Driving While Conservative
Missouri State Police have been alerted to be on the lookout for subversive drivers who may be domestic terrorists or members of militia groups. How can Missouri Law Enforcement know the car in front of them might be carrying dangerous people? Why from their bumper stickers of course!
Among the bumper stickers listed as indicative of dangerous, anti-Americans behind the wheel are those supporting Ron Paul or other 3rd party candidates, the Gadsden flag, opposition to the North American Union, opposition to the President’s Mandatory Service agenda, the right to Keep and Bear arms and belief that the States are sovereign. All these and more are “identifiers” common to militia movements across the nation and should alert law enforcement to be cautious when dealing with occupants in cars displaying them.
In fact, they are told such people often consider police the enemy. To be fair, the report doesn’t claim that all people who hold such views are automatically terrorists bent on shooting cops at traffic stops. However, if you have such stickers on your vehicle in Missouri, tensions just went WAY up.
The officer approaching your car (who is carrying a firearm) has no way to know if you are a bad guy or not but he’s been told you might be. And you behind the wheel (who may also be armed) have no way to know if the officer is terrified you might be. Both of you are on heightened alert. How does one diffuse that situation? Will the officer ask for license, registration and white supremacist membership card, just to make sure? Should your first words be, “What did I do wrong, officer? And pay no attention to that Ron Paul nonsense on the bumper, I LOVE Barack Obama’s policies!”?
I understand the potential danger to law enforcement. But that is not an exclusively Right Wing phenomenon. The Left has their share of luncacy. Groups like Earth First and the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) along with the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) destroy millions of dollars of property and endanger the lives of citizens and law enforcement alike. It’s reported that ELF is considered one of the major terrorist groups in the US by the FBI.
Why didn’t the Missouri report list Sierra Club and PETA bumper stickers along with “Animals Are People, Too!” as indicators of Domestic Terrorists?
Distributing this sort of alert to Law Enforcement at any level is outrageous and libelous. Can you imagine what the outcry would be if Missouri had suggested its troopers be on the lookout for “I (heart) Allah” bumper stickers? What about “My child is an honor student at our local madrassa” or “Hate is not a family value”? What if they were warned to be careful approaching a car sporting an NAACP sticker? What about a La Raza supporter sticker? Free Tibet?
All these are political and religious statements that are completely permissible under our Constitution and should not be taken as any sort of indication of the proclivities for violence the driver or occupants of a car may have. Such nonsense only perpetuates intolerance, hate, suspicion and all the things we say we’re trying to combat in this nation.
It’s too late to tell Missouri’s officers, “That report? Naaaah … just kidding!” The information is already out there and is having an impact. I cannot imagine a more irresponsible act than to compile and make public such an inflammatory report. The person issuing that report should be demoted or terminated. The state should issue an apology and assure citizens that their efforts are based on solid police work, investigation, facts and proof and not snap reactions to a piece of paper glued to a man’s auto.