In my final post about the U.S. Department of Homeland Security “Rightwing Extremism” assessment, I made reference to something that was quoted in the report, and I want to make a few clarifications.
At the bottom of page five, the assessment reads,
Many rightwing extremist groups perceive recent gun control legislation as a threat to their right to bear arms and in response have increased weapons and ammunition stockpiling, as well as renewed participation in paramilitary training exercises. Such activity, combined with a heightened level of extremist paranoia, has the potential to facilitate criminal activity and violence.
- During the 1990s, rightwing extremist hostility toward government was fueled by the implementation of restrictive gun laws—such as the Brady Law that established a 5-day waiting period prior to purchasing a handgun and the 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act that limited the sale of various types of assault rifles—and federal law enforcement’s handling of the confrontations at Waco, Texas and Ruby Ridge, Idaho.
In short, the government wants you to think that the threat of recent gun control legislation will push many “rightwing extremists” over the edge creating a heightened level of extremist paranoia, weapon stockpiling, and hostility toward the goverment. They go a step further in their attempt to instill fear by referencing the confrontations at Waco, Texas and Ruby Ridge, Idaho.
Many people remember the events that occurred at Waco but few people I have spoken too remember much about Ruby Ridge. Those who do remember it, usually can’t remember why they do, but they know something bad happened there.
Let’s take a look at the history of events which occurred at Ruby Ridge in August of 1992 and try to ascertain why our government would still be referencing the events there, 17 years after it happened.