For months now, activists have packed in to Standing Rock to be by the sides of the Native American water protectors. After the most recent injuries in the area, up to 2,000 veterans from Salt Lake City to the East Coast were invited to stand with these citizens.
Whatever side of the argument you agree with, you have to wonder who ends up responsible if someone is injured or dies in the heat of the protest. Should the family hire a wrongful death lawyer, or is it pointless?
A Girl Whose Life Is Permanently Changed
Sophia Wilansky of New York was known around the nation for injuries to her arm, which she incurred while protesting. Doctors told her family she may need up to 20 surgeries over several months in order to save her hand and arm.
During a night of water cannons atop a bridge, Wilansky took an explosive to the arm. Doctors saved shards to help her family build a case. Whether it was the protestors or the police responsible, the fact remains, her family was lucky not to need a wrongful death lawyer.
What Are Your Rights?
For a functioning democracy, we need a free flow of information in the marketplace of ideas. This means that your first amendment right to protest, “…the right of people peaceable to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances,” is vital to the continuation of the democracy we know and love.
This right has been violated in the past with the illegal use of force, criminalization of protests and mass arrests, especially so during the civil rights movement. If you’re looking to participate, you should always remember that if an officer stops you, stay calm and be polite.
At this point in time, there have been no wrongful death cases in Standing Rock. Though hundreds claim to have been left injured or traumatized, a class action lawsuit is being talked about.
Whatever side of the debate you take, have a strong lawyer on your side for a feeling of reassurance.