North Dakota Charges Journalist Amy Goodman for Exercising Her First Amendment Rights
It seems freedom of the press no longer means much — at least not in North Dakota, where an arrest warrant has been issued for Amy Goodman of “DemocracyNow!” after she recorded footage of “private security personnel’s use of dogs to attack Native American foes of the Dakota Access Pipeline project.” It’s also where arrest warrants were issued recently for Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein and running mate Ajamu Baraka for actions during their participation in protests against the project.
From The Nation:
Video footage obtained by Goodman, an internationally respected and frequently honored independent journalist, helped to alert Americans to the tactics being used to stop demonstrations against the pipeline by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and their allies. On Friday, the Obama administration halted work on key portions of the $3.8 billion pipeline project—recognizing concerns raised by the tribe and environmental activists.
The president’s action didn’t sway authorities in the state, though. North Dakota’s Dickinson Press reported over the weekend that:
Authorities have issued an arrest warrant for Amy Goodman of New York for a Class B misdemeanor, according to court documents.
Goodman, a reporter for the independent news program, can be seen on news footage from Sept. 3 documenting the clash between protesters and private security personnel with guard dogs at a Dakota Access construction site, including footage showing people with bite injuries and a dog with blood on its mouth.
The video footage has been widely cited by people who have since criticized the use of dogs by the security personnel.
Again from The Nation:
Goodman has been open and outspoken with regard to her reporting from North Dakota. … Goodman’s accounts helped to raise awareness of the pipeline fight at a critical stage. And her assessment of the struggle has helped to put it in historical and contemporary context. “The battle against the Dakota Access Pipeline is being waged as a renewed assertion of indigenous rights and sovereignty, as a fight to protect clean water, but, most importantly, as part of the global struggle to combat climate change and break from dependence on fossil fuels,” Goodman and [Denis] Moynihan wrote. “At the Sacred Stone, Red Warrior and other camps at the confluence of the Missouri and Cannonball rivers, the protectors are there to stay, and their numbers are growing daily.”
That is a fair assessment. It is also fair to say that an arrest warrant will not keep Amy Goodman from speaking up.
— Posted by Natasha Hakimi Zapata
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