Don't subscribe to fear

Posted: Friday, February 26, 2010

I'm surprised how long I've managed to avoid a public response to the militia recruiters in our midst. It has been impossible to miss the two of them with their constant barrage of letters to the editor on a variety of topics, often concluding with a rally to come join the militia and become one of the enlightened.

The philosophy shared by these relocated Michigan Militia men suggests that in case of an emergency (we are assured this will happen) I need to be armed and trained to protect my stuff -- and they are here to help me.

Thank you, but no thank you. Both my faith and my experience convince me that in case of an emergency, my community and neighbors will continue to share our stuff. My help comes from very different directions.

Their implication that those of us who are not responsive to their fear-based tactics and world view are simply dupes who are ignorant of the "real" situation, is condescending at the very least.

Personally, as a woman of faith, a citizen, voter, taxpayer, 40-year Alaskan, active community member, wife, mom and grandmother, I refuse to be drawn into this bogeyman mentality.

While I believe it is important to pay attention to the militia recruiters in order to hear what is being said, I urge you all to choose not to subscribe to their fears and the perception that we are surrounded by enemies who want our stuff. If we accept their perceptions, we are the losers, both personally and as a community. That is a place I do not plan to go.

Susan Smalley


P.S. When the people of Oklahoma City were lamenting the loss of friends and family after the bombing, these militia members were loudly proclaiming that they knew the bombing was a conspiracy involving the Japanese Government. This was too much even for the Michigan Militia. If you wonder how they ended up in Nikiski, check out the Peninsula Clarion, Sept. 1, 2002.

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