Oath Keepers Response to SPLC Mouthpiece “Waco Jim” Cavanaugh’s Attack on Patriotic Veterans and Gun Owners

Oath Keepers Response to SPLC Mouthpiece “Waco Jim” Cavanaugh’s Attack on Patriotic Veterans and Gun Owners

Do the Right Thing – Get Attacked by the SPLC.  Missouri Oath Keepers Leader John Karriman Spends a Cold Thanksgiving 2014 Guarding Three Minority Businesses and Apartments From Arsonists in Ferguson, MO

 

This is in response to this recent Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) hit-piece video:

See also Jason Van Tatenhove’s write up here.

OATH KEEPERS FOUNDER STEWART RHODES:

I find it ironically fitting that the SPLC would trot out demonstrated oath-breaker “Waco Jim” Cavanaugh to be their “Federal law enforcement” shill in this hit piece.   He presided over the single worst disaster and royal “Charlie Foxtrot” in FBI history, and is directly responsible for the fiery deaths of dozens of innocent women and children at Waco, a travesty that even managed to out-do the black eye the FBI got from their cluster at Ruby Ridge.  What a great spokesman!  Waco was such a complete disaster that both local and federal law enforcement agencies hold classes on what this guy did wrong, holding Waco up as an example of what NOT to do, to avoid a repeat, with “no more Waco’s” being the cautionary watchword of the class.   Is this really the guy the SPLC expects competent local cops to listen to?

What the “Southern Preposterous Lie Center” Fears Most: A Uniting of the American Warrior Class

This heavy-handed smear video is clearly aimed at trying to convince local cops that we, the patriotic military and police veterans, and our patriotic gun owner brothers and sisters, are the enemies of the police, rather than the flag-burning, America hating Marxist ideologues who are destroying our Republic and currently out there killing cops across the nation.  And notice how many times Waco Jim refers to Oath Keepers, and to the oath of office, as he tries to convince police that the only way they can really uphold their oath is by refusing to listen to us patriots when we point out clear examples of federal government abuse of power and instead just be obedient force-multipliers when the Feds decide to teach a local patriot a lesson.

I find it encouraging that the SPLC is so worried about our efforts to reach out to local police that their whole video is essentially focused on trying to counter those efforts.  It shows you what the SPLC fears – they fear us uniting the American warrior class, by getting local cops (many of whom are also military veterans) to see local veterans and patriotic gun owners as their natural allies in the preservation of our Constitution, and the rights of the people to life, liberty, and property, by means of responsible and effective use of our right to bear arms at the local level (all concepts the Marxist left hates).   They want police to see us military and police veterans as their enemies, and they want to pit the American warrior class against itself, with cops v. veterans.

Note how the SPLC ignores all the times when Oath Keepers and other patriotic veterans have directly teamed up with local law enforcement to stand united against terrorists and criminal thugs.

This the SPLC M.O.  Ignore our very well-documented support for the good cops in local departments, such as our “Operation Protect the Protectors” where we worked closely with local police as we stood guard outside military recruitment centers across the nation after the Chattanooga, TN terror attack.

recruiter-and-chief-2-e1437502467172Oath Keeper veterans standing united with active duty recruiters and local cops

And SPLC ignores how in Ferguson, MO we got along just fine with the officers of the Ferguson PD as we stood guard over minority owned businesses and apartments, protecting them from murderous arsonists who wanted to burn them to the ground (including apartments with children inside).

fergusonoath1

Natalie, of Natalie’s Cakes and More, with Oath Keepers MARSOC Marine Veteran, Nick Nesbitt.  Gee, What an Extremist!

Something the SPLC refuses to acknowledge is that during the riots in Ferguson we protected three minority owned businesses (a black owned bakery, a Korean owned beauty supply store, and an Asian owned Chinese restaurant) along with a white owned dentist office and a law firm.  We also protected the residents of the apartments above those businesses, so we protected lives, not just property, against the deadly threat of arsonists who had personally walked up during the day and shouted up to us that they would be back at night to “burn these f@#%ing buildings to the ground.”   True to their word, the arsonists came back at night and threw some improvised incendiary devices on the roof, but our veteran volunteers were ready and quickly put them out before they could light the roof on fire.  And contrary to the lies of the SPLC, there were minority Oath Keepers on those rooftops too, not just “white” veterans (not that skin color matters to us, but it sure does to the SPLC, which likes to try to twist anything done by Americans on the political right as being motivated by racism).   Among our volunteers in Ferguson was a current serving Filipino special warfare operator who was on leave at the time.   There are several news reports recounting the rather humorous incident when some protester yelled out “you’re the KKK!” and our Filipino veteran pulled down the scarf he was wearing over his face to keep warm, looked down from the rooftop and and replied, “I didn’t realize the KKK was expanding their recruitment opportunities.”

And SPLC ignores the times we stood shoulder-to-shoulder with local cops against criminal gangs and assisted in keeping communities safe from violent criminals, such as when we assisted the Gilbert, WV PD in searching for an armed and dangerous fugitive, or when our volunteers provided security for the entire town of Gilbert, WV during their annual Trailfest event.

And they also ignore our SC chapter ‘s excellent “Operation Backstop” which was put in place last year after the targeted shooting of several police offices, such as officer Goforth in Texas, who was shot in the back of the head while pumping gas.   In response, our SC chapter instructed SC Oath Keepers members to overwatch and protect police against potential terror attack when they stopped for gas, food, coffee, etc, and even built such a close relationship with their local departments that they even backed them up on traffic stops.    In the wake of the recent deadly attacks on police in Dallas and Baton Rouge, we are taking that Operation Backstop national, and will be overwatching local police across the nation, helping to watch their six whenever they are particularly vulnerable, such as while getting gas, or a bite to eat, as well as offering our assistance in the event of any other terrorist or attack unrest in our communities.

And of course the SPLC will never mention how we called on our members to reach out to their local police and express our condolences after those horrible terrorist attacks on police in Dallas and Baton Rouge by radical, racist, and Marxist ideologues, and we also called on our members to offer their direct support and protection for their local cops, as part of our national Operation Backstop, and to offer our protection to police families as part of our related Family Safe program where our military and police veterans offer to protect any police or military family that has been threatened with violence.

Card to DART

Oath Keepers Card Expressing Condolences to Dallas Police After Five of their Brothers Were Killed by Racist Terrorist

Nor will SPLC mention how our Baton Rouge chapter directly offered to stand with Baton Rouge police against any further attacks on them by those same radical leftist elements.

Baton 1

Baton Rouge Oath Keepers Leader Paul Richy Presents Pledge of Support to

Major Anthony Ponton, Chief of Uniform Patrol for East Baton Rouge Sheriffs Office

Can’t mention any of that!   Instead, the SPLC tries to create an artificial connection between us and cop killers such as Jerad and Amanda Miller, who killed two Las Vegas Metro officers, while of course ignoring the fact that some of the founding members and leadership of Oath Keepers were Las Vegas Metro officers (my first national VP was retired Las Vegas Metro officer Dave Freeman, and I can tell you that we still have members who are current serving Metro cops) or that, at Bundy ranch, we told the Millers to leave and not come back when we found out Jerad Miller was a felon (I know, because I was there and part of that decision).

I encourage police officers to take a look at not just our words, but our actual deeds and judge for yourselves who actually has your back against cop killer terrorists, Jihadists, and looting, burning, raping, and murdering thugs who take advantage of any civil unrest.  And then take a hard look at the Marxist ideology clearly at work at the SPLC.  Nobody from SPLC, or any of their Marxist fellow-travelers, such as the infamous Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers, or their carefully coddled and well funded leftist”community organizer” pals in the leadership of the Black Lives Matters movement, is going to stand up next to you, wearing rifle plates and full battle-rattle, with an M-4, to help you hold the line against evil.

Police, when the crap hits the fan in your community who would you rather have standing next to you?

Anti-gun metrosexuals like these two SPLC weenies:lenzpotokweenies

Or a well trained, patriotic, armed veteran like this:

OK-PTP-July-2015

Who do you have more in common with?   Who would you trust to watch your six when things go south?   You know the answer.

And yet, who are those SPLC Marxist weenies trying to get you to think of as your enemy?   That same patriotic veteran who would stand shoulder-to-shoulder with you and risk his life to help you defend your community.   Unlike the Marxist weenies, he has already shown his mettle, and then some, and you can count on him to step up again, and stand in the breach in your hour of need, while the anti-gun leftists hide under their beds.

The Marxist leftists want to turn the American Warrior Class against itself, by fooling police into seeing veterans and patriotic gun owners as their enemies, and to likewise convince the veterans and gun owners that the police are a threat to them.  It’s a divide and conquer strategy.

And when considering the propaganda spewed by SPLC mouthpiece “Waco Jim,” (who declared last year that Obama should issue a “directive” that we should not call Islamist terrorists Islamist, despite their declarations that they are Islamists), I encourage readers to revisit the horrible Federal government actions at both Ruby Ridge and Waco.   Both are examples of federal agents artificially creating conflict and initiating violence, and then following up with more violence.  When you read the accounts of Ruby Ridge, review the fact that the FBI sent in an informant to snare Randy Weaver by having him saw off a shotgun to just under the legal length limit, and then attempted to use that to coerce Weaver into becoming a government informant to be used to infiltrate White Supremacist groups.  When Weaver refused to be their snitch, the ATF then brought firearms charges against him.  That is how it all kicked off – by entrapment meant to force Weaver to turn snitch on groups he didn’t even belong to.  If he had agreed to be their snitch, they never would have charged him but defying that calculated attempt at coercion earned him a felony charge.  Then, when Weaver refused to show for court (after concluding that he would not get a fair trial), the U.S. Marshal service began a military style  “reconnaissance” operation to scout out places in the woods around the cabin to ambush and arrest Weaver.

And then consider that the violence at Ruby Ridge was started by Art Roderick, a bone-headed U.S. Deputy Marshal on that reconnaissance team who threw rocks at the Weaver cabin to test the reaction of the Weaver’s dogs.  Predictably, one of the dogs reacted by following the bugling and noisy agents back into the woods (with Sammy weaver and family friend Kevin Harris following in the hopes that the dog was chasing a deer they could shoot).  Then the dog walked up to the “reconnaissance team” with its tail wagging, dancing around them like it wanted to play, and that same idiotic agent, Roderick, promptly shot the dog, which caused 14 year old Sammy Weaver to fire at the man who had just shot his dog right in front of him.   Thus began the fire-fight, with Sammy Weaver shot in the back as he fled, and Kevin Harris shooting and killing Deputy Marshal Degan (Harris was later acquitted by a jury that ruled his actions to be self defense).   Thus, a series of stupid decisions by federal agents lead to the needless death of a 14 year old kid (and his dog) and a U.S. Deputy Marshal.

Then the FBI doubled down on stupid by issuing special Rules of Engagement (ROE) for Ruby Ridge:

  • If any adult male is observed with a weapon prior to the announcement, deadly force can and should be employed, if the shot can be taken without endangering any children.
  • If any adult in the compound is observed with a weapon after the surrender announcement is made, and is not attempting to surrender, deadly force can and should be employed to neutralize the individual.
  • If compromised by any animal, particularly the dogs, that animal should be eliminated.
  • Any subjects other than Randall Weaver, Vicki Weaver, Kevin Harris, presenting threats of death or grievous bodily harm, the FBI rules of deadly force are in effect. Deadly force can be utilized to prevent the death or grievous bodily injury to oneself or that of another

Note the FBI’s affinity for shooting animals simply because the animals notice their presence, such as a dog barking, which they consider “compromising.”  Nothing cures the “compromise” of a barking dog quite like shooting it, to REALLY let everyone know that you are there.  As a former Army reconnaissance team member, I can only shake my head at the stupidity.  At Waco, the ATF opened up the festivities by shooting a female dog and all of her puppies, who were in a pen near the front entrance, presumably in the name of “officer safety” no doubt – so, once again, at minimum, bumbling federal agents kicked off a fire-fight by opening fire on people’s pets (and it may well be that they also fired first on David Koresh, as he opened the front door, but we’ll likely never know since that door magically disappeared after it was all over).

Those Ruby Ridge ROE were essentially military ROEs, and a radical departure from the standard ROE:

“Agents are not to use deadly force against any person except as necessary in self-defense or the defense of another, when they have reason to believe they or another are in danger of death or grievous bodily harm. Whenever feasible, verbal warning should be given before deadly force is applied.”

The Ruby Ridge military ROE were illegal, as it was later determined.  But note that, as described in the Ruby Ridge Wikipedia entry, while some of the FBI field agents balked at those ROEs and decided not to follow them, the HRT, ever the obedient attack dogs, had no problem whatsoever with those ROEs, and promptly got down to the business of shooting on sight at any armed adult on the Weaver property.

The Denver FBI SWAT team assigned to Ruby Ridge thought the ROE were “crazy” and agreed among themselves to follow the FBI deadly force policy. However, most of the FBI HRT sniper/observers accepted the ROE as modifying the deadly force policy. Examples: HRT sniper Dale Monroe saw the ROE as a “green light” to shoot armed adult males on sight and HRT sniper Edward Wenger believed that if he observed armed adults, he could use deadly force, but he was to follow standard deadly force policy for all other individuals. Fred Lanceley, the FBI Hostage Negotiator at Ruby Ridge, was “surprised and shocked” at the ROE, the most severe rules he had ever heard in his over 300 hostage situations and characterized the ROE as inconsistent with standard policy.[50] A later Senate report criticized the ROE as “virtual shoot-on-sight orders.”

And those “shoot-on-sight” orders lead directly to HRT sniper Lon Horiuchi (who was reportedly also at Waco) shooting at both Randy Weaver and Kevin Harris as they ran back to the cabin after going to a nearby shed to visit Sammy’s body, and then shooting Vicki Weaver in the face while she stood with a baby in her arms, holding the cabin door open for her husband, her daughter, and Harris.

And please reflect on the fact that the HRT followed similar ROE at the road block where LaVoy Finicum was killed earlier this year in Oregon (with either actual Ruby Ridge style ROE, or de facto – it will likely take a FOIA Request to find out).  Although it was not initially public knowledge, it was later discovered that an HRT team member fired three rounds at LaVoy, narrowly missing him, while he had his hands raised immediately after he got out of his truck after putting it nose first into a snowbank.  So, as LaVoy got out, with his hands in the air, trying to surrender, the HRT fired at him.  But the HRT initially tried to cover that up, picking up and hiding the brass, and team members closed ranks and lied to investigators about what happened.

As Police Defensive Tactics instructor John Karriman (our Missouri chapter leader) recently noted during a Webinar, the HRT doesn’t miss, and certainly not three shots at close range on a man knee-deep in snow.   John’s conclusion is that the HRT fired and “missed” on purpose, to get LaVoy to go for his gun (any reasonable man in the same circumstances, being fired on even after he raised his hands, with live rounds zipping past his ears, may conclude that he was going to be killed anyway, and may feel he has no choice but to try to defend himself).   John thinks that the HRT murdered LaVoy by getting him to go for his gun after being fired upon while trying to surrender.  I agree with John.   I think they set him up in a very slick, dirty tricks way, and then let the Oregon State Police do the actual shooting.

The FBI has zero credibility left.  Many of us in the freedom movement have known this for decades, but it is now becoming clear to all Americans after the FBI let Hillary Clinton walk despite incontrovertible and publicly known facts that show she committed multiple felonies.   It took that in-your-face display of above-the-law privilege and abuse of power to get most Americans to finally catch a clue.   They could see that if any of them had done anything remotely similar, they would be in prison.  But Hillary can do as she pleases, in direct violation of the law, get caught red handed, and still walk away untouched.

It is becoming increasingly difficult to believe that there are any sincere defenders of the Constitution left inside the FBI.  We have police veterans in Oath Keepers who claim to know honorable current-serving FBI agents who still have some conscience left, and some desire to respect the Constitution.   But now, with all that has happened which has been publicly disclosed, how can those current-serving FBI agents be part of such a corrupt, politically motivated and controlled, rights-violating arm of the regime where the “little people” are routinely snared by paid snitches and provocateurs, or are outright murdered, but the elite are now “untouchables” who can literally get away with murder?

As Jason said in his piece, the more we can expose the truth, the better.  Now is the best time to get those newly awakened Americans to see the whole truth of what the FBI, ATF, DHS, NSA, etc has become – our Gestapo.  Our Stasi.  I still hold that we should give our local police and Sheriff departments the benefit of the doubt and the chance to do the right thing by siding with the Constitution, with our full support, up to and including continuing to stand with them physically in defense of our communities against terrorists, cop killers, and thugs, but the only federal agents I now have any interest in helping are perhaps the rank-and-file Border Patrol officers who are still trying to actually do their job under the Constitution by defending our borders.  Until we see some resignations-in-protest and more whistle blowing within the FBI/DHS (like this), they are on their own.

For the Republic,

Stewart Rhodes

About Author

Stewart Rhodes

Stewart is the founder and National President of Oath Keepers. He served as a U.S. Army paratrooper until disabled in a rough terrain parachuting accident during a night jump. He is a former firearms instructor, former member of Rep. Ron Paul’s DC staff, and served as a volunteer firefighter in Montana. Stewart previously wrote the monthly Enemy at the Gates column for S.W.A.T. Magazine. Stewart graduated from Yale Law School in 2004, where his paper “Solving the Puzzle of Enemy Combatant Status” won Yale’s Miller prize for best paper on the Bill of Rights. He assisted teaching U.S. military history at Yale, was a Yale Research Scholar, and is writing a book on the dangers of applying the laws of war to the American people.

Comments

  1. Ammo 12 August, 2016, 06:22

    Well written…and thanks for not forgetting Levoy Finnicum…let’s not forget that we still have 77 men and their families in need of our support as the Federal gov’t enacts its revenge against those who participated in the civil disobedience in Oregon and Nevada…….we can choose to stand together or choose to fall alone,,I prefer the former. #32010

    Reply this comment
    • Stewart Rhodes Author 12 August, 2016, 10:30

      Agreed. As is well known, I strongly disagreed with Ammon’s decision to occupy the wildlife refuge in OR. I though it was bad strategically and tactically, but that doesn’t make it OK for the feds to use that screw up to then get its revenge for Bundy Ranch, imprisoning good men who went there with the best of motivations, like Todd Engel and Eric Parker. Nor does it make it OK for them to use a little-used 1861 Civil War statute that criminalizes anything that impedes a federal officer in the discharge of his duties, which is a very vague and overbroad statute that can and is already being used to chill free speech and assembly.

      We have in the past posted up how to donate to legal defense funds and also how to support protests and public awareness tours for the Finicum family, and we will continue to do so.

      Another way to help is to spread the message of the power of the jury, by spreading the information from FIJA.org, so that juries in any such cases of abuse of power will know there full power.

      I will call Michele Fiori to get an update and see what else we can do to help.

      Stewart Rhodes

      Reply this comment
    • Norton II 14 August, 2016, 08:38

      Thanks Ammo for bringing us up to the present in this fight. Can’t say I’ve had the distinction of being targeted by SPLC, but it’s sister harlot – ADL – has defamed me by name as an “Anti Govt. extremist” in it’s article “Anatomy of a Standoff”. It’s coming to the point where those Americans who are NOT on some list will be in a position of having to justify themselves. As things stand now, Ammon, Ryan, Shawna, David, Jeff, Pete,Kenny – and I – are scheduled for trial in September. I’ll leave aside any debate about the wisdom of our actions in Harney Co. and simply point out the smashing success we achieved in publicizing the plight of the Hammonds and publicizing the land issues. Our occupation forced these into the national spotlight, and I can testify personally to the many who have told me that Malhure was their wake-up call. And it ain’t over yet, not by a long shot ! Our trial in Portland will continue to generate publicity – and frantic denunciations from SPLC and ADL – well into next year. I will say that we fell down in one department during the occupation – a lack of camp dicipline due to a shaky command structure. I could name – but I won’t here – certain OKs who I wish had been there to put a lid on the monkey business and keep our raggedy asses in line . Just for ducks, I’d like to hear a strategic or tactical comparison from you between the Malhure occupation and the takeover of some property that was actually and legitimately owned by the fed – the Indian occupation of Alcatraz – 1969/70……

      Reply this comment
    • Old Navy 22 August, 2016, 12:12

      Thank You Ammo. I will never forget Robert LaVoy Finicum nor his family. I respond to you here to tell you OHIO Oath Keepers is DOA/ KIA. Silenced and inapproachable even as a remnant. I’ve been trying for 5 years. Michigan too lacks luster at Oath Keeping.

      Reply this comment
  2. James 12 August, 2016, 06:57

    Great article … I couldn’t agree more. I am a new member, and former USAF Security Police K-9, Explosives Detector Dog Handler, 1980 – 1992. I look forward to learning more and getting involved.

    Reply this comment
  3. JeffH 12 August, 2016, 07:27

    Stewart Rhodes, I want to thank you and thank all of the Oath Keepers for all that you donand especially for writing understandable, clear and concise articles like this one. I’ve been very aware of what the SPLC is and the atrocious and unforgivable actions by government agents in Oregon, Ruby Ridge and Waco as well as the Bundy Ranch. I fully appreciate your expertise and the information you share with everyone through these invaluable articles and encourage everyone to read them, comprehend them and please pass them on so that others can educate themselves about the Oath Keepers, what they do and what they represent.

    Thank you for all that you and your fellow Oath Keepers do to preserve and protect America and the Constitution of the United States of America.

    Reply this comment
  4. Shadow Hawk 12 August, 2016, 07:33

    I am tired of the misinformation being spreed by the Government about what we stand for. If more people would really read what the Oath keepers are then this would not be possible. The Oath Keepers are a group that has sworn to up hold the Constitution of the United States in one form or anther whether military or public service. All we want is for our Government to follow the real rule of law and not just when they find it convenient for their agenda.

    Reply this comment
    • Cal 13 August, 2016, 08:08

      “The Oath Keepers are a group that has sworn to up hold the Constitution of the United States in one form or another…”

      What seems to be forgotten is so are all those who serve in EVERY position of government – state and federal; dog catcher to legislator to president, to judges, all – are also required to take and KEEP the Oath in order to meet the conditions of the position they occupy. The Oath to the US Constitution is so important that to break are crimes – felony and Perjury. It is a CONDITION required of all to be able to participate in any area of government.

      As Dr. Vieira, and the courts, made clear that those that serve within our governments only have lawful authority for what they to, to represent the American people and the USA, when they take and KEEP that Oath whatever position they occupy. Once those that serve within our governments break it they know longer have any lawful authority for any action they do – judge, president, governor, legislators, military of any rank, le’s, etc.

      Dr. Edwin Vieira: “This has nothing to do with personalities or subjective ideas. It’s a matter of what the Constitution provides…

      The government of the United States has never violated anyone’s constitutional rights…
      The government of the United States will never violate anyone constitutional rights, because it cannot violate anyone’s constitutional rights. The reason for that is: The government of the United States is that set of actions by public officials that are consistent with the Constitution. Outside of its constitutional powers, the government of the United States has no legitimacy. It has no authority; and, it really even has no existence. It is what lawyers call a legal fiction.” (end quote)

      Brookfield Construction Company V. Stewart 284 F Sup. 94: “An officer who acts in violation of the constitution ceases to represent the government.”

      Reply this comment
  5. Elmo 12 August, 2016, 07:51

    Excellent article, Stewart. It’s good to be reminded about the nefarious history of the FBI HRT. And speaking of nefarious, it’s not much comfort to know that SPLC has a seat at the table in determining law enforcement policy regarding ‘domestic extremism’.

    Reply this comment
    • Cal 13 August, 2016, 08:22

      Show me in the US Constitution where the SPLC, anyone serving within the executive branch, serving within the judicial branch, or any one serving within the legislative branch besides the named House of Representatives and the Senate – the people who serve as those specific, named bodies were delegated any LAWFUL authority in making anything binding on the American people, or even binding on those who serve within our governments. I cannot find it anywhere.

      If it is not delegated within it and/or within state Constitution’s in THIS nation it is null and void, color of law, PRETEND law. What does that make any who enforces it? Traitors to the American people? *Terrorists against the American people? To their own nation? Besides being (uncharged) felons and Perjurers for breaking the Oath.

      The US Constitution is very clear when it states in Article 1, Section 1 that “All legislative Powers HEREIN GRANTED shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” The word “All” is all inclusive, and because it is delegated to those two houses within the legislative branch it is FORBIDDEN to any other branch, any other position. It is not delegated to any agency that serves within the legislative branch, under the Senate and/or the House of Representatives.

      Yeah, I take the US Constitution literally. When it names an office, that is what it means. Not one word, not one comma, period, semi colon, etc was put into it as “fluff”, “filler”, even the position in which things are named within it mean something.

      Reply this comment
      • Jeff 13 August, 2016, 10:11

        “All political power flows from the barrel of a gun” as I said the constitution doesn’t mean Jack shit if the federal government doesn’t abide by it.

        Reply this comment
  6. Yoda 12 August, 2016, 07:58

    THEY call us “anti-government extremists”. There is an old saying: “If the shoe fits, wear it.” Does anyone wonder why we swear our oaths to the Constitution and not to the government? It is because governments have always had the tendency to corrupt itself and gravitate towards tyranny. Our forefathers warned us of this. That is why we swear or affirm our oath to the Constitution. Governments change but the Constitution does not. The Constitution is what guarantees us freedom, not the government. When government strays from the Constitution, we have the duty to become anti-government. They now call us anti-government. This says something about us but it also says something about THEM. This happens to be one of the few times that I see THEM telling the truth. Who has the duty to maintain freedom in this nation? According to our forefathers, that duty rests with “We the people”.
    There is but one standard by which we can rely on to ensure our liberty and that is the Constitution. By it, we examine our government to determine whether it administers freedom or tyranny. THEY say that we adhere to “our version” of the Constitution. Is the Constitution a hard document to understand? Does it take a learned lawyer to understand the words written? I have news. The Constitution was written for the common man. The Constitution is NOT to be interpreted. The Constitution is the STANDARD for all law within this nation. Is a standard to be understood by all? I will ask you three questions. How long is an inch? How much does a pound weigh? What is the volume of a gallon? The answer to all three is that they are the standards and cannot be interpreted. They are easily understood by all. This is what standards represent. The Constitution is our national standard for law and liberty. So much for THEIR false claim of “our version” of the Constitution.

    Reply this comment
    • Vern 12 August, 2016, 17:36

      Very well written and is truthful. The Constitution is a sacred document to be honored. I was at Ruby Ridge, Waco, Okla city, trade center, the downing of flight 800, the bird sanctuary, Bundy ranch, led by Holy Spirit in each case before the action. The most evil people head up our government and have for long time, I ministered the Word of God for over 40 years and still do.

      Reply this comment
      • Elias Alias 13 August, 2016, 03:44

        Wow. Could you explain more clearly what you meant when you said you were at all those places? I mean, like, would you perhaps want to re-phrase that statement? Or at least explain how that could be true in any literal sense? Thank you.
        Salute!
        Elias Alias, editor

        Reply this comment
        • Vern 13 August, 2016, 09:30

          Every word I wrote is true, as the Holy Spirit always led me to many places before the event. Jesus Christ is sending some servants to gather information to be used as He judges these evil ones. I went to many places before the events happened. I didn’t always know why, when, or happening of event. One has to know the Lord works and be willing to be sent to fulfill HIS purposes One has to be strong in faith and used in the Spirit. I do not go on trips unless HE directs it. It is not important for anyone to agree or accept unless they are servants. This is not about religion, but of relationships with the Lord. If I explain to in great detail I would be putting my self in danger. the Lord is my protector as I serve HIM.

          Reply this comment
    • Cal 13 August, 2016, 07:57

      Very well put!

      Reply this comment
  7. EXFed58 12 August, 2016, 08:00

    This is a valuable “History Lesson” that mustn’t be forgotten, but will be if we fail to secure and reaffirm The Constitution (moreover, the Ten Commandments) as our guiding principles.

    Obviously there are some local LE departments and individual Officers who deserve contempt and lengthy jail sentences. Let us not forget local LEO’s who’ve (shamefully) displayed a propensity to defy their oaths, and their responsibility to the citizens they’ve sworn to serve. Where their actions were similar to those of “misguided” Federal LE..

    Such as the (historical) 1946 case of the “Battle of Athens” TN, and more recently (Nov. 1, 2015) the senseless shooting of Adams Co., Idaho rancher Jack Yantis.

    Continuity of vigilance by informed citizens is a necessity for the survival of civilized society. This is a tough task (indeed) in light of the level and degree of “Rumors and Propaganda” promulgated by the Anti-Constitutional Cabal.

    It seems everyone requires vetting these days, and respect must be earned. These lessons are best taught, or (far too often) overlooked, in the home. Task 1, Getting Our Priorities Straight: God; Family; Friends/Neighbors; Country…the rest shall follow.

    Reply this comment
  8. gunbear 12 August, 2016, 08:16

    Well written, Stewart! I am posting a link to this on my facebook Defenders of the Constitution page “https://www.facebook.com/mycountrymyconstitution/.”

    Reply this comment
  9. jaybird 12 August, 2016, 08:38

    I have to agree with everything Steward has written above. Since I stood at the Bundy ranch I have had 5 visits by the same two FBI agents. Trying their best to get names out of me. I was Cliven’s personal body guard for awhile so they have a whole file of pictures of me. The last time I received a call from them was about 4 weeks ago, just prior to Bill Keebler being arrested after being set up by infiltrators of his militia, to blow up a BLM cabin on the AZ/UT line. Since then I have heard nothing from them. But that last call, was strange in that they told me that they had been honest with me and they hope I have been with them. Then the kicker was, that my file is private he said, but that doesn’t mean others can’t see it. My take on all this was that they were trying to get me to be one of their informants. And they were trying in their own way of blackmailing me. So I know the Feds, trust them about as far as I can spit, and as an Oathkeeper will do everything I can to disprove their reputation.

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    • Foment the crime 13 August, 2016, 07:33

      Understand that the Fed LE need to create and promote crimes so they can justify their existence and need for greater resources and vilify the Patriot movement. Local LE good guys are not at all impressed with the Feds and are aware of their intentions to co-op local LE.
      In your case Jaybird they are trying to get you to come on board and will even offer you money to come up with “leads” for them. In todays Fed LE training- everyone is a criminal until they can manufacture the evidence to convict.
      If you want to know who the Fed infiltrator is he is the one who calls loudest for violence and destruction and who is a hothead who seeks to stoke the flames within the group and wants others to “join” him. He is the one with “grand” plans who rages at the “inaction” of the group and suddenly has resources that magically appear. If you have one of those in the group you might want to consider discreet monitoring of the questionable individual and see if his story lines up. And if this individual is someone the group knows he might have been “turned” and is working for Feds. Creating paranoia is also a tactic since the Feds would have us believe they have all knowing and limitless powers. When in all reality they are severely limited.
      Checking the work location of the group “agitator” might often yield discovery of the Fed front company. They are not smart and hide in plain sight They will often know nothing about what their front company claims to provide or sell.
      Seems we need an aggressive prosecutor to charge these unbridled LE agencies who are manufacturing evidence and actually promoting criminal acts. Here’s to hoping the good Fed Le guys will out the bad ones. Don’t let the thin blue line become a thin blue LIE when crimes are committed by those who wear a badge.

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  10. WGP 12 August, 2016, 08:52

    “They want police to see us military and police veterans as their enemies…” and I say yes! We are their enemy and no the police do not see us as enemies. SPLC declared war on our constitution and specifically those who patriotically defend it, thus it is a true statement, we are their enemy and they, the SPLC, are another enemy from withing our boarders of our federation of states. Call them what they are.

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    • Stewart Rhodes Author 12 August, 2016, 12:56

      You misunderstand what I meant. I meant that the leftist wackos at SPLC want the police to think that we veterans are the enemy of the POLICE. Got it?

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      • WGP 13 August, 2016, 09:28

        Actually I completely understand your comments. The SPLC is attempting to divide and conquer. My point is I do not know any LEO’s that see military active duty or veterans as state enemies. My point is organizations like SPLC are the enemy of our federation. Lastly, using the “Got It” is rude. I haven’t treated you with that sort of condescending retort.

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        • Stewart Rhodes Author 17 August, 2016, 15:39

          Well, I don’t think “Got it” was condescending or rude. I think you read too much into that (one of the problems with text communications). But we do agree on the SPLC being the real enemy.

          I wish I could say that no cops see us as the enemy, but I don’t think that is accurate. Some do buy what the SPLC and current DOJ is selling. Unfortunately. But that is why we need to counter it as we are.

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  11. Obbop 12 August, 2016, 11:21

    The linked-to video has comments disabled. The tyrannical profit-making SPLC does not want its propaganda marred by patriot free folks’ opinions.

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    • Stewart Rhodes Author 12 August, 2016, 13:10

      No surprise. They want cops to watch it, but without direct refutation and ridicule by us. Tells you that SPLC is afraid to directly debate us, doesn’t it?

      So, I think the answer is to give a copy of this article to your local cops, so they can read our point of view. Then they can put the SPLC “intelligence briefings” in the round file, where they belong.

      Reply this comment
  12. Nick 12 August, 2016, 12:01

    Stewart,
    I am a bit lost on what Oath Keepers is trying to accomplish.

    I can read the doctrine, and on April 19th in 2009 I joined you and others in renewing my oath on the Green in Lexington. You, and I met, we shook hands and I hoped for the best.

    Under that oath I believe that every word of the Constitution is to be protected even if it means that I suffer for my actions. The overriding factor being that, which I bequeath to my posterity. What happens to me today is of no consequence if my legacy is a free and independent nation in which my children may prosper.

    This is not meant as an insult to any members, nor am I making any demands on anyone to do anything other than what they believe to be some effective methodology. I am looking for logic, and a fundamental comprehension of what goes on in the minds of others particularly in the law. If the law is not logical in the framework of the doctrine set out in the Declaration of Independence, then I believe we will eventually succumb.

    In that context, I do suggest that if we all turn a blind eye to the rule of law then I do not expect anything different from the very form the Founders attempted to avoid.

    The fact of the matter is that either the Constitution means exactly what it says, or it means nothing at all. The delegated authority clearly written into the Constitution is specific, and cannot be changed by a whim, an interpretation, or an organic act of the legislature. We should not make claims beyond the scope of the Founders, nor ignore the warnings given, the instruments recognized, and the subsequent validation in history.

    I do not read words into the document, find reasoning that fits my own, or accept the decisions of others unless I can verify the irrefutable link to those who debated and ratified the Constitution.

    “What did those who framed and adopted it understand the terms to designate and include?

    “We must remember that the fifty-five members of the constitutional convention were men of great sagacity, fully conversant with governmental problems, deeply conscious of the nature of their task, and profoundly convinced that they were laying the foundations of a vast future empire.” – Pollack v. Farmers Loan and Trust Company, 157 US 429, 558

    I can fully agree with Chief Justice Fuller’s understanding of how the Constitution must be read. Words may change for sometimes questionable reasons, the times change, and the mindset of the people may change, but law must remain constant in a nation wherein “sovereignty itself remains with the people, by whom and for whom all government exists and acts.” – Yick Wo v. Hopkins, 118 U.S. 356

    In order for sovereignty to remain firmly in the hands of the People, there must be a vehicle, by which we can “execute the Laws of the Union”. – Article 1, Section 8, Clause 15.
    For some time now I’ve been writing and speaking to the fact that the Second Amendment is misunderstood in its complete context. The Founders did not create militia, but rather recognized its pre-existence and the need for the body of the People to remain armed, and unified.

    While the Second Amendment is debated back and forth by both sides, we ignore, and for some deliberately, the fact that Militia is not an after thought, but rather an essential aspect of liberty. The Founders did not just say “A well regulated Militia”. They adopted,
    “To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union…
    “To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the Militia…
    “[R]eserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia…
    “The president shall be the commander in chief *** of the Militia of the several States…”
    And, in order to make it impossible to disarm, that which they deemed “necessary to the security of a free state”, they formally accepted, and put into effect the Second Amendment.

    For my part I have written a number of articles, publicly presented, contacted every member of the state legislature, offered to debate several so-called representatives of the people, and I have petitioned the state for a position in Militia as befitting a veteran of the armed forces in accordance with the statutes.

    With all the disdain and ridicule that I’ve received from every direction, in particular by those who claim to be supporters of the second, I should just go on my way, and live out the rest of my life. However, my mission has become the passing to my children, and now grand children a nation as the Founders envisioned. I can do no less despite the pejorative comments, and the misrepresentations and misquotes of what I say.

    This organization, as does the NRA, have the muscle to start the ball rolling toward the revitalization of Militia in order to reclaim our sovereignty. It is not as if we lack the supportive documentation in the form of both federal and state constitutions, along with the myriad of state statutes defining Militia in order to deliver a cogent argument to the public and their representatives. Certainly the work done by Dr. Edwin Vieira is more than enough to overcome any arguments, and derail any opposition.

    Oath Keepers has armed men showing up under the guise of protection, but they do so without clearly defined lawful authority. Why do so when the law contains all the muscle needed for the good People to provide the rightful and lawful duty “to execute the Laws of the Union”?

    Perhaps I write as a matter of frustration as I recall, from my boyhood, the ridicule my father endured for forecasting what we see today.

    Perhaps it is with the foresight that those who demanded a Bill of Rights. Whatever the reason, I do so with the recognition that as a father and grandfather, I’ve taken on a role that goes beyond passing the simpler lessons of life.

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    • Stewart Rhodes Author 12 August, 2016, 13:04

      Well, you seem to have missed the many times when I have stated that our ultimate goal is a full revitalization of the militia. But that has not happened yet, and what were are doing is taking steps to make that happen, one step at a time. That is the ultimate point of our CPT program, and we can’t simply wait for some state legislature to get off its rear and pass legislation to get it done. So, we the people need to take what steps we can at the local level to organize and train our communities so that they have something in place now, and in the near future, to provide community security, while we work toward that ultimate goal of a revitalization of a real militia system, which would be all able bodied people in our communities formed up, organized, and well equipped, and under the authority of the elected representatives at the town, county, and state level.

      But till then, and as a way of working toward that goal, we can and we must establish neighborhood watches, church security teams, town watches, county sheriff posses, and town and county level civil defense structures to provide security and mutual aid at the local level, and mechanisms for training and local organizing of the people. And that will provide a pool of well trained, well organized locals who can then easily become part of a revitalized militia.

      Understand?

      Stewart

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      • Nick 13 August, 2016, 09:08

        There is a saying that practice makes perfect, but the truth of the matter is that when you practice the wrong method you are simply not accomplishing anything at all.
        I’ve heard you and a couple of others in Oath Keepers talk mildly about revitalization, and I understand the gentle hand approach, but do not agree with the one step at a time mindset. I’ve been hearing that since the 80’s. Which side has made progress in this area?
        The issue is not whether you’ve tepidly talked about revitalization, but rather what is the law of the land. There are over 300 MILLION people in this nation, and I would say that 99.99% of them have no clue as to their duty, and responsibility to the nation.
        The Founders placed a monopoly of power in the hands of the People, but yet we have politicians and media asserting that “these guns should not be in the hands of civilians” without organizations like the NRA, GOA, or Oath Keepers explaining the legal doctrine of “A well regulated militia”, and the nature and theory from men of such political genius as Patrick Henry.
        Whether you know this or not, there are very few in the so-called pro-2nd groups that have any understanding of the law regarding Militia, and fewer still who support it. Even in Oath Keepers I was once told not to mention Militia around members. Perhaps a polling of the organization might reveal some telling facts.
        I do know from speaking with NRA and other pro-2nd groups that, with the exception of a very few, want nothing at all to do with Militia. Even after I’ve explained the law, and in particular the benefits of having a prepared community for any disaster, and how the Emergency Preparedness Statutes leave them out in the cold, they will cover their mouth, ears, and eyes in fear.
        Living in a nation with problems that were deliberately put into motion at least as far back as the early 60’s, the struggle to regain what was taken is a massive endeavor. There are over 5 MILLION members sitting over at NRA, and GOA with boards who will not lend a hand to move this step by step in the right direction. As a matter of fact, I would venture to say that you know this to be true, and you may also know that those board members live a very good life keeping the struggle going one step at a time.

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        • Stewart Rhodes Author 17 August, 2016, 16:23

          There are over 300 MILLION people in this nation, and I would say that 99.99% of them have no clue as to their duty, and responsibility to the nation.
          The Founders placed a monopoly of power in the hands of the People, but yet we have politicians and media asserting that “these guns should not be in the hands of civilians” without organizations like the NRA, GOA, or Oath Keepers explaining the legal doctrine of “A well regulated militia”, and the nature and theory from men of such political genius as Patrick Henry.

          All that you say in that quote is accurate, except for your including Oath Keepers among the organizations that you assert are not explaining the legal doctrine of “A well regulated militia.” This organization has been promoting and featuring the writings of Dr. Edwin Vieira since I founded Oath Keepers in 2009 (and as you know, I spoke on Lexington Green, April 19, 2009, at a rally organized by Walter Reddy for the purpose of furthering Dr. Vieira’s work to revitalize the militia). You can find some of the articles and videos by Dr. Viera that we have prominently posted here: https://www.oathkeepers.org/oath-keepers-academy/edwin-vieira/

          And I have now appeared in two films by James Yeager that are based on Dr. Vieira’s writings on the Second Amendment. One was Molon Labe, and the other was Midnight Ride. Both films explicitly focus on the necessity of revitalizing the militia of the several states. That is the point of those films. In addition, Oath Keepers actively helped both of those films become reality. We asked our members and readers to donate to get the films made, and we helped to promote and sell them once they were made. All in the service of trying to cure that planned, intentional ignorance among the population that you complain of.

          Nor have I been “tepid” in my advocacy for the restoration of the militia. I actively point out the necessity of a true militia (all able-bodied people in a community, not just Bubba and a few of his pals) in nearly every speech and interview (unlike the spokesmen for the NRA). But then I have to also tell people the sad truth that it is extremely unlikely that we will see a meaningful and effective revitalization of the militia by state statute (or any action by any state government branch toward that end, be it executive, legislative, judicial, or a combo of the three, under their existing state constitutions and statutes) in our lifetime, and that it is especially unlikely to happen before the imminent collapse of our economy and a descent into the intentionally created crisis and disorder that the elites intend to use to further their totalitarian goals.

          And that leaves us in the unenviable position of having to do something to provide some measure of local security and a “militia in waiting” – a pool of well trained, organized veterans and gun owners who can step in and fill those slot if/when a real militia system is finally reestablished (likely during a crisis, or, in worst-case, after it is over), while we CONTINUE to advocate for the revitalization of the militia of the several states. And, the steps we are taking with our CPT program and other activities work to recreate that essential element of civic virtue and public mindedness that is essential to the revitalization of the militia, as well as a block of people who understand what is needed, and who have credibility in their community because they have already personally stepped up and volunteered their time by joining and taking part in whatever first responder/emergency response systems already exist.

          You should know that the whole CPT program came out of a conversation I had with Dr. Edwin Vieira back in 2010. It was out of that conversation, and a desire to take some concrete steps toward a revitalization of the militia, that I started what we then called “Operation Sleeping Giant” which then became the Oath Keepers Community Preparedness Team (CPT) program in Oct. 2013. And I recently had yet another call with Dr. Vieira on this point, and on that call we both agreed that our CPT program was an important step in the right direction of getting the people trained, organized, and involved in their local community security and preparedness, with a significant point being a return of the Founders’ ideals of civic virtue in the form of public volunteerism and a public focus on the right to bear arms – a shift in focus from individual bearing of arms to protect against criminal attack (which is what the NRA focuses on almost exclusively, as you noted) to a focus on the duty of armed Americans to participate in and provide for community defense and security, as the militia.

          Dr. Vieira and I agreed that in the absence of a real revitalized militia, made up of all able-bodied citizens, organized into units, under state statute and under the command of the governor – we need to encourage people to join what first responder structures do in fact still exist, such as volunteer fire, EMT, Search and Rescue, Sheriff Posse (if lucky enough to have one), reserve deputy, police auxiliary, etc, while also encouraging the creation of neighborhood watches with teeth, church security teams, and activating the local VFW, American Legion, Marine Corps League, etc so they see themselves as a Civil Defense unit to assist in time of need.

          We also agree that it would be wrong to call any of those institutions and voluntary associations a “militia” since they really are not the same, but we do want to see a maximizing of the participation in such groups and efforts so we will have as strong a local community as possible, in the short term, and most importantly, so we maximize the number of local citizenry who are public minded and filled with civic virtue, who see it as a duty of citizenship to be part of those systems, and who also understand the necessity of revitalizing the militia. Their participation in the limited and inadequate existing first responder and emergency planning systems that currently exist will only help them see what is missing and what is necessary. And the credibility they will have within their community will give them the needed influence to effectively advocate for the revitalization of a true militia system.

          Therefore, out of our CPT program and the strengthening of existing emergency response systems can come not just a pool of trained and organized citizens who can be the militia, but also a voting block and advocacy block of well-respected citizens (all part of the existing first responder community) who are calling for the revitalization and actual organizing and equipping of a true militia system.

          Doing it this way gets you a maximum number of credible advocates who will be respected and listened to by their fellow citizens when they point out what is missing and still needed, as well as a larger pool of citizens who now see their civic duty and see their right to bear arms as having a very real public purpose, as opposed to a small scattering of advocates such as yourself who are shouting against a Hurricane of indifference by not just the politicians, media, and big name groups who won’t speak the word, but also a lack of civic virtue and commitment to public service, as well as ignorance of even what a militia is supposed to look like on the part of even the warrior class of this nation – the gun owners, the first responders, the police, the military veterans.

          You are correct that even among our members in this org their is a lack of understanding of what a militia is, and why we need to revitalize it. And part of the problem is not just the distortion and smear by the media and political elites, but also the black eye the very word “militia” has gotten by the use of that term by people who may be well meaning but are self-evident blundering bafoons, often with Walter Mitty complexes, who parade around in BDUs while wearing Colonel wings, or even General stars, who have not ever served in the military, and have utterly no training, and who were never commissioned by any government body at any level, who are essentially self-commissioned paper tigers who don’t even have a squad, let alone a Company, Battalion or Brigade under their self-appointed, make-believe, so-called command.

          All that does is alienate all the military veterans who look on such clowns with utter contempt, and want nothing to do with them, and that is also the image the average American now has of the so-called militia.

          And another factor is that many of these self-appointed “militia” leaders see the militia as some secret-squirrel, “Sons of Liberty” guerrilla movement in waiting, and generally advocate that people create small, three to five man cells or otherwise advocate for small, select units that are focused on preparing for guerrilla warfare, rather than on large, inclusive organizations that focus on community security as a whole.

          The “Militia movement” that has been around since the 90s, as commonly understood by both opponents, advocates, and the general public, has been its own worst enemy when it comes to PR and when it comes to actually restoring the Founders’ conception of what a militia is.

          A true militia is all able bodied citizens of a community, not just a select few in a secret cell of three to five, nor a select few who can field, at most, a couple of squads. That is not a militia even at the town level, let alone at the county level, and surely not at the state level.

          What do you call a small group of individuals who put up a website that claims to be the “Militia of X State” or “The X State Militia” who then appoint some “General” or “Commander” over the whole state when he can’t even field a squad or a platoon?

          I call that delusional.

          But to cure that ignorance and bad PR, I believe it is essential for the credible military, police, and first responders, and veterans, to step up and lead the way back toward a real militia system, and I think the way to do it is through a maximizing of our participation in the scant existing local first responder systems while we also build truly inclusive, bottom up structures, such as neighborhood watches, church security teams and relief societies, and town level watch systems, that invite all able-bodied citizens to participate, train, and organize, while we repeatedly point out that these do not constitute the militia, and while we advocate for a true revitalization of the militia, with maximum credibility.

          The people of your state are more likely to listen to you if you are on the local volunteer fire department, EMT team, or Search and Rescue unit, and they are more likely to listen if the majority of others on those teams also call for a revitalization of the militia. And the people of your state are more likely to understand and embrace the need to revitalize the militia if you have lead the way in getting them to participate in public focused security and emergency response units, teams, and structures. They will be more civic minded, and through their training and experience on those teams, more likely to see the need for a real militia. And they will have some training that will help them once they become the militia again.

          That is my plan. And I believe Dr. Vieira agrees with it, as being at least part of the solution, and synergistic with other efforts.

          Now, please tell me your alternative plan. I find it ironic that you say you “do not agree with the one step at a time mindset” but then you say: “There are over 5 MILLION members sitting over at NRA, and GOA with boards who will not lend a hand to move this step by step in the right direction. ”

          What are your ideas on how best to “move this step by step in the right direction”? You can’t just tell me that my ideas on how to move us step by step in the right direction are all wrong, but then not tell me what your plan is.

          What’s your plan? Lay it out.

          Stewart

          PS- It is now becoming clear that I have apparently not done a good enough job at explaining how our CPT program relates to, and is in furtherance of, the revitalization of the militia. I will do some formal writing on that topic to make it abundantly clear to all.

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          • Edwin Vieira 20 August, 2016, 13:08

            Perhaps more than anyone else, I understand and appreciate Nick’s frustration, because I have been trying to generate interest in revitalizing the Militia for more than a decade, without much success. And I certainly agree with him that “the Constitution means exactly what it says”, and needs to be enforced—especially with respect to the Militia—strictly and rigorously according to its explicit terms. Nonetheless, as Stewart correctly emphasizes, one must always remain aware of the political and social contexts in which Oath Keepers operate, and the limitations and challenges they impose.

            Unfortunately, most Americans today are woefully unfamiliar with both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Basically, this is the result of: (i) naive ignorance born of indifference and sloth with respect to fulfillment of their duties as citizens to study this country’s foundational documents; and (ii) perverse political indoctrination through the miseducation put out in the public schools together with the misinformation broadcast by the big “mainstream media”. Whatever the cause may be, the effect is that hardly any Americans understand anything about the constitutional Militia. For a convincing exercise in futility and frustration, ask even a supposedly educated American to explain the constitutional differentiation between and interplay among Article I, Section 8, Clauses 12 through 16; Article I, Section 10, Clause 3; Article II, Section 2, Clause 1; and the Second Amendment. You may as well ask for an explanation of Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle, because you will receive the same vacant stare of incomprehension in both instances.

            To make matters worse, nowhere in this country does a true constitutional Militia exist. to set a practical example before the people. To use the terms adopted by Congress in Title 10 of the United States Code, Section 311 (and, I believe, by all of the States as well in their own codes), there do exist the so-called “organized militia”—in the forms of the National Guard, the Naval Militia, and various State “defense forces” (sometimes called “State Guards”). These, however, are the “Troops, or Ships of War” which the States may “keep * * * in time of Peace” “with[ ] the Consent of Congress” under Article I, Section 10, Clause 3 of the Constitution, or the other “troops” which Congress (pursuant to the latter Clause) permits a State to “maintain” and “to use * * * within its borders in time of peace” under Title 32 of the United States Code, Section 109. Under color of Title 10 of the United States Code, Section 311, the vast majority of other Americans has been consigned to the constitutionally oxymoronic “unorganized militia”—which is no “well regulated Militia” at all, inasmuch as by definition an “unorganized militia” cannot possibly be “well regulated”, “unorganization” and “regulation” being mutually contradictory concepts.

            In the absence of constitutional Militia, some Americans have ill-advisedly formed their own “private militia”. These, of course, are not constitutional Militia either, because they enjoy neither governmental provenance nor governmental authority. Constitutional Militia are “the Militia of the several States” as a matter of law, not mere private groups which smatterings of individuals may have set up “in the several States” as a matter of fact. Some of the members of these “private militia” are perhaps well intentioned, but certainly not well informed. For instance, many “private militia” claim to be legitimate parts of the so-called “unorganized militia” under Title 10 of the United States Code, Section 311. But if Congress wields the power to consign Americans to an “unorganized militia”, then (by constitutional hypothesis) those Americans are to remain “unorganized”, not to “organize” themselves contrary to Congress’s command. Besides suffering from the demerit of illegitimacy, “private militia” are (as Stewart points out) generally ineffective, and in all too many cases counterproductive, because they provide grist for the mill of those subversive elements intent upon demonizing “the M word” and anyone who uses it.

            The problem confronting Oath Keepers is two-fold. First, Americans must be taught what “well regulated Militia” are, what is the place of “well regulated Militia” in the Constitution’s federal system, why “well regulated Militia” are always “necessary to the security of a free State” in principle, and why America today suffers from an especially desperate need for “well regulated Militia” in practice. Americans must be made aware that the civilian “emergency-response” and “emergency-management” institutions and structures which have been set up at every level of the federal system are insufficient to deal with really serious widespread emergencies, and cannot possibly address other problems (such as the administration of honest elections and the provision of economically sound alternative currencies) for which “well regulated Militia” could provide simple but workable and timely solutions. Americans must also be made aware that revitalization of the Militia is probably the only way to eliminate the para-military police-state apparatus now being assembled throughout the United States, and thereby to ensure this country against the imposition of so-called “martial law” when some really serious widespread emergency does break out. Oath Keepers must take up the task of educators because no one else will—neither public officials, nor the big media, nor even such ostensible “gun rights” organizations as the NRA.

            Second, for Oath Keepers to teach is not enough; they must also lead by example—once again, because apparently no one else will. In the absence of constitutional Militia, Oath Keepers must create a new ethos through action. This must occur primarily (some observers would say exclusively) at the Local and State levels of the federal system, because: (i) in principle, the Militia are “the Militia of the several States”; and (ii) in practice, the Militia are composed of Local citizens, operating initially at the Local level, where the need for action inevitably first arises. To use the NRA’s three-part mantra, through education (“knowledge”) and training (“skills”), Oath Keepers can instil in the people with whom they interact the habit of thinking and acting in “a Militia sort of way” (“attitude”), thus encouraging those people to support revitalization of the Militia, and preparing them to serve in the Militia upon revitalization.

            As Stewart emphasizes, Oath Keepers’ CPTs are not any sort of “militia” (and do not pretend to be). But they can function as precursors and foundations for revitalization of the Militia. Moreover, the more people Oath Keepers can organize and train, whether in CPTs or otherwise, the better prepared a Local community will be to deal with the real emergencies which are coming, and which the present National, State, and Local “emergency-response” and “emergency-management” bureaucracies will be unable to handle.

            Oath Keepers, however, cannot “go it alone”. Instead, they need as much as possible to work within and through existing Local and State “emergency-response” and “emergency-management” agencies, for several reasons. First, in most communities those agencies are the only organized entities of that type in existence. Second, those agencies generally possess the statutory authority to devise and implement “emergency-response” and “emergency-management” plans tailored to the particular communities they serve, which authority usually provides them with the discretion and flexibility to bring volunteers into their operations. Working within these agencies, Oath Keepers can gain experience with what the agencies consider, rightly or wrongly, to be the primary dangers which threaten their communities, as well as the fundamental tasks to be undertaken as part of “emergency responses” to those dangers; they can gain credibility with Local public officials and the general populace; and they can gradually educate officials and the public as to, and enlist them in, the movement for revitalization of the Militia.

            As individuals, Oath Keepers need to join Local volunteer fire departments, EMTs, CERTs, Search and Rescue teams, Sheriffs’ posses, and so on. They need to learn whatever members of these units know, discover what those people do not but should know, and suggest how these operations can be improved. In particular, Oath Keepers need to encourage Local “emergency-response” and “emergency-management” officials to expand and improve their operations by recruiting, enlisting, and training as many Local people as practicable, especially Local people who are already organized, trained, and equipped to some useful degree—for example, by adding Oath Keepers’ CPTs to existing Local “emergency-response” and “emergency-management” plans. As they increase in capabilities and expand in terms of citizens’ participation, these Local structures will gradually come to look like real Militia, and will doubtlessly be supportive of revitalizing the Militia, at least at the Local level, so as to provide themselves with more authority and autonomy, which will make for greater effectiveness. (One always has to assume that the Local officials in charge of these programs really do want to be effective. And certainly many of them would not turn down increased authority and autonomy.)

            So, I believe that, at the present time, the foregoing is the best general response to Stewart’s query: “What’s your plan. Lay it out.” Oath Keepers need to work with the opportunities and resources already available in Local communities—by contributing in a positive and imaginative manner, as quickly and forcefully as possible, to the communities’ “emergency-response” and “emergency-management” structures, so as to provide new resources and create new opportunities, with the ultimate goal of turning those structures into full-fledged Militia units, first at the Local level and then throughout each State. How this plan will “play out” in particular instances will, of course, depend upon circumstances. And Oath Keepers should take care to apprise one another of how their efforts are succeeding in different Localities, so that one success can be built upon another, and mistakes avoided. But if a better plan exists, it has escaped my notice.

  13. Jeanette 12 August, 2016, 12:50

    I know who I would want standing shoulder to shoulder with me!

    (Since I would be participating in defending myself, not just letting others do it for me!)

    Reply this comment
  14. Jeff 12 August, 2016, 14:53

    Lmfao! The federal government is desperate. That video is laughable considering the level of fare and unbiased accounts of those events. The federal government has lost all credibility, and are trying to demonize any opposition. Don’t they realize it only serves to further our distrust of them? Don’t they realize that many communities trust you more than them?

    Reply this comment
  15. Buzz 12 August, 2016, 16:36

    Stewart you message is spot on. This Cavanaugh is a complete clown. I am still actively serving in my law enforcement capacity after 28 of both military and law enforcement. I joined Oathkeepers because I fear that my country and my government is lost to the radicals in Washington. I am not going to allow those individuals in power to violate my, or any other citizens rights just because they are in power and feel they can, without giving them a fight. So many of us in the profession support what Oathkeepers stands for and we will be there in the nations time of need to defend her from any and all enemies foreign and God forbid domestic.

    Buzz

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    • Charlie BROWN 13 August, 2016, 10:02

      BUZZ,You made my day!!! Knowing that there are still LEO’s in uniform that we can count on when things go down.

      Reply this comment
    • Stewart Rhodes Author 17 August, 2016, 17:53

      Thanks for chiming in Buzz. Glad to hear it, and no surprise to me. I have heard from many current serving cops that they now put SPLC on ignore, and file their “reports” in the round file. Be safe.

      Reply this comment
  16. DOEBOY 12 August, 2016, 19:41

    When the Government no longer fears the people and it’s the people who fear the government then we no longer live in a free society.

    Reply this comment
  17. ImJustIce 12 August, 2016, 23:20

    Cavanaugh and his crony’s need to go. These corrupt flints feed off the flesh of our founding fathers and should be summarily tried and hung for treason. There is a growing divide in America between the true patriots and these false pariahs. We do not need the permission of the police, the state or the bumbling idiots in Washington to assert our rights as citizens, our rights are given to us by the United State Constitution which is the supreme law of the land. These freaks of justice try to pervert and subvert the laws to bring American citizens under their progressive liberal subjugation so that they can keep their boots on their necks. I’ll be damned before that happens to my family, my friends or my community. This traitor and all that are like him are the very same folks that let Hillary Clinton, Harry Reid, James Comey, Eric Holder, Loretta Lynch and the rest of the crooks in the Fed get away with crimes of treason. I am not anti-government, I AM the government. Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Franklin and the rest of our founding fathers would be appalled at what we have allowed the monstrosity in Washington DC to morph into. I’m appalled, I hope ya’ll are too.

    Reply this comment
    • Elias Alias 13 August, 2016, 03:39

      Uhm, just a note in passing, please. The Constitution did not, could not, and never shall, “give us our rights”. The Constitution was written to create a government and it was worded to protect our “unalienable rights”, which come from a higher authority than any man-made government. Always keep that in mind, yes? Thank you for reading here and sharing your comment.
      Salute!
      Elias Alias, editor

      Reply this comment
  18. Unknown Ranger 13 August, 2016, 04:01

    I’ve been studying the SPLC for year’s ; Someone else posted on this page above , about the connection of the FBI too the SPLC , which is correct ; He took the words right out of my mouth and I need OK to understand how deep the rabbit hole really is ; They act as NGO’s , but their really disinformation agent’s and that they spoon feed the FBI and the public , with the the typical Socialist mind set , keep lying until the lie appear’s too be a fact ( The End Justifies The Means ) . They also have strong connections too foreign lobbyist like APAC and this is one of many organizations’s that use them to disseminate disinformation , about organization’s that are a threat to their Fascist idealism , which is the ruination of our Republic and to achieve that goal they need too abolish The Second amendment , by any mean’s necessary . They are a classic definition of a domestic enemy operating openly inside our Republic , so dangerous’ , that the Patriot movement need’s too take the fight right too their front door ; Their agenda need’s to be exposed from all the different angles of forms of their deceit and there are many too be outed ; With the true facts , they can be discredited on every bit of disinformation , that they use too indoctrinate the public with ,so they can feel the pain , that they distribute come right back in their face ; So , that it bites !!I If we don’t , they could very well ruin the credibility of the OK , the Mitilias and many other Patriot organization’s !!!

    Reply this comment
  19. 5WarVeteran 13 August, 2016, 11:08

    The problem with the story above was that Lavoy Finicum was UNARMED and SHOT IN THE BACK 3 times…

    Reply this comment
    • vern 5 September, 2016, 12:58

      The staged killing scene and the murder of a Godly man . The act of shooting a man in the back is murder in first degree. The so called law enforcement, who planned are all guilty, and that is for everyone on the scene should be arrested and tried and receive the punishment required by law. They are all criminals and should pay the price, but am sure all rewarded and given an advancement in rank. The ones arrested and put in isolation and abused by jail conditions, guards, sheriff, and prosecuting attornies, All that was arrested should be set free. The government wanted to build new facilities at the bird watching building. A few years back I went there and talked with the lady who worked there. The building and all the area needed taken care of and she said several times she had no supplies to work with. The government wanted an event to happen so they could spend money to build new facilities. This the same as Oklahoma City, as I was told by officials of and in building. The government bombed their own building so they would have an excuse to build new one. Follow the money and truth will come out. The Lord is keeping a record of all involved, and He knows all who murdered all the innocent ones and from WW2 and especially in these later years.

      Reply this comment
  20. Elrod 13 August, 2016, 18:25

    The S.P.L.C. is like the Clinton foundation on steroids. They have fleeced donors in the form of well meaning people and corporations for decades. Follow the money. The founder of S.P.L.C was Morris Dees, a Zionist southerner who figured out very early there were millions to be made in the poverty Pimp game. Tout the plight of the poor and announce through advertising and lawsuites your the guy to fight the big racist machine. Hundreds of millions later with the influence of that money you become friends and leaders with the mega socialists in Washington. You appoint yourself, with the help of other socialist and communist groups in washington the leader of the race pimp global foundation. Morris was accused in a court deposition during a divorce of making sexual advances toward his daughter. Those records use to be available on the internet, but no longer are. I wonder why? I wonder who expunged them? Mark the card carying communist Potok is his hand picked lackey replacement. I wonder if mark had more than a deposition in his back pocket when he took over? With the behavior of the FBI lately it is no wonder the two groups sleep together regularly. And as for the Justice department? She loves the S.P.L.C. since they are experts on conning black folks.

    Reply this comment
    • Elias Alias 13 August, 2016, 18:29

      Amen! I, too, am aware of the Dees sex scandal, and I think we should always keep that in the hopper.
      Salute!
      Elias Alias, editor

      Reply this comment
  21. Mikkal 15 August, 2016, 11:35

    Unalienable rights is the argument. It is not our interpretation of the Bill of Rights. Pets like dogs and cats can bite or scratch when they feel threatened and in a corner. Rules does not apply as much as natural instinct. Simply put, if government tries to take away parts of the Bill of Rights, people will continue speaking, practicing their religion, creating weapons, hiding information and so on. So the argument is, as a society, do we allow people to do what is natural in a free society or will they be force to hide activities because government no longer sanctions it.. Either way, the activities will continue and most likely less controlled when government deems it unlawful. Interpretation is not in question, the reality of people’s instinct is. Seeing the failure or prohibition and failure in the war on drugs is signs that even activity not covered by Bill of Rights, such as entrepreneurship is also a natural instinct. I am not condoning drugs or alcohol, simply pointing out the root cause is easy money, easy business and natural instinct picks it when in a corner.

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  22. H.Nelson 15 August, 2016, 13:52

    This is on par with Savage Arms hiring Lon Horiuchi to be their spokesman for their new precision rifle. If the SPLC thought they had any credibility then, they sure don’t have it now. I guess the SPLC is OK with associating with a person that had no problems with BBQ’ing alive men, women and children over a $200 tax. It still pains me to this day that both Jim and Lon walked away with retirements and no charges.

    Reply this comment
  23. Robin 15 August, 2016, 15:05

    Thank you Stewart, Elias and the rest of the editorial staff along with all the Oathkeepers out on the ground in communities and “in the trenches” so to speak for all you do! Know there are many regular people, citizen observers if you will, that know of and respect your works and service.

    Speaking not only for myself, but many others I am certain, know that we “have your backs” for now if only “on paper” as well as, God forbid, if situations warrant, in practice.

    May God bless you all!
    Robin

    Reply this comment
  24. mtman2 15 August, 2016, 22:29

    What a cocky arrogant lying dirtbag this agent was- leaving out anything truthful and transparent as to the crime’s and national disgraces they caused at Ruby Ridge and Waco.
    They think WE forgot- no stupid WE boned up on the the truth and are waay ahead of your propaganda that intends to deceive the average sheople American public that still thinks it’s an altruistic Efrem Zimbalist Jr. FBI yet today = it’s definitely not-!!!

    Look at Comey’s pathetic excuse for a statement as to that murdering witch Khillary’s- with her continuous and montrous crimes and arrogance toward Americans and around the world.
    This elitist commie tongued filth should be forced into humility by being made to hear tbe truth and rightful culpabilty those covered up deceptions deserve.
    If anything is making the awakening “American public angry” it’s talking-head puppets like him. As if he defines what true Patriotism and honesty looks like = he definitety ain’t it.

    He’s a Globalist pawn on the chessboard they’ve set up to destroy this nation completely.
    Just looking at that “too”l holding OUR Constitution like contriban- makes me sick.
    He fits the description of one of Soros’s top people- no problem- just as he sent his fellow Jews to the concentration camps+gas chambers after stealing all their stuff and still today states how he “enjoyed that power”.

    This type is a U.N.collaberator if there ever was one that would have been a Tory back in tbe day.
    This folks is what the face of unelected, unConstitutional bureaucrat looks like- cold, dark+hard and sold out to the core. Imagine this Patriotic midget facing a giant like Thomas Jefferson or the very father of America himself George Washington with his regurgitaded rhetoric foisted at us.
    And we’ve let mice like him roar as lions over us as the “peasant classes” he feels comfortable lying to- as if WE were all retarded. The arrogance is so palpable it hangs in the air still.
    WE do not forget nor should WE as to what lengths these type “ruling class” type mentalities are capable of going and covering up as they decitfully take true law into their own hands.
    OUR lives are of no concequence to this level of ellitism and open cover ups before OUR very eyes. This situation “WE the People” are now in is very sad indeed.
    Liars like him oughtta open up a chain of used car lots for “one owner beauties on sale today”

    Well he will stand before a Holy God one day with nothing but his lies to show for the Providential nation He gave us and OUR Founders totally acknowledged ~!

    Reply this comment
  25. Mister Ed 4 September, 2016, 08:43

    I’m not sure where to post this. Has Oathkeepers reached out to give support to these folks? They are being targeted because of oathbreaking. Our government is not following through with a treaty that was signed in good faith and it is happening within the borders of the United States. After the issues in Oregon-which I know oathkeepers was not a part of-this group of people does not understand that oathkeepers are the enemy of a government that doesn’t keep it’s oath (treaty’s are covered under the constitution) Giving support would go a long way in uniting people against tyranny:
    http://www.telesurtv.net/english/opinion/Tribal-Dakota-Pipeline-Resistance-the-Start-of-Something-Bigger-20160903-0008.html

    Reply this comment
  26. Dr Wiggy 21 September, 2016, 06:34

    Did Waco Jim just say “They will prey on your patriotism….” ????
    Really? Wow…. Yeah I love that……

    Reply this comment
  27. K9001 19 October, 2016, 13:48

    Now, I’ve been working with the FBI as an informant for over two decades. The level of corruption inside the Establishment is not as widely spread as we are led to believe by these reports. Sure, there are a few bad apples, but let’s keep our eye on the prize. If we have people embedded at a local level, surely our people at the Federal Level must be kept private and secure while we sort out these atrocities under law.

    Reply this comment
    • samadams1776 25 October, 2016, 08:24

      BS–they have zero authority to exist under the constitution. As a former military officer, I had my authority under Art 1 sec 8 of the Constitution. They have no equivalent.

      Reply this comment
  28. samadams1776 25 October, 2016, 08:17

    One point of order on the very existence of Federal police agencies: They are wholly unconstitutional!

    The 10th Amendment makes clear that only enumerated powers are granted the US Government. All other powers not mentioned and not prohibited the states are reserved to the states or to the people.

    While in the National Guard of my state, a young 1st Lieutenant was applying to the FBI which I STRONGLY urged him not to do and told him they are an illegally constituted agency as are all Federal police agencies. He said they were not and I told him, that we have our authority under Article 1 section 8 of the Constitution, and asked him where Federal police get theirs. His degree is in law enforcement and he immediately responded with “The Necessary and Proper” clause.

    I explained to him (which he rejected) and explain here that it must be read in context:

    “To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States…”

    So it is to make any such laws to carry in to execution the foregoing (previously listed powers) and all other powers vested in the Constitution (not hitherto mentioned at the point of the clause).

    But the Federal government has NOT been granted police powers and powers cannot be implied, which also by the way, makes Judicial review by the courts to include SCOTUS ALSO illegal.

    STATES need to reject ALL court decisions by the federal courts. States need to ratify federal laws if they are to be valid.

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