A Case Study in Activism and Resistance: The Castle Rock Prairie Dog Campaign

8 Jul

The DGR Southwest Coalition recently held their annual Southwest Gathering, sharing skills & good food, strengthening interpersonal bonds, and engaging in many valuable discussions & strategy sessions. As part of the gathering, Deanna Meyer of Deep Green Resistance Colorado joined Brian Ertz of Wildlands Defense to discuss the recent campaign against a Castle Rock mega-mall development. We’ve reported here a little bit on the struggle, and are excited to share this video of Meyer and Ertz describing the campaign in more detail.

The campaign initially petitioned the developer to “do the right thing”: delay construction until June, so threatened prairie dogs on-site could be relocated with the best chance of survival. Though this relocation would have left the prairie dogs as refugees, displaced from their homes and with the rest of their community killed, at least they would have a chance to try to rebuild their lives. When the developer responded by poisoning the prairie dogs en masse (along with many other creatures, as well as some human casualties), the campaign focused on saving those prairies dogs  who were left, and on making an example of the developer by inflicting as much pain as possible.

The campaigners were unable to stop the development or to save all the prairie dogs, but their dedicated grassroots organizing succeeded in achieving their secondary objectives. They forced the developer to halt construction for months, allowing workers to rescue those prairie dogs who survived the mass slaughter. They’ve probably cost the developer millions of dollars and countless headaches, demonstrating the practical value to future developers of doing the right thing from the start. As well, the activists recruited some allies and potential new members, and planted the seeds of a culture of resistance along the Front Range.

Learn how these defenders of life leveraged their strengths to overcome a powerful opponent despite mainstream environmental groups saying, “it can’t be done”, and how they plan to build on their win:

See more videos at the Deep Green Resistance Youtube channel

2 Responses to “A Case Study in Activism and Resistance: The Castle Rock Prairie Dog Campaign”

  1. Suzi Hackett July 8, 2015 at 1:54 pm #

    The hypocrisy of this is astounding. The citizens of Castle Rock who collected signatures and signed the referendum, in the name of democracy to have a voice in the rampant development of Castle Rock, were duped. Alberta had already agreed to allow removal of the remaining prairie dogs, without any negotiation of the referendum. They traded the referendum for some mysterious sum of money to their organization, leaving Castle Rock with a “go ahead” to the developers. Many people were manipulated into thinking they could “make a difference”, and were used a pawns. Money in exchange for democratic principles, shameful and very damaging to environmental activism.

  2. http://kreditrechnerco.info/ June 8, 2017 at 2:27 am #

    You want to watch your animal die a slow and often painful death? I did it. No, they are not human beings. They are cats or dogs. We have the power to release them from suffering, present or imminent. The guilt is from holding onto them too long, based on sentimentality and anthropomorphizing them into things they cannot be: human beings.

Leave a Reply