Wisconsin mining company Gogebic Taconic recently barricaded its premises with armed private paramilitary guards in an overzealous effort to deter environmentalists and protesters from their Lake Superior mining site. As expected, Wisconsin lawmakers and the United States at large are opposing the unnecessarily-intimidating measures against unarmed protesters as well as unsuspecting hikers. Since the governor position is held by Republican Scott Walker, it is clear why Gogebic Taconic has permission to hire ex-military personnel to carry out security functions armed with guns. Unfortunately for tourists and protesters, they are unlikely to move many mountains because Gogebic Taconic's actions are excessive, but not illegal.
In theory, a private company like Gogebic Taconic is free to hire its own security personnel. In practice, protesters and tourists alike are intimidated by the burly, camouflaged, armed men who allegedly protect the mine workers from outside interferences. The quasi-bulldogs are under the tutelage of Bulletproof Securities, and they boast of their "no compromise" procedures in their mission statement. Assault rifles and black masks seem more suited to war-like conditions, and yet the military-trained men are supposed to fend off unarmed individuals.
When asked about his extreme security choices, Gogebic Tarconic spokesperson Bob Seitz stated that the miners felt threatened when a group of protesters "dressed in black and wearing masks violently attacked our drill site." Accordingly, it seems that the company's justification for the armed guards is the safety of the mine workers.
Democratic state Senator Bob Jauch is a vociferous opponent of the mining company's intimidating strategy. The politician has been bemoaning the undue influence likely to be imposed on the mining site protesters, and calling for Wisconsin legislature's interference. Jauch wisely asserts that Gogebic Taconic is attempting to eliminate any threats to their drilling by scaring off the unarmed protesters. Ideally, both sides would be briefed about peaceful protests and effective security measures, but at this point Tarconic is not relenting to Jauch's proposition.
Since there is no evidence that Bulletproof Securities harmed any protesters, Senator Jauch cannot appeal to the law to remove the intimidating security guards. Tourists may experience anxiety and protesters a sense of helplessness, but the security guards' frightening display remains legal. Furthermore, it is difficult to combat the Republican Party after they encouraged Tarconic to drill in order to create new jobs in the region. Accordingly, Gogebic Tarconic is likely to continue having sovereignty over the imposing, masked, and armed figures. The hippies and the Native Americans have an uphill battle ahead of them if they hope to push past the armed barricade.