On the heels of an emergency evacuation order from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and North Dakota governor Jack Dalrymple and fines of $1,000 set for those who would deliver supplies like water and food, it seems like Ace Hardware has fallen in line with law enforcement and is refusing to sell supplies to protestors.
Singer Neko Case tweeted what appears to be an official statement from Ace Hardware that plainly states that they will be complying with law enforcement’s desires and will “refrain from selling materials that could be used at the camps.”
Citing the “safety” of their employees, customers and services, but clarifying that their refusal to sell goods to the protestors is “not a reflection of any corporoate viewpoint on the pipeline project,” the statement rightfully infuriated many people. On Wednesday night, the hashtag #BoycottAceHardware started making the rounds on Twitter.
The fines are one thing –nefarious and unnecessarily cruel–but Ace Hardware refusing to sell supplies to these protestors is somehow worse. With 2,000 veterans pledging to stand in solidarity as a “human shield” on December 4, Ace Hardware’s compliance with law enforcement’s attempt to cut the protest off by literally starving them out and hitting them with water cannons and rubber bullets could very quickly make a bad situation even worse.
Update, 12:38 A.M.: A statement from Ace Hardware clarifies that there is “no ban on the sale of products” at “locally-owned Ace stores” and that they have been “working feverishly to unearth all of the facts, which have been cloudy at times.”
Editor’s note: The image for this post has been changed.