On Tuesday, former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) issued another important warning about the Democrats like former CIA Director John Brennan who appear to have seized on the Capitol riot as an excuse to crack down on dissent from the Left’s orthodoxy. Democrats seem to be mulling a new domestic “War on Terror” complete with surveillance of American “insurgents” like… Libertarians.
In a short video posted on Twitter, Gabbard began by condemning the mob that stormed the Capitol but went on to issue an important warning about the budding new “War on Terror.”
“The mob that stormed the Capitol on January 6 to try to stop Congress from carrying out its constitutional responsibilities were behaving like domestic enemies of our country. But let’s be clear, the John Brennans, Adam Schiffs, and oligarchs in Big Tech who are trying to undermine our constitutionally-protected rights and turn our country into a police state with KGB-style surveillance, are also domestic enemies, and much more powerful, and therefore dangerous, than the mob that stormed the Capitol,” Gabbard declared.
She then played a brief clip of Brennan warning against an “unholy alliance” including “religious extremists, authoritarians, fascists, bigots, racists, nativists, and even Libertarians” that “looks very similar to insurgency movements that we’ve seen overseas.”
Gabbard, a former presidential candidate, ended her clip by calling on President Joe Biden and all members of Congress to condemn Brennan’s remarks, which suggest a threat to Americans’ civil liberties.
“Now President Biden, I call upon you and all members of Congress from both parties to denounce these efforts by the likes of Brennan and others to take away our civil liberties that are endowed to us by our Creator and guaranteed to us by our Constitution,” the former congresswoman declared. “If you don’t stand up to these people now, then our country will be in great peril.”
The mob who stormed the capitol to try to stop Congress from carrying out its constitutional responsibilities were behaving like domestic enemies of our country. But let us be clear, the John Brennan's, Adam Schiffs and the oligarchs in Big Tech who are… pic.twitter.com/Q3VssCiz5l
— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) January 26, 2021
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“This whole effort, whether you’re talking about this bill or people saying that we have to deprogram these Trump cultists and people who voted for Trump because they’ve been radicalized, all of this just goes to further tear our country apart,” Gabbard warned. “And it moves towards the thing Joe Biden said in his inauguration speech that shouldn’t happen, which is a dehumanization of your opponent.”
She warned that the new domestic “War on Terror” seems to involve identifying conservatives and Trump supporters as dangerous “extremists.”
“What characteristics are we looking for as we are building this profile of a potential ‘extremist,’ what are we talking about? Religious extremists, are we talking about Christians, evangelical Christians, what is a religious extremist? Is it somebody who is pro-life? Where do you take this?” the former congresswoman asked.
Gabbard is right to call on Biden to denounce this agenda, but the current president seems likely to support it. On the campaign trail, Biden said he plans to prioritize passing a law against domestic terrorism. His blatant double standard in vocally condemning the Capitol riots while coddling the antifa and Black Lives Matter rioters who burned cities this past summer does not bode well for a balanced implementation of any terrorism law.
Biden has arguably demonized conservative Christians who oppose LGBT activism. In 2018 at an LGBT activist group, he attacked people who have “tried to define family” in the U.S. as “the dregs of society.” At the CNN LGBT town hall in October 2019, Biden called for a kind of terror watchlist to monitor organizations that oppose same-sex marriage and transgender identity. Biden firmly supports the Equality Act, which would outlaw discrimination against LGBT people. While Americans do not support discrimination, laws like this have been weaponized to punish Christians for refusing to celebrate same-sex weddings.
Biden’s domestic terror agenda may echo that of Attorney General Dana Nessel (D-Mich.), who targeted conservative groups in her announcement launching a new “hate crimes” unit. Nessel condemned “hate groups” in Michigan, referencing the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a once-noble civil rights organization that has weaponized its history in bankrupting groups like the Ku Klux Klan to brand mainstream conservative organizations “hate groups.”
In my book, Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center, I trace how the SPLC expanded its Klanwatch program to start defaming organizations like the Family Research Council (FRC), Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), ACT for America, the Center for Security Policy (CSP), and many more as “hate groups,” putting them on a “hate map” with the KKK. This “hate map” inspired a deranged man to target the Family Research Council (FRC) for a mass shooting in 2012.
Former employees have described the “hate group” list as a “con” to bilk donors. They have noted that the list does not explain how many members are in each “hate group” and that some “hate groups” consist of one person or barely exist.
Yet Nessel specifically cited the SPLC’s list of “hate groups” in launching her “hate crimes” unit, and Nessel is far from alone among Democrats in relying on the SPLC. At least eight Democratic senators have cited the SPLC to condemn President Donald Trump’s nominees. Kamala Harris, now Biden’s vice president, attacked Trump judicial nominee Allison Rushing for participating in ADF events. This came after Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) had compared ADF to the Cambodian dictator Pol Pot. Even a former ACLU president, Nadine Strossen, stood up for ADF, vehemently disagreeing with the SPLC’s accusation, yet these Democrats continue to cite it.
It is not implausible that the Biden administration would weaponize anti-terror laws against conservatives. As PJ Media’s Paula Bolyard pointed out, the Obama administration circulated a terrorism dictionary in 2009 that described “antiabortion extremism” as “A movement of groups or individuals who are virulently antiabortion and advocate violence against providers of abortion-related services, their employees, and their facilities.” It went on to say that some individuals who oppose abortion “cite various racist and anti-Semitic beliefs to justify their criminal activities.”
In 2012, a Department of Homeland Security threat assessment warned of “single-issue” extremists they described as “groups or individuals that obsessively focus on very specific or narrowly-defined causes (e.g., anti-abortion, anti-Catholic, anti-nuclear, anti-Castro). The Obama administration repeatedly targeted pro-life Americans in this way.
Gabbard’s warning is extremely important, and she is right to urge Biden to condemn Brennan’s comments. Unfortunately, it seems Biden may be on board with the domestic war on terror agenda Gabbard warned about.
Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.