2014-10-27 Hour 3 Ammon Bundy
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Ammon Bundy (Cond't)
Open Letter to Sheriff Gillespie
August 6, 2014
To Sheriff Doug Gillespie, Clark County Nevada Sheriff's Department,
In a recent press conference, you mentioned 1) the BLM lied to you and 2) Bundy brought armed men to the ranch for protection.
While I can't speak to the validity of your first claim, we unequivocally take issue with the second. We never asked for armed men to come to our aid. In fact, everyone who arrived at the Bundy ranch (men, women, armed & unarmed) voluntarily came to support the constitutional rights that you failed to defend. Had you not neglected your duty to defend our rights, the rights of the very people for whom you swore a solemn oath to defend, there never would have been a standoff in the first place.
So while you chastise my family and pontificate about how "Bundy should be held accountable for crossing the line", let it be known that the responsibility for this escalation rests primarily at the doorstep of the Clark County Sheriff's office.
Please allow me a moment to remind you of some of the history leading up to that day:
* Hundreds of militarized agents invaded our community and terrorized us.
* They seized the land by gunpoint, claiming it as their own.
* They not only threatened, but actually inflicted bodily harm on anyone who stepped onto the land. Remind you, this land was cared for, cultivated and improved upon by my family and the community for many generations.
* A 57 year old cancer surviving woman was body slammed by a federal agent, for doing nothing more than exercising her first amendment rights.
* As we sat in the sniper's cross-hairs, federal agents shoved M-16 rifles into the faces of our wives who were holding our infant children.
* Dave was, kicked, beaten, battered, loaded into a federal truck and taken to the BLM compound to become the BLM trophy. They paraded him around in the sun, cruelly ridiculing him for hours, tightly bound (without water). After they had their fun with him, they dump him out on the road and covered up any legal proof that they even took him.
These are just a few of the atrocities that were inflicted upon my family and the community – who was peacefully protesting. The only thing we pointed at those agents, were cameras to capture their atrocities for the world to see. In return, they released dogs on us, they tased us, they beat us and they abused us in order to intimidate us.
When our first amendment rights were stripped down to a 20'x50' box, you did nothing. When armed men trampled my brother, beat him and nearly took his life, you refused to protect. When women, infants, and children were held captive at gunpoint by angry and violent men, our cries for help fell on deaf ears.
When men and women literally wounded and bleeding were in need of emergency assistance, because you allowed these heavy hands to afflict us, you then refused the emergency medical services to be dispatched for our care.
When we called, you said, "there wasn't anything you could do". You said, "this fight was between the Bundy's and the BLM". However, you commanded your deputies to stand by while their own families and community members were being inflicted upon and threatened with lethal weapons.
Sheriff, your response demonstrates that you have a fundamental misunderstanding of your place in our government. You have more authority and responsibility than any federal agency, and yet you cowardly forced the people to defend themselves.
Evidence in your power and responsibility was never more apparent than at the standoff. When your deputies told the federal agents to back down – the federal agents backed down. They backed down because your deputies who had constitutional and jurisdictional authority from the people, finally did what the people hired you and them to do, and insisted that these federal agents stop their abuses.
In the end, your deputies did the right thing, but Sheriff, you should have never let it come to this. While the BLM was willing to shoot my family over land and power, we were willing to die for our families, our livelihoods and our constitutional rights. You should have been defending these rights for us. That's what we elected you to do. Thankfully, the American people came to our defense. They came to our defense because you failed to do your duty. For that you should be grieved and held accountable for.
I offer warning to you and other government personnel that lead or follow your example. The people are in unrest because of these types of egregious actions. The purpose of government is to protect and uphold the unalienable rights of the people, not to infringe upon them. It is our duty and obligation to defend our God-given rights if our government representatives fail to do so, or tries to discard them. We as citizens desire to live in peace and tranquility, but will defend our freedoms if necessary, in order to do so. I call upon you Sheriff Gillespie, and all civil servants, to honorably effectuate the true purpose of government, to uphold the oaths and duties of your sworn offices—to truly be representative of the people, by the people and for the people.
I leave you with the wisdom of Thomas Jefferson:
"Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual."
Bundy Family (Read at Clark County Sheriff's Precinct)
Read by Ammon Bundy at the Clark County Sheriff's Precinct, May 2, 2014
As we have had the opportunity to reflect on the events that took place between March 26th and April 12th, 2014—we have experienced feelings of concern, confusion, fear, anger, sadness and joy. Our peaceful community has been shaken. In many ways, we are still processing the magnitude of what took place. We ask ourselves so many questions; did the federal government really come into this valley and terrorize our community? Did hundreds of armed forces, in Red Dawn fashion, lock down the hills and valleys of our peaceful home—threatening at gunpoint, anyone who stepped off the paved road, with forceful and lethal action? Did we really see armed forces convoying through the streets of our town, diligently recording names and identities of anyone who glanced wrong or opposed them in any way? Was there really heavy equipment in the form of dump trucks and backhoes, on our mountains, tearing up infrastructure that we have used for hundreds of years, and is vital to our survival? Were we truly in the crosshairs of snipers, and under surveillance by the latest in technological weapons? Did these forces actually point their rifles in the faces of our little children, while beating their unarmed fathers to the dirt and hauling them off in chains? Did they really body-slam our friend, a 59 year old woman to the ground, and sic German Shepherds on our neighbors—even a pregnant woman? Did they actually shock a man multiple times with a 50,000 volt Taser for honorably protecting his aunt, while she gathered herself out of the dust? We reflect in sadness and awe that this could take place in our little town.
The terror of armed men occupying our land will never be forgotten. The feelings of despair of these events will long reside in our hearts. Thoughts of anxiousness that this may ever happen again, will awaken us from our pillows from time to time. During quiet reflection, we may ask ourselves if we did the right thing by resisting. Were we in the right when we acted to safeguard ourselves? When the only response to our multiple pleas for help was silence, when we were left alone to clean our cuts and wounds, did we have a divine right, duty, andobligation to protect our family and ourselves? We recall the many times we pleaded with our local government to protect us; the numerous times we called 911, and begged our Sheriff to send his deputies to assist. Our cries of distress were met with silence. We ask ourselves, "Did we try hard enough to get our local government and law enforcement to act as a buffer and perform their duty to protect and serve?" Were the hundreds of phone calls not enough, or is it just that our elected leaders and Sheriff have forsaken the people in trade for power and money? We whole-heartedly want to believe that our Sheriff would not abandon us, but where has his shielding influence been? Why was he not here to represent and protect the very men, women and children of his county that he swore an oath for? Why did he stand silent and neutral, knowing our community was in terror? What was his motivation of inaction; was it fear of the federal government or political reprisal from powerful politicians?
The scars of this traumatic event will heal over time. We hope our community will eventually return to a sense of normalcy. We fervently hope and pray that these heavy-handed tactics will not be used on us or any other American ever again. We wonder if our hopes will be in vain; will they return? Will they come back with greater force and more cunning tactics than before? Will our Sheriff keep his oath this time, and use his lawful forces to stop them, or will the people be left to their own protection? Will the good people of this nation yet again have to come running to the rescue of a neighbor? Will veterans, retired police force, churches, businesses, families and individuals have to unite once again to confront these acts of governmental terror upon the American people? Will our local government rouse themselves from disaffection and intervene—protecting the people? Will they stop fearing to do the right thing and come to the realization that the people are more important than a government agency? Will they fight for the rights of the state and her people? They must stop putting personal gain and advancement in front of the rights of citizens. They need to recognize, that as our elected representatives, they have more power than those governing in brute force, as they have the might of the people of this state backing them. With that power we invest in them, they have the obligation to safeguard our livelihoods, combat forces of fear, and protect our lives with their own.
A few weeks ago, our community was in a state of innocence and naivety. We felt safe and mostly kept to ourselves. We thought the world's problems would only affect us through television, and could be shut off with the push of a button. Our innocence has left us now, we have experienced first-hand the breath of force upon our necks. We have gasped in desperation as our lives and agency were threatened. Our cries have been ignored by our guardians in the next room. We faced a choice—either lie down and submit helplessly in defeat, or bite, scratch, and fight until help would come.
We are eternally and profoundly grateful for the many heroic neighbors who heard our desperate cries and crashed through the windows to rescue. We additionally thank the thousands that came from every States in this great nation, and stood in front of raised guns in our defense, and for the hope that those same guns would never come to their doors and their families. We are grateful for those that arrived with pen and camera, those that arrived with faith and prayers, and those that arrived with fist and gun. The variety of support from all walks of life has shown that this was an event that truly touched the good hearts of many Americans. We cannot thank you all enough—you have restored our faith in the goodness of the American people.
Our message to all, is that it is time to make things right. It is time to adhere to the supreme law of the land—The Constitution of the United States. It is time to understand right, stand for what's right, and do whatever it takes to make it right. We must continue the vision of our Founding Fathers in preserving the freedoms of the American people and the sovereign rights of the States. A nation can never abandon its fate to an authority it cannot control. Men must decide if their rights and freedoms are God-granted or are assigned by a federal government. We believe in the rule of laws and sustain a limited government. May God bless us to protect this sacred instrument.
The Bundy Family