In last week’s column, Who Are the Virtuous?, Miss Constitution explained how Faith, Liberty, Justice, and Virtue all fit together in our Constitutional system. It is a system about the individual, not the group, and it is based on the four categories of Law that govern each individual: Moral Law (right and wrong); Positive Law (statutes, ordinances, administrative rules, and constitutions); Natural Law (what wraps around individuals by their very existence); and Unwritten Law (courtesy and comity between individual people.) Our Declaration of Independence says that Governments are instituted to secure individual rights, especially the Natural Law rights to Life and Liberty. So, individuals have a right to object to government policy as part of their Liberty interest, as long as that objection is conducted within Moral and Positive Law, or within what is right and wrong (lawful) and within what are criminal statutes and ordinances (legal).
Part of our vast federal executive bureaucracy (Positive Law) is the Office of the Director of National Intelligence that was established with expanded intelligence capabilities after the attack on the United States on 9/11/2001. The current Director, Avril Haines, issued a report March 1, 2021, entitled Domestic Violent Extremism Poses Heightened Threat in 2021. Her contention is that Domestic Violent Extremists are motivated by biases against minority populations and perceived government overreach and will almost certainly try to engage in violence this year. She breaks down Domestic Violent Extremists into Racially Motivated Violent Extremists and Militia Violent Extremists. The first are likely to conduct mass-casualty attacks against civilians and the second will target law enforcement and government personnel, according to Director Haines. Mass-casualties?
The first thing that comes to mind in the above descriptions is the racially motivated attacks on Asian Americans by mostly black Americans going on all over the country. Eighty-year-old women are being stabbed and beaten and kicked in the face for no reason except their Asian ethnicity. One Asian woman was beaten with a concrete block. The second is the daily news of violence against police officers and federal law enforcement officers and the burning of courthouses and other federal and state buildings. Black Lives Matter and Antifa with their covered faces and para-military gear and dress have rampaged several cities in violent fashion and burned and destroyed businesses, blinded officers with lasers, run over officers with vehicles, beat journalists senseless, and attacked and intimidated citizens in their own homes. Some law enforcement personnel are simply assassinated in cold blood. Average people out for a bite to eat are subjected to ugly harassment and forced to submit to humiliation and threats simply for existing. Whether as individuals or organized groups, these behaviors are neither lawful nor legal.
As it turns out, however, the Director of National Intelligence is not referring to random and unprovoked violence against Asians or violent groups like Black Lives Matter or Antifa. No, she is talking about Racially Motivated Violent Extremists who “promote the superiority of the white race.” The Director thinks these white actors are in contact with foreign nationals that “frequently communicate with and seek to influence each other. We assess that a small number have traveled abroad to network with like-minded individuals. Newer sociopolitical developments – such as narratives of fraud in the recent general election, the emboldening impact of the violent breach of the US. Capitol, conditions related to COVID-19 pandemic, and conspiracy theories promoting violence – will certainly spur some domestic violent extremists to try to engage in violence this year.”
In other words, she is not concerned with proven domestic terrorists but with imagined ones. Goodness.
“Narratives of fraud in the recent general election”
This is routinely referred to as The Big Lie. Congresswoman Liz Cheney has spoken openly that any contention that there was fraud in the 2020 Presidential election is an attack on democracy. Michael Steele, former head of the Republican National Committee, said that Donald Trump’s contention that there was fraud is a giant toilet that other Republicans are jumping into as if a pool. (Lovely imagery.) Miss Constitution’s conclusion – We Do Not Know. The fact is that we do not know if the 2020 election was fairly held and if not fairly held whether the corruption amounted to a change in outcome. No investigation was conducted nor Court review held. Several key states had questionable practices in contradiction to their own election laws and forensic analysis of possible computer manipulations was prevented from taking place. That no Court would hear any of these cases is not evidence there was no fraud substantial enough to question the election, it is only evidence of the reluctance to find out. So, Miss Constitution stands by her conclusion – we simply do not know. A new American President was sworn in and the public is required to accept this transfer regardless of doubts surrounding the election. The Big Lie is just a Big Question.
“Impact of the violent breach of the US. Capitol”
President Trump called for a march at the Capitol on January 6, 2021, to protest the validity of the election, spoke to those attending, and before he finished the Capitol was breached. One protester was shot dead by an unnamed officer. Several protesters died of heart attacks and one officer died later of an apparent stroke. This riot was unlawful and illegal and universally condemned. There were no weapons found and there appeared to be no leader. We have no explanation for the lax security that is the responsibility of the Speaker of the House and the Leader of the Senate. The whole event looked like amateur hour from mostly middle-aged men and some bizarrely costumed discontents, some of whom were invited into the Capitol by police officers. Questions remain about the event and the security.
Miss Constitution has no idea what this has to do with Domestic Violent Extremism. She thinks it has a lot to do with a deliberate attack by China and incompetence and conflict of interest by the CDC.
Yet the Director of National Intelligence comes to the conclusion that questioning a questionable election is the equivalent of fostering Violent White Supremacy. She also states that “growing perceptions of government overreach related to policy changes” could cause lethal mass-casualty attacks. The current Attorney General has called White Supremacy a major Department of Justice concern. Really?
We are dangerously close with this Report to coming to the conclusion that objecting to President Biden’s policies is evidence of Domestic Violent Extremism. We are dangerously close to providing “cover” for counterintelligence surveillance by the FBI that is meant for foreign terrorists only. While the Report defines a Domestic Extremist as without inspiration from a foreign power it also states these persons have “persistent transnational connections.” “All agencies are mindful to act within the authorities granted to them.” Really? So many in the last few years have not. Miss Constitution can only conclude the Director of National Intelligence thinks that persistent violence against Asians; persistent violence against police officers; persistent violence against businesses is Constitutionally protected speech and assembly and not domestic terrorism. Objecting, however, to actions taken by the current administration poses an “elevated threat to the Homeland in 2021”. Twisted logic.