XL Dissent: 398 Youth Arrested at Anti-Keystone XL Pipeline Protest at White House

Democracy Now, 3/3/14

On Sunday, 398 opponents of the proposed Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline were arrested in front of the White House in what could be the largest youth sit-in on the environment in a generation. Students from more than 80 colleges rallied at Georgetown University and then marched to the White House, wearing mock “hazmat suits” and holding banners with slogans like “Keep your oil out of my soil” and “Even Voldemort hates tar sands.” President Obama is expected to issue a decision in the next few months on the pipeline, which would transport 830,000 barrels of crude every day from Alberta’s oil sands to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast. We speak to American University student Deirdre Shelly about why she was arrested on Sunday and the growing student-led movement to convince universities, colleges and cities to divest from fossil fuel companies.
Transcript

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: Three hundred ninety-eight opponents of the Keystone XL pipeline were arrested Sunday in front of the White House in what could be the largest youth sit-in on the environment in a generation. Students from over 80 colleges rallied at Georgetown University, then marched to the White House wearing mock hazmat suits, holding banners with slogans like “Keep your oil out of my soil” and “Even Voldemort hates tar sands.” The protesters then unfurled a black tarp, and about 50 people lay down on the sidewalk creating a “human oil spill.” Several hundred protesters locked themselves to the White House fence after being arrested by security. Here are some of the voices from the protest.

PROTESTER 1: Hundreds of young people, probably going to be over a thousand on the march, all came here from all over the country, 42 states, to show President Obama that Keystone XL is not OK, that it is not in our national interest and that we need to reject that pipeline and keep the tar sands in the ground.

PROTESTER 2: We’re here to show President Obama and Secretary Kerry that the Keystone XL is not a good move. We do not approve of it. That’s why we’re calling it XL Dissent.

PROTESTER 3: We have thousands of young people here in the streets of Washington, D.C., marching to the White House to risk arrest to demand that President Obama say no to Keystone XL….

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