Theodore Roosevelt, a Republican President, asserted federal authority over public lands in the West in the early 20th century, to insure that industry and big business would not destroy our natural wonders.
Abraham Lincoln, a Republican President, asserted federal authority to prevent the Southern secessionists from breaking up the Union through assertion of states rights in the Civil War.
George Washington, a Federalist President, used federal troops to resist defiance of the federal government’s authority to impose taxes on Pennsylvania at the time of the Whiskey Rebellion.
Andrew Jackson, a Democratic President, was ready to use federal military force against South Carolina in the Nullification Crisis, but avoided through a negotiated compromise.
We live now in a time of right wing militia who have in the past, and still do today, work to defy federal authority, and to claim the Constitution backs them up, which is a total misunderstanding of the nation and its history.
The US government must enforce taxation and control of public lands under the Constitution and its laws, and must not allow open defiance of such authority!
If the seizure of public lands in Oregon, a federal wildlife refuge, this past weekend, by members of the lawless Bundy family, can be ended peacefully, all to the good!
But one can be sure that if it was black activists or Muslims or Latinos who were occupying and seizing public lands, the outcry would be that they must be removed forcefully from the scene of their illegal actions.
We would have people saying these are terrorists, law breakers, dangers to national security and the rule of law.
So the fact that these are white men is no excuse to allow a pass on enforcement of federal authority!
Negotiations for these rebels, these trouble makers, these law breakers, to leave peacefully and soon must begin, but after a reasonable period of time, the FBI and the ATF and other law enforcement authorities MUST take action, including the use of force, to let all extremist right wing elements to know that the US government will not allow itself to be pushed around by hoodlums, by bullies, by extremists, who want to undermine the authority of our federal government!