PayPal Freezes Bundy Ranch Accounts, Will They Switch to Bitcoin?
The Bundy Ranch, a group of US ranchers locked in a conflict with the federal government, lost its ability to use PayPal to process donations. Will they start using Bitcoin instead?
The Bundy Ranch has had its PayPal accounts blocked. The Bundys, a US family of cattle ranchers in Nevada, rose to fame (notoriety?) in 2014 for refusing to pay the federal government for grazing rights on federal lands. This conflict resulted in an armed standoff between federal agents and supporters of the Bundys, many of them members of private militias from across the country. The standoff ended without violence, and members of the Bundy family had been receiving donations in support of their plight through PayPal.
The Facebook page run to support the Bundy family and their struggle against the federal government posted the bad news early on Tuesday morning:
PayPal has blocked all of the Patriots accounts and will not allow their wives and families to access any of the donations.
Until we find another way to receive donations online we are asking you to send your donations to them by mail.
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL YOUR PRAYERS AND DONATIONS!
Cliven and Carol Bundy
Po box 7175
Bunkerville NV 89007
Dave and Marylynn Bundy
Po box 814
Delta UT 84624
Ryan and Angie Bundy
Po box 7557
Bunkerville NV 89007
Ammon and Lisa Bundy
Po box 1072
Emmett, ID 83617
Another nail in the coffin of traditional payment systems as a reliable donation source
The refusal of mainstream payment systems to deal with controversial groups or subjects only underscores the need for decentralized tools, such as Bitcoin, to fill the void and fulfill the role of servicing parties who may experience government pressure.
Robert Genito, CEO of Genitrust, thinks that these actions will only further push more and more high-profile causes away from traditional payment platforms and towards Bitcoin.
He says to Cointelegraph:
“Let's be frank: PayPal's actions will only stimulate Bundy Ranch to become their own bank. It's clear that Bundy Ranch does not need PayPal. Thanks to these continuing trends of circumstances with financial blockades, Bundy Ranch will become yet another example to others on how to become their own bank and claim their financial freedom.”
Genito believes that the continuing practices of the financial industry towards dissidents, combined with freely available decentralized financial technology, will only contribute to the rise of cryptocurrency and the concept of self-banking among the general public.
“As these occurrences happen to more and more companies and individuals, this self-banking empowerment will slowly reach the consciousness of the masses, and that conscious awareness is the most powerful thing for decentralized currency to thrive.”
Controversial causes and businesses frequently experience loss of financial services
This is far from the first time that a politically controversial organization received funding issues because of its activities. Pro-peace nonprofit AntiWar.com received a ban from Google Adsense because of its decision to showcase the horrors of war firsthand, prompting them to rely more on Bitcoin donations. Wikileaks was famously relegated to Bitcoin donations as well.
Uber, in a battle in Argentina with the Buenos Aires government, was forced to rely on Bitcoin debit cards when the courts ordered credit card processors to suspend all activity with the ride-sharing company.