One of the supporters serving as a bodyguard for Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy during his standoff with federal authorities — and who also happens to be black — said he would still “take a bullet for” Bundy after the rancher made racially inflammatory comments.
CNN’s Dan Simon noticed Jason Bullock, a six-year Army veteran who serves as one of Bundy’s bodyguards, hanging around at the Nevada ranch. Simon asked Bullock whether he found Bundy’s remarks about blacks and slavery offensive.
“Mr. Bundy is not a racist,” he told CNN. “Ever since I’ve been here, he’s treated me with nothing but hospitality. He’s pretty much treating me just like his own family.”
“I would take a bullet for that man if need be. I look up to him just like I do my own grandfather,” he added. “I believe in his cause and after having met Mr. Bundy a few times, I have a really good feel about him and I’m a pretty good judge of character.”
In his own interview with CNN on Friday, Bundy refused to acknowledge that his remarks offended people.
“If I say ‘negro’ or ‘black boy’ or ‘slave,’ I’m not — if those people cannot take those kind of words and not be offensive (sic) then Martin Luther King hasn’t got his job done yet,” the rancher said.
Watch below, courtesy of CNN:
This post has been updated.
Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.