YPSILANTI, Mich. — In a world becoming more interconnected every day, militia groups across the US are fighting to reclaim an industry they view as being increasingly dominated by foreigners — Domestic Terrorism.
One such militia based out of Michigan, calling themselves the Wolverine Watchmen, rocketed to prominence this past week after several members were arrested for plotting to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer.
“When the government did 9/11 and then named the terrorists as a bunch of Saudis, it literally hijacked the industry” said militia leader Hunter Dickerson. “Now people assume we’re just neckbeards, airsoft guns, and tactical pants with a 52-inch waist, but we’re more than that. Some of us are violent extremists willing to use fear as a weapon”
The group, named for characters in the film Red Dawn (“the old one, not the new one with Black kids in it,” stressed one militia member), seeks to bring white males back to the center of the domestic terrorism discussion.
The group points to the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995 conducted by militia members Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols as the highwater mark of industry dominance by average US citizens. They lament that more recent attacks and mass shootings are consistently classified as one-off events and struggle to be defined as terrorism by the media.
“Hollywood bias and affirmative action gives all the terrorism focus to minorities,” said Dickerson. “Mark Wahlberg has made 30 movies about sleeper cells and exactly zero about incels.”
Militias as an institution are specifically accommodated for in the Second Amendment which calls for “a well regulated militia,” presumably to threaten fellow citizens and overthrow government activities that don’t align with either the Confederacy or Nazis as the founding fathers intended.
Federal agency representatives explain that they’re aware of militias across the US but acknowledge that it’s difficult to take them seriously despite a ramp up in violent intent. “Seeing a pipe bomb with Cheetos fingerprints and dip spit stains on it is just harder to view as legitimate terrorism,” said one agent.
Sources also point to mixed messaging from the President as cause for exclusion of militias from the domestic terrorism industry and discussion. Telling the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by,” tweets like “Liberate Michigan” or “It would be a real shame if someone kidnapped Governor Gretchen Whitmer” cast militias in a non-terrorist light to many citizens.
Despite these challenges, the fight goes on for the Wolverine Watchmen and militias like them across the country. “At the end of the day, it’s about representation,” says Dickerson. “I look at the FBIs list of Domestic Terrorists and I don’t see nearly enough people who look like me.”