From the tone of his remarks in yesterday’s Wisconsin State Journal , it sounds as though Iron County district attorney Marty Lipske wants to prosecute everyone who’s broken the law in the ongoing Gogebic Taconite, (GTAC) iron mine controversy. Everyone?
Sounding as much like a GTAC spokesperson as an elected DA, Lipske stated that the conduct of the protesters in the June 11th harassment of mine workers explains why GTAC hired Arizona based firm Bulletproof Securities and their heavily armed, paramilitary looking guards. Apart from the fact that assessing corporate security threat levels is not typically in your average district attorney’s job description, Lipske seems to be making a case for Bulletproof Securities return when instead he ought to be considering charges against them.
The John Muir chapter of the Sierra Club has filed a complaint with the Department of Safety and Professional Services contesting Bulletproof Securities license application, citing a state law that says ” anyone who operates a security agent without a Wisconsin license could face jail time, fines, and will not be eligible for a license for one year. ”
Bulletproof Securities broke the law. In Iron County. Which is Marty Lipske’s jurisdiction. And if it’s not within Lipske’s powers to bring charges against Bulletproof Securities he could certainly issue a public statement calling on Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen to do so.
The surest path to defusing tensions in the north woods of Wisconsin is to apply the law equally, across the board, to all involved parties. The surest path to ratcheting tensions up is to do otherwise.