A single footnote is perhaps the most disturbing and chilling aspect of the Department of Homeland Security report to all law enforcement agencies warning about a rise in “right-wing extremist activity.” Comments at American Thinker, and columns at the Washington Times and at World Net Daily describe the content of the report, with World Net Daily including a link to an apparent copy of the report. The DHS report cites the current economic environment and the prospect of unspecified “policy changes” under President Obama, and
warns against the possibility of violence by unnamed "right-wing extremists" concerned about illegal immigration, increasing federal power, restrictions on firearms, abortion and the loss of U.S. sovereignty and singles out returning war veterans as particular threats.
A footnote on page 2 of the DHS report reads:
Rightwing extremism in the United States can be broadly divided into those groups, movements, and adherents that are primarily hate-oriented (based on hatred of particular religious, racial or ethnic groups), and those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration. [italics mine]
First of all, compare this with the text of the 10th amendment of the Constitution:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
Leaving that example of ignorance of the constitution aside, the principles of law-abiding conservatives, who are patriotic by definition, can be said to include limited government, free markets, individual liberties, and respect for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Conservatives generally oppose unrestricted abortion rights and oppose amnesty for illegal immigrants. Conservatives generally believe strongly in the constitution and specifically in the Bill of Rights, including the second amendment. Conservatives generally support a strong national defense, and are concerned about maintaining the sovereignty of the United States.
It is a slippery and dangerous slope from warning law enforcement against possible violent activity by “right wing extremists” to indiscriminately painting law-abiding, patriotic citizens with the same brush. The fact that conservatives are currently the primary political opposition is no mere coincidence.
When asked to comment on the DHS report, the President’s spokesperson said “the President is focused not on politics but rather taking the steps necessary to protect all Americans from the threat of violence and terrorism regardless of its origins.” The nationwide distribution of this report to thousands of law enforcement agencies is a ham-handed abuse of federal power by bureaucrats that are accountable to no one, with a president who governs by platitudes and rhetoric while he directs his minions to tighten the ropes.
The DHS report should be withdrawn in the same manner that the Missouri bumper sticker police alert was withdrawn, but even so the damage will already have been done. This abuse must not go unchallenged if we are to survive as a free nation.