Protesting at the pump

March 16, 2017 12:08 PM

Life in the United States seems predicated on the ideal of freedom and having the option to choose. So why have we disregarded the only choice at the pump?
I believe we can regain our independence by not supporting the Dakota Access Pipeline by boycotting companies that aid our addiction to big oil consumption.
On March 7, I was headed home toward 12th Street and Broadway. Right on the corner were about 45 anti-DAPL protesters blocking the entrance of Wells Fargo. Wells Fargo happens to be one of the most corrupt banks in the US to date. From 2011 to 2015 they settled $185 million dollars in penalties for falsifying 1.5 million accounts and 560,000 credit card accounts.
Wells Fargo is also DAPL’s second largest backer, investing over $467 million into the project. About 10-15 police officers stood on standby ready to “de-escalate” any hostile situations. But the protesters, with their picket signs and concern for the environment, had no intentions other than raising awareness of our environmental crisis.
“PUMP”, a 2014 documentary by Josh Tickell and Rebecca Harrell Tickell, thoroughly explains the history of our national dependence on oil and exposes the monopoly of petroleum-based fuel.
“PUMP” suggests that our problem stems from not having options at the pump and being “prohibited” to utilize other clean energy sources. America consists of 4.5 percent of the world’s population, but we use up to 20 percent of fossil fuels worldwide.
The documentary covers alternative, affordable sources (such as ethanol, alcohol and methanol) which can fuel any vehicle made after 1996.
This film provides us with an in depth understanding of our source of oil and what role the military plays in protecting our foreign oil sources, costing us trillions of dollars while creating unmanageable amounts of CO2.
If we continue to bring about social upheaval and inform ourselves about the choices we can make, maybe we can mitigate the decimation of our planet.

Jumoke Evans is a staff writer at the Laney Tower. E-mail her at j.evans256(at)gmail.com.

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