They're not "militias." Call them what they are: "domestic terrorists"

Bruce Maples (bruceinlouisville@gmail.com)
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Well, it finally happened. Members of a so-called “militia” were arrested for plotting to kidnap, and possibly execute, the governor.

No, not OUR governor – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, the governor of Michigan. The group had spent months surveilling both the governor’s mansion and her vacation home, and had even practiced setting off explosive devices to take down a bridge leading to the vacation home in order to isolate it further.

Fortunately, they were arrested before they could carry out their plans. Fortunately, there was someone in the group who was so concerned about where the plans were going that they contacted the FBI. Fortunately, there were no law enforcement officers harmed during the arrests, even though the plotters had specifically talked about killing police officers.

But, what if none of the “fortunately” events above were true? What if the group had succeeded in carrying out their plot? And, to bring it even closer to home, what if this was not about the governor of Michigan, but our own governor?

For too long, many people have looked on these groups as oddities – people you can ignore, or perhaps laugh at and make fun of, but not anyone you need to take seriously. Well, that approach passed a long time ago, and it’s time we paid attention.

The FBI has said for years that the primary threat to our national security was not terrorists from overseas, but domestic terrorists – specifically, right-wing and white-supremacist domestic terrorists. That message gets lost because this administration refuses to acknowledge it, and because many Republicans and even some Democrats actually endorse and stand with these groups.

These are not “militias” in any traditional sense of the word; they are terrorist cells. When they show up wearing camouflage and brandishing enough firepower to kill the entire General Assembly, it is not to celebrate their 2nd Amendment rights; it is to intimidate and threaten.

The 2nd Amendment gives everyone the right to own a gun. It does not give anyone the right to form groups designed to overthrow the government, kidnap elected officials, intimidate lawmakers, or commit violence and terrorism.

The 2nd Amendment gives everyone the right to own a gun. It does not give anyone the right to form groups designed to overthrow the government, kidnap elected officials, intimidate lawmakers, or commit violence and terrorism.Click To Tweet

Donald Trump refuses to condemn them. Many of our elected officials refuse to condemn them. Many of US refuse to condemn them, or to call out those who stand with them.

Lawmakers and leaders, the ball is in your court. Either condemn these groups and the dog-whistles that encourage them, or we will know where you stand and who you stand with. And we will remember.

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