Did you buy extra ammunition after Barack Obama was elected President, and are you still concerned that he might ban your guns? Are you concerned that the economic crisis could devolve into a depression, or worse? Do you think the federal government has overstepped its authority under the Constitution? If so, the government thinks you’re a right-wing extremist and a potential terrorist threat.
Last week the Department of Homeland Security Office of Intelligence and Analysis published an “analysis” of “right-wing extremists” in the United States in which it claims, quite vaguely, that: “Rightwing extremism in the United States can be broadly divided into those groups, movements, and adherents that are primarily hate-oriented (based on hatred of particular religious, racial or ethnic groups), and those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration.”
Naturally the document was leaked and has provoked a firestorm of controversy, with conservatives saying it unfairly paints their viewpoints as extremist. You’ll have to read it for yourself to see how far it goes in demonizing anyone who believes in individual rights and limited government. But here’s a sample:
(U//FOUO) Rightwing extremist chatter on the Internet continues to focus on the economy, the perceived loss of U.S. jobs in the manufacturing and construction sectors, and home foreclosures. Anti-Semitic extremists attribute these losses to a deliberate conspiracy conducted by a cabal of Jewish “financial elites.” These “accusatory” tactics are employed to draw new recruits into rightwing extremist groups and further radicalize those already subscribing to extremist beliefs. DHS/I&A assesses this trend is likely to accelerate if the economy is perceived to worsen. . . .
(U//FOUO) Historically, domestic rightwing extremists have feared, predicted, and anticipated a cataclysmic economic collapse in the United States. Prominent antigovernment conspiracy theorists have incorporated aspects of an impending economic collapse to intensify fear and paranoia among like-minded individuals and to attract recruits during times of economic uncertainty. Conspiracy theories involving declarations of martial law, impending civil strife or racial conflict, suspension of the U.S. Constitution, and the creation of citizen detention camps often incorporate aspects of a failed economy. Antigovernment conspiracy theories and “end times” prophecies could motivate extremist individuals and groups to stockpile food, ammunition, and weapons. . . .
(U//FOUO) DHS/I&A assesses that rightwing extremists will attempt to recruit and radicalize returning veterans in order to exploit their skills and knowledge derived from military training and combat. These skills and knowledge have the potential to boost the capabilities of extremists — including lone wolves or small terrorist cells — to carry out violence. The willingness of a small percentage of military personnel to join extremist groups during the 1990s because they were disgruntled, disillusioned, or suffering from the psychological effects of war is being replicated today.
That’s just the beginning.
Interestingly, the report draws a distinction between “right-wing extremists” and “law-abiding citizens,” as if good, honest, moral people could not possibly hold any of these viewpoints.
A DHS spokesman told FOX News that nothing was wrong with this assessment, citing a January assessment of left-wing extremists the department also issued.
DHS spokeswoman Sara Kuban said the April 7 assessment is one in an ongoing series published by DHS “to facilitate a greater understanding of radicalization in the United States.”
“DHS has no specific information that domestic right-wing terrorists are currently planning acts of violence, but right-wing extremists may be gaining new recruitments by playing on their fears about several emerging issues,” Kuban said. . . .
“This is the job of DHS, to assess what is happening in this country, with regard to homegrown terrorism, and determine whether it’s an actual threat or not, and that’s what these assessments do. This is nothing unusual. These assessments are done all the time. This is about awareness,” the official told FOX News on Monday. — FOX News
You might be tempted to believe that if you hadn’t actually seen the left-wing extremist assessment, so I invite you to read it for yourself and contrast it to the right-wing extremist document. It’s much more clear about its definition of left-wing extremists and even gives examples of organizations it considers to be left-wing extremists (and they’re quite difficult to argue with, unfortunately for my more liberal readers).
As you’ll see, the left-wing document is narrowly focused on specific groups and activities while the right-wing document covers almost any belief to the right of, well, Barack Obama. It names no organizations as examples, and as one commentator pointed out, doesn’t even say there’s an actual threat! You right-wing extremist loonies are just a potential threat to the nation, and so the government is going to have to keep an eye on you.
This report smacks of profiling and harassing American citizens based on their political views, and specifically based on their opposition to the Obama administration’s proposals.
This used to be called “democracy” and “free speech” protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution. But under Obama, “Homeland Security” has become an instrument of oppression of opposing points of view. — WorldNetDaily
Oh, Bush would have done the same thing if he thought he could get away with it. Let’s not pretend this is a purely Democratic problem. The problem is that the institution of government allows people who disagree with each other to beat each other over the head with the world’s largest hammer, and whoever is out of power must suffer at the hands of whoever is in power. That whoever is in power can be changed every couple of years makes it no less of a problem; it just means that everyone gets a chance to wield the hammer, and to be hit by it, in turn.
Oops, that’s an antigovernment sentiment. I must be a right-wing extremist.