I thought I'd start a new topic here. As you probably know, the Bundy folks who were making headlines in Nevada in the past turned up in eastern Oregon's Harney County to "occupy" the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. For the moment, things are calm but no progress is being made, either.
In about two months, the spring bird migration will start and zillions of waterfowl, including sandhill cranes, snow and Ross' geese (hard to tell those two apart), and you name it will arrive at Malheur. The sage grouse will start doing their mating displays at the leks on the dry parts of the refuge, and the sandhill cranes (enormous, spectacular birds) will be dancing in the swampy meadows. The spring migration is the big tourist draw for the Harney County area, and if the Refuge is still closed in March, local businesses will suffer severely. Some of the rarer bird populations will also suffer if the "occupiers" decide to shoot their own food. There's a big birding festival in Burns the first week of April that I wanted to attend, but of course it will be cancelled if the refuge is still shut down.
While I do have a little sympathy with the two local ranchers who have just had to return to jail after serving their sentences for setting fires in the wrong places (I'm not fond of mandatory minimum sentences), even they have asked the "occupiers" to shut up and go away.
Here's a slightly humorous take: Enraged Birders to Retake Oregon Wildlife Refuge
. Never underestimate the power of birders!
Seriously, these "occupiers" are arguing that the Federal Government has no Constitutional right to own land. and that everything should be privatized. I'm not too sure where this notion came from. In fact Article IV, Section 3, second paragraph strongly implies that Federal territory or property is the responsibility of Congress.
OK, I've said my piece, have at it, folks!