On Saturday (Jan. 2), a group of armed men infiltrated the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Princeton, Oregon. The armed takeover of this federal building was lead by Ammon Bundy, the son of Cliven Bundy, a Nevada ranch owner who has been involved in a number of land disputes with the U.S. government over cattle grazing rights.
The Independent reports, "Ammon Bundy said the building they had taken over represented 'tyranny' of central government control," and that "the place would be a 'base' for the militia and that the occupation would last 'several years.'"
Some news sources have referred to this latest Bundy-lead infiltration as an "armed protest," calling the men involved "occupants" or even "militia." Many on Twitter, however, have pointed out a double standard therein: The coverage of these white, armed men who have taken over a federal building is sanitized, while protests lead by people of color are often vigorously condemned and vilified.
Several hashtags relating to the incident, such as #YallQaeda, #VanillaIsis and #YokelHaram, have surfaced to point out the hypocrisy in the armed group's belief that it's committing an act of patriotism rather than terrorism, as well as to highlight media coverage of the takeover as a "peaceful protest."
Others questioned the lack of TV news coverage around the incident.
Many online juxtaposed the National Guard's reaction to the protests in Ferguson and Baltimore to this armed takeover. In April 2015, the National Guard referred to protestors in Ferguson as "enemy forces."
Others, including Cornell William Brooks, president of the NAACP, noted how differently protestors of color are perceived versus the white, armed group in Oregon.
One of the most chilling sentiment is this one, highlighting the difference in how law enforcement reacted to the #OregonUnderAttack terrorists versus Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland and Eric Garner.
At this time, the FBI says it hopes to reach a "peaceful" solution with Bundy and his armed group.