Still jailed in Portland several weeks after their arrests, the Harney County occupiers are experiencing what they should have known before: Rebellion is punished as a crime only if it fails. Still, their treatment so far seems needlessly harsh.
In Harney County we just watched an attempt to spark an uprising against increasing government control over the way citizens — western ranchers in this case — must live and work. The attempt failed. But the government is not about to change its approach, so the urge to rebel will fester and grow.
The FBI on Thursday told us what happened when several of the Malheur refuge protesters were arrested and one was killed. It demonstrated that informing the public is the right thing to do, and that it can be done in a timely manner even while a formal investigation is still going on.
Most of the cartoonists and editorial writers holding forth about events in Harney County don’t know the first thing about the place. They should spend a few minutes and listen to Congressman Greg Walden, whose 2nd District includes all of Eastern Oregon.
On social media, someone wanted to know why the media aren’t saying “terrorists” when they talk of the people who took over buildings at the Malheur Wildlife Refuge. The answer is simple. Terrorists they’re not.