Grand Jury Resistance Solidarity Actions on February 1st
This a national call for actions against the grand jury, the feds, the pipeline and its world on February 1st. Spread the resistance to the federal grand jury convened to investigate the struggles of Water Protectors at Standing Rock against the Dakota Access Pipeline! Drop a banner, hold a rally, have a workshop, be ungovernable, lock down, mask up and act up. Our targets are many but our goal is clear.
To the best of our knowledge the grand jury began in December 2016, with the first appearance required by subpoena on January 4th, 2017 at the U.S. District court in Bismarck. It will continue to attempt to interrogate those subpoenaed on a monthly basis for up to 16 more months, or longer should the court approve an extension. But, we gather strength from the long history of grand jury resistance.
On January 4th, Steve Martinez, the first Water Protector known to be subpoenaed to the grand jury, delivered a powerful statement of non-cooperation with the grand jury and federal investigators. Steve was surrounded by a crowd of Water Protectors, friends and comrades outside of the Federal Courthouse in Bismark. We ushered him to the door, hugging him, thanking him, and holding back tears. We feared we would not see Steve again for months for refusing to testify before the grand jury. A U.S. Marshall took Steve from us and he began the repressive confrontation with the grand jury, alone. We stood outside singing, praying, holding banners, and conversing. We chanted “Blake Snake Killaz.” We chanted “Grand Jury Killaz.” We demanded that they return Steve to us.
An hour later, Steve walked out of the Federal Courthouse. Cheers tore through the crowd. He stood in front of the building, cops and U.S. Marshals at his back, pulled out his black tie with the words Mni Wiconi in blue lettering ironed on it, and raised his fist. We raised our fists with him. This day we reminded ourselves that solidarity is both a source of strength and a tool of attack. Steve was free and among us. We all embraced him as he smiled, breathed.
Mni Wiconi, Water is Life. Grand Juries and the world they secure are the terrifying, lethal monolith of the state. We remain steadfast in this small victory and hold to our demands: Abolish grand juries. Kill the Black Snake. Allow water to continue to give life as it always has. We are the vibrant, joyous life force in resistance to death, which is all that the state and capital can offer. We stand in solidarity with all grand jury resisters, all land defenders, and all indigenous warriors.
It is unconfirmed if more subpoenas have been issued, but we expect they have and we expect more to come. If the state wants to perform its modern day inquisitions in secrecy, let us unveil them for the world to see.
We ask you to join us in shining the light on this grand jury. Where the state and the pipeline have only death and loss to offer, the vibrancy of our solidarity and fierce spirits show we will never cooperate. We will not stop until the land, its spirits, and its forms are liberated.
With joyful rage and the utmost solidarity,
Water Protector Anti-Repression Crew