Skip to main content

What is not often talked about in regards to the 2nd Amendment and its "well regulated militia" is that one of its original purposes was to enforce tyranny. In order to maintain the vast slave empire, the slave states organized "slave patrols", creating what amounted to a vast totalitarian police state over much of the young Republic. Slaves of course were not among those people who had the right "to keep and bear arms."

The slave patrols were among the "well regulated militias" of our early history and contributed to the militarism of that region, a militarism necessary to put down slave rebellions.

Patrollers at work in this 1839 graphic

The slave patrols aka "patrollers, pattyrollers or paddy rollers" had a well deserved reputation for brutality which was extended to whites who displayed anti-slavery sympathies. The Civil War brought an end to slavery, but the patrollers lived on in the form of the KKK and the local police and sheriffs departments who enforced the Jim Crow laws and customs that followed the defeat of Reconstruction.

If you have ever wondered why there are so many military academies south of the Mason-Dixon Line, why the Confederacy had such military prowess during the Civil War and why that region still has a strong tradition of militarism, well now you know.

Today's rightwing militia types, 2nd Amendment fundamentalists, survivalists, NRA hotheads and automatic weapons enthusiasts are pretty much the same type of white people who eagerly joined the slave patrols. They may found in all 50 states: north, south, east and west.

They talk about using their weapons to defend freedom against a tyrannical government, but you know what? I think the quote often attributed (possibly erroneously) to Sinclair Lewis sums it up,"When facism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross."

These folks have nothing to fear. If fascism ever does come to America, they'll be the star spangled brownshirts of the new regime.

Originally posted to BobboSphere on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 07:07 AM PST.

Also republished by Black Kos community and History for Kossacks.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site