The US government claims I'm a 'domestic terrorist'. Am I? | Ken Ward
I was acting as part of the “Valve Turners” direct action against climate change. Five of us, in locations across four states, succeeded in shutting down all five pipelines carrying Canadian tar sands oil into the US for a day. We were careful, transparent, civil and nonviolent. We put a premium on minimizing damage to pipeline property, and carefully considered ways to minimize any violations of the law. We called the pipeline companies beforehand, and waited around afterwards for the police to arrest us (nearly an hour in two cases).
Our motley crew of mostly retirees included a former IT manager, a retired tribal government attorney, a psychologist, a poet and, in my case, a climate activist and part-time handyman. None of us had ever been charged with a major crime. We were moved to action because the world is marching toward climate cataclysm, with almost nothing being done to change that. We acted out of distress for our children and grandchildren. We acted on behalf of the poorest peoples of the world, who have contributed almost nothing to the climate problem yet will suffer the most from its effects. We acted for all the wild things and wild places which have no voice.
In an intelligence report, the DHS catalogued 34 deaths and numerous cases of violence in recent years. Those included acts of terror by Dylann Roof, who “used a Glock 41 pistol to conduct a shooting at a bible study at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, SC”, killing nine; Robert Dear, who “used an AK-47 to conduct a shooting at the Colorado Springs, CO Planned Parenthood”, killing three; and Micah Johnson, who killed five police officers in a shooting spree in Dallas.