DAPL and Bernie

The Dakota Access Pipeline is a-building and all of President Obama’s requests that construction be stopped in the Lake Oahe section have been ignored. The military style enforcement against the First Nation protests continues with arrests and harassment at a tremendous level.

Bernie Sanders, with Patrick Leahy, Dianne Feinstein, Edward Markey, and Ben Cardin, wrote a letter to Mr. Obama requesting that he do what he promised to do years ago, stop the DAPL. These five senators, led I’m proud to say by the Vermont contingent, have spoken of the environmental and cultural degradation going on in the pursuit of money, profits, for the few at the expense of clean water for hundreds of thousands of people and clean air and climate stabilization for the world.

Islands throughout the world are suffering rising ocean levels. Vanuatu, one of the newest countries, may be the first to disappear under this onslaught. Rick Scott forbids Florida government employees from discussing climate change while Florida’s water table is being invaded by the Atlantic Ocean, making environmental hash of wildlife and drinking water resources. Hurricane Matthew, so destructive in Haiti as well as in our southern states, is only the most recent in a growing line of killer storms that grow from the heated oceanic waters.

What we need now is leadership to combat all of the assaults on our environment, in large measure because of fossil fuels. The one leading now is Bernie Sanders, who got this group of senators to sign the letter. We are not getting leadership from either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton, the person who got the Democratic nomination for president over Bernie. Since when is a presidential election allowed to overrun the day to day business of this country? When native Americans and fellow protesters are being arrested for exercising First Amendment rights, why can’t Hillary and Barack speak from the many podia they share to say that enough is enough about the climate when they spend so much time saying it about Donald Trump.

I say the climate is more important than they are admitting. Donald Trump has shot himself in the foot one time too many. He has admitted committing sexual assaults, and then threatens the New York Times with a lawsuit when they produce his victims. He is no longer a concern. The clean water in the Missouri River, in the drinking sources of much of the Midwest, is more important. Guess what, apparent leaders of the Democratic Party? You can do more than one thing at the same time. You can excoriate Donald Trump and Dakota Access at the same time. Trump is an investor in the pipeline. Not only is he a sexual predator, he also preys on the environment and the rights of First Nations.

Now I’m not surprised that Bernie gets it, and that he has led his doughty crew of Democratic senators to sign this letter to the president. He has been right on so many issues for so many years, and he is a leader we could be proud of. I am casting my vote in the next week, and I will be writing in Bernie Sanders. He has continued to show the leadership we are entitled to and need. Hillary hasn’t. Hillary doesn’t deserve my vote. I hope many of you are with me.

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