The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Antigovernment ‘Patriots’: ‘Are You Willing to Kill for Liberty?’

By Hatewatch Staff on August 20, 2010 - 8:57 am, Posted in Antigovernment, Patriot

The Forces of Freedom are ready for war.

Last week, about 100 self-described “Patriots” and “strict Constitutionalists” gathered in a hotel ballroom in Valley Forge, Pa., for the American Policy Center’s Freedom Action National Conference. United by rage at a federal government they believe is undermining state sovereignty in collusion with the “New World Order,” they are determined to take back the country for the people.

The conference, organized by APC founder and president Tom DeWeese, featured a parade of Patriot movement heroes. Each outlined a theory on the roots of the alleged sovereignty crisis, offered a solution, and encouraged the audience to take action before time ran out.

Most proposed nominally peaceful options such as jury nullification, local government coordination, or outreach through alternative media. But none dismissed the possibility – even the probability – of violence.

Juxtaposed surreally with the gospel tones of a loud and unrelated black church revival meeting happening in a ballroom on the floor below, DeWeese’s Patriots beat the drum for a “Second Amendment solution” to the Tenth Amendment crisis. (The Second Amendment guarantees the right “to keep and bear arms.” The Tenth Amendment says those powers not explicitly given to the federal government are reserved to the states or the people.)

One-time Libertarian Party presidential candidate Michael Badnarick insinuated that a new revolution is in the offing. “Is the government evil? Yes. Are they willing to do anything to subdue us? Yes. But as I said, we just bought 85 million guns,” Badnarick said, a reference to the number of gun owners in America. “The question is, what are we willing to do for liberty?” he continued. “Dying for your country is not really the question. Are you willing to kill for liberty?”

Pennsylvania State Rep. Sam Rohrer, who earlier this year lost his primary bid to become the Republican candidate for governor, echoed his call. “There is a time to pray and a time to fight,” said Rohrer, paraphrasing Revolutionary War hero Pastor Peter Muhlenberg. “And I think the time has come to fight.”

Speakers were uniform in believing that the United States is headed for a catastrophe for which strengthened state sovereignty, won by words or by force, is the only antidote.

“The oligarchy our founding fathers feared, federalist and anti-federalist [alike], has taken over,” said Tom Cryer, famous in Patriot circles for beating charges of tax evasion. “We’ve got to put this beast back in the box that it came in.

“We are in a defining moment,” he continued. “We are either going to be the generation that saved America from its government and its government from itself, or we’re going to be the generation that betrayed its ancestors and its posterity all at one time.

“Unite. Fight. Win.”

  • Jeff Lewis

    If it weren’t for character assassination and diversion, you “hatewatch” folks would have nothing to talk about. The speakers at the Freedom Action Conference aren’t “anti-government,” they are anti-corrupt government. They are pro-Constitution, and pro-rule-of-law. Once again the SPLC has vested their time and efforts in hate-speech of their own against patriotic Americans. What a joke you’ve become. The truth will never set you free, since you have no interest in the truth. My God-given inalienable rights are not for sale. Our Constitution guarantees they will be upheld. Any of you whiny, hatemongers ever put your lives on the line for liberty? I didn’t think so. Until you do, judge not those who have put themselves in harms way for your right to be whiny traitors and corrupt-government lackies.

  • IludiumPhosdex

    So much for “Our Sarah” pushing the meme of “Don’t Retreat–RELOAD!”: Doesn’t this imply a “Show No Mercy” mindset excusing the sadistic, the depraved, the extreme ultraviolent, not unlike Nazi Germany?

  • Carter

    Simply my opinion, but I believe that this gentleman LotusGeek s has a strong handle on a sad reality.
    Many people think people like Limbaugh speak for them but they speak for their own wealth and opulence while their sheep delude themselves into thinking that they have a kindred spirit in the Country Club elite.

    As for the lover’s of “warrior fantasy”, their wakening day often comes with the pain of a deeply troubling reality. They are typically the lost, lonely, & lifelong fearful. Our world is so rich with diverse thought and experiences that to open one’s self up to the wider berth of it invites feelings of even more vulnerability.

    If the majority of society knew that all the tough talk, weapons, & anger grow from a garden of fear, they wouldn’t react with the same measure; but they would but a stop to it by a variety of measures: including the promotion of learning. However there is a wide difference between wisdom & intelligence and that’s where so many challenges are. You can always lead a horse to water but you can’t make them drink….

  • LotusGeek

    It is always funny to me how tough idiots like this Robert Jennings like to talk. Sure, they may go as far as wearing their camo stretched tight over their beer bellies as they go off in the woods to shoot guns and talk tough. They reinforce each others delusions of grandeur, and they have (wet) dreams of a day when they can drive off, enslave, or kill anyone who doesn’t think or look like them.

    Furthermore they make no attempt to actually LEARN something, to explore the different sides of an issue. No, that would require thinking, something that isn’t too high on their priority list. They can’t risk learning something that challenges their illusions of reality or may destroy their suspension of disbelief. Instead they stick with listening to the claptrap that their heroes spew every day – people like Beck, Coulter, Palin, OReilly, etc. – and of course the most (in)famous of all, their love-daddy Limbaugh.

    I encourage Jennings and people of his ilk to rise above their brethren and actually read other viewpoints, other facts that challenge their belief system. Jennings I challenge you to try – and I know it is very hard for your type, but really try – and consider alternative viewpoints to your own. I know it’s scary, but you may learn something, and ultimately you may actually learn to think for yourself – instead of letting people like the aforementioned Limbaugh think for you all the time.

    Limbaugh’s Lemmings are sad to behold – they are a depressing reminder of how much our society resembles herd animals. BAAAAAAAAHHH

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    Good news Jennings- your asinine comment was posted, so the whole world will be able to view your internet tough guy rant.

  • skinnyminny

    Interesting! Very interesting! Just recently, a guy was arrested for “I wanna kill me a cop” song. He was given two years, actually. Yet, we have people like this that gets away with this. And as far as Mack, I’ve read that he has a home, that’s right, a home in Honduras. Again, here we go with these type groups, with their homes, or, are they safe homes in Latin America. I don’t understand for the life of me, if they can’t be arrested, what’s stopping them from being held on a 72-hour involuntary psych hold!

  • Robert Jennings

    Are you people all insane! Don’t you care at all for The Constitution of the United States? It’s beginning to look like there are a lot more of us Tenth Amendment fans than there are of you effeminate morons. We’re taking back our country from you scum with or without your help. From the sound of these comments, I can say for sure you people wont be standing in our way. Now lets see if the truth can even be posted to this forum.

  • Carter

    The President has taken extreme criticism from some – for “not dealing with the gun issue”. He obviously prioritized his prioritized agenda for logical & common sense reasons.
    Meanwhile the firearms industry has made billions of dollars on “panic buying” by fools frightened by tales of “Obama taking their guns” from them.
    This happened during Clinton but on an order of magnitude higher.* When you attempt to control an object; you simply make it worth more.

    The political false flag is the twisting of the TENTH AMENDMENT so as to aggrandize the old “State’s Right’s Issue”. The larger scale danger to the actual subversion of the Constitutional protections(& the BoR) wherein the broader wording is used to impact the specific.
    For those of you who don’t know what the 10th Amdt. is:
    ” The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people. ”

    Therefore we have a genuine division that may occur by the very existence of the freedoms to challenge government. This is a healthy thing; as all social choice is but it rests on maturity & logical discourse.
    The methods of coping with this are LOGIC, not the pitfall of emotionalism or symbols as a guise for a wider agenda.

    Remember, when many of the lunatic fringe speak they draw more listeners by attracting return emotional responses rather than logical discussions. Emotion feeds mobs & frenzy; both public & private.
    Every time a group is blamed for the actions of a few it proves that the same is fair game!

    I have been saying this for several years now.
    Call every individual who happens to be registered a Republican (or believes him or herself conservative) a bigot, a “wing-nut”, a Nazi, or any name and thus formats an acceptance of pre-judgementalism and you give free rein to it being the standard fare of the discussion; bringing it to a very low-functional level of name calling.

    By the way:

    Now if one PROVES the points by logic & reason; staying away from “group think” and you’ll sway those who think with their mind. Expand on the need to prove that the Government is the enemy & those who claim that is so needs more than emotionalism.
    Demand logical reasons and proof that FEMA is a secret government instead of suspicions and you move the discussion from one of fear – to one of reason.

    Unless of course you’re dealing with someone who “KNOWS” that the government is controlled by Secret societies, Masons, Jewish people, Star-Chamber Super Rich, Corporate Collectives, the NSA / CIA, – you name it.
    -> Remember if you’re actually FROM the Government you say simply: “CIA”. Civilians or those not in “the know” say “THE CIA”.
    Just listen to recordings of Richard Helms speak to the public…… Ooooooohhh.

    * This would be a story for another time but whenever there is “gun control” the firearm’s Industry LOVES it because a $3 high capacity pistol magazine – becomes worth $100 and is SOLD for that price!

  • daemonesslisa

    These “patriots” talk a huge game about killing for liberty. There are some that do actually kill, but they don’t kill anyone that actually threatens their supposed liberty; they just blow up buildings and kill children

    And I promise you, NONE of them are willing to die for liberty; remember, a lot of these people—especially their cheerleaders in the political realm—are the kind that cheer for wars (while forgetting about the troops), but make up excuses and refuse to actually serve.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    Ah yes, FEMA and the NWO, the diabolical plan whereby a secret elite which controls the world…..takes over the world…that they already control. Yes, the plan that was supposed to happen as long as 30 to 40 years ago. What the hell is taking it so long?

  • Paen

    These nuts are no just like the nazi storm troopers of Germany and just as dangerous.

  • beholder

    I agree with Carter’s observation.

    This seems to be a use of the 2nd Amendment protections to shield violations of the 1st Amendment, if that makes sense. That is, blowing smoke about gun rights which gets half the country upset while going out on limb with free speech by inciting to violence. It’s a very clear line to cross in my opinion, but I’m not surprised by this because the rhetoric from the right has been inching toward this: (i.e. The 2nd Amendment is there to make sure the People can enforce the rest of the Constitution).

    There is a critical fallacy in that argument however at the risk of seeming self indulgent.

    Militias are intended to preserve against an external threat, otherwise they would constitute standing armies which are supposed to be a no-no in our country because of the abuses committed by quartering troops in citizens homes etc before the Revolution.

  • Carter

    I believe that those opposed to violence and threats to a peaceful communicative society need to get their priorities very clear.
    The issue is not about firearms; it’s about individuals who are inflammatory, exploitative, or or disturbed.
    BEFORE the Brady Bill the BATFE statistics determined that there were 223 million firearms in the USA. After the Bill had sunset the figure rose to 301million functional modern (as opposed to functional antiques). Of all objects counted as firearms the figure is MUCH higher.* These objects exist and do NOT go away; just like automobiles. The issues are not the physical existence of an object.
    JUST like the “War on Drugs” or Prohibition, the singular focus on an object will do nothing to cope with behavioral agenda of emotional disturbance.
    Overt paranoia, on a clinical level is different from inflammatory rhetoric, self aggrandizement, or just plain BS.

    It is the very small percentage of mentally disturbed individuals who (just like criminals) are responsible for the horror and tragedy left in their wake.
    Just as the focus on the solvent alcohol did NOT alter the level of alcoholism or the focus on narcotics, alter the individuals who are addicted, the focus on an object or symbol will NOT change the disturbed actions of a tiny percentage of those who commit violence.

    HOWEVER, we are dealing with TWO issues here. One is the exploitation of paranoiac thinking for self aggrandizement & the other is the actual tragedy of criminal violence. There can be a linkage but it’s not to the benefit of the solution to confuse the issue with symbols or objects.

    One method of coping with people who self aggrandize via conspiracy theories and paranoia is to meet them head on with logic and debate! NOT to lash back with ideas of superficially controlling alcohol to stop alcoholism.

    People…… there are just TOO many guns & TOO much drugs to deal with the issues by chasing “feel good” legislation or quick fix answers.
    The most effective method of confronting the problems of addiction OR violence is to look at the behavior, causation vs reward elements, & the elemental driving forces behind them. At that point, once these issues are understood, to form a logical treatment plan to address the specific issues in the specific individual(s). With Violence, the logical answer is to put those who do so -far from the society where they did harm.

    Conspiracy theorists have agendas that may include self aggrandizement, ignorance of factual data, or actual mental imbalance.

    We must be extremely careful to also realize that there HAD BEEN some actual “conspiracies” in (any) government. And never throw the baby out with the bathwater. For that would be a serous mistake in addressing those who may be ignorant of factual data & unjustly alarmed for various reasons aside from mental instability.

    LOGIC & REASON are the tools that should always be employed when first addressing the problems of social concern. It is very important that just as some of the conspiracy theorists use self aggrandizement as a personal tool for egotistical purposes; we should be equally careful NEVER to be exploited by politicians with easy answers to complex problems in response to those who attempt to incite unrest or worse..

    *see the following for statistics:

  • RonniNY

    What should be a fringe movement is only going to grow bigger with the likes of Palin screeching, “America , do you love your freedom!!” and ” Don’t retreat, RELOAD!”. You’ve got Angle telling reporters that she doesn’t rule out the possibility of a 2nd Amendment solution being needed. Glenn Beck whipping millions in to paranoid frenzies with bizarre conspiracy theories. Bachmann is out there saying that FEMA camps are being readied and the govt wants to round up conservatives en masse.

    How is this sort of talk allowed ? Doesn’t this fall outside the realm of free speech and spill in to incitement ?

    The reasonable, sane citizens of this country have to make sure we vote in every election, from local on up to highest office. We also need to get our voices out there , countering the crazies. The media needs to step up as well and start calling these pundits and politicians out on their outlandish rhetoric.

  • wnelson

    Well, this is truly scary stuff. My hope and prayer is that this is fringe stuff that will go away, sort of like the Black Panthers and Weather Underground. The number of guns is especially alarming.