We rounded up some of the reactions and comments to Tim DeChristopher's sentencing this week:
Mountainfilm Festival Director David Holbrooke:
While we are sad that our friend Tim DeChristopher is going to prison, he has always known he was going to face time for his courageous actions. Today, we at Mountainfilm find ourselves - once again - inspired by his deep and fierce commitment to combating climate change and we hope the Mountainfilm community will take action, locally and nationally, on this crucial issue of our time.
On that life-changing Friday in December, DeChristopher stepped out of that respect for law and appealed to a higher authority -- a care for the Earth and for future generations. The government has declared him, as Thoreau predicted, to be an enemy. The American public may beg to differ.
DeChristopher spoke on the steps of the federal courthouse after being convicted on two felony charges after being denied the right to tell his story in court about how public lands fell prey to industry cozy with the BLM and why a fossil fuels future endangers all of us. This “continuing trail of statements” is called freedom of speech, Your Honor, not “anarchy.” We are all shamed by this sentence. The criminal is not DeChristopher but our justice system.
Once in a while, the moral insanity of the world we live in reveals itself to anyone who cares to look. One such moment came yesterday afternoon, when 27-year-old Tim DeChristopher was sentenced to two years in prison for disrupting a federal auction of oil and gas leases in 2008.
Heartbroken and outraged that Tim @dechristopher will spend next 2 years in prison, democracy is in chains today.
Here's another idea: What if instead of landing him in jail, DeChristopher's bidding was welcomed and encouraged? What if his bids were a real threat to energy developers that currently receive public lands at a discount? What if environmentalists were allowed to bid for federal land leases, win them, and protect them from development? It's a question no one is asking, but it's an important one.
His jailing is an ominous and disappointing act in a desperate bid to protect a dying industry and corrupt system that places the interests of polluting corporations before those of the earth and future generations.