Actress says arrest in Dakota Access Pipeline protest was on Indigenous Peoples Day
In essay for Time, she encourages others to take a stand for Native Americans
Shailene Woodley is sharing the story of her arrest.
The “Divergent” star was charged with criminal trespassing and engaging in a riot on October 10 in North Dakota while protesting the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline.
She pleaded not guilty to charges Wednesday, and on Thursday Time published her firsthand account titled “Shailene Woodley: The Truth About My Arrest.”
The actress, an outspoken activist for the Native American community, used her essay to further that cause.
She pointed out that her arrest was on Indigenous Peoples Day, “a holiday where America is meant to celebrate the indigenous people of North America.”
“We grow up romanticizing native culture, native art, native history … without knowing native reality,” Woodley wrote.
“Somehow, we’ve allowed 200-plus years to go by without questioning the western truth we have been told to believe about Native Americans.”
At the time of her arrest, Woodley was one of 200 protesting the 1,172-mile pipeline that they say will have a negative impact on historically significant Native American tribal lands and damage the environment.
In her piece, she lamented the lack of recognition of Native Americans as “marginalized communities in our country” and their struggle against the pipeline.
“So much so that it took me, a white non-native woman being arrested on Oct 10th in North Dakota, on Indigenous Peoples’ Day, to bring this cause to many people’s attention,” she wrote. “And to the forefront of news publications around the world.”
She encouraged her fans and others to take up the cause.
“Simply feeding off the hype of a celebrity’s arrest ain’t going to save the world,” she noted. “But, standing together will. Please stand in solidarity with the Sioux people of Standing Rock Reservation to ensure that we still have rivers to swim in, springs to drink from and lakes to float on.”