Support Your Local
by William F. Jasper
I do not believe in a fate that falls on men however they act, but I do believe in a fate that falls on them unless they act.
G. K. Chesterton
It is unfortunate but true that a great many of our fellow Americans are inviting a terrible fate upon our nation by fatalistically accepting as ineluctable our ongoing march into a police state. Many, no doubt, have been gulled into believing that this devolution into tyranny is not only inevitable but necessary desirable even to protect us against terrorism. "Right-wing" terrorism, of course. (That' s the only kind that exists these days, naturally. With "right-wing" being loosely enough defined to include virtually anyone to the starboard of the Clinton-Rodham claque now ensconced in the White House.) Those who have succumbed to the propaganda of the federal police statists quite probably have convinced themselves that the onrushing regime being fastened around us will exercise its new powers benevolently and moderately. But there is no basis in the recent history of our own federal law enforcement agencies, or in the bloody annals of human history, for such blithe optimism.
"Power tends to corrupt," as John Emerich Edward Dalberg (more commonly known to posterity as Lord Acton) noted, "and absolute power corrupts absolutely." But if those to whom power accrues have the advantage of absolute corruption in advance as the Clintons and their cohorts give every indication then we are faced with an even more frightful specter, the more rapid and efficient fulfillment of the Rummel Corollary. "Power kills," says R.J. Rummel, "and absolute power kills absolutely." Rummel, a professor of political science at the University of Hawaii, amply demonstrated the truth of that assertion with his important series of books on "democide," a word he coined for the mass murder by governments of their own people. And an essential element in the practical implementation of every democide is a centralized, powerful, and ruthless police apparatus: an NKVD, KGB, or Gestapo.
Americans may wish to believe that the creation of such an abominable organization could never happen here, but, as we have already said, there is no sound basis for believing so. We are not, by virtue of being Americans, somehow magically immune from the hard and proven truths of Acton's theorem or Rummel's corollary. If we continue to allow the rending asunder of the constitutional checks and balances that the Founding Fathers so laboriously erected, we will pay a terrible price. This should be far more obvious now than it was 35 years ago, in 1963, when The John Birch Society coined its now-familiar "Support Your Local Police" slogan. That maxim quickly grew into a permanent project of the Society a project that has played a major role over the years in stopping the many specific programs that the Communists, Liberals, and Insiders designed in order to implement a national, police-state agenda.
Although it is still fashionable in "Liberal" circles to scoff at the "paranoid" concerns of anti-Communists in the 1950s, '60s, and '70s, the facts are that the Moscow-directed, global Communist Conspiracy did indeed target for destruction the police of the Free World. In 1961, the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee published an important 32-page report entitled, A Communist Plot Against the Free World Police, which documented the identical methods of scientific crowd manipulation, "spontaneous" riot creation, and "police brutality" campaigns employed by the trained Communist cadres in one country after another throughout the world. Besides providing pages of diagrams of crowd-handling methods from the Communists' own handbooks, it also furnished important testimony from law enforcement experts and investigators.
"Our police are among the foremost guardians of freedom and thus a major target of the Communists," the Senate Report noted. "The better the force, the greater its efficiency, the higher its competence in preserving the peace, the more vital it is for the Communists to destroy it." In testimony about Communist efforts to destroy the local police in another country, the Subcommittee was told: "Further, a smear campaign attempted to discredit the leaders among the rank and file. The more outstanding and upright the senior police officers, the more certain they were to become a major Communist target."
A witness who had observed the Communist plan at work against the police forces in many countries testified: "The task of containing Communism is not made easier by the lack of awareness on the part of many of the Communist threat. Thus one of the first tasks is education." To which The John Birch Society said "Amen." And then heroically went on about the task of education, of creating awareness about the Communist threat. We documented and pointed out the Communist leadership of many of the blatant attacks on police forces throughout the country, and we exposed many of the Reds' published plans to discredit and cripple local law enforcement while simultaneously creating anarchy with riots and terrorist activities. However, thanks to the clear insight of Robert Welch, the Society recognized that the Communist thugs creating havoc in the streets and shouting "Kill the Pigs!" were not the only or even the primary threat to local law enforcement. Our thin blue line was (and is) the target of a pincer attack from above and below. While the radicals and street toughs were focused on creating chaos, the Insiders of the Conspiracy in the media, academia, and the federal government pushed for more and more federal control of police power.
One of the early programs that fit this pincer strategy of both the Communists and the Insiders was the effort to establish "civilian" review of police conduct. In the March 1964 John Birch Society Bulletin, Robert Welch warned that "the drive to set up 'Police Review Boards' in various cities is increasing," and urged Birchers to reject these schemes in their communities:
Please oppose any such action in your city, and get others to do so, as vigorously as possible. Not all local policemen are law-abiding angels by any means, and many people who get pulled into supporting these "review boards" are good citizens with idealistic motives. But the primary purpose behind the whole movement is to discredit, harass, and hamstring the last dependable physical protection we have against the Communist police-state measures of a central government, with its barbouzes and federal marshals.
We were successful in stopping and reversing many of these initiatives. So much so, in fact, that the Society earned the wrath of both the Communist and Establishment press for thwarting this totalitarian agenda. Unfortunately, over the past decade, many cities have implemented many of these same programs (often under different names) while we have been preoccupied with other important campaigns. And we still have many other important battles demanding our full attention and all of our meager resources. Nevertheless, we cannot afford to neglect this vitally critical area where the Conspiracy has been directing so much of its attention in recent years.
The Clinton Administration, while constantly prattling about reverence for the rule of law, has moved with audacious speed and shameless effrontery to transform federal law enforcement agencies into a veritable Gestapo unhindered by constitutional restraints. The extended litany of criminal abuses by federal agencies goes back to pre-Clinton days, to be sure. A report released way back in January 1982 by the Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on the Constitution concluded: "Based upon these heatings it is apparent that enforcement tactics made possible by current federal firearms laws are constitutionally, legally, and practically reprehensible."
The Subcommittee reported that it had "received evidence that the BATF [Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms] has primarily devoted its firearms enforcement efforts to the apprehension ... of individuals who lack all criminal intent and knowledge." It charged that common ATF practices, "amply documented in hearings before this Subcommittee, leave little doubt that the Bureau has disregarded rights guaranteed by the constitution and laws of the United States." It further charged that the ATF:
· "has trampled upon the Second Amendment by chilling exercise of the right to keep and bear arms by law-abiding citizens";
· "has offended the Fourth Amendment by unreasonably searching and seizing private property"; and
· "has ignored the Fifth Amendment by taking private property without just compensation and by entrapping honest citizens without regard for their right to due process of law."
Unfortunately, the ATF is not alone among federal agencies in trampling the Constitution and grossly violating the rights of American citizens. Last year, in the May 28th issue of The New American ("Good Cop, Bad Cop: The FBI Story"), we detailed the shocking record of recent abuses, corruption, duplicity, and obstruction of justice by the Clinton-era FBI. In the past month, widely-publicized congressional heatings on flagrant abuses by the Internal Revenue Service have outraged and appalled the American public. These examples alone, even though they barely scratch the surface of a much larger train of violations, should be sufficient, to disabuse our fellow Americans of the dangerous folly of allowing any further federal usurpation of police authority. In ordinary times, these incidents, together with the grim legacy of charred bodies of women and children at Waco, would have sufficed.
However, these are not ordinary times. The Oklahoma City bombing has been skillfully used by the Clinton Administration and its Insider media allies to shift the American public's attention and concerns from the imminent threat to our security posed by rapidly-ex-panding Big Government to the supposed danger to national security posed by "anti-government" forces. And anyone who had ever enunciated a principled stand against the abuses and unconstitutional activities of Big Government was, in the new order, transformed into an "anti-government extremist," and an "ideational conspirator" (as Time magazine put it) with the Oklahoma City bombers. So intense and hysterical was the propaganda barrage that even the powerful NRA was forced to grovel and apologize for the entirely defensible (albeit poorly timed) statement in a fund-raising letter that the misnamed 1994 assault weapons ban "gives jack-booted government thugs more power to take away our constitutional rights, destroy our property, and even injure or kill us."
Former President George Bush (CFR) joined the Clintons and the CFR media cartel in cowing the NRA, its congressional allies, and all other dissenters from their new "imperative," which demanded a vast "empowerment" of federal law enforcement agencies to deal with the post-Oklahoma terror threat. All who objected were smeared as vile extremists, on the side of anarchy and violence. Never mind that only a few weeks before the Oklahoma explosion even so "liberal" a member of Congress as Representative John Dingell (D-MI) had declared during a House speech that the federal assault on the Branch Davidian complex in Waco was an indefensible act. Mr. Dingell stated that the ATF agents "are not trusted. They are detested. And I have described them properly as jackbooted American fascists."
Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), then chairman of the Senate Constitutional Rights Subcommittee, ignored calls for a congressional investigation of the Waco tragedy, and said that hearings should be delayed until the feds completed their investigation of the Oklahoma bombing. "It is my concern," Hatch told reporters, "that every available agent, every available leader of the FBI, every person in law enforcement that we can bring to bear on the Oklahoma City situation are out there doing that rather than here testifying." By the time congressional heatings were held on Waco, the media had so succeeded in associating concern over FBI-ATF actions at Waco with Timothy McVeigh and militant extremism that intimidated members of Congress quickly rushed through the hearings and failed miserably in their duty to investigate and expose the crimes and abuses of federal agents.
As a result, the federal constabulary has exploded, with vast new powers, personnel, and resources. During the first week in May of this year, the Clinton Administration named State Department official Richard Clarke as its new "terrorism czar" to coordinate the 17 federal agencies that will be spending a record $7 billion on anti-terrorism efforts. That announcement followed closely on the heels of another ominous development: the successful conviction of peaceful, pro-life activist Joseph Scheidler on April 20th, under the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. The blatant misuse of that legislation passed to fight the Mafia and other organized crime groups to destroy those who champion politically incorrect causes, is a dreadful development that should alarm and energize every thinking American.
While the RICO decision against Scheidler was joyously celebrated by the NOW banshees, the ACLU subversives, and their media allies, there were a few surprising voices of sobriety and reason. The Sacramento Bee, as radically pro-abortion and liberal-left as any other media organ, nevertheless objected that applying the "racketeering law to protests chills freedom." In an editorial entitled, "Liberty loses," the Bee opined:
The Chicago jury verdict finding that anti-abortion leaders are liable for damages under the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act for organizing protests against abortion clinics sends a chill over the liberty of all Americans. It is a terrible misuse of a bad law.
The editorial concluded by warning that "Liberty is indivisible, and an important piece of it may have disappeared this week in that Chicago courtroom." For once, at least, the Bee had it right. Even if that verdict is overturned on appeal, a signal shot has been fired indicating a dramatic escalation in the Conspiracy's plans to completely delegitimize, marginalize, and, ultimately, criminalize, all opposition to its totalitarian agenda. Using the chain of abortion clinic bombings and shootings of abortionists over the past few years as agitprop devices to smear all pro-life activists, the pro-abortion lobby and their government cronies have succeeded in demonizing and criminalizing their opponents in the eyes of much of the public. And the same Orwellian propaganda is being directed against gun owners, property owners, home schoolers, opponents of homosexuality, and opponents of Big Government. And it is definitely being directed at The John Birch Society.
Over the past three years, a nonstop campaign of defamation and vili-fication against the Society has been mushrooming into an incredibly vicious program aimed specifically at criminalizing our organization in the minds of those who serve in law enforcement, and, generally, at tarnishing our reputation with the public at large. It may not rival in volume the torrents of execration and condemnation rained down upon the Society during the Big Smear of the 1960s, but in view of the recent RICO ruling, the drastically expanded fed-gov war on "domestic terrorism" and "hate crimes," and the ongoing media jihad against "anti-government" forces, it is every bit as serious and damaging.
On April 19, 1998, the third anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution delivered a major sludge piece aimed directly at The John Birch Society. Entitled, "Targeting the Government: The Road to Oklahoma City Was Paved by 40 Years of Fringe Movements," the defamatory screed by Emory University professor Dan Carter begins by asserting that "Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols are part of an angry minority of Americans who see their government as a tyrannical enemy that must be destroyed by violence." The "motivations underlying this violent antigovernment movement," says Carter in his second paragraph, include "Religious fanaticism, anti-communism, racism, anti-Semitism and an obsession with guns." Thus, he set the stage for his third, fourth, and fifth paragraphs, which qualify Mr. Carter for the Smear Artist of the Year Award:
The passions of the Cold War proved a fertile setting for the growth of the anti-government movement.
When Boston candy manufacturer Robert Welch founded the John Birch Society in 1958, his rhetoric seemed little different from that of mainstream anti-communists. Welch opposed the United Nations, argued that liberalism was communism in disguise and passionately espoused his view of the Cold War: "This is a worldwide battle between light and darkness; between freedom and slavery; between the spirit of Christianity and the spirit of anti-Christ for the souls and bodies of men."
But the John Birch Society marked something of a departure in the evolution of post-war right-wing movements, with Welch escalating the levels of rhetorical paranoia ....
Smear artist Carter provides not a shred of evidence to substantiate a single (implied) charge, i.e., that The John Birch Society is "anti-govern-ment" or infected with religious fanaticism, racism, anti-Semitism or an obsession with guns. Because he can't; they are figments of his fetid and lying imagination. We have never denied being thoroughly anti-commu-nist, of course, but that is a crime only (at least so far, thankfully) in Mr. Carter's imaginary world and those totalitarian hellholes where his apparent sympathies already hold sway. But then the smear artist is not manly enough to accuse outright; instead, he implies and slyly insinuates his cowardly calumnies by slippery rhetorical linkages and the hoary old propaganda technique of "textual propinquity." And, like most of his fellow slime throwers, Carter uses the "sandwich technique." He wraps the Society between one repellent slice of bread labeled "Oklahoma bombers, anti-government, racist, anti-Semite, terrorist" and another slice labeled "Minutemen, Ku Klux Klan, Silver Legion, Christian Identity and Posse Comitatus." Then, to visually underscore the slander, the Journal-Constitution provided a pictorial sidebar of "Post World War II Anti-Government Groups" sandwiching a photo of Robert Welch and a summary paragraph on the Society between entries on the Ku Klux Klan and the Columbians, described as "a Nazi-like cadre preaching hatred of blacks, Jews and Communists."
We have survived many attacks as malicious and crude, it is true, but the Atlanta Journal-Constitution assault and others like it have come in conjunction with an all-new, concerted campaign by federal authorities and far-left radicals to convince local law enforcement that The John Birch Society is a "dangerous" organization closely akin to if not directly linked with domestic "hate," "anti-government," and "terrorist" groups.
We have written previously in these pages about John J. Nutter, PhD, who claims to be an expert on "right-wing extremist groups." He came to our attention in early 1996, after he had conducted a seminar for the benefit of about 500 law enforcement of-ricers in Oklahoma City. We received a copy of his seminar booklet entitled Criminal Justice and Right-wing Ex-tremism in America, which features a chart that places The John Birch Society at the center of a confluence of spokes radiating out to the "neo-Na-zis," "militias," and "Patriot groups." The text unequivocally declares: "The John Birch Society is the source for much of the literature employed by right-wing extremists in America today, including (especially) the Militia Movement."
Then, under the title "Extremist Literature," Dr. Nutter lists a number of our staple items including Bastiat's The Law, John F. McManus's An Overview of Our World, and The New American. Listed as "key documents, in terms of their effect on modem extremists," are: Gary Allen's None Dare Call It Conspiracy; G. Edward Griffin's The Creature From Jekyll Island; and John F. McManus's The Insiders: Architects of the New World Order.
The Klanwatch Intelligence Report, published by Morris Dees' left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center, is distributed to thousands of law enforcement agencies across the nation. False Patriots: The Threat of Anti-Govern-ment Extremists, a 64-page "special report" from the SPLC published in April 1996, has also been provided to law enforcement and media organizations. "When 169 people were killed in the Oklahoma City explosion, it became clear that there was something more to the Patriot movement than their weekend war games," declares SPLC Militia Task Force Director Joe Roy in the overview to False Patriots. "It is critical that media, law enforcement and other public servants have a clear understanding of the danger these Patriots represent." Pages 48 through 57 of this pernicious tract provide a list of "Prominent 'Patriots'" that indiscriminately mixes certified racists and violent criminals with legitimate conservatives and constitutionalists. On page 53 is a photograph of now-convicted Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh. Take a guess as to who is listed immediately above him in bold type. Our own "John H. (sic) McManus" (just like these leftists to not even get the middle initial right).
Law enforcement personnel from across the country have furnished us with these and other attack pieces that have been employed to poison police officers against the JBS and other legitimate, non-violent organizations. A particularly rancid example of the Dan Carter variety is the manual for a course entitled, "Domestic Terrorism Orientation and Awareness: An Of-ricer Safety Perspective" by Dr. Mark Pitcavage of the Institute for Intergovernmental Research. It was used earlier this year in a program sponsored by the American Society of Law Enforcement Trainers (ASLET) to train state, federal, and local law enforcement instructors from across the country. Under the section labeled "Historical Evolution of An-tigovernment Groups," we find listed (and in this order) the Ku Klux Klan, the Silver Shirts, the German American Bund, the Christian Front, the Minutemen, and The John Birch Society. This is how the Society is described:
The minutemen, led by Robert de Pugh, was a paramilitary group which amassed weapons and explosives to fight off a Communist invasion. The minutemen also kept lists of suspected Communists. Members committed various crimes, mostly weapons violations, before fading away in the late 1960s. A longer-lasting but relatively non-violent group was the John Birch Society, which popularized conspiracy theories about one-world governments.
No direct linkage is asserted, but, again, the organizational and ide-ational connection between the JBS, KKK, Minutemen, and others is insinuated by structural inclusion and textual propinquity. "Relatively" nonviolent? Pray tell, when has the Society been anything other than non-violent? The only possible motive for the malicious use of such slimy tactics and weasel words is to implant in officers' minds, during this course on "Domestic Terrorism," that members of The John Birch Society may indeed present a real threat to "officer safety." Elsewhere in the manual, instructors are informed that the "patriot movement is the product of many extreme right-wing goals, combined with conspiracy theories about a 'New World Order.'"
Do members of law enforcement "buy" this propaganda? Many don't, but, obviously some do. The more uninformed the officers are in general, and the more unfamiliar they are con~ cerning our Society, the more likely they will be to fall for the deception. The instructor who attended Dr. Pitcavage's ASLET program and provided us with the manual, ventured to speculate that perhaps 15-20 percent of the police instructors in attendance appeared to enthusiastically embrace the course content. A majority of others, like himself, appeared to be less comfortable with what was obviously left-wing propaganda, but voiced no opposition.
Another slanderous publication that has been lavished upon law enforcement agencies is When Hate Groups Come to Town: A Handbook of Effective Community Responses, published by the Atlanta-based, left-wing Center for Democratic Renewal. This publication offers the following definition:
Far right. Used as an umbrella term which describes extremist or ultra-conservative elements further to the right than the New Right. These elements are dominated by various conspiracy theories mixed with anti-communism .... Includes the white supremacist movement as well. The John Birch Society is a far right political organization more radical than the Moral Majority but less dangerous than the Liberty Lobby .... The far right has embraced Christian Identity ....
Ironically, many of these recent publications deluging local law enforcement agencies, including many published by the Clinton-Reno Justice Department, are authored by (or heavily feature quotes and literature from) groups and individuals that have been anything but friendly toward law enforcement: the American Civil Liberties Union; National Lawyers Guild; National Gay and Lesbian Task Force; the Anti Defamation League; Ken Stern; Morris Dees; Chip Berlet; etc. Indeed, many of these sources being peddled to law enforcement today as "experts" on the dangers of "right-wing" terrorism have themselves been directly involved with radical, subversive, Communist and officially-cited "terrorist" groups of the left-wing variety. Clearly, they are engaged in an insidious campaign to invert, subvert, pervert, and convert local law enforcement into a tool to advance their revolution. And, as all of the foregoing and much more which we have neither time nor space to report should make unmistakably plain, they intend to turn the "thin blue line" into an arm of an all-powerful, federal police state that will specifically target for elimination "extremists" like ourselves who insist on adhering to antiquated notions like constitutional limitations upon government.
If we fail to act, we will invite the fate of which Chesterton warned. So what must be done? We must reactivate our Support Your Local Police effort. We are not advocating, for the moment, at least, a formal resurrection of local and regional SYLP committees like those that existed in many cities during the 1960s and '70s. But we are advocating that all good members avail themselves of the tools at hand to carry out much of the same fine work accomplished by those committees and individual JBS members during those troubled times. Our Support Your Local Police efforts did far more than most Americans will ever know to thwart the subversive agenda of the police-state devotees. We can and must duplicate the success of those earlier efforts. For a start, we are urging the following course of action:
Meet Your Police
The Chapter Leader, or a volunteer selected by the Chapter Leader, should contact the local police chief and/or sheriff to arrange a brief, introductory meeting with one or more selected members. The purpose of the meeting is, first of all, to establish contact with the chief executive of-ricer of the law enforcement organization(s) in the area, and, as a representative of the Society, to present a friendly, human face that will do more than any number of letters or phone calls could to dispel the vicious falsehoods that are being spread about us. At that meeting, our representative should present the chief or sheriff with a copy of the May 11th issue of The New American, "Our Local Police Under Siege," and let him know that local law enforcement has a good friend in The John Birch Society.
Find out what their law enforcement concerns are and be willing to answer questions they may have about the Society and our Support Your Local Police program. If you do not know the answer to a particular question, simply say so and volunteer to find out; we will be glad to help you with any information we can. We have some of our excellent graphics and computer people working to create a Support Your Local Police web page for our JBS Internet site and hope soon to have relevant previous articles from The New American, The Review of the News, and American Opinion, as well as earlier SYLP materials, available on the net (www.jbs.org/sylp/). Since virtually all police departments are connected to the Internet or so we are told this will make readily available to law enforcement a vast array of information that can do much to refute the disinformation and calumnies of the Left and the Insider-controlled media.
We are well aware that, especially in the past two decades, many formerly conservative law enforcement departments are now led by liberal-left chief executives, oftentimes appointed by a mayor, city council, or police commission. Many of these chiefs support gun control and other radical programs with which we disagree. These unfortunate developments have caused some people who may share many of our concerns to view the local police department with suspicion or even hostility. That is doubly unfortunate. We cannot afford to concede any of these vitally important law enforcement organizations to those who would convert them into engines of destruction.
It is important that when representing the Society and SYLP you do not get involved in arguments or drawnout debates with the chief or other officers. Courtesy, respect, cordiality, and professionalism are the operant words here. It is equally important to resist temptations to give your chief the Ph.D. course on Conspiracy, the Federal Reserve, the United Nations, and TRIM all in one short meeting. And we do mean short no more than 10 to 15 minutes. Restrict your literature and conversation to the aforementioned issue of The New American no Global Tyranny, Insiders, Shadows of Power, Tragedy & Hope, etc. You may wish to take additional copies of the same police issue of the magazine and offer them for other members of the department. Before leaving, try to arrange a time to stop by the following week to see the chief and drop off a copy of the latest issue of the magazine. These relatively small, personal acts can do much to neutralize the immense and costly campaign of our well-funded opponents and to win important new allies (and even recruits) in the freedom fight.
[ ] Read "Our Local Police Under Siege" in the May 11th issue of The New American. ($2.95; 10 for $12.50; 25 for $22.50; 100 for $75.00)
[ ] Arrange a meeting with your local police chief and/or sheriff. Give him a copy of the above TNA and emphasize that local law enforcement has good friends in the JBS.
[ ] Inform your local police chief and officers about our SYLP web page, at www.jbs.org/sylp/.
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