Elijah Friedeman, the Millennial Perspective
In the Sunday edition of USA Today there was an article breathlessly warning us about the dangers of what the paper calls 'anti-government' groups. I know of absolutely no one who is anti-government. In fact, I think USA Today would be hard pressed to find anyone who is against government in its entirety. But apparently despite that fact USA Today along with other media outlets think we're careening towards another Oklahoma City bombing at the hands of these groups that are against big government.
This narrative is nothing new. Tea parties and anti-big government types are constantly branded by the media and Democrats - often one and the same- as racists, bigots, and violent anti-government radicals. In fact, USA Today cites research by the Southern Poverty Law Center, which bases its list of radical groups on unwritten and highly questionable criteria. The Southern Poverty Law Center says that there are 512 homegrown radical anti-government groups. Undoubtedly there are some groups out there that could theoretically pose a threat to national security, but again, you would be hard pressed to find one of these groups that wants to violently express their ideologies.
In light of the Southern Poverty Law Center's politically motivated list of radicals, I've decided to compile the official Elijah Friedeman list of groups that pose a serious threat to the very existence of the United States of America, which doesn't make for a very catchy acronym, but is a highly influential, widely quoted list regardless. So far there is one, and only one, group that makes the list. No, it's not Al-Qaeda, or homegrown, radical anti-government groups, or even a burgeoning superpower like China. The only group that threatens the existence of this nation is out-of-control government.
If a radical homegrown terrorist group attacked the United States, following after the example of Timothy McVeigh in Oklahoma City, it would be horrible, outrageous. If Al Qaeda managed to attack us again, killing thousands of people, the nation would be devastated, saddened and enraged. However neither of these terrible events would affect the existence of America. Big government, on the other hand, is set on destroying the individual on which America is built.
Al Qaeda isn't putting our nation on track to a $20 trillion debt load by 2020; big government is. China isn't taking away personal responsibility, consequently killing American exceptionalism; big government is. Radical anti-government groups are not taxing Americans into oblivion, running $1 trillion deficits as far as the eye can see, or forcing others to acquiesce to their whims on healthcare; however, big government is guilty of all of the above.
I am by no means a radical in any sense of the word. I like government when it stays within the bounds set by our Constitution. I'm glad that we have the best military in the world that is defending our nation against all comers. But I can say all that and without any qualms let it be known that I loathe government that has stepped beyond its founding purposes.
I don't want to discount the threat of disgruntled anti-government radicals who want to perpetuate their agenda through violence. The recent arrest of seven members of an anti-government milita group illustrates that there are certainly a few dangerous groups who pose a threat to citizens of America. But it is amply clear that big government is a larger, more insidious threat to America than any other group in the world. Period.
And whether the media elite and liberals like it or not, it is the job of the American people to keep government in line through the peaceful channels allowed us in the Constitution. When the people start to worry about the size of their government, it's not a reason to worry; it's a reason to rejoice.