More coverage on an item noted last week by David; read it all, please, including the comments and embedded links.
Irritating sample paragraph:
...The report’s most controversial passage states that militia “most commonly associate with third-party political groups” and support presidential candidates such as Ron Paul, former Constitutional Party candidate Chuck Baldwin and Bob Barr, the Libertarian candidate last year.
Hotz said using those or similar factors to determine whether someone could be a terrorist is not profiling. He said people who display signs or bumper stickers from such groups are not in danger of harassment from police.
“It’s giving the makeup of militia members and their political beliefs,” Hotz said of the report. “It’s not saying that everybody who supports these candidates is involved in a militia. It’s not even saying that all militias are bad.”
Not everybody agrees. At a “Tea Party” to protest wasteful government spending Thursday in Flat Branch Park, several people displaying the Revolutionary War-replica “Don’t Tread On Me” flag were upset to learn the MIAC report lists the banner as a “militia symbol.”
“That’s insane,” said Doug Wendt looking at the MIAC document. “That is not a militia symbol. That is American history. This is historic. The only animosity” American colonists “ever directed with this was towards England.”
Roger Webb, president of the University of Missouri campus Libertarians, also took offense. “It’s absolutely obscene,” he said of the report. “It seems like they want to stifle political thought. There are a lot of third parties out there, and none of them express any violence. In fact, if you join the Libertarian Party, one of the things you sign in your membership application is that you don’t support violence as a means to any ends.”***
Points of irritation:
1) The Gadsden flag is most certainly a "militia symbol", both from its Revolutionary origins and its use in the Nineties.
So what? Remember these words from the Founders?
"I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials." George Mason (3 Elliot, Debates at 425-426)
"The militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves, ... all men capable of bearing arms;..." -- Richard Henry Lee writing in "Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republic", 1788, page 169.
"Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man against his own bosom? Congress shall have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birth-right of an American ... The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the People." -- Tench Coxe - 1788.
2. Equally irritating is anyone who claims to stand for human rights while categorically excluding violence as a possible path for securing those rights. As an acquaintance at a recent gun show put it: