This article was originally published on www.InsideSTL.com on April 20th. My new articles are published every Monday on InsideSTL. I place them here after they are no longer featured on the site each Wednesday. Please take the time to visit the site, read the articles, and participate in the debate which takes place in the comments section. As always, I want to thank InsideSTL for giving me the weekly forum.
The common storyline concerning political discourse says that racism, hatred, and greed fuel the actions and beliefs exclusively of those on the right. Liberal Democrats often take credit for the civil rights movement despite the fact that Martin Luther King, Jr. was actually a Republican and Democrat John F. Kennedy ordered phone taps of the civil rights icon. Most of the votes in Congress against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 were cast by Democrats. Southern segregation was a Democrat platform during this period. In fact, Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president. Today’s liberals, or progressives, claim that racist Democrats became fed up with their own party for supporting the Civil Rights Act and jumped ship to join the Republican Party. Basically by their logic, racists were furious with the party who offered the most opposition to the Civil Rights Act, causing them to become members of the party that offered the most consistent support. Don’t try too hard to understand the logic because it’ll cause heads to explode. Now, the racist accusations are flying again and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has actually turned this progressive myth into policy through their recently released report, “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.” Elsewhere, progressives are also using the tired storyline to explain last week’s nationwide tea parties. All of this is a concerted effort to marginalize Obama’s critics through painting any criticism as the product of bigotry and ignorance.
Last week, the DHS under the supervision of DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano, released a report claiming that the current economic downturn along with the election of the first black president poses a threat of fueling violence from “rightwing extremists” who are defined as not only hate groups but also “those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely.” Anyone who considers the 10th Amendment still applicable to American politics is apparently a threat according to Obama’s DHS. DHS admits at the beginning of the report that they have “no specific information that domestic rightwing terrorists are currently planning acts of violence.” The hypothetical threats referred include “groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration.” The report also singles out veterans returning from Iraq or Afghanistan and anyone who is pro-Second Amendment, people supporting third party candidates, and/or opposes expansion of federal government programs. Essentially, anyone who disagrees with the Obama agenda is being painted as the next Timothy McVeigh. It is interesting though, that William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn aren’t worried about increased monitoring.
This report differs greatly from the January DHS report focusing on the threat of cyber-attacks from leftwing extremists. In this report, leftwing extremism is defined as, “groups or individuals who embrace radical elements of the anarchist, animal rights, or environmental movements…” The report specifically mentioned such leftwing terrorist organizations as the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) and the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and had concrete evidence requiring elevated threat levels from previous actions of the groups. Nowhere in the leftwing report did it caution that certain people should be watched because their political beliefs make them more susceptible to being recruited by leftwing extremist groups. To equal the broad warning of the rightwing extremist report, the DHS would essentially have to say pet owners should be watched because they are more susceptible of being recruited by the ALF to blow up laboratories. Democrat Representative, and chair of the House committee overseeing DHS, Bernie Thompson confirmed this when writing to Napolitano, “This report appears to have blurred the line between violent belief, which is constitutionally protected, and violent action, which is not.”
When discussing the reasons behind the recent nationwide tea parties, actress Janeane Garofalo read straight from the progressive script when she told MSNBC’s Keith Olberman, “It’s about hating a black man in the White House. This is racism straight up and is nothing but a bunch of teabagging rednecks.” She then went on to claim that Fox News, the only network to give real coverage of the protests, focuses on the “Klan demographic.” What is unsettling is that the intellectually vacant and perpetually single Garofalo wasn’t alone in her assessment. During the weeks leading up to the tea parties, MSNBC anchors Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow couldn’t stop laughing at their “cleverness” as they referred to “teabaggers.” Illinois Representative, Democrat Jan Schakowsky told TheHill.com, “It’s despicable that rightwing Republicans would attempt to cheapen a significant, honorable moment of American history with such a shameful political stunt.” Between asking combative questions and interrupting their answers in order to insert official Obama talking points, CNN “reporter” Susan Roesgen lamented from the Chicago tea party that she had not seen one African American in the entire crowd. It’s easy to avoid an honest debate if you successfully paint your opponent as a bigot, undeserving and incapable of productive conversation.
B. Hussein Obama was probably more sincere than he had ever been when he explained, “It’s not that I want to punish your success. I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you, that they’ve got a chance at success, too. I think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody.” The tax day tea party protests represented the alienation felt by many in this nation. If Obama gets his way, a majority of the population will consume most of the government entitlement spending but pay no taxes. This will create a voting majority able to extract whatever they want from the taxpaying minority. This is tyranny, plain and simple. While many may support this idea out of self interest in light of their present socioeconomic class, no one with any higher aspirations should ever condone this type of confiscatory despotism.
Abraham Lincoln, who many of Obama’s supporters constantly compare him to, once said, “If by the mere force of numbers a majority should deprive a minority of any clearly written constitutional right, it might, in a moral point of view, justify revolution.” The revolution Lincoln is referring to is brewing and it will manifest as the regular, nonviolent coup provided for in the Constitution. It will take place in November of 2010 when voters head back to the polls. This is when every protester who has seen their concerns written off as acts of ignorance and racism will be able to enact change that, not only they can believe in but also believes in and respects them as well. All without any actions requiring DHS monitoring.