Slate Ridge needs your support in ending the corruption that is deeply rooted in Pawlet, Vermont. Many of you may know Slate Ridge’s story from the words of the media, but I hope you’ll take the time to read with your heart what has gone on and is continuing in this small town.
Daniel Banyai purchased the property on Briar Hill in Pawlet, Vermont in 2013. In November of that very year, the gate that Daniel put in place on his property was dismantled by his neighbors. Determined to enjoy his new property, Daniel pressed on.
In 2016, construction began on Daniel’s property to bring a firearms safety school to the local residents. This school offered a wide variety of courses, serving individuals ranging from youth to elder. Classes such as youth firearm safety and self defense courses for single mothers are only a small a small example of the variety of learning offered on Slate Ridge.
The locals of Pawlet, and specifically the residents of Briar Hill Road, had no interest in seeing what Daniel had to offer this small town. Not only were they unsupportive of the range in its entirety, but they also felt personally invested in the removal of him from the local area due to his relationship status with a prior in law of theirs. This set the precedent for the fear based bandwagoning that has continued on for years surrounding Daniel and Slate Ridge. The judge ordered that the the permit Daniel was issued for building the range be voided, and that the range be dismantled, rendering the entire facility unusable. After a tiresome court battle, Daniel dismantled the range, and reversed all hard work invested in the project, and presented proof to the courts. This was not enough to appease them, though, as they wanted access to the property to ensure he possessed no building materials, or un permitted structures on his land.
While suffering through what felt like a never ending battle on his pursuit of happiness, Daniel turned to agriculture for comfort and purpose. Slate Ridge is deemed a Small Farming Operation, confirmed by the Vermont State Agency of Agriculture, Food and markets and is a complete working farm, home to a plethora of animals. In the state of Vermont, farm structures need not be permitted. During the most recent inspection, they have found Daniel to remain in non compliance for not removing the run ins which house his animals, for having tarps on property covering what “could potentially be” building materials, and for having a silo that “might possibly be” the same silo he was instructed to dismantle during a prior site inspection, on the grounds that it’s contents could be used to create a weapon., just to name a few.
I implore you to see the true colors that have been shown throughout this grueling process. What started out as Pawlet needing the gun range dismantled due to “threats to their immediate safety” has somehow spiraled into not being allowed to farm peacefully on private property. The entire basis of their argument has shifted gears, showing that their only true intent is to eradicate Daniel’s residency as a whole. Daniel has been targeted personally, racially, and religiously throughout this smear campaign that the town of Pawlet has orchestrated. The taunting and torment continues on to this day, with photo evidence of the “victims” who claim to fear him most on the edge of his property wearing a smile as they break their own protection orders. His constitutional rights continue to be revoked, and the favoritism, nepotism and corruption prevail.
This corruption, albeit sickening and wrong, should come as no surprise though, considering just last year the town of Pawlet created a petition in attempts to remove from the town a woman struggling with mental illness. That in itself proves that if you aren’t a part of the “in crowd”, you will be removed.
Please join us in supporting a cause that is greater than any farm or safety range. Please support your own constitutional rights in this fight, stand up for your freedoms and liberties, and stand with us for Slate Ridge and all that it now stands for.