The internet has no chill, as they say. No sooner than Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was proclaimed dead — with LeVoy named as the man who was killed in the Oregon standoff, as reported by the Oregonian — did reactions to Finicum’s Twitter page begin flowing in online.
First off, the Arizona rancher received plenty of attention on Twitter for his Twitter tagline. On the LaVoy Finicum Twitter page @OneCowboysStand, Finicum proclaimed that he was willing to die defending the freedom that LaVoy loved.
The Arizona rancher was one of the self-proclaimed guardians that held camp at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. Screenshots from CNN called LaVoy the 55-year-old man beneath the blue tarp with a gun, preparing for battle with the cops in the shootout.
Indeed, Finicum was also a foster parent as well as one of the men who joined up near Burns, Oregon, with Ammon Bundy, as Bundy led the group occupying the wildlife preserve, reports the Oregonian.
Meanwhile, a relative of LaVoy’s is already claiming that Finicum’s hands were up when he was shot by authorities on Tuesday.
Apparently, LaVoy was an author, and a final shootout scene from Finicum’s book is also being shared on Twitter.
A search through the Twitter posts with LaVoy’s name being mentioned displays all sorts of reactions to Finicum’s death. There’s a meme of a blue tarp with a snake’s tail that quotes LaVoy saying “don’t tread on me,” with the reaction that LaVoy was tread upon. Others mention the hubris of LaVoy taking over the government property as his office, and going through the artifacts therein. Still others quip on Twitter about everything from LaVoy’s intelligence level to his cowboy hat and beyond.
A smaller number of those Twitter tweets show support for LaVoy, with an RIP mention here and there, and tweets about whether or not LaVoy’s hands were up when he was shot. While some saw LaVoy as a sort of hero, defending his land from “Big Government” or other interlopers, others — even Oregon residents — saw the militia men as interlopers themselves, not representative of the beliefs of local residents.
The small group — dubbed “Y’all Qaeda” on social media and made fun of for running out of snacks — got shipments of sex toys and gallons of lubricant when they reached out for help from the general public. Fears that a standoff could end in tragedy appear to have been made a reality.
While LaVoy saw his role as one of great sacrifice, others disagreed with the methods and tactics used by those in the Oregon standoff to protest the role the government played.
In his Only by Blood and Suffering: Regaining Lost Freedom, LaVoy’s introduction sounds like he was hell-bent on bloodshed.
“Warning: To my friends, neighbors and citizens of this great land, please reflect on the events written herein. As most of us have known only peace and plenty, it is hard to believe that such things as war and famine can ever happen here. Nevertheless, the history of the world both ancient and modern teaches us otherwise. Whenever a dominant nation of the earth collapses, the record is one of horror and suffering.
“Atrocities greater than what is written in this book were personally experienced by one of my own family members. It would be unwise to cling to the unfounded confidence that “it won’t ever get that bad.”
“It is my belief that freedom will arise again in this land, but only after much blood and suffering. This is my witness and my warning. – LaVoy Finicum”
(AP photo/Rick Bowmer)