What if the Oregon Ammosexuals were Black?
Imagine 150 Black Lives Matter protesters storming a federal building (or glorified birdcage) with firearms in hand. Imagine them breaking into the federal building and setting up shop making demands and threatening to stay there for years to come...or else. Imagine the black protesters calling for a rise against the federal government and imagine them encouraging more armed men from across the country to join them in their cause.
Then imagine the SWAT team heavy, all-around ass whoopin' that would follow. Imagine the media covering the rise of armed thugs terrorizing a federal building amidst the fury of White America.
Of course the 150 protesters in Oregon aren’t black, or Muslim or dirty hippies. They are gun waving, cowboy hat wearing, good old boy white ranchers who are protesting the imprisonment of two fellow ranchers, found guilty on two separate charges of arson. There is an unknown amount of militants with an unknown amount of guns inside the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge outside Burns, Oregon.
Now I know what you're thinking. It’s been over 5 days. Have all of those poor ranchers made bail yet? That’s a great question except, remarkably, none of them are in jail. And to up the ante, the militants plan on occupying the federal building for several years while calling for Americans across the country to rise up in arms.
One would think after seeing in recent years the violent police response to Occupy, Black Lives Matters and anti-police brutality protests, an all-out assault was on the way. An assault, of course, I would never support or promote, but one I have come to expect nonetheless. Being that I have seen first-hand the battle thirsty angst of police and SWAT members on the streets of recent protests, the tepid response by law enforcement seems out of character.
Instead of a SWAT team style raid, nothing has happened. No one has been arrested. The local police are maintaining a “low presence.” The FBI is seeking “a peaceful resolution to the situation.”
Schools have closed in Harvey County, Oregon over safety concerns over the seizure of the federal building. But that’s it. No police presence. No 24 hour belittling news coverage. I’m sure it has nothing to do with their white skin, cowboy hats, and tight jeans. Oh, and those guns.
Yet my real outrage doesn’t come from the reasoning of the protest. I’m all about the right to civilly disobey and to voice your displeasure with political injustices. My problem isn’t with the cause. If the Ammosexuals in Nevada and Oregon want to protest and occupy a space to fight for the freedom of their fellow ranchers, I say more power to you. Occupy away.
My outrage comes from the double standard by police and the inconsistent commentary by the conservative mainstream and social media. When Black Lives Matter protesters put up tents in a public park to protest active racism on a university campus, conservatives cried foul and demanded that they obey the law and called them wussy thugs.
When 150 firearm waving white rancher militants break into a federal building asking for armed men to join their cause in occupying the reserve for years, the tone is a bit different. Conservatives instead believe that the law is corrupt and doesn’t apply to the patriot ranchers.
It’s comical watching the ideological shift in conservative’s favorable opinion of the law. If you’re black and protesting systematic racism, the law must be followed. But if you’re white and protesting the government, the laws are unconstitutional and should be broken. White rancher protesters are heroes and patriots upholding the Constitution. Black Lives Matter protesters are thugs who are constantly breaking the law.
But honestly, it makes me wonder if this is a lesson protesters can learn from. If you bring weapons to a protest, you won’t get fucked with by the police. Hell, they will let you set up shop in a god damn federal building for Christ’s sake. The fact that the local police are maintaining a low presence in this situation has anti-police-brutality protesters across the country scratching their heads.
A Black Lives Matter protester will get pepper sprayed and tazed until they drool out of their butthole for sneezing in the wrong direction. But in Oregon, the protesters practically get away with murder. Well, not actual murder but sure as hell the threat of murder. It's the same Ammosexuals who are occupying the refuge in Oregon today who, last year during the Cliven Bundy protest in Nevada, were pointing rifles at federal agents and placing children and pregnant women in the front lines of the protest.
Yet, like I said, I support anyone who wants to exercise their right to protest. But the way the media portrays these ranchers as peaceful patriots is sickening. Considering that one of the leaders, Ammon Bundy, claimed that God directed him to go to Oregon to defeat the federal government, and his father Cliven, last year said that he believes that “the negro” were “better off as slaves,” and another leader, Jon Ritzheimer, has threatened the lives of peaceful Muslims in videos yielding high power firearms, 'peaceful protesters' may be a misnomer.
They aren’t exactly your poster children for a righteous revolution. Perhaps, an old school racist one. But like I said, I support the right to protest, I just think there is a huge double standard in coverage and response. One faction are dubbed freedom fighting patriots. The other, thugs. But I support both. Even if I don't agree with some of what they are protesting. I support their right to do it. Hell, that shit takes balls. But I'm not going to give a pass to the hypocrites who demonize several sets of protesters and then champion another.
I'm good on this protest. I support their right to do it. It sounds personal to them and more power to them. Hope they get their boys out of prison. But it's like I said, if these 150 armed dudes were Muslim or black, the response would be a shade of a different color. Probably a deep red.