YOUR ACTIVITY ON SOCIAL MEDIA
CAN AND WILL
BE USED AGAINST YOU
In early April, I had the privilege of visiting Dave Bundy, the brother of Ammon Bundy and son of Cliven Bundy, who have been in prison for 500 days as of June 8, 2017…without a finding of guilty or a conviction by a jury.
A more friendly, kind and congenial person than Dave Bundy is hard to find. Speaking to him through a poor quality computer screen with poor audio, he didn’t want to talk about his legal matters. We talked about family, hobbies, and finally, spiritual things because it was Sunday.
Although Dave did not want to talk about legal matters, the subject was heavy on my mind as I looked at the quality of character of Dave Bundy and I came to grips that this was not fiction but fact, that my country was capable of doing something so unjust.
I decided to go back to the original detention hearing for Dave Bundy. After extensive analysis of the government’s position and comparing it to similar cases, I conclude that the depth and breadth of injustice is truly outrageous. And. something that should have all Americans, deeply troubled.
One of the lessons that has come out of all the Bundy et al trials and hearings, is the fact that activity on social media, and especially Facebook, has been one of the main tools used by the federal team (judge, prosecutors, federal agencies) to bring charges of criminal wrong doing and to justify pretrial detention.
So, that raises the question, when is and when isn’t my activity on social media, including Facebook and YouTube, not protected activity? When can prosecutors use my statements to indict me and then trample on the presumption of innocence and punish me without a conviction by throwing me in prison with all the horrors that prison life entails (sleep deprivation, bad food, bad smells, strip searches, sexual abuse, brutal guards, absence from family, absence from jobs and businesses, etc)
In the 37 page detention hearing document by the federal team asking for pretrial detention of Dave Bundy, the federal team sought to convince their co-worker, the judge, to detain Dave Bundy under the Bail Reform Act. The government stated:
“Most nefariously – and perhaps most relevant to the detention decision here – Bundy and his sons, including D. Bundy, recruited gunmen to come to Nevada to confront the federal officers issuing calls-to-arms over the internet to anyone who would listen to come to Bundy Ranch to confront the officers who were executing the federal court orders to impound the cattle.” (page 8)
The prosecution alleged that Dave broke the law by using the internet to recruit gunmen. However, the federal team failed to prove that such activity actually happened and if it did, was not protected by the 1st amendment.
Throughout the 37 page document by the federal team, is a rambling tirade against the Bundy family and an attempt to imply that Dave was guilty by association. Not until page 16 does the federal team become specific in its accusations against Dave.
Trying to exploit the anger that any citizen would feel following having his face slammed into the ground, when no crime was being committed, the federal team tried to use this internet source against Dave Bundy:
“The following day, D. Bundy was released from custody with citations including one for resisting arrest. He was interviewed about his arrest in a video which was posted to YouTube shortly thereafter where it was widely viewed and shared, stating: . . . l looked at that officer and l told him, l said “”l don’t let anybody tromp my face in the ground.”‘ l says “l would like to meet you in an alley,”` is what l told him_, and l hope the media covers that and he gets that message, cause l’m still looking for him…. There was a woman that kinda seemed to be in charge, at least of what they were doing with me, and her name was . . . and she came into the passenger seat and was asking me questions and l said “Mrs. . . . , l don’t have to answer anything to you,” and she goes to me “l am Officer . . . ,” and l says ““to me you’re nothing . . .”’ (page 18)
Then, the government cited the following post:
On January 4, 2016, D. Bundy posted a lengthy message on his Facebook page, stating: lt is real easy to idly stand by, say all is well ye zion prosper standing idle in carnal security looking tuff speaking bold_. but when there is an opportunity to stand up against the evils and tyranny that is encircling around all of us your types are nowhere to be found but behind the scenes scrutinizing those who have the patriotism, zeal for country, commitment to the constitution and understand the devine responsibility that is ours to defend what we fought for so valiantly in the pre mortal, AGENCY. l fully believe in Edler Oaks’s talk, we must be cautious not to fall into extremism, we must seek the spirits guidance in all we do.`However l also believe in obeying the thousands of other Prophets and Apostles warnings and pleadings to stand for agency, freedom and with the divine U.S. Constitution. l believe that we should be law abiding citizens so far as it is Constitutional as we are directed so in the 98th section of the D_octrine and Covenants. I have personally quest_i__on_ed the recent strategies taken by my brothers However let me make-it very clear that l 100%`-agree and will defend the principles that drive_. their commitment There-” ve’b_een”‘ “ ” aggressious act of blatant tyranny upon many multiple land users in Carney Co. OR. lncluding the Hammond family. Tyranny that has violated there ‘ God given unalienable rights as human beings many of` there state/civil rights including their pre-emptive rights All by a bureaucracy that Constitutionally has absolutely no Authority and Jurisdiction over them or their ranch_. all in an effort to take their ranch, rights to the land and livelihood away. (l also must mention the treason committed by their County Sheriff_. the coward made an oath to protect the life_. liberty and property of those within his county_. his oath is not made to the BLM.) OId man Hammond will most likely die in prison before his release in four years Over the past few years he and his son have been persecuted and lmprisoned for a common practice of burning for weed control and fire protection that has been a practice used by Ranchers for centuries Remember, the l’lammonds are a God fearing, Christian family with grandchildren and a way of life they love and cherish and have been good stewards over the things God has given to them. lt would truly be a tragedy if we the people failed to do something in there behalf. Don’t get hung up 23 Case 2:16-mj-00130-P|\/|W Document 10 Filed 03/08/16 Page 24 of 37 on the media spin that they took over a federal building and have guns First of all who’s building really is it_, second don’t we have the right bear and keep arms? l think our heavenly father is pleased with those who put forth effort to preserve the most divine principle of Agency. lt is evident now what president Benson said in a talk titled “not commanded in all things” he said many and l emphasize many priesthood holders will be led a stray like a bull with a nose ring regarding defending the constitution in the last days l‘m paraphrasing so go look it up and read it for yourselves This is not the time to climb upon your high horse and cast criticism upon your family, rather it is the time to support and pray for their protection and for the Hammond family and the people of Harney County. Go captain Moroni. “ (page 23)
Ironically, the government is using a personal opinion piece by Dave that is actually favorable to him. In this post, Dave analyzes the opinions of church leaders and his own beliefs and acknowledges that he questions the strategies of his brothers. Does that sound like a dangerous person talking? More, importantly does the exceed the boundaries of activity protected by the 1st Amendment?
CAN I BE THROWN INTO PRISON FOR STATING MY OPINION ON INTERNET?
The overriding question here is this: what constitutes protected 1st amendment activity? Can the government use your posts against you to justify pretrial prison, without a guilty verdict, and all the horrors of prison?
In Watts v. United States 394 U.S. 705, 708 (1969), the Court held that only “true” threats are outside the First Amendment. The defendant in Watts, at a public rally at which he was expressing his opposition to the military draft, said,
“If they ever make me carry a rifle, the first man I want to get in my sights is L.B.J “(Lyndon Johnson)
While it is illegal to threaten the president of the US, even this violent remark by Watts naming the president, the court ruled was not a “true” threat.
Now, contrast the statements made by Dave Bundy with Watts. Where did Dave Bundy ever suggest or encourage weapons to be used against anybody, let alone a president of the United States? And, even after making such a statement, Watts did not have to suffer in a pretrial hell hole awaiting trial.
In NAACP v. Claiborne Hardware Co., 458 U.S. 886 (1982) white merchants in Claiborne County, Mississippi, sued the NAACP to recover losses caused by a boycott by black citizens of their businesses, and to enjoin future boycott activity. During the course of the boycott, NAACP Field Secretary Charles Evers had told an audience of “black people that any ‘uncle toms’ who broke the boycott would ‘have their necks broken’ by their own people.
The Court acknowledged that this language “might have been understood as inviting an unlawful form of discipline or, at least, as intending to create a fear of violence ….” Yet, no violence had followed directly from Evers’ speeches, and the Court found that Evers’ “emotionally charged rhetoric . . . did not transcend the bounds of protected speech set forth in Brandenburg v. Ohio, 395 U.S. 444 (1969)… An advocate must be free to stimulate his audience with spontaneous and emotional appeals for unity and action in a common cause. When such appeals do not incite lawless action, they must be regarded as protected speech.” While holding that, under Bradenburg, Evers’ speech did not constitute unprotected incitement of lawless action, the Court also cited Watts, thereby implying that Evers’ speech also did not constitute a “true threat.”
WHATEVER IT TAKES
Again, contrast Bundy statements with Charles Evers’ speech. Did the Bundys ever suggest breaking necks or other similar rhetoric? The government has alleged that “whatever it takes” is advocating for violence but the government has failed, in spite of its best efforts, to produce a mind reading device that shows intent to commit violence.
“Whatever it takes” has been used by Federal Express and many others in a display of superior effort and bending over backwards to achieve goals, without the slightest hint of violence or illegality.
The federal team argues that the Bundy statements on internet did incite lawless action and was not protected activity and the Bundys counter that no laws were broken, that they were exercising 1st amendment rights to speech, assembly and protest. This is why we have trial by jury, to determine the facts and make a decision of guilt or innocence. The jury acquitted them in Oregon for similar charges by the government. The government failed to show that the Bundys et al exceeded the boundaries of the 1st Amendment and they fail at the Bunkerville protest.
The federal team (judge, prosecutors, FBI, BLM, marshals, etc) are offended by Dave’s statements about their lack of constitutional authority and failure to comply with the original intent of the enumerated powers. Their offense to his statements give rise to the conflict of interest inherent in this case, ie, that a federal judge who is paid by the organization which is being challenged by Dave Bundy, must make an impartial decision as to his qualification for pretrial prison and its attendant horrors.
The federal co-worker, has the nuke option, the option to punish Dave Bundy now, knowing full well he may get acquitted just like what happened in Oregon. So, rather than let him be free pending his trial and to participate in the preparation of his defense, has pushed the nuke option button, subjecting Dave Bundy to the horrors of prison life and the weakening of his defense.
If you are not terrified by now, you should be. The answer to the above question, “CAN I BE THROWN INTO PRETRIAL PRISON FOR STATING MY OPINION ON INTERNET? “ The answer is a resounding “Yes” even if there was no “true” threat. In a federal court run by a biased and obsessed federal team, anything is possible.