No man’s Land

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According to the United States Constitution (Article 1, Section 8, paragraph 17), the Federal State cannot own land areas except for the 10 square miles of Washington DC on which both the White House and the related administrative offices are located. In the other States the government property is provided only for postal offices, courts, military buildings, arsenals and so forth.
However, in the West of the United States the majority of the land is federal property: in Nevada, in particular, only 15,5 percent belongs to the citizens. 84,5 percent of the land belongs to the government that today is using it regardless of the rights and traditions of the cowboys who are the descendants of those pioneers that had founded here their ranches and that are now disappearing.
If in the 1940’s there were 52 ranches in the county of Clark (Las Vegas) nowadays, there is only one left: that of the Bundy Family that refused to sell the grazing and water rights. This family is now facing the consequences. 5 of its members are now in jail on charges of domestic terrorism for openly demonstrating against the Federal government and its land plans. This attempt of expropriation started 30 years ago and it is repeating itself in different ways but with the same results in many other West territories (e.g. Hammond in Oregon, Gardener in Nevada, Bulloch Rucker in Utah and so on).
Among Trump’s campaign promises there are the reconstitution of those rights laid down in the Constitution and the ensuing return of the land to the native Americans.
On the other hand, Hillary Clinton promises the development of green energy which is currently managed on federal land.

This work has been conceived and realized together with Michela Benaglia.
www.michelabenaglia.it

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