Sauce for the goose isn’t sauce for the gander


If supporters of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy have the Second Amendment right to engage in armed protest against the federal government’s demand that he pay rent for using government land, surely ranchers and farmers in the path of the planned Keystone XL pipeline have the right to do the same thing to prevent confiscation of their own land and the possible contamination of their water supply by the corrosive tar sands slurry that the pipeline will carry.

But do you have any doubt as to what the result would be if they tried to exercise that right?  I don’t.

What happens to protesters depends not on their tactics, but on how great a threat they pose to powerful people.   That is  why police treat Tea Party rallies with kid gloves, and come down brutally on Occupy protesters.

I won’t even speculate on what would happen if Cliven Bundy and his supporters were black.   The fate of the Black Panthers is the last noteworthy effort of black people to exercise Second Amendment rights.   As far as that goes, I have yet to hear, and never expect to year, about an armed black person who was exonerated on “stand your ground” principles for shooting an unarmed white person because he felt threatened.


Just so there’s no misunderstanding, I think it is a good thing, not a bad thing, that the Bureau of Land Management enforcers backed off from a shootout with Bundy supporters, and I do not advocate that Tea Party supporters be abused as Occupy Wall Street protesters were.  I merely point out that government and police give a lot of leeway to certain kinds of protests, and come down hard on others.

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One Response to “Sauce for the goose isn’t sauce for the gander”

  1. tiffany267 Says:

    Reblogged this on Tiffany's Non-Blog and commented:
    I concur with Phil here.


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