Cliven Bundy’s name has been all over the media in the last couple of days for some really racist comments he made that were quoted in the New York Times. Cliven Bundy is a 67 year old rancher who has been championed by some Republicans because of the fight he is engaged in with the federal government. For twenty years, Bundy has been using federal land to graze his cattle without paying the grazing fee. Bundy allegedly owes the federal government over a million dollars in fees and penalties for allowing his cattle to gaze on government property for all of these years. The government confiscated 900 of his cattle, and this started a firestorm with supporters of Bundy rallying to his defense. In recent weeks, armed militia supporting Bundy’s cause showed up on Bundy’s estate, threatening federal officials with semi-automatic weapons. For the sake of safety, the federal officials returned the cattle to Bundy. Bundy then began appearing on different media circuits touting his stance that he did not recognize the U.S. Government.
Bundy had much support for his cause including some media personalities and some top Republicans who publicly showed their support for his cause, until Bundy made the following racist comment:
“They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton, and I've often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn't get no more freedom. They got less freedom,"
This statement sent the media in a frenzy, and most people that heard these comments scratching their heads and wondering what on earth is wrong with this man? When I heard these statements, I was not that shocked because I realize that there are going to be racist in this country, and this kind of rhetoric sometimes rears its ugly head causing great embarrassment to white people and black people. I believe that there is no room in our society for this kind of racist rant. Most intelligent people know that Bundy’s statements were ignorant, but we can’t ignore the fact that there are Cliven Bundy’s in this country. These kind of people cause great harm to the strides that have been made regarding race relations in this country. I just hope that Cliven Bundy’s statements don’t erase the gains made by whites and blacks in this country to eradicate this kind of racism. Cliven Bundy has just reminded us all that although we have made a lot of progress with eradicating racism, we still have a very long way to go. I hope we as country can continue to strive for equality in education, housing, and workplaces for all people in this country regardless of their race. We must continue to have the conversation and not ignore the Cliven Bundy’s that live among us.