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Letter: Gun worshippers

Re “Free Staters aren’t terrorists” (Monitor letter, Aug. 6):

Former Free State Project president Varrin Swearingen carefully sidesteps the fact that members of the Free State Project worship their guns and have been directly responsible for firing up gun lovers in New Hampshire over the past several years. The recent display of gun-rights activists bullying anti-gun activists at the State House shows where all of this has been heading. I was even confronted by a gun activist in the parking lot of my local supermarket recently, something that would have been very unlikely 10 years ago.

The Free State Project has a stated goal (despite President Carla Gericke’s continual denial) to infiltrate state government and essentially dissolve its power over time. Members plan to have a profound effect on New Hampshire, with or without their guns. There are also many Free Staters who have come to the state as anarchists and are not interested in working within the system. They see the country heading for a major breakdown and are heading to New Hampshire, with their guns and their copies of the US Constitution, to take their last stand. I think it’s a giant question what some of the 20,000 of them planning to come here are prepared to do to defend their “freedom.”

I don’t think an armed tank is an appropriate response, but I can understand the concern it reflects.



Legacy Comments10

I see you have a bee in your bonnet, Joseph. I compared the Browns to Drega only in the way that if you feel you have a complaint against the government( local, fed, state) your only recourse is to resort to violence and to feel justified in doing so. Nowdays anyone anti government seems to be labeled "patriot" Depends on what side of the fence you are sitting. Many "patriots" could also be labeled "terrorists" or "traitors." The Browns had amassed weapons and explosives and were ready to fight to the death.

dont forget Hillary is a gun lover too.

Remember Carl Drega? Well a guy named Vin Suprynowicz wrote a ode to him, called The Ballad of Carl Drega. Suprynowicz is a founding member of the Free Staters. These are the people the Republicans are so happy to welcome to our state.

Nice catch,Tillie. I wasn't aware of this one. There are really no words to describe the mental processes that must go on inside someone's head to turn Carl Drega into a hero. But leave it to desperate and fanatical Libertarianism to do so. Who said Libertarian "thinking" (sic) was harmless and pacific?

The Free Staters themselves are few in number, but in a small state like ours they have a big impact. The worst part are they have duped so many people who really don't understand what their true agenda is and only think of them as Libertarians. People are just so blinded by their hate and fear of Obama. They think people like Carl Drega and the Browns are patriots.

Wrong comparison there Tillie, of comparing Carl Drega with Ed & Elaine Brown with the common denominator of a patriot, defined as jingoist =militarist of from the word militate = to use force as evidence. To lump the Browns into being militants is wrong! The militants without the evidence of liability of to the question of what made the Browns liable to pay such a Federal income tax was never answered by any agent of Uncle Sam. The judge said: just pay it, of you make this $amount on this line so pay $x according to some chart. Read the phrase in the 16th Amendment of "to lay and collect", and look up the word lay as either to apply or impose, of to request or levy. Freedom of choice is supposed to still exist in this county. I chose the prior as the more consumer-friendly in 1983 and won the IRS case against me. Unfortunately the Browns had their CIVIL case of 2005 stolen and converted into a criminal case BEFORE the tax was ever declared a debt. So much for due process of law in this of The Plantation of New Hampshire.

These ideologically driven general caricatures are beyond absurd. Sure, horrible events have happened in the name of minarchist and anarchist oriented fanatics. But obviously, how many such have there been compared to the number of behaviorally normal, peaceful and civilized supporters of such as libertarian oriented structured limitation of government power? Such caricature can be applied to fanatics from any ideological orientation, with greatly varying results. How about, for example, statist Nazis and statist Communists? Have any such desperate and fanatical agents ever hurt anyone during the 20th century while coming to power and afterward? Modern social and political ideals can be, and in the vast majority in societies such as ours usually are, pursued without violence. They should be recognized for what they inherently are all about in reasoned public debate and at the ballot box.

I think your letter accurately describes the thinking of many on the right, who seem to be looking forward eagerly to hard times ahead, and in some cases doing their bit to try and speed the process. "Stand Your Ground" laws, and open carry laws, to my mind are both steps backward, to a lawless (and largely imaginary) Old West mentality. A certain element of the Free State (sic) movement has embraced gun culture, which has always fascinated the fringes, especially the far right. What else are we to make of the motto favored by Granite Grokers and TPers: "Molon Labe"--"Come and take it"? This thinking reflects an absolutist reading of the 2nd amendment, and distorts the amendment's history by claiming it was designed as a hedge against a tyrannical government. They have it exactly backward. It was designed so the militia would be ready to defend the government. The leadership of the NRA has hitched its philosophical wagon to this absolutist/right-wing libertarian reading of the 2nd Amendment. It's a flag of convenience for gun manufacturers--allowing them to sell military style weapons for civilian use, and enabling lots of folks with issues to dress up and play Rambo. Video games and movies both reflect and reinforce the militarization, gun worship, and obsession with violence that characterize our mass culture. While the NRA tried to blame violent video games and Hollywood for Newtown, the message of the games and movies is one the NRA believes: a good guy with a gun can take out the bad guys with guns.

Hot new summertime blockbuster movie - TWO GUNS. Not TWO MEN or TWO MEN WITH GUNS, just TWO GUNS. And who is it again who worships firearms????

Victoria, Your description of their goals & methods exactly fits the soc/left (perhaps-sans firearms).

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