- United States House of Representatives
- United States of America
There has been much dispute lately about the federal government's seizure of private property, particularly out west. The government has tried to justify it through eminent domain. Eminent Domain is when the government seizes private property for public use, but provides just compensation to the owner.
This is allowed under the 5th Amendment to the Constitution, which states,"... nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation." The federal government has been seizing property from citizens whose families have owned the land for generations, but the land isn't for public use. The most prominent example of this would be the Bundy family's farm in Nevada.
The Bureau of Land Management attempted to seize land and cattle from the Bundy family, claiming that they were trying to protect the habitat of the Desert Tortoise. That is not public use of property, therefore, it is against the Constitution. In addition to that, the BLM euthanized dozens of Desert Tortoises not long prior to this, because they claimed to be unable to afford the care of them. If they couldn't afford that, than how could they afford to spend a million dollars rounding up Cliven Bundy's cattle? The BLM also attempts to justify the land and cattle seizures by saying that Mr. Bundy hadn't been paying grazing fees for 20 years. Why should citizens have to pay money to the government in order for their cattle to graze on their own property?
The federal government has been doing this for too long. They own 28% of the total land in the United States, and even more than that in some states. 84% of Nevada is now owned by the federal government, as well as 69% of Alaska, and nearly as much of most other western states. It is wrong for the federal government to have taken this land, and it is time for the American people to stand up and say so.
We, the undersigned, call on the government of the United States to stop abusing its power, and to obey the 5th Amendment to the Constitution, where it it states,"... nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation."
For too long, the federal government has been taking private property from citizens without just compensation, and for uses other than public use. This must end, and the properties that the government has seized must be returned to their rightful owners.
The End Government Seizure of Private Property petition to United States House of Representatives was written by Patrick Latham and is in the category Government at GoPetition.