Christian Militia in Michigan

Published March 30th, 2010 by Bobby Henderson

The FBI took down a Christian militia group in Michigan on Monday.

The indictment said the Hutaree, who describe themselves as “Christian warriors,” viewed all law enforcement as their enemy. It said they had planned a violent act to get the attention of the police, possibly by killing an officer at a traffic stop, and then attacking the funeral procession with explosives.

The arrests of the Hutaree members comes amid what the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama non profit that tracks extremism, has called “an explosion of new extremist groups and activism across the nation.” The organization has cited the economic downturn as a major reason for the change, and also contends that the far-right has been particularly animated by the election of the nation’s first black president.

That is pretty disturbing. I agree with the author that a lot of these occurrences are related to nutball “conservatives” rather than nutball “Christians”, however the two groups have quite a bit of overlap. I got a lot of flack a few days ago for saying religious people don’t stand up against extremists in their own religion (only in opposing religions). It will be interesting to see the Christian response to these arrests. I suspect we’ll hear a lot of the No True Scotsman* type arguments. “No True Christian would do these things”, immediately close mind.

* From Wikipedia:
No true Scotsman is a logical fallacy, an ad hoc attempt to retain an unreasoned assertion. When faced with a counterexample to a universal claim, rather than denying the counterexample or rejecting the original universal claim, this fallacy modifies the subject of assertion to tautologically exclude the specific case or others like it.

Imagine Hamish McDonald, a Scotsman, sitting down with his Glasgow Morning Herald and seeing an article about how the “Brighton Sex Maniac Strikes Again.” Hamish is shocked and declares that “No Scotsman would do such a thing.” The next day he sits down to read his Glasgow Morning Herald again and this time finds an article about an Aberdeen man whose brutal actions make the Brighton sex maniac seem almost gentlemanly. This fact shows that Hamish was wrong in his opinion but is he going to admit this? Not likely. This time he says, “No true Scotsman would do such a thing.”
—Antony Flew, Thinking About Thinking (1975)

Update: There’s a related article today in the Washington Post, The Hutaree militia and the rising risk of far-right violence.

68 Responses to “Christian Militia in Michigan”

  1. Randy says:


    I, ________________________________, do solemnly swear to uphold the principles of a socialism-free society and heretofore pledge my word that I shall strictly adhere to the following:
    I pledge to eliminate all government intervention in my life. I will abstain from the use of and participation in any socialist goods and services including but not limited to the following:

    •Social Security
    •State Children’s Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP)
    •Police, Fire, and Emergency Services
    •US Postal Service
    •Roads and Highways
    •Air Travel (regulated by the socialist FAA)
    •The US Railway System
    •Public Subways and Metro Systems
    •Public Bus and Lightrail Systems
    •Rest Areas on Highways
    •All Government-Funded Local/State Projects (e.g., see Iowa 2009 federal Senate appropriations). This means every single road that is not a toll road is off limits to my use.
    •Public Drinking Water and Sewer Services (goodbye socialist toilet, shower, dishwasher, kitchen sink, outdoor hose!)
    •Public and State Universities and Colleges
    •Public Primary and Secondary Schools
    •Sesame Street
    •Publicly Funded Anti-Drug Use Education for Children
    •Public Museums
    •Public Parks and Beaches
    •State and National Parks
    •Public Zoos
    •Unemployment Insurance
    •Municipal Garbage and Recycling Services
    •Treatment at Any Hospital or Clinic That Ever Received Funding From Local, State or Federal Government (pretty much all of them)
    •Medical Services and Medications That Were Created or Derived From Any Government grant or research Funding (again, pretty much all of them)
    •Socialist Byproducts of Government Investment Such as Duct Tape, heart monitors/defibrillators and Velcro (Nazi-NASA Inventions)
    •Use of the Internet, email, and networked computers, as the DoD’s ARPANET was the basis for subsequent computer networking
    •Foodstuffs, Meats, Produce and Crops that were grown with, fed with, raised with or that contain inputs from crops grown with government subsidies.
    If a veteran of the government-run socialist US military, I will forgo my VA benefits and insist on paying for my own medical care.

    I will not tour socialist government buildings like the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

    I pledge to never take myself, my family, or my children on a tour of the following types of free-admission/taxpayer subsidized socialist locations, including but not limited to:

    •Smithsonian Museums such as the Air and Space Museum or Museum of American History
    •The socialist Washington, Lincoln, FDR, and Jefferson Monuments
    •The government-operated Statue of Liberty
    •The Grand Canyon and all national/state/regional/local parks, forests and monuments
    •The socialist World War II, Korean and Vietnam Veterans Memorials in every town
    •The government-run socialist-propaganda location known as Arlington National Cemetery
    •All other public-funded socialist sites, whether it be in my state or in Washington, DC. This also includes Post Offices, fire departments, police departments, public schools, libraries and zoos.


  2. Mike M says:

    I believe you have to attack citizens (non-military, government, police) with the aim of affecting government in order for it to be terrorism. If I heard right they have been charged with insurrection. Treason would apply if they were doing this on behalf of another government.

  3. Nastyogre says:

    @ # 18 Mike M.

    In a very real sense that would be correct, but I believe the law is written only that the action’s purpose be to cause terror and fear for a political end. That’s my Social Studies teacher understanding and what I remember of studying Law in my poli sci courses. I’ll have to check up on that.

    Their planned attacks might have initially targeted the police and government but you can bet that their attacks on the funerals would have caused civilian casualties in the friends and families of the fallen officers and officials. That would make them terrorists by your definition.

    The term for seeking to overthrow your government is sedition. When you do it for the benefit of another government you are correct that it becomes treason. You can argue that organizations that espouse some sort of new government are not seditious but treasonous even if they don’t involve a foreign power. They are in fact working for another government, even if it is a different domestic state. A good example would be those that supported the American Confederacy. While that became a defacto and actualized government, the Union never recognized it. Some argued the Confederates were treasonous, others that they were seditious. It’s kind of semantic.
    The punishment for each is usually death, as barbaric as that is.

  4. Dimitri says:

    I’m christian, not totally like some other people because I find this site funny and true, but I personally think that any terrorism is horrible and is unacceptable. Religion does not matter at all because you can’t tell a person’s character from what religion they are born into. People should be able to choose what they want to believe, but it is wrong to try to force that belief on others (ie Kansas school system/ “Christian Militia”)

  5. Bosn_C_Otter says:

    your story of the Scotsman strikes true also in the current Catholic molestation scandal. Christians of all faith are calling the priests “imposter’s” and not real priests but Homosexuals that pretended to be priests.

  6. Schmeeges says:

    To Bosn_C_Otter…

    Are Christians of all faiths really calling these reprehensible priests Homosexuals? Are they really? That may be the opinion of a few ignorant reactionaries, but one does more harm than any good possible in sharing, promoting or relaying (however accurately) an opinion that child molestation and sexual orientation are inevitably intertwined. For goodness’ sake – let’s leave the gay community alone with this issue – this is NOT a gay issue, this is an issue about truth! I agree that these men are not priests – they are liars (amongst other things) and in my opinion as an ex-(baptised, not by choice)Catholic-turned aetheist -turned aesthetist – turned Pastafarian, any church who continues to allow their ‘pillars’ to remain standing after confirmation of their betrayal of others’ faith in them should be razed to the ground.

  7. theFewtheProudtheMarinara says:

    “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag, carrying a cross”.

  8. James says:

    Interesting that almost every religions group seems to require an “US” and a “THEM” to congeal the group and maintain cohesiveness. The “US’s” must try to convert the “THEM’s” and, barring the success of rational discourse about an irrational and unprovable tenant, must kill those among the “THEM’s” who are unable or unwilling to see the truth in the “US’s” philosophy and subsequently convert.
    Saddly the US’s usually have no problem, torching or even killing the “THEM’s” – it is justified in every major religious text from the Bible to the Koran, even when the “THEM’s” are among the ranks of the most noble profession, the public servant who has taken an oath to protect and serve the public interest. Even when the “THEM’s” are just plain old everyday john Q citizens who didn’t do anything to draw the wrath of the “US’s” down on them. The only true solution to the problem of the “US’s” is and will be education – anything less will just polarize them and strengthen their resolve to cleanse the world of the errant “THEM’s. It’s a real shame that a philosophy with such promise (the religious ideal of love and respect to your fellow man) can be so easily be perverted into a pretext to persecute those who don’t share your beliefs, kill medical professionals who assist other people in private health matters which are none of their concern, and even to try to ignite wars between the “Antichrist” and “God’s army” We are truly a young and stupid species! I find myself vacillating between hoping that we don’t arbitrarily exterminate ourselves and all the other life forms on this planet in the name of “US” vs “THEM” and feeling a deep sorrow for all the other creatures of this planet who have, through no fault of their own, come to be subjugated by man.
    Thanks for keeping FSM alive – it is seriously needed!

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