the Sami tribe who are the indigenous people of Scandinavia, the reindeer herders. We met medicine men from the Amazon and the Grand Canyon. There was a busload of people that came in from Norway. There were around 4,000 people there while we were there. The one thing we had in common is that we all realize that water is needed for life. Water is not an unlimited supply on this earth, and if we continue to not be better caretakers of this planet, we will not have anything left for future generations.

I believe the indigenous people are aware of this. That is why more than 200 tribes have come together in solidarity for this. Maybe we need to start listening to them.

If you don’t know about this, do some research. Look up Standing Rock. Look up the Dakota Access Pipeline. See how you can get involved. Water is the life support of everything. Let’s start making changes for a better future.

Patricia Drake


Congressman Rodney Davis has been getting a lot of praise for being so civil and not attacking his opponent.

It is very easy to be civil when your opponent has no money or name recognition and is more than 20 points behind. Last time Davis had an opponent on his tail, he ran one of the nastiest campaigns with numerous false negative ads against David Gill. They worked. Davis beat Gill by 0.3 percent.

This time Davis knew he couldn’t beat Gill, so the congressman had his former Macon County GOP chairman challenge Gill’s petitions because, running as an independent, Gill needed 15 times more signatures than Davis. Even though the U.S. District Court ordered that Gill, with 8,500 valid signatures, had to remain on the ballot, a higher court stayed the order, allowing Davis’ challenge to kick in again and remove his only real opponent from the ballot.

This is very unfortunate because Davis supports the TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership), which will cost our country jobs, undermine our environmental and food safety laws, hike prescription drug prices and infringe on our internet freedoms.

To top it all off, Davis backed Trump and served on his advisory committee. Then, at the last minute, Davis said he’s not voting Trump, but won’t say who he is voting for. Yet one of the duties of the House of Representatives is to pick our president when no one gets a majority of the Electoral College, and it will have to be one of the top three vote getters in the Electoral College vote, meaning Trump or Clinton.

We deserve better.

Angel Sides


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