Published on Feb 3, 2013
For a short 3 minute summary of road opening details: http://youtu.be/NYnTHtDIeXA
What is RS 2477? It is a provision of federal law supporting the actions of these courageous townspeople.
Though repealed in 1976, its powerful effects are not repeal-able.
It is about preservation of public property, i.e. rights of way.
It is a matter of liberty!!
Of the freedom to travel!
Vision, knowledge, and guts are the real powers behind what happened in Pitkin.
The willingness to be arrested for standing for what is right.
We tried it their way, and all they want to do is talk. This is because they can control the outcome of the conversation through the "Delphi technique." The meetings commenced by the BLM and Forest Service concerning road closures, as well as the taking of comments, are outcome oriented. In other words, for the most part, the decision has already been made about road closures. The meetings are solely for the appearance of public input, while the real purpose is the manufacturing of consent.
The only power the BLM and Forest Service has to close roads is derived from our "buy in." On this day in history, the group in Pitkin broke out of their programming.
Instead of being seduced by promises of future possibilities, they withdrew their consent to the destruction of their roads and reversed the trend by controlling the conversation about opening the road.
What these people knew is that the Forest Service was outside its jurisdiction to "close," let alone destroy the road. The "closure" was therefore a usurpation of power.
The emperor was wearing no clothes. The law upon which the People of Pitkin were standing was the protection of right of ways provided by RS 2477, an old 1866 mining law, which, though repealed, still protects certain public rights of way from closure.
The Forest Service and BLM had closed one road too many. No more. The People of Pitkin and surrounding areas have had enough. One Friday morning, in late September, 2012, several of the men of Pitkin, were gathered at the Silver Plume general store, drinking their coffee as is their morning custom. This day the topic of conversation turned to the destruction of their roads by the Forest Service.
To really get a feel of the devastation and see what they saw, please see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XHr8u8...
That morning someone said, "I have had enough! Let's just go open the road."
He was referring to the Powderhouse Gulch Road that had just been closed. "Who here is Man enough to join me?" He asked.
Just then a customer who had just parked walked between the crowd into the store. Everyone went silent. When the door closed, the subject suddenly changed. They did not go back to the conversation about road closures again.
But the elephant had been let into the room.
Someone called local constitutional and abusive government activist David Justice, a Gunnison county local, and told him about the meeting and the conversation about opening a road. David was immediately on board saying, "Lets do it!"
A time and date was agreed to and the word went out to others willing to stand.
A meeting was called in Pitkin for Sunday night to discuss the road closures. About 40 to 50 people showed. David Justice gave a short presentation on the principles of State sovereignty, the tenth amendment and RS 2477. He then provided an example of a couple of circumstances where a county sheriff in one case, and a county commissioner in another, had successfully opened a road regardless of a threatened arrest by Federal Forest Law Enforcement (LEOs) agents.
David contends that the Forest Service and BLM LEOs (Law Enforcement Officers) have no jurisdiction and power to make arrests on county roads, and that all they have is influence of threat and intimidation like the Wizard of Oz.
During his presentation, the group came to life. After the meeting it was announced that a group was planning to open the road on Wednesday morning and asked for volunteers to help.
Several Men stepped up and committed to being there. Among those who showed up were local homeowners, college students, businessmen, the Pitkin fire chief, a ex Gunnison county commissioner, and a retired banker.
And that is simply how this began. Founded in 1879 Pitkin, originally named Quartzville was Colorado's first mining town West of the Continental Divide. It sits at an elevation of 9,242 feet, twenty eight miles northeast of Gunnison, on the Quartz Creek and the old D & S P Railroad line in Gunnison County, Colorado.