The press calls them a militia group intent on overthrowing the government, claiming that they organized a coup on January 6. The ADL says that they are “a large but loosely organized collection of right-wing anti-government extremists who are part of the militia movement, which believes that the federal government has been coopted by a shadowy conspiracy that is trying to strip American citizens of their rights.” The Southern Poverty Law Center says that the Oathkeepers are “one of the largest radical antigovernment groups in the U.S. today.”
They are none of those things. I wrote about them in 2010, long before they were in the national spotlight. As a patriot and a first responder who has taken the oath multiple times, the basis for the Oathkeepers was one I could support:
- We will NOT obey orders to disarm the American people.
- We will NOT obey orders to conduct warrantless searches of the American people
- We will NOT obey orders to detain American citizens as “unlawful enemy combatants” or to subject them to military tribunal.
- We will NOT obey orders to impose martial law or a “state of emergency” on a state.
- We will NOT obey orders to invade and subjugate any state that asserts its sovereignty.
- We will NOT obey any order to blockade American cities, thus turning them into giant concentration camps.
- We will NOT obey any order to force American citizens into any form of detention camps under any pretext.
- We will NOT obey orders to assist or support the use of any foreign troops on U.S. soil against the American people to “keep the peace” or to “maintain control.”
- We will NOT obey any orders to confiscate the property of the American people, including food and other essential supplies.
- We will NOT obey any orders which infringe on the right of the people to free speech, to peaceably assemble, and to petition their government for a redress of grievances.
So to those on the left: Which of the preceding points do you disagree? What makes those the goals of a right wing terrorist organization?