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Guest Opinions

Multiple Land Use

Written by Rex Rammell

To the Editor:

The federal government controls nearly 50 percent of Wyoming’s land and 50 percent of the land in the West. Since the West was divided into states, one problem after another has surfaced because of this fact. The latest and sad case was the death of Lavoy Finnicum, a rancher who protested the cruel and unfair punishment of his fellow ranchers in Oregon. Story after story has been archived through the years of the BLM, Forest Service, EPA, U.S. Fish and Wildlife and National Park Service unjustly managing the public lands. 

However, if their intent ever was to allow multiple land use, all pretenses have been dropped in recent years with an outright attack on grazing, mining, logging and other economic uses. Make no mistake about it, the environmentalists want the public lands to be off limits to livestock producers, miners and loggers. They are now unabashed in their assault on the use of public lands, which leaves no recourse for westerners other than all out war. I am not speaking of a violent uprising but a well coordinated constitutional states’ rights fight.  

I grew up in the shadows of the mighty Tetons in Teton Valley, Idaho just six miles from the Wyoming line, a fifth generation Rammell who has witnessed first hand this assault on the West by environmentalists. In 2008, I had had enough and decided to do something about it. I entered the political arena by running for the U.S. Senate. Unsuccessful, but undeterred, I moved forward with a run for Governor of Idaho in 2010. In both races my campaign was “It’s Time to Take Back Our Land.” My message was well received as evidenced by over 42,000 votes in the Republican primary. However, the majority of the people were not prepared to take on the federal government at the level I was advocating. 

Discouraged and broke after waging an intense campaign to break up the monopoly of power in Idaho, my wife and I moved to the Cowboy State in search of a better future. Thanks to Lex and Shawn Madden and Michael Schmidt, I was given a job as the chief veterinarian at Torrington Livestock Markets. After preg checking 30,000 head in 18 months and suffering from a bad shoulder, I moved back to Jackson to see if my dislike for environmentalists had dissipated. Unfortunately, it had not, so I moved to Gillette to work for Animal Medical Center of Wyoming. 

Keeping my head in the sand, I tried to ignore the escalation of the “War on the West.” Gillette, however, proved to be the wrong city to do that in. Upon Congresswoman Lummis’ retirement announcement, I felt compelled to get back in the fight. So here I am again, like a moth drawn to the flame, ready to walk the coals in this seemingly ageless battle. Except this time, I hope the cowboys, the miners and the loggers of Wyoming will have my back. What I started in Idaho eight years ago I intend to finish in “wonderful” Wyoming with your help. 

For more information and to join the cause please go to voteRammell.com.

Sincerely,

U.S. Congressional Candidate Rex Rammell, DVM, MS

Gillette