Yesterday we got news that the National Lawyers Guild was suing North Dakota’s Morton County, along with the county Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier, for allegedly using excessive police force against #NoDAPL protesters.
The NLG fashions itself a “human rights” organization which defends “civil liberties.” Yet without a hint of irony, on the same day the group announced their lawsuit against Morton County, the group posted this statement on the passing of brutal Cuban dictator Fidel Castro.
“Cuba under his leadership inspired generations worldwide to act in solidarity across national lines and against poverty, racism, disease and profit-inspired threats to the world’s environment,” the NLG states of Castro’s legacy.
The NLG praises Castro’s work on education and health care – which is something akin to praising Hitler for the Reichsautobahn – but even supposing positive outcomes in those areas could somehow excuse Castro’s egregious behavior in other areas it’s not at all clear that Castro actually, you know, improved health and education for Cubans all that much.
“Cuba has made less educational progress than most Latin American countries over the last 60 years,” Hans Bader from the Competitive Enterprise Institutione wrote recently, citing numbers from UNESCO and the United Nations. “Cuba has made less progress in health care and life expectancy than most of Latin America in recent years, due to its decrepit health care system.”
Bringing this back to North Dakota, it speaks volumes that a group which would fête a dictator with a demonstrable, indisputable, decades-long track record of brutal suppression would attack a North Dakota county for supposedly suppressing people who are protesting a pipeline.
To be sure, the NLG’s nauseating eulogy for Castro does not necessarily make them wrong in their claims against Morton County (though, as I wrote yesterday, I believe their arguments will fail) it does perhaps give us a window into their political motivations.
The NLG is clearly ok with political suppression, as long as it’s the right kind of people are being suppressed. That makes it easier to understand why the group would propose enjoining police officers from using non-lethal crowd control measures against #NoDAPL as they announced yesterday.
The #NoDAPL movement – or, at least, a large faction of it – is a bullying, unlawful mob which has repeatedly trampled on the rights of others despite the best efforts of law enforcement. But in the eyes of the NLG it is the right kind of bullying, unlawful mob.