Robert “LaVoy” Finicum and his wife Jeanette were foster care parents for troubled boys. Finicum estimates that over the past decade, more than 50 boys came through their ranch near Chino Valley, Arizona. The boys often landed there from mental hospitals, drug rehabs and group homes for emotionally distressed youth.Finicum offers the implausible argument that federal officials have convinced Gov. Doug Ducey to act on their behalf:
“My ranch has been a great tool for these boys,” Finicum said. “It has done a lot of good.”
Jeanette Finicum cared for the four children while her husband traveled between the refuge in southeastern Oregon and Utah, as part of a press tour in support of the militants’ occupation.
The removals coincided with Finicum’s involvement in the occupation of the refuge, outside of Burns. He blamed the removals on “pressure from the feds.”Ducey spokesman Daniel Scarpinato told The Range today that Ducey had no role in the decision to remove the children from Finicum's ranch.
“They were ripped from my wife,” Finicum said. “We are very successful (foster parents). Our track records are good, it’s been a good relationship. (Federal authorities) must have gotten to the governor, who told the state to get them out of there.”
First, having one parent away from the home for a significant period of time committing a number of high profile federal crimes would seem like at least a plausible reason to remove the children. This doesn't seem to occur to Finicum.Marshall concludes:
The second point comes further down in the article. From a mix of tabulations by Oregon Public Broadcasting and Finicum's own account, Finicum and his wife apparently get almost all or all of their income from being foster parents. His ranch in Chino Valley, Arizona is break even at best and appears to generate no income.
It's certainly possible that Finicum and his wife provide a great experience and place of emotional support for these boys. That's what he says and maybe he's right. But participation in anti-government extremist activity and various federal crimes seems to merit at least a close look at whether this is a healthy environment for these children, especially if they are taking in as many as 8 or 10 at a time and it's their only source of income.
Regardless, Finicum's claim that this is another example of the government persecution of him - removing foster children, who come with state subsidies which are his only source of income, because he has abandoned them to go commit crimes against the federal government in another state - just illustrates painfully and comically what a nonsense bubble these jokers live in.