San Juan County showdown slated for Saturday at Recapture Canyon

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  • elmarchjoe Cynthiana, KY
    May 12, 2014 5:07 p.m.

    What they were doing there is illegal as well as immoral. Disturbing sacred sites is not a good thing. What if we ran through their parents graveyard with an ATV like they have done so many times in the past. We would get arrested and fined for the same thing.

  • John Harrison Sandy, UT
    May 12, 2014 3:59 p.m.

    If this was "civil disobedience" I expect them all to be arrested and jailed. They should be lining up in front of the Sheriff's office to show their devotion to the cause.

    Oh wait, the Sheriff was there and didn't arrest anyone? Good thing nobody bid on anything...

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    May 12, 2014 9:22 a.m.


    "It just makes it harder for people who cannot walk or ride a horse to gain access to the public lands they are the owners of. They have a right to see these artifacts, too."

    The problem with your argument is that ATV riders are not a protected class of people. There are other methods of travel for those who can't walk but want to see artifacts. It's funny that you're making this argument but not arguing that ATV's should be allowed in Yellowstone for essentially the same reasons.

    And let's be totally honest here: ATV riders aren't accessing these trails because they want to see Native American artifacts. They're riding ATV's because they want to burn some gas, make some noise, and have a good time. I ride ATV's and I don't use it for transportation from point to point, and neither does anybody else I know.

  • BJMoose Syracuse, UT
    May 11, 2014 8:16 a.m.

    To Cats, Your wrote: "Too many people think they know what goes on in San Juan County when they actually have no idea."
    You present yourself as an authority on San Juan County. Do you live in San Juan County? Somewhere In Time isn't very definitive.

  • mck201111 mariposa, CA
    May 10, 2014 5:35 p.m.

    Open letter to Phil Lyman
    Your ride through known archaeological sites is reprehensible. This freedom ride is limited to a small group with their own self-interest in mind. I agree with the premise of free access to travel on public lands, but there is a delicate balance where your freedom, will and desire should not impinge on my freedom, will and desire. That balance is known as law, it is how we as a people have elected to live in this country in a mutual contract. so while you espouse that you are protesting against an unfair government ruling, you are unilaterally denying any private citizen that disagrees with your position and abides by that contract a say in the matter. I wholeheartedly disagree with it and I consider it to be a criminal action, with real flesh and blood victims. Your protest is akin to vandalizing a cemetery. Those founding patriots with whom you have aligned yourself were willing to take responsibility for their actions, are you? I suggest that you be prosecuted to the full extent of the law for any damage incurred.

  • Mack2828 Ft Thomas, KY
    May 10, 2014 3:22 p.m.

    I respect these protesters. Sometimes an act of civil disobedience is the only way to get the attention of a federal agency run amok like the BLM. If you don't believe they have run amok, just watch the online video of the BLM agents with their tasers and attack dogs going crazy on the Bundy family in Nevada.

    I wish I lived in Utah as I would join these good people. Ride on!!

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    May 10, 2014 2:30 p.m.


    You are correct that the Navajo are not descendants of the Anasazi, as the Navajo came south from northern Canada about 500 years ago. The Utes, Zuni, Pueblo and possibly Shoshone may be descendants of the Anasazi - DNA testing and some population genetics may reveal their relations.

    I do know something about relations in San Juan County, from the side of the Navajo, who, interestingly, do not (generally) see things the same way the predominantly Anglo residents of Blanding see them. Until Mark Maryboy was elected a commissioner in San Juan County, the Dineh (Navajo) perceive that conservative Anglos assumed they were in charge and in control, that they were divinely destined to rule.

    While conservatives and the Montana Militia seek to claim millions of acres of federal land, the Dineh are seeking a national monument, and I hope they get it. It's clear there will never be agreement between the various interests, and to pretend there could be is silly.

    Obama should strike one for the First Nation people in that area and declare the monument.

  • BJ61 South Jordan, UT
    May 10, 2014 11:34 a.m.

    Cats: Your logic is so flawed. One point in particular is fraught with problems. The destruction of and disrespect for native American sites may be a tradition in Blanding for the last 150 years, but that doesn't make it right. If that logic is true, then you end up supporting the oldest of all professions and practices: prostitution.

  • Geebes TEMPE, AZ
    May 10, 2014 11:20 a.m.

    I can understand the frustration of waiting years for the BLM to process an application. Government is bureaucratic, things happen slowly, not all laws are agreeable to all of the population, we all understand. But is it worth spilling blood over? Democracy is not a semi-automatic weapon. Leave your guns at home. And don't ride your ATV with an American flag as if breaking laws in unison is patriotic. It's an insult to every law-abiding U.S. citizen who pays their taxes as well as their speeding tickets.

  • cachedout Centerville, UT
    May 10, 2014 11:09 a.m.

    If these folks want to stage an act of civil disobediance against the BLM for policies they oppose, so be it.

    Tim DeChristopher served 21 months in prison for an act of civil disobedience against the BLM.

    There simply isn't any reason that the very same judgement shouldn't be applied against every last one of these lawbreakers.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    May 10, 2014 10:57 a.m.

    Dear 10CC:

    Again, you are misinformed. The Navajos are NOT the descendants of the Anasazis. In fact, the word Anasazi is a Navajo word that means "ancient enemies." The Anasazis did not evolve into the Navajos. They simply left. The Navajos are a completely different group. Their opinions about this shouldn't carry any more weight than those of any other American.

    And...the Blandingites do no "bully" the Navajos or the Utes. They are very kind to them and they actually all get along quite well. You are clearly thinking about some other native people in some other part of the country.

    Too many people think they know what goes on in San Juan County when they actually have no idea.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    May 10, 2014 10:46 a.m.

    Dear 10CC:

    You are clearly one of the many people who are misinformed about this case like most the posters on these boards. The artifacts were not disturbed and BLM has not denied access altogether. Banning ATVs does not in ANY WAY protect the artifacts

    A couple of guys went in there and did a little maintenance on the trail. That's all. They caused no damage and didn't intend to do anything wrong. No artifacts were damaged. The Great Old Broads (who live in Durango, CO--not Blanding) found out who did it and filed charges against them. People came from far and wide to pay their fines. The whole thing was ridiculous.

    Banning ATVs from this trail does not in ANY WAY save the artifacts. It just makes it harder for people who cannot walk or ride a horse to gain access to the public lands they are the owners of. They have a right to see these artifacts, too.

    I don't condone law breaking, but this case is just another example of Big Brother heavy handedness. These people love that land more than anyone in the world. They have no desire to damage it.

  • Jim Cobabe Provo, UT
    May 10, 2014 10:41 a.m.

    I was wondering if Mr. Bundy will have any time in his busy schedule for signing autographs?

  • Ralph West Jordan Taylorsville, UT
    May 10, 2014 9:50 a.m.

    Re: BJ61 and Interloper. It could not be said any better. Problem is you are spitting into the wind bringing reason to the subject here in Utah. Bad new is, The Radical right will grab their white hats, saddle up to ride in any posse that that is formed to eradicate the Right Wing-Ding arch enemy, the big boogie man aka the Federal Govt. Good news is, give them enough room and time and inevitably they will follow the leader right over the edge. Happens every time!

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    May 10, 2014 9:14 a.m.


    Actually, your logic is flawed. The people of the United States of America owns that land, and through our democratically elected representatives the BLM manages that land, for all US citizens, not just the people of Blanding.

    As a co-owner of that land, I want what's left of the Anasazi artifacts protected. My voice - and the voice of all Americans, including the Navajos, whom the people in Blanding have been bullying for well over 100 years - are equivalent to the locals in Blanding.

    If you & the people of Blanding are turning everything into a free-for-all, I want one of the F-16s at Hill AFB. I'm a licensed pilot, I'm pretty sure I've paid more in taxes than most people... I deserve one of those jets.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    May 10, 2014 8:40 a.m.

    Among his ill-considered remarks on blacks and slavery, Cliven Bundy also compared himself to Rosa Parks. But by allying himself with self-styled militias brandishing weapons, Bundy betrayed a lack of historical understanding (not surprising) and a lack of a coherent protest philosophy. Rosa Parks, Dr. King, and the black civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s were passionately committed to nonviolent civil disobedience. Arms were not part of their strategy. (When I participated in nonviolent civil disobedience protests at the Nevada Test Site in the 1980s, there was even vigorous debate as to whether going limp instead of willingly offering your wrists for handcuffing constituted violence.)

    If the San Juan County protesters wish to join with the Bundys and their militia supporters, fine, but they will not be the intellectual or philosophical heirs of Dr. King. They will be following in the footsteps of Huey Newton, the Black Panthers, Malcolm X, and "by any means necessary." There is a huge difference and it does not benefit their cause.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    May 10, 2014 6:55 a.m.

    BJ61: You comparison is flawed. Rio Tinto is a private owner. The Federal Government is not. This land belongs to the people of this nation and not the Federal officers who think they can bully and control it. The people have a right to access their own property--especially in view of the history of this trail with has been used by the locals for well over a hundred years.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    May 10, 2014 6:52 a.m.

    These people are not law breakers or unreasonable people in any way. They have just had it with the Feds always controlling their lives and outside groups like the Great Old Broads who don't live there and don't live with the consequences of these decisions but think they have a right to control the lives of the locals.

    This is Big Brother gone amok and someone needs to do something. I wish them well in their protest and I hope something can be done.

  • Interloper Portland, OR
    May 10, 2014 1:41 a.m.

    Does Phil Lyman believe people are hopelessly naive? Nearly 90% of Utah is public lands. If any citizen who decided he is the arbiter of some acres here and there was allowed to get away with it, there would be chaos. Furhermore, there is no 'ancestral right' to these lands held by any European-descended inhabitant. The BLM legitimately acts as custodian of Recapture for all of America's citizens.

    What this is really about is 'sovereign citizens' - people who say they are above the federal government - claiming ownership of public property for their own selfish reasons - whether grazing cattle illegally or tearing up a historical site with ATVs. We should see these people for the louts they are.

  • BJ61 South Jordan, UT
    May 9, 2014 7:53 p.m.

    My ancestors and I have lived in close proximity to what is now the Bingham Canyon mine for a century and a half. I have decided that Rio Tinto has no real legal title to that land; therefore, I am going to arm myself tomorrow morning (along with other self-proclaimed geniuses who have joined my cause), storm the mine, and take over its operation going forward. It is clear to me that Rio Tinto has not operated the mine in the manner that I and my band are willing to accept.

    What nonsense! Arrest the Bundy family, Commissioner Lyman, and their seditious militia, and continue to arrest anyone who violates the law. What part of illegal is so difficult for the Bundy clan and their anarchist followers to understand?