Dear Mr. VP,
Fun things are happening near me this weekend.
And by fun, I mean scary and awful.
The nearby gun club is having a Flag Day Second Amendment Rally. At first I was like, oh. Some Republicans are having a rally, how nice. And then I went down the rabbit hole and started reading more about the event and realized, no. Some white supremacist alt-right conspiracy theorist Patriot militia members are having a rally about ten minutes from my home.
Here’s the line-up:
- Joe Arpaio, who has apparently not changed his self-given title of “America’s Toughest Sheriff” though I might replace it with “America’s Most Racist Ex-Sheriff.” AKA that guy who lost an election in a humiliating defeat after he was too racist and regressive for a red state.
- Jeanette Finicum, wife of late LaVoy Finicum, who was part of the group that took over Malheur Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. Husband LaVoy was shot after he almost hit a law enforcement agent while swerving to avoid a roadblock, and then got out of his car and walked towards an agent, reaching into his jacket where he had a loaded 9 mm handgun. A hero of the Patriot right.
- Stewart Rhodes, who founded the Oath Keepers, described by the Anti-Defamation League as “heavily armed extremists with a conspiratorial and anti-government mindset looking for potential showdowns with the government.” If you want an excellent read on the Oath Keepers, check out the SPLC write-up.
- $25 for a chicken dinner and a chance at a door prize, which I can only imagine is a DVD copy of made-for-TV The Siege at Ruby Ridge, starring Laura Dern, Randy Quaid, and Kirsten Dunst.
Here’s what an event organizer said, as quoted in a local paper:
“As big government politicos and a dragnet of bureaucratic panderers set their sights on nationwide gun control schemes, patriots from across the region will gather on this day to assert their God given rights to keep and bear arms,” Dave Kopacz, the event organizer and the former state chapter president of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies, wrote on the Facebook event page. “Never in the history of this nation has our God given rights to defend ourselves been under such vicious attack. It’s almost like they’re expecting some sort of resistance to their monopoly on violence, or a collapsing economy, or a flood of illegals invading the U.S., or UN land use schemes, or unsustainable domestic food supplies, or regressive taxing schemes, or government schools that reproduce socialist failure.”
This letter is to you, Mike, but may I also take a moment to address Dave Kopacz.
Dear Mr. Kopacz:
We have a Republican House, Republican Senate, and Republican President. Last week, a bunch of Republicans were shot at on a baseball field. If there ever was a moment for guns to be taken away, wouldn’t it be now, as the party with the power to make this happen just had members involved in a mass shooting? Have you seen them actually make a move towards gun control? No? Ok, I think you’re safe from vicious attack.
p.s. Agenda 21 concern is so 2012.
A letter within a letter. How meta.
Anyway, when I mentioned to my mom that this was happening, she told my dad, and then I got a frantic email with this line: “HE YOUR FATHER SAYS YOU NEED TO STAY AWAY!!!!!!” Actual number of exclamation points included.
I’m having some conflicting feelings. I have three options:
- Go and infiltrate and hope no one checks my ID to find my last name. Pro: this is like my dream research opportunity. Cons: don’t want to give $25 to racist assholes, could be murdered if they find out I’m not one of them.
- Protest outside. Pro: shows racist assholes they aren’t welcome. Con: could still be murdered by upset snowflake Patriots.
- Stay way the heck away. Pro: would make my mom and dad happy. Con: not as fun.
And there’s the point of my letter. Mr. Pence, what should I do? How should I deal with your emboldened supporters?
At least if I decide to infiltrate I have the right hat.