Domestic Terrorists Occupying Federal Building In Oregon Cite Mormon Scripture For Support Of Their Acts
Cliven Bundy's sons, Ammon Bundy and Ryan Bundy, are the leaders of a "militia" group that on Saturday took over a federal building at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Burns, Oregon. Now that the general public is learning the Bundy family are of the Mormon faith, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has decided to condemn the action, which many are calling domestic terrorism.
"While the disagreement occurring in Oregon about the use of federal lands is not a church matter," LDS spokesman Eric Hawkins told the Deseret News, which is owned by the Mormon Church, "church leaders strongly condemn the armed seizure of the facility and are deeply troubled by the reports that those who have seized the facility suggest that they are doing so based on scriptural principles."
Calling it an "armed occupation," the LDS Church said the actions "can in no way be justified on a scriptural basis."
"We are privileged to live in a nation where conflicts with government or private groups can â€” and should â€” be settled using peaceful means, according to the laws of the land."
Buzzfeed reports that it obtained several emails from the Bundy family members, citing the Book of Mormon as support for taking action, supposedly to help the Hammonds, th two Oregon ranchers who are being sent back to jail after buring acres of federal lands.
"Please stay informed about the Hammond Family and be prepared to act according to the prompting the Lord gives you," Ammon Bundy wrote on Nov. 6.
"The injustices the Hammonds are suffering will be a type and shadow of the suffering the American people will endure if we do not stand and put an end to it," Carol Bundy, wife of Cliven, wrote on Nov. 17. Buzzfeed explains:
The "type and shadow" language is especially significant. It comes from The Book of Mormon (the scripture, not the musical) and is used by a prophet who is decrying a king that has unjustly oppressed and taxed his people.
"Nevertheless, when the wicked rule the people mourn," Ammon wrote on Nov. 21, quoting, Buzzfeed says, "from the Doctrine and Covenants, another Mormon scripture."
Pointing to the Mormon scripture, the New York Daily News reports it "seems some explanation for this bizarre conquest was clear long ago: The Bundys believe it was written."
Indeed they do.
In 2014, according to The Spectrum, Cliven Bundy, had this exchange with the members of the Independent American Party (IAP), a socially conservative political group that draws inspiration from the Mormon Church:
"If our (U.S.) Constitution is an inspired document by our Lord Jesus Christ, then isn't it scripture?" he asked.
"Yes," a chorus of voices replied.
"Isn't it the same as the Book of Mormon and the Bible?" Bundy asked.
"Absolutely," the audience answered.
Ammon Bundy has also said this week that "the Lord was not pleased with what was happening to the Hammonds," and, to his "fellow Christian terrorists," as Progressive Secular Humanist reports, "I am asking you to come to Harney County to participate in this wonderful thing that the Lord is about to accomplish."
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