Shailene Woodley's Arrest Is Kinda Sorta a Blessing for the Pipeline Protest

In what we imagine was a tumultous 24 hours, Shailene Woodley turned out to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota, live streamed it to 40,000 fans, was arrested, was released, and watched as her video hit more than 3.5 million views in less than a day. 

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The live stream is still up on Shailene's page and it ended up being a full two hours long. She makes it through most of that without any major problems. She even points out the police at one point and says, "I have to say, they were peaceful today. That is a blessing." But she runs into cops about seven minutes from the end:

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Obviously, the bad news here is that Shailene was arrested for criminal trespassing. The good news is that it was for a really good cause -- the Dakota Access Pipeline is designed to bring oil from North Dakota to Illinois, but its proposed path would destroy areas sacred to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. Protesters are also worried that it would contaminate the drinking water in the area, and hit the tribe's water supply the hardest.

Shailene says she was singled out, and that's kind of true and kind of not true -- according to E! Online, the county sheriff said Shailene was one of 27 people who were arrested out of a total of 200 protesters, so she definitely wasn't alone. But the camera and attention on her did most likely made her a more interesting target (if you want to use that word).

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In any case, she was released from North Dakota's Morton County Jail a few hours later. And though it could have been emotionally harrowing, her arrest helped her cause a lot -- views on her video spiked exponentially, and more people are talking about this protest (and the reason why it existed in the first place) than would have been otherwise.

Her rep told People, "She appreciates the outpouring of support, not only for her, but more importantly, for the continued fight against the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline" ... so clearly, Shai's team has the same idea.

 

Image via Splash News

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