“I regret having to even make this statement, but I have no choice, since Ammon Bundy has not made it sufficiently clear to the patriot community that the Hammond family has declined physical armed help, and by all indications does NOT want any kind of armed stand off with the Federal government, and they do NOT want anyone to attempt to protect Dwight and Steven Hammond from being taken into Federal custody on Monday, January 4, 2016 when they are scheduled to turn themselves in to serve additional time for their felony convictions (which came after a jury found them guilty). They intend to voluntarily turn themselves in and serve out the remainder of their sentence, under federal minimum sentencing statutes, after losing in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on that issue. In fact, they have made it very clear, through a public statement by their lawyer, in a letter to the Sheriff dated December 11, 2015, that:
Neither Ammon Bundy nor anyone in his group/organization speaks for the Hammond Family, Dwight Hammond or Steven Hammond. In addition, I wish to report to you that, as recently ordered by the District Court, District of Oregon, Dwight Hammond and Steven Hammond intend to voluntarily report to the designated federal facility on January 4, 2016, as required.”
Rhodes goes on to explain a YouTube video that has caused confusion on Ammond representing the will of the Hammond family.
“Unfortunately, Ammon Bundy has not made that clear. And despite Dwight and Steven Hammond’s decision to voluntarily report to Federal custody, Ammon has issued a video titled ‘BREAKING ALERT! URGENT CALL TO ACTION! ALL CALL FOR ALL PATRIOTS! MILITIAS! OATH-KEEPERS! FROM AMMON BUNDY RANCH!’ In that video, posted on December 29, Ammon Bundy asks those who went to Bundy Ranch to now go to the town of Burns ‘to make a stand’ and he urges them to ‘come to Burns and defend this family and defend this county.’ Here is a transcript of the last part of his video:
“I’m asking you, and you know who you are, you that came, and you that felt to come, to the Bundy Ranch. I’m asking you to come to Burns on January 2, to make a stand. And I feel that this is every bit, and in many ways more important, than the Bundy Ranch. I feel – I know – that the abuses this family has endured is much greater than even the Bundy family. And this is something that cannot be ignored. It has to happen now. We cannot allow these violations to be so blatant and do nothing and expect that we will not be accountable for it. We will be accountable if we do not stand, and I’m asking you now, to come to Burns and defend this family and to defend this county, because it is not just the Hammonds that are being affected by this. They have put this whole county in depression. In the 80s, this county was a thriving county that the household income was higher than the national average, and the highest in the state of Oregon. Now, because of the federal control of the resources, now Harney County is in an economic depression. They are the lowest – they have the lowest income in the county (country) and it is $22,000.00 under the national average – $22,000.00 less than the national average. And it’s because they have no access – very little access – to their natural resources. And it is time that we make a stand, and I’m asking you to do that. And I want to thank you for your time and thank you for listening, and I hope that you can feel the urgency of what I am asking you to do.”
It has been claimed that the Hammond’s have received threats from the federal government to not associate with Ammond or they could make things much worse for themselves. This could very well have forced the Hammond family to stand down into the current nonresistant stance they have taken in this situation. Many now wait to see the response from the government, as this would be the second time this family has forced them to tuck tail and run.