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article imageOp-Ed: The Cliven Bundy quotes the media is omitting

By Justin King     Apr 25, 2014 in Politics
Bunkerville - The internet is awash today with every news outlet in the world calling embattled rancher Cliven Bundy a racist, but the quotes fueling this tirade are taken completely out of context by the media.
In the same statement where Bundy asks whether or not “negroes” were better off as slaves, he defends the actions of black rioters during the Watts riots because they were correct in believing they didn’t have any freedom. In another section omitted by most of the media, he says that America needs to welcome illegal immigrants because they are here now and they are people, too. Suddenly, Cliven Bundy doesn’t seem like a card carrying member of the Klu Klux Klan.
Bundy opened his statement with
I was in the Watts riot, I seen the beginning fire and I seen the last fire. What I seen is civil disturbance. People are not happy, people is thinking they did not have their freedom; they didn’t have these things, and they didn’t have them.
We’ve progressed quite a bit from that day until now, and sure don’t want to go back; we sure don’t want the colored people to go back to that point; we sure don’t want the Mexican people to go back to that point; and we can make a difference right now by taking care of some of these bureaucracies, and do it in a peaceful way.
Bundy now launches into the controversial statement that is being quoted on news sources.
Let me tell… talk to you about the Mexicans, and these are just things I know about the negroes. I want to tell you one more thing I know about the negro.
When I go, went, go to Las Vegas, North Las Vegas; and I would see these little government houses, and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids…. and there was always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch. They didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for the kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for the young girls to do.
And because they were basically on government subsidy – so now what do they do? They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never, they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered are they were better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things? Or are they better off under government subsidy?
The above statement certainly uses some terms that most Americans today find offensive, and Mr. Bundy is definitely in need of a gaining better understanding of slavery beyond what he seems to have picked up by watching Gone with the Wind. This statement is immediately followed by
You know they didn’t get more freedom, uh they got less freedom – they got less family life, and their happiness -you could see it in their faces- they were not happy sitting on that concrete sidewalk. Down there they was probably growing their turnips – so that’s all government, that’s not freedom.
In context, his statement becomes less about a desire for black Americans to become slaves and more about the fact that those on government assistance are unhappy. This is where Bundy’s statement takes an even more bizarre turn. The accused racist defends illegal immigrants.
Now, let me talk about the Spanish people. You know, I understand that they come over here against our Constitution and cross our borders. But they’re here and they’re people; and I’ve worked side-by-side a lot of them.
Don’t tell me they don’t work, and don’t tell me they don’t pay taxes. And don’t tell me they don’t have better family structure than most of us white people. When you see those Mexican families, they’re together, they picnic together, they’re spending their time together, and I’ll tell you in my way of thinking they’re awful nice people.
And we need to have those people join us and be with us… not, not come to our party.
Defending illegal immigrants and wanting to welcome them to the American party is certainly unusual behavior for a racist.
The American citizen must now weigh Bundy’s entire statement. Obviously, the use of Bundy’s racial identifiers is highly inappropriate by today’s standards, even though those racial identifiers were the same ones used by Congress to write laws when Cliven Bundy was growing up, and they were the same identifiers used by President Kennedy while he campaigned for civil rights. It might be worth noting that when Bundy was growing up, these terms were actually considered the more polite options.
The idea that welfare is a new form of slavery is not new. Bundy’s statements made Glenn Beck refer to him as “unhinged from reality.” Of course, in an article titled “12 quotes from Allen West’s new book that will make liberals’ heads explode” on Glenn Beck’s network the exact same idea is put forth, admittedly in a more eloquent fashion.
When Booker T. Washington talked about education, self-reliance and entrepreneurship, he was describing economic independence. But the Great Society has left a legacy of economic dependence, a new form of slavery, and to me, a far more dangerous one, because it destroys the will and determination to excel. As President Franklin Roosevelt said, welfare is “a subtle destroyer of the human spirit.”
It isn’t the same idea entirely. After all, the simple cattle rancher just wonders if that is the case. The quote picked by the Blaze’s staff from Allen West’s book asserts it as fact.
In essence, what the American media has done is show the public this quote from Malcom X:
The American Negro is nothing but a football, and the white liberals control this mentally dead ball.
Cliven Bundy during a Fox News interview.
Cliven Bundy during a Fox News interview.
Fox News screen grab
Without showing the whole statement of
The white liberal differs from the white conservative only in one way. The liberal is more deceitful than the conservative. The liberal is more hypocritical than the conservative. Both want power, but the white liberal is the one who has perfected the art of posing as the Negro’s friend and benefactor, and by winning the friendship and support of the Negro, the white liberal is able to use the Negro as a pawn or tool in this political football game. Politically the American Negro is nothing but a football, and the white liberals control this mentally dead ball. Through tricks of tokenism and false promises, and they have the willing cooperation of Negro leaders. These leaders sell out our people for just a few crumbs of token recognition and token gains.
Obviously, Mr. Bundy needs to understand that slaves didn’t actually have a secure family life. They were property that could be sold at the owner’s will. The Dred Scott decision by the United States Supreme Court firmly established that blacks held “no rights which the white man was bound to respect.” Families were, in practice, broken up and sold off with no regard for the family lives of the slaves throughout the history of the institution of slavery in the United States.
Mr. Bundy could also benefit from some classes in modern terminology. While the terms he chose to use were acceptable and common in his youth, they are certainly offensive today.
What Americans need to remember is that in this instance, they are dealing with an old cattle rancher; not a politician, nor a media personality, nor a person who is used to having to watch what he says because he might offend someone. This didn’t stop Harry Reid’s criticism of Bundy, even though it was Reid who referred to President Obama as not having a “negro dialect.”
The lesson to take away from this incident is not that cattlemen don’t have a firm grasp on history or modern etiquette, although it is still unclear where the idea that they would came from to begin with. The lesson to take away from this is that the US media will undoubtedly take quotes out of context and blatantly lie to the American people for the purposes of creating controversy and prolonging a story that has polarized the nation and provided them with good ratings.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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