The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.
American Vision is a hard-line Christian Reconstruction organization whose current leader, Gary DeMar, has said that democracy should be replaced by a theocratic government run by Christians who will impose Old Testament prohibitions and the occasional executions of “sodomites” to drive gay people back into the closet. It’s no surprise, then, that American Vision has involved itself over the years with anti-gay and anti-abortion causes. ( continue to full post… )
A former “staff leader” of the neo-Nazi Aryan Nations is threatening to indict members of the Montana Human Rights Network by convening a “citizen grand jury.”
The e-mail threat came from Karl Gharst, a white supremacist who was convicted and sent to prison in 2004 for threatening to kill a child protective services worker in Montana. ( continue to full post… )
Nearly eight months after President Obama released his long-form birth certificate, the carnival barkers he hoped to quiet are again clamoring to get back into the center ring.
WorldNetDaily (WND), the right-wing conspiracy website that has led the charge to question the legitimacy of Obama’s citizenship, has reported that the nation’s first law enforcement investigation into the president’s birth certificate is under way. Ostensibly leading the charge is none other than Arizona’s Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who bills himself as “America’s toughest sheriff.” ( continue to full post… )
A western Arizona mayor, who recently called in the antigovernment “Patriot” group Oath Keepers to rally support for what he claimed was a town under martial law, has not gone quietly into the night after losing a recall election earlier this week. Instead, Quartzsite Mayor Ed Foster has doubled down with new claims that the election was rigged.
Speaking with WorldNet Daily, the far-right website that has led the charge on the conspiracy theory that President Obama is not a U.S. citizen, Foster said the Town Council almost certainly had a hand in fixing the election. “There’s no doubt about it,” Foster said. “The early voting was obscenely different. … Whether people voted early or late should not have affected the weight of the vote.”
The recall election, held on Tuesday, came as a footnote to a complicated tale of alleged small-town corruption that pitted Foster against the Town Council and Quartzsite Police Chief Jeff Gilbert. Foster claimed the town had been writing checks to anonymous people to the tune of $250 million every year for the last several years – a claim that was never verified. Then, the dispute became national news in June when a video posted online showed a local blogger, Jennifer Jade Jones, being arrested at a Town Council meeting. The video was taken as proof by many antigovernment extremists that the “martial law” they had long predicted would be imposed on Americans had finally arrived, at least in Quartzsite. For his part, Chief Gilbert dismissed the claims of martial law as absurd. ( continue to full post… )
QUARTSZITE, Ariz. — In the heart of the Sonoran Desert, in a scruffy town populated by nomad retirees, inveterate rock hounds and a nearly 70-year-old nudist bookseller who claims to be the first male stripper in the country, the antigovernment “Patriot” group Oath Keepers has decided to take a stand.
Quartzsite has only 3,800 permanent residents in homes strung out along both sides of Interstate 10 as it cuts westward to California. But here, the Oath Keepers argue, the banner of tyranny has already been raised. “This is the start. We want to set an example here,” Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes said Saturday after a two-mile march scheduled as part of a “Liberty Festival” in Quartzsite. “If every community across the country simply did what’s being done right here – right here, right now – we would restore our republic.”
What’s being done in Quartzsite is a response to a complicated tale of alleged small-town corruption that pits the town’s police chief against many of his officers and a number of citizens — complicated enough that it’s hard to say at this stage who’s right. But the Oath Keepers says on its website that it “considers the Quartzsite saga to be a vital pivot point on which small-town America shall awaken to the encroachment of corruption and violation of rights from Federal levels downward into our local communities and our daily lives.” ( continue to full post… )
A federal fugitive with past ties to the Patriot group Oath Keepers was arrested without incident Thursday southwest of Houston, Texas, just days after fleeing a campground during a law enforcement dragnet.
Charles Alan Dyer, 31, a former Marine, was arrested after leaving a Sonic drive-in where he had purchased a Route 44 red cherry limeade, The Houston Chronicle reported. Fort Bend County sheriff’s Deputy Jeremy Goodrich, who made the arrest, said Dyer was wearing a baseball cap, blue jeans, with a T-shirt over his shoulder. After providing a fictitious name, he was arrested without resisting and seemed very tired, the deputy said. ”He said he was just done,” Goodrich said.
Deputies found $1,000 in cash and a GPS device on Dyer, who had been hiding along the Brazos River during the day. Officials say he had been in the Fort Bend County area for three to four days. The wanted man apparently hung out along the Brazos River during the day and would come out at night, searching for food, sheriff’s deputies said.
The Liberty Counsel for Law and Policy is traditionally known for its pro bono litigation work with regard to perceived slights against the practice of Christianity in schools and other public venues, as well as its work against abortion and LGBT rights. It was no surprise, therefore, when its president, Mathew Staver, and Matt Barber, on staff at Liberty University, recently assailed the American Psychological Association (APA) for its support of LGBT people and same-sex marriage on their Faith and Freedom radio show.
It was standard Liberty Counsel rhetoric: Gay men and lesbians can and should change their orientation, because the Liberty Counsel considers it harmful and immoral. Barber and Staver dismissed leading, reputable mainstream organizations and instead touted the findings of small religious (often Christian-only) groups like the American Association of Christian Counselors, which the Liberty Counsel has said is larger than the APA (the APA has 154,000 members, while the AACC claims “nearly 50,000″).
What’s more surprising is that the Liberty Counsel seems to be dipping its toes into the anti-government “Patriot” pool. Patriot groups see the federal government as part of a conspiracy to impose a socialistic one-world government – or “New World Order” – on freedom-loving Americans. They often rail against involvement with the United Nations, worry about government instituting martial law, and express fears about “creeping socialism” (more recently, “creeping Shariah law”) and other government plots to undermine freedom. ( continue to full post… )
A new Tea Party group in Florida is boldly going where no Tea Parties have gone before – space.
Tea Party in Space, an offshoot of the South Florida Tea Party, is, of all things, pushing to end the government’s supposed monopoly on space exploration.
“Our goal is nothing less than the expansion of American civilization into the solar system,” says the group’s platform. “We must return to traditional American free-market principles to expand permanently into space.”
Tea Party in Space is complaining that, as its founder Andrew Gasser said, “NASA is being forced to fund programs that are behind schedule and ridiculously over budget.” But that’s not all. Gasser sees a great ideological principle here: “It is socialism when you have the government coming down and saying, ‘this is what we want to build, and this is how we want you to build it.’”
According to Tea Party in Space logic, the Erie Canal, Hoover Dam, our national highway system, and Mount Rushmore are all just examples of unnecessary government socialism. ( continue to full post… )
A nationwide “family rights protest” set for next week – and billed as one of the biggest ever — is attracting attention and support from antigovernment militia, “Patriot” and “sovereign citizens” groups.
Protests organized by a group called “govabuse” are planned outside courthouses in more than 300 counties in at least 42 states on Aug. 12. Organizers say the protests – fueled by a Facebook campaign and utilizing a special red, white and blue ribbon — are intended to shed light on “abuse of constitutional rights” by family court judges, guardians ad litem and child protective service workers. The group complains that the system is “used to separate and financially demolish families.”
Although nothing on the group’s site suggests that it agrees with the antigovernment conspiracy-mongering of Patriot groups and individuals, it’s not entirely surprising that such groups have glommed on to the protests. Over the last 15 years, Patriot organizations have taken up a number of causes in which the rights of individuals, often ones with heterodox ideas, seemed to be pitted against the government. ( continue to full post… )
Nullification — the idea that a state can simply refuse to follow federal laws when it doesn’t like them — has been popular of late. A traveling conference called “Nullify Now!” has been roving the country in the last year pushing this notion, with its events headlined by prominent figures in the antigovernment “Patriot” movement.
In addition, state lawmakers in recent months have introduced, but not passed, numerous bills to nullify federal initiatives like gun regulations and the new health care reform act. Some have sought to deny the authority of federal agents to act in state jurisdictions. Arizona’s Senate even passed a sweeping bill earlier this year that would create a legislative committee to “recommend, propose and call for a vote by simple majority to nullify in its entirety a specific federal law or regulation that is outside the scope of the powers delegated by the People to the federal government in the United States Constitution.”
Now, the movement is going national, with some Congressional GOP lawmakers pushing for legislation affecting the entire country. Their proposed constitutional amendment, a Tea Party favorite, would allow a vote by two-thirds of the states’ legislatures to override any federal law. According to the Talking Points Memo website, the amendment is being pushed by Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) in the Senate and is co-sponsored by Sens. John Barasso (R-W.V.) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah). In the House, U.S. Reps. Rob Bishop (R-Utah), Morgan Griffith (R-Va.) and Paul Broun (R-Ga.) are backing the amendment. These lawmakers, using traditional antigovernment language, claim their goal is to stop the tyranny of Washington over the economy and circumscribe other federal powers. ( continue to full post… )