BISMARCK, N.D. - Escalating tensions between protestors and Dakota Access LLC lead to clashes over the weekend. Some Native Americans say they disagree with the tactics some in the protest site are using.
Lorraine Davis, an enrolled member of the Sisseton Wahpeton Dakota Nation, has lived in the Bismarck area for more than a decade and says she's horrified at the intimidation between activists and the company.
She says while the use of dogs by private security is deplorable, activists shouldn't be vandalizing equipment and trespassing.
"I think we need to remove the violent type of behaviors that is coming from both sides and then really come together to just talk about it and find solutions," said Davis.
Davis says many in her community believe in peace and prayer. She says the unlawful activity is a step back in coming to an agreeable solution.
The same message is coming from Washington, where everyone's awaiting the court decision.
"What I would say to North Dakotans - and when I say North Dakotans, I mean people on all sides of the issue - regardless of the outcome if you disagree with the outcome, use the peaceful, established, legal forms to issue your protest. That is to say the courts, that is to say the ballot box, that is to say lobbying your governor or whatever the case might be. Do it lawfully and peacefully. There are appeal opportunities for whoever loses. There might be further appeal opportunities for whoever loses. There might even be new negotiations that surface as a part of this. Do it all, but do it peacefully and do it lawfully," says Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D.
“As North Dakotans, our treatment and respect for one another has always been paramount. It’s absolutely imperative that as the significant issues that have been raised by both sides are considered in federal court, the rights of tribes to peacefully protest, and the rights of workers to safely do their jobs are honored. I’m grateful to our local law enforcement – particularly Morton County officers – for their reverence and care in keeping our communities safe, and as this issue proceeds in court, I’ll be working to make sure that the sustained respect and care for our neighbors that makes us inherently North Dakotan is upheld," says Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D.