Tim DeChristopher © 2010 DaphneHougard
(KCPW News) In the hours leading up to environmental activist Tim DeChristopher’s sentencing this afternoon, dozens of supporters gathered across the street from the federal courthouse. Ashley Anderson, director of Peaceful Uprising, a non-profit group co-founded by DeChristopher two years ago, says it’s not an end to their call to action.
“If Tim goes to prison, we’re going to take it as a call to take more action to stop the real criminals out there, which are the corporate CEOs and the fossil fuel industry corporations that are out there committing crimes and aren’t being held accountable because the justice system, so far, has been unable to address these crimes, we’re going to have to take it upon ourselves, and that will be a long term project that we’ll undertake in the spirit of what Tim did,” he says.
Cori Redstone, a co-founder of Peaceful Uprising, says DeChristopher wasn’t given a fair trial, because in the end, the oil and gas lease parcels at the auction he was protesting in 2008 were later canceled by the Obama Administration.
“Oil and gas companies are pushing the federal government to prosecute Tim and to prosecute protesters much more harshly and they’re making an example out of Tim rather than actually worrying about justice and focusing on justice,” says Redstone. “This is absolutely an unjust prosecution. He raised a bidder paddle.”
DeChristopher’s cause has attracted the support of celebrities like Robert Redford and Daryl Hannah, though his actions have been condemned by conservative lawmakers in the Utah Legislature.