North Dakota Pipeline protesters attempted to crowdsource money to aid them in their protest of the construction of the four-state long Dakota Access oil pipeline. The effort yielded surprising results.
“It still feels unreal sometimes because it is such an astronomical figure to me,” said Ho Waste Wakiya Wicasa, a protester who set up the original GoFundMe campaign. “The money goes as quickly as it comes, but without having been as much as it is, we certainly wouldn’t have been able to be as productive as we have been in the fight.”
Wholly 95.4% of U.S. citizens participate charitable giving at some point in their lifetime. Given that fact, it should come as little surprise that though the protestors originally planned to raise $5,000, they earned more than $1 million.
According to CBS News, the GoFundMe revenue is part of a stream of cash that has so far totaled $3 million to pay for legal expenses, provide food, and accommodate other essential supplies to people opposing the nearly 1,200-mile pipeline.
Much of the money is being used to aid protesters after they have been both harassed and arrested by police.
“Over 300 riot police came,” a protester said. “They came with force, and they bulldozed the camp. They maced people today, they based them in the face.”
More than 140 protesters have been arrested.
Despite the opposition that these peaceful protesters are facing, they do not plan on backing down.
“I know the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe is not alone.” said Dave Archambault, the chairman of the tribe. “We have overwhelming support. He states that his tribe, along with other tribes and people all over the world providing donations are helping the fight against these corporations that are in favor of the pipeline construction.
“This is our water supply,” said Carol DiPirro, a New Hampshire resident who has been donating to the protesters. You run a pipeline through it and it leaks, you are poisoning us. This really, really struck a chord with me.”