Thursday, May 1, 2014

About those ancestral rights ...

Cliven Bundy already has taken up way, way more of my mindspace and time than he deserves, but I had to mention a piece in the Nation that demolishes his "ancestral rights" claim to the land on which he has been illegally grazing his cattle.
“My forefathers,” he has said, “have been up and down the Virgin Valley here ever since 1877. All these rights that I claim have been created through pre-emptive rights and beneficial use of the forage and the water and the access and range improvements.” A simple search of Clark county property records by KLAS-TV, a Las Vegas television station, however, revealed that his family had purchased the ranch in 1948 and had only begun grazing cattle on it in 1954—eight years after the founding of the BLM. KLAS reporters also received a map from the Moapa band of Paiute Indians showing how the land the Bundy ranch is on was promised to them by federal treaty.
Picking up on that last point, writer Jacqueline Keeler continues:
As a Native American, I find Bundy’s late-nineteenth-century claims of “ancestral rights” presumptuous, since by law all remaining pre-emptive rights in Nevada belong not to late arrivals like the Bundy family but to tribes that have lived in the region for thousands of years.
Keeler is remarkably restrained. The colossal hypocrisy and gall of Bundy's "ancestral rights" claim is breath-taking.

Then again, he is so ignorant that it shouldn't surprise me he not only cares nothing, but knows nothing, about better claims to "his" land. Common criminals like him often have the problem of being really, really ignorant.

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