Are the Oregon protestors and militiamen doing the right thing? This makes a case for them. Check it out from David French at National Review…
Watching the news yesterday, a person could be forgiven for thinking that a small group of Americans had literally lost their minds. Militias are marching through Oregon on behalf of convicted arsonists? A small band of armed men has taken over a federal building? The story practically writes itself.
Or does it? Deranged militiamen spoiling for a fight against the federal government make for good copy, but what if they’re right? What if the government viciously and unjustly prosecuted a rancher family so as to drive them from their land? Then protest, including civil disobedience, would be not just understandable but moral, and maybe even necessary.
Ignore for a moment the #OregonUnderAttack hashtag — a rallying cry for leftists accusing the protesters of terrorism — and the liberal media’s self-satisfied cackling. Read the court documents in the case that triggered the protest, and the accounts of sympathetic ranchers. What emerges is a picture of a federal agency that will use any means necessary, including abusing federal anti-terrorism statutes, to increase government landholdings.
The story as told by the protesters begins not with the federal criminal case against Steven and Dwight Hammond but many years earlier, with the creation and expansion of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, a tract of federal land set aside by President Theodore Roosevelt as “a preserve and breeding-ground for native birds.” The federal government has since expanded the preserve in part by buying adjacent private land.
Read more: National Review