Thursday, October 08, 2015
Are Ranchers Terrorists?
It’s a prime example of why ranchers and the BLM don’t get along. Eastern Oregon ranchers Dwight and Steven Hammond served three months and one year in federal prison, respectively, after a fire they started on their property spread to BLM land. The fire, set to control juniper trees and sagebrush, burned less than 140 acres of public land. A jury convicted the father and son in 2012, and a U.S. District Judge handed down the sentence. Should have been case closed, except the feds weren’t satisfied. They appealed the sentence because it didn’t meet mandatory guidelines stipulated in the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996, which Congress passed following the Oklahoma City bombing. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed, and yesterday U.S. District Court Judge Ann Aiken re-sentenced the men to five years in federal prison. Oregon Farm Bureau president Barry Bushue said, “This is an example of gross government overreach, and the public should be outraged. link