How naïve of me. I thought laws and court rulings matter. They might in other places, but not here. The rule of law died in the beautiful Virgin Valley on April 12, 2014. Cue the violins, please.
Cliven Bundy won. Through threats of violence fueled by armed militias called in by our local tea party “patriots,” he won. The Bureau of Land Management was forced to dismantle their operation to rectify 20 years of his lawbreaking with court orders to back up removal of his cows from public land because Clark County Sheriff Gillespie made the BLM stand down. He didn’t want a shoot-out on his watch.
It was a wise move. As bad as the national publicity was for our little community with Cliven Bundy as our LDS pioneer family poster child, a Waco or Ruby Ridge shootout would have been worse. Responsible people didn’t want to see others get killed, either.
Reportedly, local businesses received threats. Well, that’s nice. That should help economic development in our fair community.
Of course, the BLM didn’t have many friends in high places. Governor Brian Sandoval and Senator Dean Heller stood with Cliven and the tea party and condemned the BLM. I myself heard Republican Congressional candidates Niger Innis and Cresent Hardy stand with Bundy against the BLM in their tea party debate last week. The Hardy and Bundy families settled the valley together generations ago. It will be handy for Cliven to have Cresent in Congress looking out for his interests. Don’t you think?
But where does that leave the rest of us?
As soon as our local tea party pals don’t like a law or a court order – they can speed dial up a civilian army with loaded artillery that will threaten us with violence in order to impose their will on the rest of us.
Put THAT on your fancy looking websites, Real Estate Agents, Chamber of Commerce, Mesquite Regional Business, Mesquite Resort Association, Golf Courses, Casinos and Businesses.
Our little corner of the Grand Canyon had potential to be a tourism economic driver. But the pioneer families (and friends) kept screaming about getting the federal government out of Gold Butte, vowing to block their protecting it as a safe multi- use area for everyone to enjoy. Well, don’t worry about THAT any more. The feds are gone. Armed militia groups have tweeted they’ve set up camp and are patrolling the region so the feds don’t come back. It’s Bundy’s now. That should work out much better.
So, good job, everyone. The tea party has eliminated the rule of law, militarized the Gold Butte region with armed civilian militias, saved those poor starving cows to wander the desert for inadequate food and water, enhanced our business climate with threats of violence, put us on the map of every nut with a gun who is itching to fight for “liberty and justice” AND established Cliven Bundy as the face of the Virgin Valley. All in one week.
So …. you can go back to sleep now, check on your tee time or resume your bingo game. The tea party has taken over our little valley with their version of civilian government by gun. Nothing to worry about. I didn’t mean to bother you.