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Opinion

Cliven Bundy's pro-slavery, racist comments sour supporters

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Joel Gehrke,BLM,Slavery,Cliven Bundy,Racism

Cliven Bundy's pro-slavery, racist comments have soured a lot of the conservative supporters who regarded his fight with the Bureau of Land Management as a good opportunity to question the federal government's control over vast swaths of federal land.

“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” Bundy told supporters in Nevada in the presence of a New York Times reporter. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I've often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn't get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”

Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., who described Bundy and his cohorts as "patriots" last week, “completely disagrees with Mr. Bundy’s appalling and racist statements, and condemns them in the most strenuous way,” his spokesman said Thursday morning.

The Wire has produced "a list of Cliven Bundy's supporters now that we know he's a pro-slavery racist," Heller among them. The implication here is that Bundy's supporters should be shamed for his racism. But, as the headline itself implies, they issued their support for him -- in his fight with the Bureau of Land Management -- before he made his deplorable and ignorant racist comments.

Moreover, Bundy's deplorable comments only reveal his racism; they don't prove anything about his fight with the Bureau of Land Management.

What undermines Bundy's position in the BLM fight are the two court orders against him and the fact that he doesn't own the land where he wants his cattle to graze.

"The Bundys have never owned the disputed land," the Blaze's Becket Adams reported. "They hold no deed and they've never paid property taxes on it. Rather, prior to 'firing' the Bureau of Land Management, the Bundy family held a grazing permit, which, according to the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934, does not bestow the holder with permanent grazing rights or land ownership."

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