Social Question

john65pennington's avatar

What's your opinion concerning Oklahoma forming a state militia?

Asked by john65pennington (29235points) April 13th, 2010

The State of Oklahoma’s legislature is preparing to hear and possibly vote for a state militia in Oklahoma. Tea Party members state the federal government is overstepping its authority by ordering every U.S. citizen to pay for personal healthcare. Tea Party members state the Constitution of The United States allows citizens the right to bear arms. democrats state this is the purpose of the National Guard… protect its states citizens. whats your opinion? question: are state militia groups legal and are state militia groups whats coming for America in order to keep the Federal Government in check?

Source: Associated Press 4/13/2010

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39 Answers

mrentropy's avatar

I would say a state militia is quite legal. I’m surprised Texas doesn’t have one.

Qingu's avatar

It’s interesting that the question basically characterizes the formation of such militias as a threat.

It’s “what’s coming for America” ... unless we presumably vote for the party the questioner thinks we should vote for?

tinyfaery's avatar

What is a state militia going to do against the federal government? Militias might be legal, but I’m pretty sure killing people, holding people hostage and threatening violence is still a crime.

john65pennington's avatar

tinyfaery, i could not agree with you more. it kind of reminds me of the Civil War, except this is between the feds and all the states, not just the north vs. the south.

JLeslie's avatar

I just want to comment that every Democrat I know personally is in favor of and indiviuals right to bear arms, and I have seen many in collective voicing the same thing. Now about the question. It is an interesting question. My fear is that militia minded people are looking for a revolt against the federal government. I mean actually seeking it at this point. Someone said on another thread that it feels like there is going to be another civil war there is such angst in the country. Intense arguments over what the country should be.

To explain further, I know many many people who own guns for protection. Some of them are what I call “gun minded” they love their guns, think its cool, talk about shooting anyone who gets in their way, etc. Then there are the other people who own a gun, who dread the day they might have to use it against someone. Lately the gun minded people are all riled up. That is kind of scary to me.

Qingu's avatar

(I love how fat 60 year old guys with rifles are aching to fight the U.S. government. National militaries have sort of come a long way since 1861.)

john65pennington's avatar

Jleslie. good point. i am not for a state militia, nor am i against it. i do believe that the feds need a watchdog over their lawmaking and never again attempt to force something down the peoples throat, that do not want it. this is the way local police departments are kept in check. the state watches over local police departmnets and the feds watch over the state police. this is the way it should be. but, who is the watchdog for the feds??

john65pennington's avatar

Qinqu, well, the folks of 1861 were a lot leaner thats true. just goes to show you how far America has come in the fat gram department.

Qingu's avatar

@john65pennington, violent armed groups threatening rebellion isn’t a “watchdog.”

In a civilized democracy, the thing holding government in check is the democratic process—the ability to vote them out of office. Not the threat of violent rebellion.

It is frankly amazing to me, and a little creepy, that this is lost on so many people.

JLeslie's avatar

@john65pennington I’m not sure, it will be interesting to see more opinions. Our ability to vote in public officials is probably the most important tool we have. I guess for me I would be way more afraid of my states militia than the federal government. I don’t think of the state fighting back the feds, I think of my crazy bible belt state as coming after citizens within the state.

Hell, during Hurricane Katrina I felt the fed stuck too closely to the rules/laws that state the fed cannot come in without the request of the governor. In FL when we have a hurricane coming the governor puts in the request for all counties that might be affected BEFORE the hurricane makes it to shore. Then the president gets to decide after the fact what counties should be declared a disaster and help is sent.

Look at desegregation. Wasn’t it the federal government that had to come down and force the states to do the right thing? Or, is my history wrong, I suck at history. Seems the feds are more often on the side of right.

But, then you think of Hitlers Germany, and everthing I said can be thrown out of the window. Hitler is why I am for an individuals rights to bear arms.

Qingu's avatar

What would bearing arms do against the rise of Hitler? He enjoyed popular support. I’m also not sure what owning guns would do against Germany’s impressive and ruthless military and secret services.

Lots of people owned guns in Iraq. They couldn’t come close to overthrowing Saddam, who was (unlike Hitler) quite unpopular.

JLeslie's avatar

@Qingu Probably true, probably overall would be ineffective. Maybe a few more Jews would have gotten away if they could have shot at some of those crazy sons of bitches. If the Jews had organized their own militia it might have helped some of them, don’t you think? Or, maybe I just want to believe that. To feel like I could protect myself.

Qingu's avatar

If Jews had organized their own militia I think they would have been slaughtered, along with anyone else in the neighborhood. And depending on when it happened, the act of rebellion may have even sped up the “final solution.”

I mean, the Germans had tanks and airplanes.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

All states have them. It’s called the National Guard. Militia is only the archaic name used prior to WW1. I think what Oklahoma may be doing is attempting to create an armed body not subject to federalization.

This may provoke a constitutional crisis. In the 1950s, the governor of Arkansas attempted to use to national guard to block school desegregation. President Eisenhower trumped him by federalizing the Arkansas National Guard and placing them under professional Army officers. We’ll have to see what happens this time.

john65pennington's avatar

Jleslie, excellent answer. john

JLeslie's avatar

@Qingu You make a good point. But, then does that mean the individual does not have a chance, it must be a government that can protect you? Crap, that is scary. Another reason to fight for Israel.

john65pennington's avatar

Strange Land, good point. that was a strategy move by the feds to federalize the National Guard. that way, the Guard would be under the direct order of the president and took away the governors power of direction for the Guard.

JLeslie's avatar

@john65pennington Thank you.

I am confused. Does anyone know exactly what rule it is that does not allow the fed to go into the state? If the national guard is now directed by the president, and that is what they used during desegregation, then why was the president unable to go into New Orleans? Or, has there been some sort of change since desegregation? Or, is my information wrong that the governor must request help?

Qingu's avatar

Uh, I wouldn’t say that’s a reason to fight for an apartheid state. :|

It’s a reason to fight for increased education and empathy for fellow human beings. Governments are made of people.

JLeslie's avatar

@Qingu I agree with the education and empathy, but Germany was pretty educated and sophisticated at the time of Hitler.

Qingu's avatar

@JLeslie, are you referring to Bush not going to New Orleans? I don’t usually defend Bush, but I believe the reason he didn’t go is because he would need a lot of “hands on deck” to both land Air Force One and provide sufficient security for the president. Such people would have had to be diverted from efforts to help the victims.

Also, I wouldn’t call Germany sophisticated. Hitler’s writings were the equivalent of modern day paranoid conspiracy-theory blog screeds. That was the media that people in Germany most often consumed. The country had also been pretty f-d over economically from WW1; I don’t know what effect that had on education, but it apparently made people there more insane and xenophobic in the years afterwards.

john65pennington's avatar

Katrina, i believe, its a soverign state. this meant the mayor and the governor had to request aid from the feds. the mayor and governor waited too long to make their request and FEMA took the heat for it. i assume the mayor and governor did not want to relinquish their power over to the feds. once the hurricane became truly dangerous, both the mayor and the governor saw the light, but way too late. i belive a soverign state has to request aid from the feds. i may be wrong and i am sure someone will correct me. john

Qingu's avatar

@john65pennington, states in America aren’t “sovereign”

JLeslie's avatar

@john65pennington That is how I understand it also, which makes sense, considering my experience in FL. But, then why could the fed direct what went on during desegregation? was the rule changed and then changed back?

JeffVader's avatar

I think it displays alot of the most distastful things about America.

tarmar's avatar

In these days of EXTREMELY tight state budgets, it’s the VERY last thing I can imagine a state budgeting any money for.

limeaide's avatar

@john65pennington As far as a watchdog for the “fed”, in the united states that’s why we have separation of power a check and balance system of “Legislative, Executive and Judicial” Go to this link and skip down to the United States part to see what each of these 3 branches does:

limeaide's avatar

@john65pennington one other thing this isn’t the first time the government forced Americans to buy something, The second militia Act, passed May 8, 1792, provided for the organization of the state militias. It conscripted every “free able-bodied white male citizen” between the ages of 18 and 45 into a local militia company overseen by the state. Militia members were required to arm themselves at their own expense with a musket, bayonet and belt, two spare flints, a cartridge box with 24 bullets, and a knapsack. Men owning rifles were required to provide a powder horn, ¼ pound of gun powder, 20 rifle balls, a shooting pouch, and a knapsack.[3] Some occupations were exempt, such as congressmen, stagecoach drivers, and ferryboatmen. Otherwise, men were required to report for training twice a year, usually in the Spring and Fall.

Also, you could throw Social Security, Taxes, medicare…....I don’t think there is away for me to not pay these unless I’m disabled, or become a citizen of another country.

john65pennington's avatar

limeade, good and informative answer. i learned something from your answer. thanks.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

A mob of state funded angry armed citizens furious at the government: What could possibly go wrong?

Sounds like a waste of time. This effort costs money. What else could that money do for Oklahoma?

Also, the next time a massive tornado hits an Oklahoma do Americans get to opt out of the relief effort?

You know since it is a social program and all..

PacificToast's avatar

If any state, Texas probably has one. Do they? I’m sure it’s plenty legal. How does health care come into this? I’m all for it if it keeps the Feds in check.

whitewalls's avatar

It’s amazing how Oklahoma and other southern states refuse to acknowledge and embrace change. If you don’t want to carry insurance then you should perish in the streets. If you really feel that you need not carry insurance then you are on your own. Don’t go to a hospital if you are on your death bed.

JLeslie's avatar

@whitewalls I consider it narrow-mindedness and fear. I swear these people are terrified, the same way I was terrified when I found out Gore lost and Bush won. :)

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@JLeslie But you probably didn’t go out and buy all the guns and ammo you could find…

PacificToast's avatar

@whitewalls Maybe they just don’t want government insurance?

JLeslie's avatar

@Dr_Dredd Exactly. I did think about moving to Europe. JK. The bazaar thing is Bush, when he won, freaked me out because I was worried about domestic issues with him, women’s rights and more, and everyone focus’ on his war mongering, which actually seemed to get him reelected. I will never understand it. Sorry to go off on a tangent.

SundayKittens's avatar

@whitewalls and @JLeslie As an Okie born and raised, I can tell you that “fear” is right on the money. Most people here don’t take kindly to change.

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