CLAIM: The Missouri Sierra Club claims that legislation designed to protect critical infrastructure in Missouri – and the construction of those projects – is “clearly an attack on speech and assembly” and is “meant to intimidate actions.”
Senate Bill 293– like other bills in Statehouses across the country – is clear in its language that it is aimed at those who trespass on others’ property without permission and those who “damage, destroy, vandalize, deface, or tamper with equipment in a critical infrastructure facility.”
Quite simply, the proposed law clearly allows for free speech, which is protected by the First Amendment. Instead, it is anti-trespassing and anti-violence at infrastructure worksites, activites that are not protected by any federal, state or local law.
But anti-pipeline protesters and environmental organizations like the Sierra Club continue to mischaracterize the intent and effects of legislation like Senate Bill 293 because they are committed to using any means necessary to threaten access to affordable energy. This includes trespassing and dangerous protests that including sitting in trees in the path of builders, breaking into pipeline facilities to shut off oil valves, attack equipment with blowtorches and chaining themselves to equipment.