Shailene Woodley was arrested on Monday in North Dakota for trespassing while she protested the Dakota Access Pipeline. It has been reported that the protest included around 200 participants, and 27 protesters were arrested. Woodley took to Facebook and livestreamed her arrest, while narrating exactly what was going down. “[I’m being arrested] because I’m well known, because I have 40,000 people watching”, Woodley declared. "We were going to our vehicle which they had all surrounded and waiting for me with giant guns, and a giant truck behind them just so they could arrest me," she explained, "I hope you're watching, mainstream media." Woodley hands off her phone and is recorded as she leaves, handcuffed, with the police.
The protest Woodley attended was one of several for the Dakota Access Pipeline, which would transport crude oil from the North Dakota Bakken region through South Dakota and Iowa, to be received in Illinois. While the pipeline would be relatively cost effective and make lots of oil simple to transport, there are valid counter arguments. The pipeline could be detrimental to the environment, and would be using land that has spiritual and historical significance to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, and endanger their drinking water supply. The Tribe has filed a complaint to federal court, but the US court of appeals rejected the injunction to halt construction. It’s no coincidence that this protest occurred on Columbus Day, a federal holiday that is extremely hurtful to Native American’s (because, ya know, they were already here when Columbus “discovered” North American land. Many American's celebrated Indigenous Peoples' Day instead.)
Woodley has been released from jail, and we have no doubt that she will continue to be vocal and active against the pipeline. As Maya Angelou once said, "If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude." Something tells us Woodley will stick with the first option.