Ammon Bundy is making his thoughts known on the Dakota Access Pipeline. The Oregon militia leader was back on the news on Thursday after being acquitted by a federal jury. Bundy and six others occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in a 41-day armed standoff that resulted in the fatal shooting of LaVoy Finicum, also part of the Oregon militia.
Sensing his moment to seize the spotlight for a good cause, Bundy took to Twitter on Saturday to issue a formal statement about the First Nations protestors attempting to halt construction of the oil pipeline, which would run from North Dakota to Illinois.
Bundy reiterated his support early Sunday morning.It’s unclear how Bundy wants to help but he certainly feels that the Standing Rock Sioux’s ideology aligns with his own. Bundy has either offered support or is interested in giving it, though he writes in his statement that “the Natives [sic] Americans have not asked any groups besides other Native American tribes to come in to help.”
To the contrary, protestors of all ethnicities have joined the #NoDAPL demonstration. It was white actress Shailene Woodley who further called attention to the cause when she streamed her arrest at Standing Rock on Facebook Live. How Woodley could make headlines while other activists were overlooked has about as much to do with white privilege as the Oregon militia’s acquittal.
The jury behind that decision has been heavily scrutinized and white privilege has been cited as the key reason Bundy and others are now free. Bundy doesn’t see it that way, somewhat falling into the “all lives matter” camp, which he indicated in one of his tweets about the Dakota Access Pipeline.
Prior to Bundy issuing his statement, his tweets were littered with pro-Donald Trump hashtags. He called out Black Lives Matter, referring to its members “thugs.” Let’s just say Bundy’s not the most racially sensitive person around. When it comes to issues of land, however, he’s slightly more attuned to the cause.