catallaxy files

catallaxy in technical exile

Militias, Xenophobia and Racism

with 31 comments

Given the recent attention to new U.S. Laws regarding martial law, I thought that maybe now was the time for me to actually become a gun owner and maybe start practicing with a militia. Not because I think problems are imminent, but because I believe they could be in the distant future, and I think it would be good to have some practice before that time comes.

I looked up Maryland militias, and was I ever turned off.

My options are:

  • The Citizens Militia of Maryland, here, which looks abandoned. It links to the next one…
  • The Southern Sons of Liberty, here (beware popups, etc), which looks fine at first. Check out the quick links on the left. Yeah…
  • The Maryland Militia Yahoo Group, here, which contains posts with such titles as, “The Best of the White Net”, “Maryland National Socialist Party”. I didn’t notice those till I singed up. I promptly reversed that action.

What’s the deal? Why can’t I find sane militia groups? Why does the ideal of limited government and self-defense from the government seem to go hand-in-hand with keeping out “the darkies” and Jews for so many people?

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Written by Admin

October 30, 2006 at 3:29 am

Posted in Uncategorized

31 Responses

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  1. I wouldn’t necessarily think that bearing the Confederate Flag makes the 2nd group racists. The first link (which links to #2) quite explicity states they believe their militia should be mulitracial.

    That said, they are probably still nutballs.

    I’m guessing that the less insane people who like shooting guns a lot join the Defense Force, National Guard or the Police Force. The guys who fail the psych test join militias.

    Shouldn’t you be able to get plenty of practice firing a gun at a rifle range or shooting club anyway?

    yobbo

    October 30, 2006 at 4:58 am

  2. Yobbo,
    Indeed, the first link looks pretty good, but it also looks abandoned. The second group has a “Xenophobic Zealot” page, but it’s broken, as are most of the subpages, so I can only guess from titles. Perhaps I should try to get in touch with some people and find out what the deal is.

    As for practice, one can easily practice shooting by oneself, but organized defense is another matter.

    Good point about the psych test.

    Brock

    October 30, 2006 at 5:22 am

  3. The official militia is the Maryland National Guard. The militia were intended to be the instruments of the states, rather than feds, and drawn from the population as needed.

    cam

    October 30, 2006 at 5:31 am

  4. btw where abouts in Maryland are you? I am in Northern Virginia.

    cam

    October 30, 2006 at 5:32 am

  5. cam: Duly noted. Baltimore area.

    Brock

    October 30, 2006 at 5:52 am

  6. Brock, Cool. I just finished a project in Baltimore. Always good to know where the expats are since we are such a rarity in the US.

    cam

    October 30, 2006 at 7:34 am

  7. Seriously, a local shooting club or rifle range is the way to go. The NRA probably has lists of such clubs, and they’re probably WAY more normal.

    skepticlawyer

    October 30, 2006 at 7:43 am

  8. cam: Actually, I’m a US citizen, born and raised.

    Brock

    October 30, 2006 at 8:23 am

  9. This is one of the better threads on this site in a long time.

    Much is made of the Americans’ freedom of gun ownership. It is worth citing the Second Amendment to the US Constitution – much referred to but rarely read – in full:

    A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

    Gun ownership fans like to quote the text that follows the second comma but not the proviso beforehand. When this was written there were no rifle ranges or shooting clubs independent of a militia, which was subsordinate to a civil power with its superior claim to military force. It shows how wrong it is to empower the lonely sociopath in the name of the socially responsible gun-owner.

    A few gutsy Democrats and a well-tempered Supreme Court, and a gun-owning people may yet feel secure enough to consider themselves free of both the heavy hand of the nanny state and of the live TV cross to the local high school where the country’s future is being loaded into body bags.

    A bunch of clowns who want to call themselves a militia should not be regarded as such unless they are subordinate to some civil and temporal authority.

    Andrew Elder

    October 30, 2006 at 9:28 am

  10. “The Maryland Militia Yahoo Group”

    Those familiar with the original use of the term Yahoo in Gulliver’s Travels will get a laugh out of that.

    Jason Soon

    October 30, 2006 at 9:36 am

  11. “In Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, a yahoo is a vile and savage creature, filthy and with unpleasant habits, resembling human beings far too closely for the liking of Lemuel Gulliver, who finds the calm and rational society of the Houyhnhnms far preferable. Hence the term “yahoo” has become a general term of insult, much along the lines of “cretin”.

    –Courtesy of Wikipedia

    Brock

    October 30, 2006 at 9:49 am

  12. A bit like the Illinois Nazis from The Blues Brothers.

    Andrew Elder

    October 30, 2006 at 10:00 am

  13. The “right to bear arms” derived out of an ancient fuedal obligation. Historically there was always a dichotomy between the King’s need to have armed men ready to march north or west or to go to his possessions on the continent and His desire to keep the peace at other times.

    In 1328 the bearing of arms in public was made an offence by the Staute of Northampton. It was aimed at bearing arms ‘malo amino” i.e. with intent to terrify.

    The problem in base terms was without a standing professional army the king needed armed subjects, the king encouraged archery and required peasants to know how to use axes etc.

    When the new world was settled those who went fort used guns and swords and armour.

    The militas were designed to combat external threats.

    There is a fundamental difference between the right to own a weapon and the use of it “malo Amino”.

    With professional standing armies and Militias (be it reserves or national guards) who provide the weapons there is no need to keep weapons for national defence. There remains however, the desire to keep weapons, to protect one’s property, to shoot animals and or targets.

    Personally, owning a gun to defend your country is bullshit but it’s ok by me if you want to blow away feral animals or paper targets. So long as you don’t frighten the horses or scare the shit out of your neighbours you should be allowed to own a gun.

    .50cal

    October 30, 2006 at 10:34 am

  14. A friend’s ex who is American is a pacifist but owns a gun (he lives in Australia) and regularly practices with it at the shooting range. It’s apparently only for protection against one’s government if it starts violently oppressing own population. Thought it was interesting belief at the time so glad this got brought up, it explains it a little.

    Anyway, he’s strange in his own way but whatever belief system he was involved in in the US, it seemed quite separate from KKK racist crap. So maybe you might find something sane if you poke around a little more? I think the pacifism was also part of the philosophy rather than his own individual thing, I don’t know. Whatever you think of pacificism, it was an interesting paradox.

    Kitty

    October 30, 2006 at 11:10 am

  15. If a modern government starts “violently oppressing own population,” I doubt if citizen ownership of small-arms will do much to deter it. The balance of lethal firepower is just too asymmetric (and has been for at least a century or so).

    At the very least, the potential resisters would require some access to anti-armour weaponry (RPGs, etc) or bomb-making (IEDs, etc), in order to have some effect. I cannot see, in the current environment, any modern government allowing such weaponry.

    A far more credible counterweight to potential government tyranny is informational: limitations on government secrecy, dissection (rather than parroting of) of government propaganda by the media, limitations on government surveillance of its population — precisely the counterweights that the current US administration has shredded.

    What does it matter if you own a gun (or even a heavy machine gun), if the government can secretly target you, secretly raid you in the dead of night, and have you slandered as a dangerous criminal before anybody knows you’re gone?

    Tim_Makinson

    October 30, 2006 at 12:05 pm

  16. Brock, Actually, I’m a US citizen, born and raised.

    You are an active member of the Au bloglobalisation which is near enough as to be indiscernible.

    cam

    October 30, 2006 at 12:56 pm

  17. Andrew Elder, Much is made of the Americans’ freedom of gun ownership

    IIRC, when I looked into it several years ago, Australian gun laws were not much different to Maryland’s. That may have changed since.

    cam

    October 30, 2006 at 12:58 pm

  18. so which is the most libertarian state in the US overall?

    I notice that New Hampshire’s motto is ‘Live free or die’ which is quite admirable

    http://www.nh.gov/nhinfo/emblem.html

    Jason Soon

    October 30, 2006 at 1:04 pm

  19. Elder, you pathetic dickweed. you know nothing about the US and the pretense is laughable. You had to be a young liberal, didn’t you.

    Look dick weed there have been many excellent legal scholars look at the constitutional right to guns and it holds up. Don’t you think for a moment that if opponents thought there was an opening they would have been in there? Don’t you?

    Even lawrence Tribe a liberal but excellent legal mind has agreed that it is a legal right.

    Do us all a favour and try to start a young libs branch on Xmas island will you.

    jc

    October 30, 2006 at 1:07 pm

  20. New Hampshire is an intersting place. One of the smallest states… I think Delaware is smaller.

    It raises lots of tax revenue from property tax, a concept our Bird of prey would dearly love.

    It seems to still be a solid yankee state that hasn’t yet been feminized like CT, some of the other north and mid atlantic states.

    jc

    October 30, 2006 at 1:11 pm

  21. If you’re looking for a not so old in the tooth libertarian state, New Mexico is the place to be I think. They had a GOP governor who was very close to being a libertarian.

    jc

    October 30, 2006 at 1:13 pm

  22. Jason, so which is the most libertarian state in the US overall?

    Virginia’s is “Sic Semper Tyrannus” which translates to “Thus always to Tyrants”. The state seal is lady liberty sticking a pitchfork into a monarch (tyrant).

    In terms of laws, New Hampshire and Vermont are know as being focused on liberty. That was one of the sells of Howard Dean.

    In reality though, many of the states that dont have to focus on urban costs, ie West Virginia and low taxes, but are urban enough that they can ignore the rural religious vote ie not North Dakota, can avoid tax and coercion traps.

    Much of the US NE population is following those patterns. The NE has moved heavily into North Virginia, so much so that Loudoun County is the wealthiest county in the US. But that brings urban problems like gridlock and high taxes. So people flee to Charleston, WV – which brings urban problems like gridlock, sewer that cant meet capacity etc etc. So there comes higher tax bases etc.

    The reality is that the growth places like North Virginia offer the best mix of liberty and tax base. New Jersey has horrific taxes and costs of living. As an example our insurance dropped by half by moving to Virginia. Our taxes were also an order of magnitude smaller, but that has been eroded by increasing taxes at the county level to meet demands like roads and education.

    IIRC 80% of county budgets go to education and lately the local county has been condemning local farm properties to make ways for schools. I recognize that universal education is important in representative democracy and a liberal economy, however, farm owners have property rights too, and the same property owners had 40 acres condemned to put in primary schools near us.

    There are also plenty of blue laws, for instance, Luray, VA was where a judge was criminally charged with adultery. atm though the DC area (DC, MD, VA and even Southern PA) offers the best mix of low tax, unobtrusive laws and economic opportunity.

    cam

    October 30, 2006 at 1:18 pm

  23. “It’s apparently only for protection against one’s government if it starts violently oppressing own population.”

    Yeah thats good thinking.

    You know it seems almost childish. Queenslanders who buy serious weaponry and bury it in pipes in the ground.

    But to see this as childish is to misread the nature of the utopian eschatological mind.

    Once they would know that we are without defenses their fantasies grow more real to them and thats when they all start kicking at the same time looking to bring the third age on.

    Now I SAY that but I’m profoundly uneasy with this idea of semi-automatics or weapons both concealable and lethal in the big city.

    Thats a scary thing to think that there could be all these characters around the big city carrying a concealed handgun.

    Just because we let the kids vote at 18 doesn’t necessarily mean thats the age that they ought to be able to sport serious firepower in the big city.

    A lot more thought needs to go into this topic.

    And in the big city there ought to be a lot more availability of the non-lethal gear.

    GMB

    October 30, 2006 at 2:23 pm

  24. Even lawrence Tribe a liberal but excellent legal mind has agreed that it is a legal right.

    Do us all a favour and …

    Perhaps you can do us both a favour and point me to Tribe’s writings on gun ownership for non-militia.

    Andrew Elder

    October 30, 2006 at 2:46 pm

  25. Elder
    So you have a problem with free association as well, paricularly people who…… just quite fit into the lower north shore set.

    Pick up the phone Elder, your BMW dealer is calling asking that you pick up your 3 series from service.

    You and Jimmy Wheeldon ought to do a site together. You’re both blockheads who think your silly opinion has merit.

    jc

    October 30, 2006 at 2:57 pm

  26. New Hampshire was the state chosen as the target for the Free State Project.

    yobbo

    October 30, 2006 at 4:35 pm

  27. New Hampshire is where PJ O’Rourke chooses to live when he’s not in Washington DC (where presumably he is forced to go only because of his work).

    Jason Soon

    October 30, 2006 at 4:38 pm

  28. new hampshire is the most libertarian…they have no seatbelt or helmet law…

    good to know new mexico is fairly libertarian, as sante fe is where douglas adams said was the best place on earth, and lived as well (at least some of the time)

    everyday that goes by i feel the need more to abandon nanny state/communist australia and go to the nation that stands taller than the others…

    pity that the attractive (to me) women come from socialist countries…although im sure there must be some good lookers in the US

    c8to

    October 30, 2006 at 9:16 pm

  29. “pity that the attractive (to me) women come from socialist countries…although im sure there must be some good lookers in the US …”

    Dude, what on earth are you talking about? there are generations of Slavs in the US.

    Jason Soon

    October 30, 2006 at 9:20 pm

  30. east europe was socialist, and theres still plenty of them there…israel, germany and france are all currently socialist as well…

    c8to

    October 30, 2006 at 9:53 pm

  31. You can always go live in Hong Kong. Plenty of Eastern European women there, especially in Wan Chai.

    yobbo

    October 30, 2006 at 11:16 pm


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