This Viral Comic Nails the Racist Hypocrisy Toward Oregon's Militiamen

January 3rd 2016

Thor Benson

When I first heard about the militia that has taken over the headquarters of a federal wildlife refuge in southeastern Oregon and the local law enforcement's desire to avoid escalating the situation, I was not surprised. This is yet another example of armed, white "patriots" battling their own country and getting away with it. (I also wasn't surprised the corporate media is barely covering this situation, you can see how others are responding, too.)

What it reminds me of most is the numerous recorded situations where white people with large guns face police officers and are calmly told to put down their weapons, as opposed to a situation where an unarmed black person is shot with little forethought. One image that I saw spiraling around the internet after this situation became a larger controversy was the Carlos Latuff comic below, and it accurately depicts the issue at hand.

RELATED: What You Need to Know About the Crisis in Oregon

gun comic

This image is of course depicting how white men with guns are often treated differently by corporate media, society and law enforcement than black men (or even boys) with guns (or fake guns). This situation harkens back to the Bundy ranch standoff in Nevada from 2014, where guns were aimed at federal agents while a rancher tried to defend his believed right to have his cows graze on federal land. This new standoff in Oregon includes Cliven Bundy's son once again. The family must be so proud.

People should also remember the death of Tamir Rice, which the comic eludes to. Rice was a 12-year-old black boy who had a toy gun in a park in Cleveland and was shot and killed literally within two seconds of police arriving. There was no deescalation for Tamir Rice. There was no "please put down your weapon." Tamir Rice was seen as a violent criminal and killed like one.

This is a group of grown men acting as if the federal government is bullying them into staying on their own land. This is a group of vigilantes who think they know what the forefathers would have wanted and are stealing land meant for everyone, as Charles P. Pierce at Esquire implied. 

Real activists aren't cowardly enough to say they would kill to stay on this land. Real activists don't fight on behalf of millionaire farmers who want more free stuff from the government. Real activists speak out and demonstrate; they don't demand what isn't theirs with guns drawn. That's what an extremist does. If their intentions really were valiant, they would demand the federal government give the land back to the Native Americans it once belonged to.

RELATED: People Are Furious Over Media Hypocrisy Toward Oregon's Militiamen