Monday, April 20, 2009

You might be ... illiterate?

If you haven't heard yet, conservatives are oh-so-mad about the Department of Homeland Security's latest report, officially called "Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment." You can read the whole report here.

The most common overheard complaint is that the report labels all conservatives as terrorists. Obviously it does not, but it's curious as to why so many people are eager to self-label and be offended by the report. The document clearly talks about "extremists," which is not the same as "conservatives." A DHS report issued in January talked about left-wing extremists, specifically environment and animal-rights groups. Does that many that any person who cares about the environment or animal rights is a left-wing extremist? Of course not. Just as this report is not calling all pro-lifers and supporters of the Second Amendment extremists.

The whole point is that some people can, and have, used those stances to commit violent crimes, destroy property, or, you know, blow up a federal building. Just like left-wing environmentalists and animal-rights groups have (minus the federal building part). But somehow because the government issues a report to law enforcement about the possibility that such things might happen, all conservatives are now terrorists.

This has led to a new Twitter trend that, frankly, astonishes me. You can see for yourself by searching for #rwe.

What's "rwe" you ask? That would be "right-wing extremist." Here's a couple of examples:

  • "You might be a right wing extremist if you don't believe spending is the way out of debt."
  • "I would love to waterboard Obama. (And if you weren't before, you are NOW a RWE!! LOL!)"
  • "You might be a right wing extremist if you think it send the wrong message to the world when our Pres "buddies up" to terrorists."
  • "You might be a right wing extremist if you love your country and are willing to defend it."
  • "Why must all RWE's be categorized as we look in the mirror and just not see the same thing that DHS does?"
  • "As long as center is anything right of Obama. I'm actually a complete centrist but Obama considers me a #RWE"
  • "would like to formally thank the Dept of Homeland Security for target they've put on my back. It looks great!"
  • "apparently whack jobs are popular this year, November 4,2008 made that very clear"
  • "New Hashtag #rwe is right wing extremists? I've found home!"
  • "The Socialist Media is running scared, attacking the Tea Parties, I guess we are all RWE now! Proud of it!!"
  • "1000's of citizens now wear "right wing exter" RWE w/honor, akin to Jefferson Adams Hamilton Franklin"
  • I'm a RWE: I believe in the Constitution, God, the Bible, gun rights, free speech & capitalism. What a nut case, eh?
  • Libs HATE terrorists. Especially the Right Wing Extremist kind. (ed. note: do conservatives not hate terrorists?)
  • You might be a RWE if you allow your children to enlist in the Navy to protect this country, too. (ed. note: John McCain is a RWE??)
  • oh yah. our favorite #RWE activities: going to CHURCH, reading the BIBLE to kids, supporting USA military (shock), paying taxes, twittering!

And that's just a sample.

My only conclusion can be that these people have not read, or cannot read, the DHS report. Because if you read it and are conservative and are offended ... well, then I guess you might be a RWE. And let me tell you: you're not.


Razor said...

It is amusing that these people have come running to the defense of the Ku Klux Klan, Neo-Nazis, Skinheads, and crazy people in Montana shacks making a bomb out of a coffee filter and deer shit.

These are the kinds of people the report was actually talking about, yet the right has become so desperate to attack anything Obama (even though the DHS report was authorized by Bush), that they're ignorantly associating themselves with these kind of groups in order to make... some attempt at a point, maybe?

I don't know if it's desperation, stupidity or both, but watching the neocons flail around is equally amusing as it is annoying.

Matt Osborne said...

These people are whistling past the graveyard of political irrelevance.

GM said...

Hey, I'm a right wing extremist. How are you?

Rosie said...

Just curious Gabe, you still claiming that label?


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