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Yeager Not Alone: Radical Right Reacts to Gun Control

By Mark Potok on January 11, 2013 - 10:58 am, Posted in Antigovernment, Extremist Propaganda

When Tennessee weapons instructor James Yeager threatened Wednesday to “start killing people” if President Obama moved ahead on gun control, his infuriated rant went national, with dozens of media outlets and blogs expressing amazement.

In thousands of comments about Yeager’s YouTube video and another video the unrepentant Tactical Response CEO posted yesterday, Americans wondered if Yeager was breaking the law, or mentally ill, or a perfect example of the need for gun control. “Amazing, really,” wrote a commenter on the Hatewatch blog. “Simply amazing. These people are certifiably insane.” Said another, “These are the words of a real terrorist.” And a third wondered, “Can’t he be arrested for this?”

But the truth is that the death threats from Yeager — a man who is a former police chief, protective services contractor in Iraq, and owner of two companies that provide tactical weapons and training to police and military units — are not unique. Although Yeager said it more clearly than most, and with more profanity, the far right in America generally is reacting to the prospect of gun control with hysteria.

Yeager may well have been set off in the first place by the online Drudge Report, which earlier Wednesday compared the administration to Hitler and Stalin for considering using executive orders to facilitate some gun control measures. But Matt Drudge’s  was the only the latest in a series of furious attacks from the political far right.

The League of the South, a white supremacist secessionist group based in Alabama, on Wednesday said that “the biggest threat is the U.S. government itself” and described the Obama administration as “a criminal regime.” “Those in positions of power who exceed the limits of lawful authority ought to be made to live in mortal fear of their transgressions,” league president Michael Hill said.

A day later, Terry Jones, the Muslim-bashing Florida preacher whose burning of the Koran set off violence in the Middle East, sounded similar. “Every generation needs a revolution,” Jones said. “We must resist the disarming of the American people, if necessary, with violent aggressive opposition. The tree of liberty must be, from time to time, refreshed with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”

Chuck Baldwin, a Montana leader of the antigovernment “Patriot” movement and a pastor, wrote last week, and reiterated yesterday, that semi-automatic weapons were essential to preserve “freedom” and prevent “tyranny.” “Ladies and gentlemen, whatever the consequences might be, and whatever anyone else does or doesn’t do, I am prepared to become an outlaw over this issue! I don’t know how to say it any plainer: I will not register my firearms, and I will not surrender my firearms.” He went on to say that any confiscation attempt would result in a “revolution.”

It wasn’t only acknowledged radicals reacting. In Wyoming, a state where guns are very much a part of life for many, lawmakers have sponsored a bill that would ensure that “any federal law which attempts to ban a semi-automatic firearm or to limit the size of a magazine of a firearm or other limitation on firearms  in this state shall be unenforceable in Wyoming.” Of course, this kind of attempt to “nullify” federal laws dates back to the Civil War and is generally unconstitutional.

Yeager found a virtual cheering section on the radical racist right as well. “He is saying what needs saying and is ready to rock,” wrote “Fred O’Malley” on the neo-Nazi Vanguard News Network Internet forum. Elsewhere, he added: “He is saying what we should all be saying, LOUD AND FUCKING CLEAR!! … You fucking idiots, if you let them get away with this shit, you have no life left anyway.”

“A line must be drawn in the sand, a small spark could set off the power keg of patriots lets hope it blows sky high,” wrote another commenter on Stormfront, which is the world’s largest white supremacist Web forum. “I see Civil War II on the horizon,” said another. A third commenter, “Rosalynn,” put it like this: “We’ve been putting every extra penny aside to buy more ammunition and hopefully in the next couple of weeks we will also be able to purchase a few more firearms. They can kiss my white butt if they think they are getting any of our guns.”

  • Kate

    My husband and I used to visit and camp at National Monuments and state campgrounds when our children were young. The first time I realized there were ‘gun nuts’ was when aging men would start telling me about their reasons for buying guns and what they thought those guns would do for them.
    I was used to hearing worries and fears about being robbed in home invasions. I wasn’t prepared at all for the number of times the imagined victims for these older men turned out to be teenagers just walking by them on the sidewalks.
    Since then I am learning that many older men are afraid of teenaged boys and evidently expect to engage them in violence at some future point.
    Maybe they are watching too many shoot-em-up movies before bedtime?

  • What?

    Saying that EVERYONE that supports the Second Amendment has a fundamentalist frothing at the mouth fear of the government coming to take every firearm away is a little bit like claiming that EVERY Christian hates gay people… completely preposterous and entirely untrue. But, hey, the gun companies are making millions off the current red scare… so the NRA is happy… hence the GOP is thrilled to fan the flames of fear and impending catastrophe.

  • aadila

    Just to bolt on to what Aron said, about Fast and Furious. Most (if not all) the repeaters of this endless meme care nothing that guns get into the wrong hands.

    That’s what all this prefab outrage about OFF is supposed to be, but when America takes a step — any step — toward reasonable safeguards on the right to bear arms, all the crocodile tears dry up and we see them for what they are: brutish chest beaters who swell up in rage not to limit, but to defend, even demand gun violence.

    Meanwhile gun manufacturers leech off the fear subsidy, sucking the marrow of America. They exist to profiteer off human tragedy.

  • CM

    “You animals keep screaming at each other.”

    It’s that kind of sentiment that makes people think taking your guns away might be a good idea. How can we trust you not to decide one day to start shooting us “animals”?

    “We will continue to have group hunts with our children.”

    Because as Newtown showed, children are easy prey.

  • NAFTA Refugee

    Defending your constitutional right to bear arms hardly makes you a racist.

    Federal government “infringing” on your constitutional right to bear arms IS tyrranny.

    “The radical racist right” is a term many conservatives deem politically ignorant and part of the lexicon of the radical left whom the right also deem as intolerant to any view but their own. No diversity here.

    Calling gun owners names is ignorant. I’m reading your arguments and you seem to take great pride in your intellect but many of you still revert to bashing and smearing. I grew up in farm country/mountainside. I grew up around guns and people who respected them.

    It’s easy to make fun of those with high blood pressure and low tolerance to your intolerance. The people I grew up around would fix your tire on a rainy night just because. They would buy you a beer even though you were a complete stranger. They would welcome you at the firing range or at the make shift one in the woods. They would even let you shoot their weapon, with a cautious eye. Nice, wholesome, salt of the earth people. Not the monsters you folks describe.

    I’m beginning to realize that I’ve got a good thing and my old stomping grounds are a good thing. Sooo. You animals keep screaming at each other. We will continue to have group hunts with our children. We will practice and teach gun safety, sharpshooting skills. We will not pretend that the second ammendment is for hunting rights. We will practice and teach how to appreciate the land and not abuse it. And we’ll just keep it a secret because obviously you folks can’t handle it.

    Take care.

  • Aron

    Hey Guardian, your concern troll is showing. Anyone who doesn’t know that nearly every firearm used in OFF has been tracked and recovered must get all of their news from WND or the like.

    As I wrote yesterday to someone else, nice try, skippy.

  • Guardian

    But once again the president has overstepped his authority, as he so commonly does, in circumventing the approval of Congress to enact an unprecedented amount of executive orders.

    The president is immature and naive to think that these measures will have an impact on the type of violence we’ve been seeing at our schools. The majority of people agree with the measures the president took on gun control, but a relative amount of people agree that these measures will not affect these types of attacks.

    Although I am a strict proponent of second amendment rights, I am among those who support universal background checks and bans on certain assault weapons and large capacity clips.

    We need to look at the real problem, the people behind these attacks. What can be done? I’m no psychologist but I do know that we need to re focus our attention. The president’s kids have armed protection, as they should. But what about our kids, are they less important? We post sign at schools saying “Gun Free Zone”, an open invitation for these types of psychos. Would you post a sign in front of your house saying “No guns here”?

    I realize there are no perfect answers, but exploiting our kids and issuing executive orders for political gain is definitely not the answer.

    With that said, for this president to say anything about curbing gun running is the height of hypocrisy, or have we forgotten the fast and furious gun deal he and Eric Holder perpetrated on the American citizens. So just stop with that already!

  • What?

    The myopic worldview of the people who believe in an America that never existed during the formation of our country (at least for women, and Native Americans and African Americans… which adds up to at least 60% of the ealiest inhabitants) has very similar traits to the diagnosis of paranoid schizoprenia… the battle cry is always the same… “They are coming to take me away! They are coming to take me away!” It would be funny if it were not so true… :(

  • Aron

    I see Robert Lazo the Sovereign Citizen Keyboard Kommando has decided to attempt a comeback. At least we all know what a brilliant piece of work he is…

  • Reynardine

    With due respect, Walkaway, it’s people like the following why you feel the need for military type weapons, and people like them why the “hate-filled” language is directed at those who demand unfettered access to them:

  • Tobias A. Weissman

    I am not a Lawyer, but the way I read the 2nd Amendment is that it gives permission to form a MILITIA. It says nothing about the private citizen having a right to own a gun. We have quite a few MIITIA’S, Our Police, the FBI, the CIA, the ARMED FORCES. The USA is the only country that allows private gun ownership, and we’re paying for it in the killing of our children. The 2nd Amendment was made during the formation of our country,,then private ownership was necessary. Now it’s not. We have all the Militia necessary.

  • Robert Lazo

    We will never disarm. We will never surrender our military pattern, semi-automatic rifles and the full capacity magazines, parts, and ammunition that go with them. The fundamental purpose of the Second Amendment is to preserve the military power of We the People so we will have effective means to resist tyranny. Regardless of what unholy, unconstitutional filth issues from the mouths of oath breakers.
    Our answer is MOLON LABE… I dare you to try!

  • Bill Wright

    As my wife has said, ” You can talk to me about gun control if you have ever been raped at gun point.”

  • A Walkaway

    There are a lot of liberal gun owners who are terrified that they will be punished for the misdeeds of a tiny handful of individuals – and I’m one of them.

    I left PoliticusUSA because of the hate-filled language and insults directed at gun owners, and I may end up no longer supporting or being involved in this blog too, if the SPLC throws away its support of freedoms and joins the “disarm them!” chorus.

    The arguments against more laws are many and well supported by evidence. The language used (“Assault weapon, Weapons of War, etc.) demonstrates that most of the move to limit the freedom of other citizens is motivated by emotion and not reality or common sense (or logical thinking).

    Ask yourself this – would you want to be left defenseless when surrounded by people like Terry Jones and who have made comments since President Obama was re-elected about “Second Amendment treatment for liberals”? That’s what the laws being pushed would do to people like me. (Don’t make me laugh by suggesting that the pigs will protect us… they’re far more likely to be the problem than part of the solution!)

    Oh… and there are precedents that show what gun control is really about – America used to have laws against selling firearms to my ancestors, and you know the real reason why – so that they couldn’t defend themselves when their homes were destroyed and all of their possessions confiscated (and many cases, put in wagons or railroad cars and carted off to Oklahoma). When you hear things like “The only good Indian is a dead Indian”, well, you know how the people really feel.

    In a sense, because I am a gun owner, I feel that way right now.

  • Pinto

    Actually, the government is looking at controlling the wrong thing. Handguns have killed far more people in this country that so-called assault weapons. Problem is, we don’t mind it when one or two people are killed at a time… but when the single event body count goes above that we get all bothered and nervous. Social engineering – we only respond when the media tells us we should.

  • Reynardine

    Check out the latest gun-nut infamitá:

    Together with today’s NRA ad targeting the President’s daughter, I suggest SPLC has grounds to designate the NRA a hate organization.

  • Reynardine

    Abraham Silverman, shame on you, beating up on a poor little straw man like that.

  • Reynardine

    Thanks, Ace.

  • Abraham Silverman

    I agree with Ace, anyone who does not hold a government approved opinion should not have guns, nor rights. Great men like Stalin and Mao knew this, why don’t we?

  • Ace

    Ah, it is so much fun to watch racists and right wing nuts act like spoiled children. They flail hilariously. People are actually treated like second-class citizens (by people who think like them, who would’ve thought!?) and these guys think gun control equates to “oppression”. As we all know, making threats of violence totally will make people want you to have assault rifles.

    I’m actually not against guns, my relatives have been soldiers and cops. I just don’t like assault rifles being in the hands of people who will use them on their neighbors with impunity and try to justify it under the Constitution, as long as its convenient for them. They are not protectors, they are not responsible, and their hate-group status should disqualify them from owning a firearm, let alone a freaking assault rifle. I’m tired of watching young people die because some entitled bigot “feels threatened”.

    If I have to go to a specific place, to get a specific ID, during certain hours and fill certain forms in order to mark a name on a ballot, they should be able to handle some extra effort to get a freaking weapon. Its not that hard to be responsible and follow the damn law.

  • Charmel Maynard

    Quoting ‘controlled opposition’ Stormfront is always entertaining.

  • Kiwiwriter

    These guys are all fond of quoting Jefferson. They obviously missed out how he expanded presidential powers, made the country larger, and (gasp!) committed miscegenation.

    He also wrote, “The first duty of every citizen is to obey the law.”

    Once again, as I said in an earlier post, and I’ll repeat it, “The right wing never wants to be satisfied; they’re professional whiners. They are never happy.”

    They’d rather have a dozen Newtowns than submit to a background check. Probably because many of them would fail.

  • Sam Molloy

    D. Cary and C. Odem. The existing system of Background Checks could simply be expanded, with the responsibility being the seller’s. The seller would keep the paper copy, or a xerox, to prove that the transfer was made legally. There would have to be an additional line for the serial number of the weapon being transferred. The strict pro 2nd Amendment people would have to allow this addition. The anti gun folks seem to be holding out for total registration.

  • Linnea

    You’ve got that right, CM. One of the things that always astounds me about these idiots is what blatant hypocrites they are, and irony is totally lost on them.

  • CM

    The “tree of liberty” line that Jones misquotes is from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson. I don’t suppose Jones would accord the same authority to another thought contained in a letter Jefferson wrote, about the “wall of separation between church and state.” It would be a bit much to expect anything resembling logical consistency from a self-proclaimed Christian who spends so much time promoting bloodshed.

  • Sam Molloy

    I can agree with some Occupy protester’s rants but disagree with others. I can agree with a lot of the Peta crowd, but… I can agree with most of the NRA’s positions but… I can agree with Jesse Duplantis Ministries but…..Also the SPLC, and ACLU. ( BTW, the ACLU is who stopped medical records from appearing on Firearms Background Checks, as was originally intended). Life is complicated and it’s best to not be all or nothing with people. Most people.

  • Kevin Young

    These people are precisely whom the GOP have made a Faustian bargain.

  • C. Odom

    I’ve heard of 8-year-olds who have been taken into custody and questioned for writing a list of “teachers I wish were dead,” because we live in a post-Columbine world and must take those sorts of things very seriously. I think that’s the line they used to justify taking the kid into custody. Here you have an adult — someone who I assume is trained to kill and who is probably armed to the teeth — saying he will kill people if Obama goes forward with some form of gun control. Seems Homeland Security may want to interview this guy. An interesting paradox. Also, it seems, too often many people who act so rabidly defiant whenever the mere mention of any gun legislation comes up are also racist — and unabashedly so. Proud, even.

    I do think some assault-style automatic weapons should be illegal to posses, and should be confiscated from those who own them. Universal background checks (ending gun-show loophole), and the accountability the last posted mention are also needed.

  • Reynardine

    Cary, I left a comment at your blog, which you are welcome to use or circulate without attribution, if you think it will help get the point across. Its actual title is “Last Class”. If by chance my true name appears, please delete it.

  • David Cary Hart

    I have spoken with a number of victims of gun violence, and their survivors. One thing that I have never heard is “if only I had been carrying a [fill in the blank] . No victim ever feels that more guns is the solution (something that these whack jobs conveniently overlook).

    And NO, we don’t want to take away anyone’s toys. What we DO want – what I want – are two things:

    1. Universal background checks and;

    2. Accountability; A system to prevent lawfully purchased weapons from ending up in the hands of prohibited purchasers.

  • Reynardine

    The right they care about is their “right” to shoot every successful candidate they voted against and everyone who voted for such candidates. I hope to eff they are being monitored.

  • aadila

    Very interesting post, Mark.

    This situation will be an important test of the right wing — whether or not the “honest citizens” who cling to their guns join forces with the racists on this issue or use it to condemn racism and extremism.

    My guess is, as with the Tea Party, there will be a lot of angry talk about not being racist or bigoted but no one will actually do anything about the racists and bigots they are holding hands with.

  • Mitch Beales

    It is high time to send out the black helicopters and start transporting these loonies to the FEMA camps.