Monday, April 19, 2010

Weekly Opinion/Editorial
by Steve Fair
Monday was the fifteenth anniversary of the Murrah building bombing. Perpetrated by self proclaimed libertarians Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols, the bombing forever changed Oklahoma. McVeigh said his motive for the bombing was to ‘send a message to the federal government. “Borrowing a page from US foreign policy, I decided to send a message to a government that was becoming increasingly hostile, by bombing a government building and the government employees within that building who represent that government,” McVeigh said. McVeigh referred to those killed in the bombing as ‘collateral damage,’ but never expressed any remorse for his actions. Collateral damage is that which is unintended or incidental to the intended outcome. McVeigh was supposedly flirting with radical ‘militia’ groups before the bombing.
What is a militia? Webster defines a militia as “A military organization composed of citizens enrolled and trained for service in times of a national emergency.” Sounds a little like the National Guard, doesn’t it?
Which brings us to the ‘militia’ talk that has been in the news recently. During the April 15th rallies across Oklahoma some Tea party movement leaders said they had discussed the idea to form volunteer militias with some Oklahoma lawmakers. Al Gerhart, who heads up Sooner Tea Party said the very thought of forming militias was scary. “But when do states start doing something to stop the federal government from rolling over them?” Gerhart asked.
Two Republican lawmakers were quoted in an Associated Press article of being supportive of the volunteer militia proposal. State Senator Randy Brogdon, (R-Owasso), a candidate for the GOP nomination for Governor and State Representative Charles Key, (R-OKC), both say they were misquoted in the AP article.
Brogdon says his comments were taken out of context. "Specifically, historical speculation about the frame of mind of the Founding Fathers as they wrote the Constitution was reported as if it were my deeply held belief. Then these misrepresentations were used to distort my true beliefs, while implying that I have violent intentions," Brogdon said in a press release.
Then on Friday, former President Bill Clinton said that “legitimate” comparisons can be drawn between today's grassroots anger and resentment toward the government (Tea Parties) and the attitude of people prior to the bombing of the Murrah federal building. “Before the bombing occurred, there was a sort of fever,” Clinton recalled. “The fabric of American life had been unraveling.” “What we learned from Oklahoma City is not that we should gag each other or that we should hold less passion for the positions we hold, but that our words really do matter. There is this vast echo chamber, and the words fall on the serious and delirious alike,” the former president warned. “Have at it. Go fight. Do whatever you want. You don’t have to be nice. But be careful with what you say and do not advocate violence.”
First, the Oklahoma legislature doesn’t need to authorize state sanctioned militias. We have the Oklahoma National Guard and don’t need paramilitary groups to supplement their responsibilities. If Oklahoma gets to the point that we need to form militias to protect ourselves from the federal government, we should secede from the union and start our own country.
Second, President Clinton should not have used the OKC bombing as a political football. To imply that people who publicly protest the growth of government by attending a Tea Party are of the same mindset as Tim McVeigh is despicable. Tea Partiers are not wild eyed radicals who want to blow up federal buildings (like Bill Ayers).
According to CNN, 31% of the movement is from the south, 29% from the Midwest, 28% in the west and 13% in the northeast. Is tea-party support gained mainly from the elderly? No. And that’s quite emphatic. By far the largest group represented is 30-49 year olds at 40%. Most Tea Party people are fairly well educated- most have some college. Sixty percent are Republicans, but over a third are Democrats. 80% have never been involved in politics in their life.
Liberals/Progressives want to try and use this ‘militia’ talk as a smoke screen to get Conservatives to take their eye off the ball. They want to put conservatives on the defensive.
The real issue this year is the unprecedented growth of government. Last year’s federal spending surge was nothing short of historic. The twenty five percent spending increase in one year represented the largest non-war government expansion since the New Deal. The dollar is losing value world wide. America is in danger of losing our AAA credit rating. Those are real issues and that’s why the Tea Partiers are on the street. They recognize America is in trouble fiscally and spiritually and they are fed up. Watch for some real ‘change’ in November.


David Wozney said...

Re: “The dollar is losing value world wide.

If the stated value, of “Federal” Reserve notes, declines enough with respect to copper and nickel, the 1946-2009 U.S. Mint nickels, composed of cupronickel alloy, could become somewhat rare in mass circulation.

The April 19th metal value of these nickels is “$0.0623779” or 124.75% of face value, according to the “United States Circulating Coinage Intrinsic Value Table” available at

Steve Fair is a Jelly Salesman. said...


Start saving those nickels- it may be the only currency we have worth anything. Appreciate your comments