Congratulations to President Trump for heeding my call, and the calls of other westerners, farmers, and ranchers, to pardon the Hammonds. Neither he, nor his appointees, nor bureaucrats, however, should rest on their laurels. There are many agency vendettas and prosecutorial abuses to undo, and many innocents to be made whole. One of those victims is Pastor Victor Fuentes of Nevada.
Dwight and Steven Hammond are a father-son ranching duo from Oregon. They were prosecuted under a terrorism statute and sentenced to five years in prison in 2015, punishment for arson charges that stemmed from controlled burns started on their ranch that spread onto nearby public lands.
Trump pardoned them on July 10. In a congratulatory commentary on the pardon, the Wall Street Journal's editorial board reported that in its efforts to “drive out [the Hammonds and other ranchers],” the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service “mismanaged water to let ranchlands flood.”
The Hammonds are not the only westerners wronged in a case of “theft by flooding.” So, too, was Pastor Fuentes, who fled Castro’s Cuba and whose church — a small, mostly Spanish-speaking congregation — built a 40-acre refuge in the Nevada desert for troubled youth.
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