I can’t believe I’m writing about militias

This post is going to be about militias in America and my thoughts on a topic that’s being bandied about a lot lately – “civil war.” I might end up breaking this into more than one post, because I’ve got a lot of thoughts on this subject and although I might step on a lot of male egos, my intent isn’t to criticize any particular person, it’s to speak about ideas and approaches here. My intent also isn’t to try to silence anyone, because I’m rather a free speech zealot.

Lately, some Dems and even top level FBI officials have been labeling right-wing Americans as “domestic terrorists,” and the Biden administration has been spouting this all-encompassing term, “MAGA Republicans,” to broad-brush Americans with right-wing political beliefs as a threat to democracy. That demagoguery is totally reprehensible. Reacting to that and also to the Biden administration big green-energy/great reset transformation going on, I’ve seen some ideas that I think are total crazytown stuff being floated among some online right pundits/preppers/survivalists and most of it comes from men.

I believe some of the ideas on the right, although being hinted at and floated wrapped in euphemistic language, would be as destructive as the left’s green-energy/great reset crazytown policies. None of these more extreme ideas, from the left or right, leads to saving our republic or saving our democracy, or whatever euphemisms people choose to use to describe saving America. They lead to more chaos, irreparable divisions, and a destruction of both our republic and the representative democratic norms we value. They don’t lead to return to some bygone halcyon days of glory, the right dreams about or to the utopian system where equity, sustainability and ideal governance (ESG) people on the left blabber on about. I’ve written about the left’s insanity, so this post is going to be about some right-wing ideas I’m concerned about.

My interest in militias in America began in my teens, during the American Bicentennial. I’ve mentioned in other posts how 1976 ignited my interest in early American history, the American Revolution, and the formation of our constitutional republic.

A direct ancestor of mine was a captain of a militia in the Northampton territory in northeastern PA. Around 1774 he was tasked with recruiting 82 men, which he did without a problem. When my ancestor moved into that area of PA, it was a move over the Blue Mountain to an area that was an ancient Lenni Lenape (Delaware Indian) village, called Meniolagomeka, and the natives were forced out.  As a teen, a history I read, translated that village name as meaning the “fat-lands,” and it was rich farmland.

I think there’s a lot of misunderstandings about those early militias, because they weren’t just random people decided to form a militia. They were organized through governmental structures in the American colonies. The British colonies operated under a charter system decreed by the King of England. Even the earliest British settlers were financed and governed through various set-ups, but they were all under the British charter system. In previous posts, I’ve mentioned the first volume of the John Marshall set, The Life of George Washington, as an excellent history, full of details on the settlement of the American colonies. These early militias operated under the rule of law.

Here’s an article from the Revolutionary War Journal, History of Early Colonial Militias in America, which explains the how and why militias were utilized in early America:

“It was what the English government chose to do from the first chartered settlements in North America. England did not have the manpower or money to provide for the protection of her growing colonies on the mainland.  She was stretched thin, maintaining her growing fleet and by garrisoning her island colonies in the West Indies from the threat of her old rivals, France, Spain, and The Netherlands. Add the strife of civil war with the Cavaliers and Roundheads who were literally bashing heads, and the new American colonies quickly became low on the British agenda. However, the threat from intrusion on the mainland by England’s enemies, including the indigenous peoples already habituating the land, was a concern. A solution was sought and found in the very first settlements.  The charters of the Royal Providences, which would ultimately become the thirteen colonies of the Americas, were given authority to organize for their own defense.  Henceforth, the militia, organized and managed by local provincials, emerged in the shadow of British oversight and blessings.”

Settling the American West in the late 1800s and early 1900s presented more dilemmas for the defense of those early settlers, with the scarcity of law enforcement, and the vast spaces between homesteads and “towns,” which in many cases were just a few buildings. Challenges came in many forms, from battles between settlers and Native Americans, range wars and feuds over control of open ranges, water rights disputes and the US Army was deployed to far-flung forts on the frontier, to help protect settlers. There are many accounts of vigilante justice in the settling of the American West, but as soon as some law and order could be established through a governmental system, settlers embraced that.

Fast forward to modern history and back in the 1990s, there were three major “militia” type events, the Ruby Ridge siege (1992), the Waco siege (1993) and the Oklahoma City bombing (1995), that sparked a focus on right-wing extremism. in America. The Janet Reno run DOJ, in the Clinton administration made hunting down right-wing militias a top-tier FBI mission, while the 1993 World Trade Center bombing perpetrated by an Islamic radical was downplayed by the Clinton administration.

When 9/11 happened, the Bush administration focus shifted to Islamist terrorists, but within the FBI, I’ve often wondered if they ever shifted away from that 1990s “right-wing extremism” focus, of acting like there were right-wing militias around every corner and behind every tree in flyover country.

During the Obama administration, the DOJ shift in focus went back to seeing dangerous right-wing extremists everywhere and of course, there was Janet Reno’s DOJ sidekick, Eric Holder, now running the DOJ. It became all too common when an Islamist-inspired terrorist attack to occur in the US for the FBI to go to great pains to insist the motive was unknown, yet they had been aware of that person before the attack. Then we kept hearing about “lone wolf” attacks, as if these homegrown Islamist terrorists just became radicalized out of thin air. Added to this there was a concerted political messaging effort in the Obama administration and liberal media to pretend these Islamist-inspired attacks had nothing to do with a radical religious ideology.

So, it was no surprise really in 2016, when Hillary Clinton was running for president that all of a sudden some new and dramatic “right-wing threat” was being hyped by the Clinton campaign and liberal media – the looming threat of the “alt-right.” A few fringe far-right loons suddenly were being hyped by Hillary Clinton and the liberal media as being a massive threat and Hillary deliberately tried to paint all Trump supporters as Deplorables” and “alt-right extremists.”

So, now with this Biden administration/liberal media hype, smearing Trump supporters with an even broader brush, as “MAGA Republicans,” it feels like we’re right back to 2016 Dem spin mode. What’s disturbing though is it seems to me that the FBI has gone along with facilitating the Dem spin smear games – for decades. Current FBI director, Chris Wray, has consistently downplayed Antifa and left-wing domestic violence and focused on domestic right-wing extremism. And certainly, the FBI has left no stone unturned trying to track down every person who was at the US Capitol on Jan.6 2021.

I’m going to end this post here, because I want to delve into J-6 a bit more and the current things, that made me decide to write about militias in America.


Filed under American History, General Interest

2 responses to “I can’t believe I’m writing about militias

  1. Sam Topeka

    “FBI director, Chris Wray, has consistently downplayed Antifa and left-wing domestic violence..”
    The terrorist arms of the democrat party.
    Some things never change.

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