Friday, April 25, 2014 | 10:26 a.m.
Clark County rancher Cliven Bundy, who is battling government officials over cattle-grazing on federal lands, is now comparing his fight to those staged by Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks during their struggle for civil rights.
Bundy came under a firestorm of criticism Thursday for wondering aloud to The New York Times whether African-Americans would have been “better off as slaves.”
In a rambling news conference Thursday afternoon and again today in a signed posting on the Bundy Ranch Facebook page, Bundy defended his comments and invoked King and Parks, paragons of the civil rights movement, to bolster his view.
“I am trying to keep Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream alive,” Bundy wrote in the post. “He was praying for the day when he and his people would be free, and he could say I’m free, free at last, thank God I’m free at last! But all of us here America, no matter our race, are having our freedom eroded and destroyed by the federal government because of its heavy handed tactics.”
Whether it is through the Internal Revenue Service, the National Security Agency, the Bureau of Land Management or welfare, all Americans “are in some measure slaves of the federal government,” Bundy wrote.
“The BLM, the IRS, the NSA – all of the federal agencies are destroying our freedom. I am standing up against their bad and unconstitutional laws, just like Rosa Parks did when she refused to sit in the back of the bus,” the Facebook post says.
As he did a week ago, Bundy is sponsoring another "patriotic celebration" and barbecue today at his ranch in northeast Clark County for militia members and other supporters.