Someone posted about the Oregon incident the other day and did not agree with the standoff. One person asked this question: “What in your opinion would justify armed resistance?” He believed it “best to try a peaceful solution before resorting to anarchy”.
My feelings were mixed. Since then, I have done a little more reading. It goes way back. Fish and Wildlife together with Bureau of Land Management has made it difficult for them to get grazing permits, built fences to keep their cattle from the water they had rights to and barricaded roads that they used to access their land.
Bottom line, the government wanted their land. They were in the middle of a wildlife refuge (they were in the middle because everyone else had been forced off and the refuge grew to a point that it surrounded their property).
Sure the Hammond’s acted up a little – who wouldn’t. And eventually the agencies found a way to take them to court. Federal court with a federal prosecutor that was just as anxious to make things as difficult as the agencies had been. And he did. 5 years each for 73 year old Dwight Hammond and his 46 year old son Steven.
And so that is what lead to the standoff. Years of trying to work things out peacefully while trying to stand their ground; and the government just keeps pushing.
So, a few step in to help them. The group chose the refuge headquarters because it was this particular building that these agencies worked out of to do all they did to all the people in that area.
What IS the point that justifies armed resistance? The government just keeps pushing. States have a hard time standing against them. What chance does an individual have?
All this was a result of the government wanting their land. The excuse for restricting grazing permits was that it was hazardous to wildlife. During the court proceeding the Hammonds were forced to grant BLM first right of refusal if they ever decided to sell. They were fined $400,000 and if they did not have it paid by the end of 2015, they would be forced to sell to BLM or face other prosecution.