Cliven Bundy is a scofflaw, so why are so many people supporting him?
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
4/17/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
Despite the drama which recently unfolded on the Bundy ranch in Nevada, the federal government apparently has a history of using heavy-handed tactics to enforce their will on rural farmers. This is part of the reason why so many people are sympathetic to Bundy, despite his scofflaw attitude towards grazing fees.
We want these things respected. Our Faith, our Rights, our Liberty. That's why we stand against federal corruption and evil. This is not negotiable.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Defenders of federal action to seize cattle and revoke federal grazing rights from rancher Cliven Bundy are stunned to see fellow Americans risk their safety in an attempt to protect Bundy from paying his righteous due. Bundy has not paid grazing fees since 1993, and despite court orders to pay up, he has stalwartly refused.
According to the rules of the American system of justice, Bundy is guilty and must pay. So federal action is simply an effort to compel him to pay what he has been ordered to pay, fair-and-square. So why so much support for a man who is clearly a scofflaw?
It turns out that the federal government has a nasty habit of using coercion of various sorts to get rural farmers to give up their rights. Ryan Yates, director of congressional relations for the American Farm Bureau recently told the Washington Times that the federal government has a history of pressuring and threatening farmers including efforts to raise grazing fees, withhold renewals unless farmers transfer water rights, or otherwise intimidate ranchers into giving up their rights.
"Some have called it a culture of intimidation," Yates told the Washington Times. "It's issue after issue, threat after threat. It's becoming harder and harder to keep those operations in business."
The behavior of the federal government hasn't gone unnoticed. On Oct. 29 of last year, the Congressional subcommittee on Natural Resources held a hearing that didn't get much attention. It was called, "Threats, Intimidation and Bullying by Federal Land Managing Agencies."
The Washington Times explained, "Rep. Rob Bishop, Utah Republican, said in his opening statement at the time that the hearing would feature "a number of troubling cases in which federal land managing agencies have employed abusive tactics to extort rural families into giving up property rights or to bully farmers and ranchers into making concessions to which the federal agency had no legal right."
Despite Bundy's refusal to pay his fees or to comply with (likely) lawful orders, people across America are fed up with what they see as a federal government that habitually overreaches. On the far right of the political spectrum is a population of people who are Christian and conservative and sick and tired of what they see as a government that is drunk with its own power.
The showdown at the Bundy ranch was not really about Cliven Bundy as it was an opportunity to say no to the federal government's habitual use of what many feel are heavy-handed tactics. And let's be honest, they were heavy-handed. Since when do you need snipers to round up cattle?
An army's entire purpose is coercion.
The showdown in Nevada isn't really about Cliven Bundy as it is about saying no to overreachng government. Our God-given rights are non-negotiable but there's an increasing sense that the government isn't respecting them.
While discontent with the government is growing on the right, it's also growing on the left. The Occupy movement, which has been largely comatose of late, still isn't happy either. There are millions of Americans, many who are young, who believe the government is bought out by special interests and that the people have no more voice. Conservatives may agree.
The time of federal overreach and rampant corruption is coming to an end. The federal government has gone too far, colluded too much, and they have struck the nerves of many Americans. The winds of change are blowing, and no army has yet been able to stop the wind.
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