The GOP Presidential candidates are more than happy to call Arabs terrorists, Black Lives Matter activists, terrorists and worse. But the silence in Cliven Bundy’s son’s attack on a federal building this weekend is accepted with silence in America. An armed militia took over a building at a national wildlife refuge in Oregon late Saturday and vows to occupy the outpost for years to protest the federal government’s treatment of a pair of ranchers facing prison time.The occupation of a portion of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge 30 miles southeast of Burns, Ore., followed a peaceful march for ranchers Dwight Hammond, 73, and Steven Hammond, 46, who are scheduled to report to federal prison in San Pedro, Calif., on Monday after being convicted of arson, according to the Oregonian.
Prosecutors said the father and son set the fire, which burned about 130 acres in 2001 on leased federal land, to conceal poaching, according to CNN. The Hammonds argued that they were attempting to reduce the growth of invasive plant species and ward off potential wildfires. The pair was sentenced to five years in prison.
Among the occupiers are several members of the Bundy family, whose patriarch — Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy — was involved in an armed standoff with government agents over grazing rights in 2014.
At a news conference on Sunday, Ammon Bundy said militia members had taken over an unoccupied site. He said the group had not heard from law enforcement and had no desire to be aggressive. He urged other citizens from across the country to join their effort and said that if violence occurred, it would begin on the government’s side. “If they did,” he said, referring to the authorities taking violent action, “it would simply be over a building that they would come in and kill.”
The federal property, managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, was closed and unoccupied for the holiday weekend, the Oregonian reported.
At Sunday’s news conference, Ammon Bundy said the refuge’s creation was “an unconstitutional act,” one that removed local ranchers from their lands, thrusting the county into an economic depression.