The Coastal Post - January, 1998

The Militia: Patriots or Lunatics?

BY JACK STUART

Address before the Commonwealth Club

I am honored to be invited to address you today. I especially appreciate your invitation to tell you first-hand about the militia movement without this information being filtered through, and interpreted for you, by the media. I am probably the first real live militia-man most of you have met, so I will try not to frighten you! You can relax, I am not armed!

The French philosopher, Voltaire, in 1769, said "All generalities are false!-including this one!" If we can agree with Voltaire, then we must admit that we should avoid generalizing about people. There are good and bad in all groups, including political, racial, religious, occupational, sexual, and yes, even militia groups! The Commonwealth Club might even have some good and bad members! The media and the government are constantly generalizing about groups, labeling all the people in one group the same, enacting laws to punish or favor an entire group, ignoring the fact that there is an infinite variety of people in every group.

I am the first to admit that some very bad people have called themselves a "militia," or have been labeled by the media as a "militia." As an officer of the Militias of California, I can assure you that there certainly are some very good, legal, lawful, responsible militias in California. Some fine examples are the Kern County Liberty Corps, the Placer County Militia, the Southern Command in San Diego, and many others.

Over recent years, as government grew and started pushing people around, resistance and rage began to grow. Then the gross abuse of federal police power in Waco, Texas, and Ruby Ridge, Idaho, frightened the people and triggered the spontaneous formation of militias all over the nation.

In California, the most responsible militia leaders recognized that some very undesirable extremists were being attracted to, or were attempting to infiltrate, the movement, just as a light draws insects. Therefore, they formed a statewide organization with a Mission Statement and Rules and Regulations designed to isolate and eliminate racists, terrorists, bigots, anarchists, government haters, religious fanatics, and other extremists.

A recognized unit of the Militia of California must require each member to take an oath and covenant of service, similar to the oath taken by government officers, and each unit must vote to adopt, and agree to abide by, the authorized Mission Statement and rules and regulations. Some members and some units have been thrown out, and some commanders have been relieved of command for refusal to obey the rules. Our goal is to maintain a legal, lawful, responsible "well-regulated militia." The Militias of California are composed of men and women of all races, nationalities, and religions. Our Southern Command in San Diego even includes Mexicans whose citizenship is pending. We have a legal network that advises us and keeps us legal. We support and cooperate with honest local law enforcement. However, we vigorously oppose dishonest, corrupt and unconstitutional law enforcement and abuse of police power wherever we find it. Some of our county units have very good relationships with their local sheriffs. If the sheriff suspects an alleged militia person of violating the law, he can call on our extensive intelligence network. We know who the good guys and bad guys are, and where they are, and we will cooperate with the sheriff.

We do not support lawbreakers who erroneously call themselves a militia. If they violate constitutional laws, they are not us! The so-called Republic of Texas militia asked for our assistance as the government closed in on them. Our intelligence department investigated and found them to be lawbreakers, so we voted to turn them down.

When the Freemen of Montana were under siege by the FBI, John Trochman, Militias of Montana Commander, came to California to advise others to stay out of Montana. He and the FBI had already agreed on a plan to avoid violence. Besides, he said, the Freemen were violating the law. When someone claimed the Freemen were only copying the Federal Reserve, creating money out of nothing. Trochman answered, "That may be true, but two wrongs don't make a right." The militia leaders voted to stand down.

During last winter's floods, some of our units were called up by sheriffs to patrol evacuated areas to keep out looters. You probably didn't hear about this, because the media rarely publishes anything good about any militia. Late last year in San Diego, I participated in a very frank and productive meeting with law enforcement. Eight militia commanders sat across a table from eight law enforcement leaders: sheriffs, police, FBI, BATF, and Border Patrol. Each officer had no objection to our militia, so long as we didn't engage in illegal activity. They were especially concerned about explosives. The sheriff felt we were getting a bad rap from the media, just as law enforcement gets when the media finds a "bad cop." The meeting was very cordial.

You are probably wondering what motivates a reasonable, rational person to join a militia. Typically he or she is a person who feels we are losing our Constitutional Republic. National Socialism, a form of Fascism, is steadily, relentlessly and inexorably taking over our country in violation of our Constitution. The takeover is accelerating, and our elected reps can't, or won't, stop it. We are losing our rights and freedoms step-by-step. We see laws and regulations multiplying exponentially.

In addition to the states, federal agencies alone publish 200 pages of new regulations in the federal register every business day! These regulations, issued by unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats, have the force of law if not canceled by Congress in 30 days. Congress does not have time to read 200 pages every day, so the system is totally out of control. The constitutional principle of the separation of powers is violated daily as unelected bureaucrats write their own laws and enforce them (often at gunpoint). Forty-six federal agencies now have agents carrying guns, with authority to arrest citizens for violating any one of thousands of regulations none of us ever heard of.

This growing federal police force is superceding local law enforcement, and is not responsible to local citizens. Peaceful citizens are being searched, and property seized without warrants, in violation of the Constitution. Worst of all, we see federal officers murdering innocent, peaceful citizens and no one is punished!

There are many more documented instances of abuse which we don't have time to list today. We see decisions of juries being appealed, reversed or modified by lawyers and judges. If they fail to convict a citizen of a politically-incorrect crime in a state court, they try him again in a federal court for the same alleged crime, violating the constitutional prohibition of double jeopardy.

We see our sovereign nation and our military being turned over to the United Nations through complex treaties with treasonous provisions that violate our Constitution. Our Constitution is written in plain English. We don't need a law professor to explain it to us. Albert Einstein said, "The strength of the Constitution lies entirely in the willingness of the citizens to support and defend it. Without that willingness, it is just a piece of paper."

The primary purpose of the Militias of California is to support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the State of California by providing a credible threat to unconstitutional abuse of government power. We think we have already achieved the position of credible threat. Consider how carefully the FBI handled the Freemen of Montana. They knew if they went in with guns blazing as the BATF did in Waco, thousands of armed militiamen would be ready to appear on the scene.

Another example is the men caught in West Virginia, who were planning to blow up a federal building. The FBI immediately called all state militia commanders and asked them not to defend these guys because they caught them red-handed with explosives. At the same time the FBI said they had no objection to lawful militias. Due to the existence of militias, I think it is now much less likely we will have more Wacos or Ruby Ridges.

As sworn members of a legal "well-regulated militia," we claim the right under the Second Amendment to keep and bear military-style arms and equipment, and to train in the proper use thereof to be prepared to act in concert for the common defense. Therefore, as a military organization, authorized under the U.S. and State Constitutions, we consider ourselves to be exempt from assault weapons bans, and we will not be disarmed!

Government knows that the militias are armed, trained, disciplined, and ready. We are growing in numbers daily. Our organization and our leadership is maturing. We are a definite threat to the abuse of police power, to criminal activity, and to corruption. We are not a threat to national security. Quite the contrary, we present a formidable adjunct to State and National troops. We are the home guard! Our regulations authorize the sheriff or the governor to call us out. We are friends of the people, not their enemy. We are the defenders of their liberty.

A militia member is typically a person who has seen his legislators bought and bribed by special interests. He sees them protecting their cronies, voting themselves power and perks, and insulating themselves with the power of incumbency. He sees the national administration using federal agencies to punish political enemies, and nothing is done about it. He sees his government as worse than that of King George in 1776, who, according to the Declaration of Independence, "erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance."

In the face of all this, a free American becomes "mad as hell," and he is "not going to take it anymore!" So he joins a militia to protect his Constitutional rights and his family. The militiaman (or woman) is a patriotic person who is sincerely convinced he is fighting for a noble cause, for the survival of his free country, and for the preservation of its precious Constitution.

As we become "a well-regulated militia," many other people sympathize with us, and would join the nucleus of their local unit in a time of emergency. They may be your neighbors, or they may be in this room. They also will not be disarmed!

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