On February 6, the government Bureau of Investigation held a news conference with regards to a growing problem faced by local police force agencies. Based on the FBI, police all around the country have been contacting the Bureau with requests for information and training around the sovereign citizen movement.
Over the next week, the online response to the Bureau’s statements ranged from confused to outraged. Conservative pundits were wringing their hands, fearing that this FBI will target their Tea Party readership as enemies from the state, while liberal pundits expressed glee that the FBI now considers Tea Party supporters being domestic terrorists.
For instance, conservative commentator Glenn Beck aired a 12-minute segment on his show last week where he determined that there is no such thing being a sovereign movement, since he’s never heard of it, and therefore the federal government is employing this fictional group as being a boogeyman to carry out nefarious what you should Glenn Beck’s fans.
The good thing for Beck is the fact that overlap between his fan base along with the sovereign movement is most likely minor. The not so good news all through us is the fact state and local law enforcement agencies are having a heck of energy educating their officers about how wise to identify and cope with this very real and potentially violent group.
If you’re a member of the Tea Party movement, the answer for this bad law would be to protest your opinion in DC and also in other metropolitan areas, write angry letters in your Congressmen, and vote for politicians who go along with you that such a law needs to be scrapped without delay.
If you’re a member of the what is a sovereign citizen, your approach is a little different. You begin by searching for a mixture of quotes, definitions, court cases, the Bible, Internet websites, and so on that justify how you can forget about the disliked law without the legal consequences. Be imaginative. Pull a line from the 1215 version of the Magna Carta, a definition from a 1913 legal dictionary, an insurance quote from your founding father or two, and set it from the blender with 14dexipky official-sounding Supreme Court case excerpts you located on like-minded websites. Better yet, hire a company else online who disliked that same law and pay them $150 for the three-ring binder full of their word salad research.
Et voilà, not just have you proven that you just don’t must obey the law you dislike, heck, it’s your patriotic duty to disobey it, and anybody who lets you know otherwise is simply plain un-American and is probably a part of a world-wide Jewish conspiracy to ensure Chihuahuas are slaves for the US government.
When you are able pick and choose which laws to put through your special blender, you are effectively putting yourself especially laws.
Sovereign citizens are true believers. They generally entered the movement by purchasing into a scam or conspiracy theory that not only promised them a brief fix on their problems, but wrapped such solutions in the heavy layer of revolutionary rhetoric. When a sovereign feels the flush of excitement and self-importance which comes from acting as being the David for the Usa government’s Goliath, they are fully aware, with a bunch of their hearts and souls, that their scientific studies are correct, that the cause is definitely, and therefore anyone who disagrees along with them is a criminal who deserves to become punished.
These sovereign citizens may also be doomed to failure; the tax collector, prosecutor, and judge supply heard these same legal theories a large number of times already and understand they are bogus.
When a person believes his cause is definitely, yet he meets failure over and over and over again, there comes a point where he has to decide: he can admit his theory is wrong and walk away, or he could fight dirty.
Non-violent retaliation against government employees and law enforcement is the most common response, and can take the sort of filing false liens, filing bogus Forms 1099, sending threatening correspondence, suing government employees for millions of dollars, and cyber-stalking individuals in government who disagree with all the sovereign’s legal theories.
Some sovereigns plot a violent revenge, trying to inspire others inside the movement to arrive at their breaking point sooner. By way of example, after two decades of trying to persuade the internal revenue service as well as the Tax Court that his blender salad of legal theories was accurate, during 2010, private pilot Joseph Stack flew his airplane into an IRS building in Austin Texas, killing one tax collector, and injuring thirteen others.
“I saw it written once the meaning of insanity is repeating exactly the same process over and over and expecting the end result to suddenly be different. I am just finally ready to stop this insanity. Well, Mr. Big Brother IRS man, let’s try something different; take my pound of flesh and sleep well.” — Joseph Stack’s suicide note
Most sovereigns who act violently, however, have zero grand plan into position; they simply lash out when they’ve failed one lots of times. Some commit suicide, however for many of them, the final straw can be something no more than being pulled over by a highway patrolman to have a busted tail light or anything as large as being evicted using their home when the bank forecloses on their own property.
Because most people don’t have direct experience of government other than with local police force, officers have reached an especially high risk of bearing the brunt of sovereign citizen anger.
On the outside, sovereigns believe some pretty outrageous things, as well as an outsider, their legal theories seem fairly silly. Up to the recent wave of violence, most law enforcement officers who encountered sovereigns found them more amusing than whatever else. Following recent police shootings in Arkansas, Florida, Texas, and Pennsylvania, officers now need to rethink their opinion of the group.
Also, sovereign citizens don’t call themselves that. The truth is, if you ask somebody if she is a member of the movement, she will likely respond how the “sovereign citizen” label is surely an oxymoron, and therefore she is an individual looking for the Truth. She may then launch in to a ten minute lecture about 18th century ideals of individual sovereignty. A non-sovereign simply answers, “No.”
Perhaps the most difficult hurdle for police force is coping with stereotypes. The 1st generation sovereign movement (from 1970 to 1995) was comprised mostly of middle-aged, high-school educated, white men with some military background, and extreme-right, often racist values, located mostly in in rural communities west 14dexipky the Mississippi. Today, the next sovereign wave (1999 to offer) might include anybody: black, white, rural, urban, Asian, Hispanic, young, old, armed, unarmed, male, female, conservative, liberal, semi-literate, college-educated, from your walk of life. For instance, dentists, chiropractors, as well as police officers all seem fascinated by the movement in recent times.
Sovereigns may also be tough to identity since there is no membership group to enable them to join, no charismatic leader, no organization name, no master selection of adherents, and no consistency within the schemes they promote and buy into. There are countless sovereign legal theories being peddled in seminars, in books, and online, and several of these theories contradict the other person.
The sovereign citizen movement is big and it is growing fast, because of the Internet. There are approximately 300,000 individuals the movement, and approximately a third of such are a few things i would call hard-core believers – people prepared to act on their beliefs rather than simply move on.
As there is no guarantee with regards to officer safety, police departments do indeed need to teach their front-line officers how you can identify sovereign markers and take appropriate precautions just in case a particular encounter turns into a sovereign’s “final straw.