Friday, April 15, 2016

Slow Starvation

I wondered about Cliven Bundy's cows. Apparently he abandoned many of them on the range decades ago. His threats of violence frightened off responsible caretakers, so cattle numbers increased. Now they may be starving. Much more alluring instead to take over Oregon wildlife refuges, wave guns around for the camera, and deliver lectures on personal responsibility to long-suffering government employees, elected officials, and Clark County African Americans:
But an administrator for the Nevada Department of Agriculture told the paper they have not received any “substantiated” reports that Bundy’s cattle are starving.

“We have not received any substantiated reports of Cliven Bundy’s cattle starving on the Golden Butte allotment – though this may be true to some extent, as Cliven’s management practices leave a lot to be desired," said Flint Wright, the animal industry administrator for the department.

But the question of who’s response for the cattle is complicated. Wright told the Gazette-Journal that while the cattle are state property because they’re trespassing on public lands, a move by the department to corral the cattle would require an order from the federal Bureau of Land Management.

A representative for the BLM also told the paper their hands are tied when it comes to dealing with the free-ranging cattle.

“The Bureau of Land Management too is concerned about the welfare and condition of the cattle,” Rudy Evenson, of BLM in Nevada, said in a statement. “Unfortunately, all previous attempts to remove Mr. Bundy’s trespass cattle from the public lands have been met with threats of violence and most recently with an armed assault on law enforcement officers.”

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