The Malheur militants put out an all-call for snacks, and have doubled down on their plans to remain at the Burns, Oregon, wildlife center for the long haul. The Citizens for Constitutional Freedom initiated a peaceful, but armed, protest at the federal facility to drawn attention to the plight of Dwight Hammond and other ranchers they believe are being squeezed off public lands by the BLM — Bureau of Land Management.
The group, which has been referred to as the “Y’all Qaeda” and the “Bundy Caliphate” online, took over the Malheur Wildlife Center on Monday. A standoff with the FBI has “kind of” ensued. So far, the roads leading into the Burns facility remain open, and no warrants have been issued for the arrest of the men who view themselves as fed-up patriots determined to make the populace aware of the obstacles ranchers face in the West.
SHARE FEEL FREE TO COME OUT AND HELP US BEHIND EVERY BLADE OF GRASS! BRING YOUR CAMPERS RVS AND BBQS WE HAVE… https://t.co/JZ4Xls9Dml
— Blaine Cooper (@coop3030) January 5, 2016
As previously reported by the Inqusitr, about 60 percent of the land in many western counties and states is owned by the federal government. The Cliven Bundy ranch standoff with federal agents last year alerted Americans in other regions of the nation not only to the ongoing battle between the folks who grow and raise our food and BLM, but the existence of the agency itself.
Blaine Cooper and Ammon Bundy, a son of Cliven Bundy, are perhaps the most recognizable faces of the anti-BLM movement. Cooper, a former United States Marine, has become “internet famous” after many of his YouTube videos have gone viral. Several popular hashtags are used on Twitter to connect with the group at the Malheur Wildlife Center — #YeeHawdist, #CowTippingTerrorists, and #YokelHaram are among the most popular.
During an interview with the Oregonian, Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward said that although he would not state publicly FBI plans to end the Malheur Wildlife Center occupation, the federal agency did have something in the works to bring the BLM standoff to a peaceful close.
— MinutemenUSA (@Minutemen_USA) January 3, 2016
Once the Malheur Wildlife Center garnered national headlines, political pundits and television news anchors began debating whether or not the men at the Burns, Oregon, center should be called terrorists, the Los Angeles Times reports. Many of those who oppose either their message or their actions have decided terrorists is the proper label which should be applied. Supporters have prefer to call Blaine Cooper, Ammon Bundy, and the other men assembled in the BLM protest patriots.
Somehow, race quickly became infused in the issue. Some of those opposed to the standoff have said that if the armed men (not all are armed) were black or Muslim, they would be called terrorists or “thugs.” But some of those who are applauding the effort have issued reverse-racism claims, noting that the Black Lives Matter protesters who violated the law taking over streets and blocking commerce were not subjected to a terrorist labeling debate.
Although the FBI has not publicly ruled out the forced removal of the Malheur occupiers, the bloody images sparked by similar actions in Waco and Ruby Ridge are still fresh in the minds of many federal officials — and the American public.
The Burns wildlife center occupiers have stated that no person or property has been harmed during their protest, and no vandalism will take place as they nestle down and prepare to winter over at the facility, if necessary.
What do you think about the power and federal land ownership supervision of the BLM? Do you support the takeover of the Malheur Wildlife Center or the message they are trying to send?
[Image via AP Photo/Rick Bowmer]