By David Codrea
USA – -(Ammoland.com)- We’ve all seen no shortage of angry comments in various forums calling for escalation of the Malheur situation. Some demand showing up in force at the refuge, or confronting authorities surrounding it.
Others demand expanding shows of armed defiance nationwide.
A common factor among many is that some of the loudest voices are complaining about what others aren’t doing. What they themselves are doing, and their qualifications for expecting others to follow their recommended courses of action, is in many cases left unsaid.
In some ways, the release of the video showing the shooting death of LaVoy Finicum has made things worse. Different viewers are reacting in different ways, with some calling it a cold-blooded execution, and others concluding he looked like he was reaching for a weapon he reportedly carried. For those certain of the former assessment, it’s fair to ask, were the video to be shown to a jury, would it be able to return a unanimous “guilty” verdict that is beyond a reasonable doubt?
No doubt the angle of a video taken from the air and the lack of sound contribute to the way different people watching the same recording arrive at different conclusions. One thing it does let us do is compare the video to conflicting accounts. It would appear a lot of so-called “less than lethal” projectiles were expended, as the vehicle did not appear to be riddled with bullet holes. But the thing is, the disagreements and divisions are so deep right now, even if/when dash cam and body cam videos with soundtracks are released, don’t be surprised to see reactions still mixed.
The way things are going, I won’t be surprised to see someone introduce “crisis actor” accusations into the mix. Things are that strange.
When we don’t have complete information, sources are trusted or distrusted by varying degrees depending on who’s listening and what agendas are in play. Add to that instances where breaking information about significant developments has been sent out, supposedly by people in the know, only to be refuted later by others with access to those on the ground at Malheur.
It happens, and not always by malice. But it does demonstrate the critical need to verify reports before acting.
Right now, what we don't want, is another Waco. And a factor preventing that, so far, is the government realizing it is being watched, and any repeat of such brutal rules of engagement is likely to make containing things problematic. In a very real sense, that’s been beneficial to the wildlife refuge occupiers throughout, and to the remaining holdouts.
It’s understood that’s not enough for some. That said, we can’t ignore two undeniable truths:
The Hammond family declared from the outset the Malheur takeover was not what they wanted. And now, on the other end, Ammon Bundy is calling for the remainder of the occupiers to “Turn yourselves in and do not use physical force. Use the national platform we have to continue to defend liberty through our constitutional rights in an Article 3 Court with an Article 3 judge.”
That Bundy’s call has not produced an immediate stand-down, and that his own father has now declared they “will retain possession of the Harney County resource center,” shows strong divisions exist even within the family, and then within the small band involved in the takeover.
It’s no wonder we see such distrust and anger — including that being directed by some liberty activists at others.
Now might be the time to ask ourselves who that benefits.
About David Codrea:
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating / defending the RKBA and a long-time gun rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament.