A situation similar to the one which occurred at the Bundy Ranch in Nevada is now taking place in Burns, Oregon. The Bundys were the last holdouts of over 50 Ranching families who were run off their land by burdensome federal regulations and taxes. This was all part of a scheme by Harry Reid to make a land deal with the Chinese to build solar power farms. The Bundys held out and after the unconstitutional Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) used SWAT teams to round up the Bundy cattle, a large group of militia formed from all over the country and forced the federal government to back off and return the cattle.
In Burns, Oregon, father and son ranchers, Dwight and Steven Hammond, came under assault by the federal government in a slightly different way. Like the Bundys, they leased federal land for grazing around their ranch. The unconstitutional way that the federal government grabs up land and then leases its use back to We The People is the subject of long debate.
The Hammonds purchased their ranch in 1964 along with leases and water rights on public lands around it. The federal government bought up all of the other ranches in the area in the 1970s and handed the land off to the Fish and Wildlife Service. They have been after Hammond’s land ever since. The Hammonds have suffered almost 5 decades of harassment from the federal government in various forms, such as The Fish and Wildlife Service barricading public roads the Hammonds used and fencing off their water supplies.
The Hammonds had problems with wild fires and invasive plant species. They addressed these problems with controlled burns, to mitigate the risk of wild fires and invasive plants going out of control. The federal government brought charges against them. Everyone is thinking they were arson charges, never mind the fact that arson is not a crime that Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution allows Congress to legislate. The Constitution leaves almost all domestic criminal justice to the states.
The Hammonds weren’t charged with arson by the federal government. First, they were immediately arrested and charged with various crimes, such as arson by the State of Oregon. It was determined that the charges didn’t warrant prosecution and all charges were dropped. Five years later the federal government charged the Hammonds with terrorism under the Federal Anti-Terrorism Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996! Yes, they are charged with terrorism for helping Smokey The Bear.
The terrorism charge carries a 5 year minimum sentence, but the federal judge on their case gave them shorter jail terms, saying that long of a sentence would “shock the conscience.” He also said it violated the 8th Amendment by being cruel and unusual. Dwight Hammond served 3 months and his son Steven served a year, because he was convicted of multiple counts. They were both given 3 years of supervised probation after their sentences.
After they served their shorter sentences The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals unconstitutionally threw out the shorter sentences and mandated the 5 year minimum sentence. The Hammonds were also ordered to pay the BLM $400,000. They’ve paid half if it and were ordered to pay the remainder by the end of 2015 or lose their ranch. This is double jeopardy. They had already served the sentences they were given for the crimes of terrorism they were found guilty of.
Ammon Bundy learned about the situation and he met with the Hammonds to offer support. The Hammonds were planning on simply turning themselves in on January 4th, to comply with the second sentencing for the terrorism crimes they already served time for.
On Saturday morning of January 2nd, 2016, a peaceful protest was held in Burns, Oregon in support of the Hammonds. Afterward, 150 militiamen along with Ammon Bundy and two of his brothers, split off and went to the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge and occupied the Federal Headquarters there, which is used by The Bureau of Land Management. This was a peaceful occupation, of course. The leftist rancor over this issue, calling it terrorism, is outlandish and ignorant. Unlike the left wing “Occupy Wall Street,” no one is being raped or urinated on.
The Hammonds still plan on turning themselves in at this point, but the Bundys and militia intend on continuing to occupy the National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters Building as well as taking over the BLM Fire Department building, which is currently vacant. They are making the stand to put a stop to the tyranny that is plaguing the residents of Harney County. They have exhausted every possible legal means to seek redress and have had every application and petition to law enforcement, sheriffs and all levels of government flatly ignored. The people just want to be free and left alone to prosper as they have for over 100 years, without the shackles of federal tyranny being clamped upon them.
Ammon Bundy is calling for more people to come join them in Harney County. In this Video, Ammon Bundy says, “I am asking you to come to Harney County, to make the decision right now, of whether this is a righteous cause or not, whether I am some crazy person or whether the Lord truly works through individuals to get His purposes accomplished. I know that we are to stand now and that we are to do these things now or we will not have anything to pass on to our children. That they will be placed under the same exact measures that the Hammonds have been placed under. And I ask you now, to come to Harney County to participate in this wonderful thing the Lord is about to accomplish. And I say those things to you and I’m grateful to have such great friends and I look forward to seeing you. Thank you.
If you haven’t already, please click the video link above. For a far more detailed timeline of the unconstitutional actions taken by the federal government against the Hammonds over the last half a century, go here: The Conservative Tree House.
Jan 4th Update: Reporters get tour of the Malheur Refuge buildings that are being occupied. Notice the respect they have for the property compared to all of the liberal occupations of public property, which were strewn with litter, vandalism, urine, and feces. KOIN 6 Reporter gets Tour of Maheur Wildlife Refuge Buildings.
Update, Jan 24, 2016:
Three weeks into the occupation of an empty lodge in the middle of the forest, Ammon Bundy and is fellow ranchers still haven’t burned down any buildings, set cop cars on fire, thrown molotov cocktails, blocked traffic, looted stores, raped anyone, or murdered civilians and cops. If they are supposedly terrorists, they have a lot of savagery to commit before they catch up with Black Lives Matter or the Occupy Wall Street deadbeats.
As it stands now, Ammon Bundy says that he is willing to talk with FBI, but still doesn’t recognize their authority in the matter and considers it an issue for the sheriff to solve. The federal government is the problem, not the solution.
Oregon’s Governor, Democrat Kate Brown, is complaining that the occupation has cost Oregon tax payers half a million dollars. No Kate, the FBI and BLM occupation of Burns, Oregon is what costs you money. The ranchers haven’t sent you a single bill or caused one bit of damage to any property that would cost tax payers a dime. Want to save money, send the FBI and BLM home. But that’s not how Kate sees it. She asked Attorney General Loretta Lynch and FBI Director James Comey to “to end the unlawful occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge as safely and as quickly as possible.” In other words, a State Governor is deferring her authority to unconstitutional agencies and asking them to come in guns blazing. This woman is sick and Oregon residents should recall her. She wasn’t even elected and replaced John Kitzhaber who resigned over a scandal involving allegedly abusing his power to benefit his wife’s business.
Ammon Bundy responded to the unconstitutional request of the Governor by saying, “It just again shows the ignorance of some of our elected officials. It’s just amazing that she would just disregard the Constitution to the point where she would think it would be OK to give the federal government that authority to come in and take some dynamic action or something like that.”
It should be noted that during Bundy’s occupation of the Wildlife Refuge, his group has been performing repairs on the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge property and structures, addressing fire hazards in the firehouse, and assisting local ranchers with maintenance. Their actions have been the exact opposite of any liberal rally or demonstration in U.S. history. Never has there been a location that was left in better condition by liberals who have demonstrated there. Accused of being terrorists by the left, all this group has done so far is peaceably assemble on vacant public land. Exercising this right and their right to bear arms outrages the left, because they simply do not understand what rights are or why we have them. Liberals are allergic to liberty.
Update, Jan 27, 2016:
Ammon Bundy and 7 others were arrested and one rancher, Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was killed in an FBI operation when they were pulled over while traveling to a meeting in Burns Oregon. The details are sparse, but what is clear is that Ammon’s brother Ryan was also shot in the arm. The arrested ranchers are charged with “conspiracy to impede officers of the United States from discharging their official duties.” In other words they are charged with committing no crime other than not wanting to be harassed by the FBI and BLM who couldn’t find a crime to charge them with.
Ammon Bundy said that Finicum was shot three times while peacefully complying and with his hands up. There were six witnesses. It appears that the only guns discharged were those of the FBI.
Robert “LaVoy” Finicum leaves behind a wife 11 children, and 50 foster children.
U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley (Democrat-Oregon) congratulated the FBI and said, “I am pleased that the FBI listened to the concerns of the local community and responded to the illegal activity occurring in Harney County by outside extremists.” Oregon should be ashamed of electing this man to the U.S. Senate who is pleased that a man is now dead who was guilty of no more than peaceable assembly.
When the L.A. Times infomed Cliven Bundy, Ammon and Ryan’s dad, he said, “Isn’t this a wonderful country we live in? We believe that those federal people shouldn’t even be there in that state, and be in that county and have anything to do with this issue. I have some sons and other people there trying to protect our rights and liberties and freedoms, and now we’ve got one killed, and all I can say is, he’s sacrificed for a good purpose.”
Updated Jan 29, 2016:
Here is the link to the video where Lavoy is shot. He obviously has his hands up exiting the vehicle. He appears to succumb to a gut shot and turn around and head back, but is taken down quickly. To claim he is grabbing a gun is really reaching for moon beams, because if that were the case he would be facing off one of the agents, but he doesn’t. Stumbling through snow, he is attempting a 180 degree turn to head back the way he came. He is grabbing several places on his body as he is taken out. Not a gun grabbing maneuver. Only people who have never pulled a gun from a holster can see a gun grab from this video. I have never seen a right handed person with a holster over his pancreas, which is the first place on his body that Lavoy appears to grab. It must also be noted that so far there is no claim by the FBI that Lavoy was even armed.
Click here for the video. The shooting starts at about 9:20.
Updated Feb 13, 2016:
After 40 days and 40 nights of Peaceable Assembly in an empty lodge on public land, the last four people surrendered. David Fry was the last to come out and give himself to the FBI. Gavin Seim, Kris Anne Hall, and Reverend Frankling Graham helped to facilitate the surrender by live streaming it, to ensure the FBI remained peaceful. The media is reporting them as anti-government activists, but nothing could be further from the truth. They only want government to follow the Constitution and the law. What is wrong with that?
It should be noted that it is unconstitutional for the federal government to own this land. They can own territories, but not land within states unless purchased with the consent of the state legislatures for certain reasons outlined in Article 1, Section 8, Clause 17 of the U.S. Constitution. Creating a park, or using the land to lease to cattle ranchers are not among those reasons. Other than Washington D.C., they can own land acquired from states only for Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, Dock Yards, and other needful buildings. A needful building might be something like a U.S. Post Office or Army recruiting center. Not a lodge for operating control of millions of acres of park land the federal government can’t legally own.
Ammon and Ryan Bundy have vowed to take the federal government to court. Among those in jail with them is online journalist Pete Santilli who visited the site to report on the situation. Apparently freedom of the press is no more protected from the tyranny of the federal government than peaceable assembly is.
Also arrested was Cliven Bundy, the patriarch of the Bundy family from Nevada. It’s not clear why he was arrested. He is charged with conspiracy and extortion. Baseless charges where no real charges could be found. The 25 ranchers who were peaceably assembled at Malheur, minus LaVoy who was killed in the ambush, are all charged with interfering with an investigation. In other words, they peaceably assembled on public land and didn’t want to forfeit their 4th and 5th amendment rights. In the absence of any actual crimes they could be charged with, their crime is not allowing the FBI to figure out a crime to charge them with.
Updated March 10th, 2016:
The FBI agents involved in the ambush and killing of LaVoy Finicum are now under criminal investigation by the Justice Department. Video footage being taken from passengers in the car with LaVoy, which includes audio brings new light to the story. With his hands already in the air as LaVoy exited the vehicle, an FBI agent shot the rear window of the car out through the roof. Multiple shots were fired at the vehicle and its occupants before LaVoy was finally taken down. Claims that LaVoy got shot, because he was reaching for his gun, no longer hold water. It’s now clear that if he were reaching for a gun, it was in self defense. It’s still not clear that he was even reaching for a gun though and not just stumbling through thick snow. This video blows away any arguments the “tolerant” leftists had for cheering on LaVoy’s death.
New Video from inside the car : Full Video
Slow Motion video of the gun shot through the roof, shattering the back window with LaVoy’s hands high above his head: Slow Motion Video
AMP (Anna Maria Perez)
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