Lamb Of God’s Randy Blythe has announced he’ll join the protest against the $3.7 billion oil pipeline project in North Dakota.
The frontman will be among thousands of protestors standing in solidarity with the Native American Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, whose reservation is close to the project’s path. They believe the proposed 1172 mile pipeline would affect their supply of drinking water and could lead to potential oil spills.
Blythe says: “So now when I am finally off tour, why am I going far inland to freezing North Dakota of all places, where people are getting tear gassed and arrested, instead of to the much warmer beach to chill?
“I am going because as a surfer, I know that all of our planet’s water is connected, and that you cannot poison a river without it eventually leading to the sea.”
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He continues: “I am going because there are people trying to stop a river from being poisoned, and they need firewood, coffee, wool blankets, winter sleeping bags, and strong hands that know how to swing an axe. I have those things, so I am driving them there.”
Rock icon Neil Young surprised activists at the Dakota rally by performing with his acoustic guitar on his 71st birthday last week.
More than 400 protestors have been arrested so far by heavily militarised law enforcement officers, who have deployed pepper spray, teargas, rubber bullets, Tasers, sound weapons and other methods.