Military coup fantasy is latest in trend of extremist right-wing rhetoric
Research ››› ››› JEREMY HOLDEN & JOCELYN FONG
Continuing a trend of increasingly violent and revolutionary rhetoric advanced by conservative media figures, Newsmax columnist John Perry wrote that President Obama "is inviting" a military coup and detailed the reasons he said officers might support such a "[m]ilitary intervention" with the end result being one in which "[s]killed, military-trained, nation-builders would replace accountability-challenged, radical-left commissars." On the same day, radio host Jim Quinn told armed service members to "run for your life, get out," because Obama "is gonna get you killed."
Perry, Quinn latest to engage in extremist, revolutionary right-wing rhetoric
Newsmax columnist John Perry asserts Obama "is inviting" a "[m]ilitary intervention." Perry wrote, "There is a remote, although gaining, possibility America's military will intervene as a last resort to resolve the 'Obama problem.' Don't dismiss it as unrealistic." He added:
Will the day come when patriotic general and flag officers sit down with the president, or with those who control him, and work out the national equivalent of a "family intervention," with some form of limited, shared responsibility?
Imagine a bloodless coup to restore and defend the Constitution through an interim administration that would do the serious business of governing and defending the nation. Skilled, military-trained, nation-builders would replace accountability-challenged, radical-left commissars. Having bonded with his twin teleprompters, the president would be detailed for ceremonial speech-making.
Military intervention is what Obama's exponentially accelerating agenda for "fundamental change" toward a Marxist state is inviting upon America. A coup is not an ideal option, but Obama's radical ideal is not acceptable or reversible. [Newsmax.com, 9/29/09]
Jim Quinn tells U.S. troops: Obama "is gonna get you killed." Discussing rules of engagement in Afghanistan, Quinn stated on his radio show, "The only reason you put military anywhere is to win and win as quickly as you can, as ruthlessly as you can, because mercifully it will be over quick, instead of turning it into a meat grinder. I'm looking at -- guys, look, I love you all who go over there and serve, but I gotta tell you right now, run for your life, get out, this guy is gonna get you killed. Man, these people are scary." [Clear Channel's The War Room with Quinn & Rose, 9/29/09]
Conservative media increasingly preach rhetoric of violence, revolution
Media Matters for America has previously noted that since Obama's inauguration, conservative media figures have made ominous, even apocalyptic claims about the impact policies pursued by Obama and other progressives might have on the United States and have unleashed violent and revolutionary rhetoric. For instance:
Beck speaks for one third of the nation: "[Y]ou will have to shoot me in the forehead before you take away my gun" and "before I acquiesce and be silent." During the July 30 edition of his radio show, Beck warned "ACORN, GE, Obama, SEIU" that "you are awakening a sleeping giant, and I have nothing to do with it" and that "America is waking up. You know the American Revolution took place with 12 percent of the population? Twelve. Are you telling me there is not 30 percent of this population that you will have to shoot me in the forehead before I let somebody into my house to tell me how to raise my children; you will have to shoot me in the forehead before you take away my gun; you will have to shoot me in the forehead before I acquiesce and be silent." Beck further stated:
They cannot move on these things, because they are building a machine that will crush the entrepreneurial sprit and the freedom that our Founding Fathers designed. This machine, whatever it is they are building, will crush it. Do not let them build another piece.
So while I turn away, I want to make sure that I have at least 10 million eyes watching -- watching every single move they are making.
We know why they're doing what they're doing. You need to do what you need to do, and as long as that is peaceful, we will save our country. [Premiere Radio Networks' The Glenn Beck Program, 7/30/09]
Beck: "This game is for keeps"; "[Y]ou can shoot me in the head ... but there will be 10 others that line up." Asking his audience to "pray for protection," Beck claimed that "the most powerful people on the planet on the left" were "not going to go away easy" because "[t]his game is for keeps. This is who controls the United States of America and its destiny." He went on to state, "Just pray for protection, please." Beck subsequently stated:
You can try to put the lid on this group of people, but you will never silence us. You will never -- you can shoot me in the head, you can shoot the next guy in the head, but there will be 10 others that line up. And it may not happen today, it may not happen next week, but freedom will be restored in this land. Period. And no matter what you want to call it, it is a totalitarian state that you're headed towards. [The Glenn Beck Program, 9/08/09]
Beck: "There is a coup going on. There is a stealing of America." During the August 31 edition of his radio show, Beck stated that "there is a revolution, and they think they can get away with it quietly." Beck further claimed, "At this point, gang, I'm not sure, they may be able to because they are so far ahead of us. They know what they're dealing against; most of America does not yet. Most of America doesn't have a clue as to what's going on. There is a coup going on. There is a stealing of America, and the way it is done, it has been done through the -- the guise of an election, but they lied to us the entire time." He also said, "And they're gonna say, 'we did it democratically,' and they are going to grab power every way they can. And God help us in an emergency." [The Glenn Beck Program, 8/31/09]
Morris: "Those crazies ... who say, 'We're going to kill ATF agents' " are "beginning to have a case." During the March 31 edition of Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto, while discussing Obama's foreign and economic policies, Fox News contributor Dick Morris said: "Those crazies in Montana who say, 'We're going to kill ATF agents because the U.N.'s going to take over' -- well, they're beginning to have a case." [Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto, 3/31/09]
RedState's Erickson: "At what point do the people ... march down to their state legislator's house, pull him outside, and beat him to a bloody pulp?" In a March 31 post on RedState.com, while discussing a Washington county's ban on certain kinds of dishwasher detergent, managing editor Erick Erickson wrote of politicians: "At what point do the people tell the politicians to go to hell? At what point do they get off the couch, march down to their state legislator's house, pull him outside, and beat him to a bloody pulp for being an idiot?" Erickson later added: "Were I in Washington State, I'd be cleaning my gun right about now waiting to protect my property from the coming riots or the government apparatchiks coming to enforce nonsensical legislation." [RedState.com, 3/31/09]
Savage: "We're going to have a revolution in this country"; "These people are pushing the wrong people around." Michael Savage discussed multiculturalism and predicted, "This is not going to go on in this country much longer. We're going to have a revolution in this country if this keeps up. These people are pushing the wrong people around." Savage further said that "the rage has reached a boil. If they keep pushing us around, and if we keep having these schmucks running for office catering to the multicultural people who are destroying the culture of this country ... guaranteed the people -- the white male in particular." He continued:
Let me talk specifically. The white male in particular -- the one without connections, the one without money -- has nothing to lose, and you haven't seen him yet. You haven't seen him explode in this country, and he's still a majority, by the way. In case you don't know it. He is still the majority. No one speaks for him. Everyone craps on him. People use him for cannon fodder. And he has no voice whatsoever. He has nobody speaking for him.
So he goes to these extreme fighting events. Take a look at them, and you'll see what the white male is capable of. And you're going to find out that if you keep pushing this country around, you'll find out that there's an ugly side to the white male that has been suppressed for probably 30 years right now, but it really has never gone away.[Talk Radio Network's The Savage Nation, 8/21/09]
Quinn calls for "riots": "Our country was built on revolution, and it's about time we took it back." Discussing health care reform, Jim Quinn stated, "You have got to say no to this, and if they push this through, you need to riot in the streets. You need to riot in the streets." He further said, "Our country was built on revolution and it's about time we took it back. These people are dangerous," and "It's about time to put an end to this leftist control of this country, and if a revolution is what it takes, damn it , then that's what it's going to take, because liberty will not be denied." [The War Room with Quinn and Rose, 9/10/09]
Limbaugh: Obama "inciting violence" at town hall protests, "armying up" with "union bigshots", "tort lawyers" Rush Limbaugh claimed that "public sector union bigshots and the tort lawyers" were "the people that Obama is armying up with. These are the people Obama is marshalling to prevent you from engaging in the democratic process while saying you're sabotaging it. No incidents of violence [at the August town hall protests] until Obama's crowd showed up." Limbaugh further claimed that Obama was "inciting violence." [Premiere Radio Networks' The Rush Limbaugh Show, 8/7/09]
Chuck Norris in WND: "[W]hen that time comes ... will history need to record a second American Revolution?" In a March 9 column for WorldNetDaily, actor and political activist Chuck Norris wrote: "How much more will Americans take? When will enough be enough? And, when that time comes, will our leaders finally listen or will history need to record a second American Revolution? We the people have the authority according to America's Declaration of Independence." Norris also wrote, "On Glenn Beck's radio show last week, I quipped in response to our wayward federal government, 'I may run for president of Texas.' That need may be a reality sooner than we think." [WorldNetDaily, 3/9/09]
Beck pours gasoline on "average American," asks, "President Obama, why don't you just set us on fire?" During the April 9 edition of his Fox News program, Glenn Beck claimed to be imitating Obama while pouring liquid from a gasoline can -- which he later stated was water -- on an "average American." Beck said during his demonstration: "President Obama, why don't you just set us on fire? ... We didn't vote to lose the republic."[Fox News' Glenn Beck, 4/9/09]
Beck portrays Obama, Democrats as vampires, suggests "driv[ing] a stake through the heart of the bloodsuckers." During the March 30 edition his Fox News program, Beck aired a graphic portraying Obama and Democrats as vampires and said, "The government is full of vampires, and they are trying to suck the lifeblood out of the economy." Beck then suggested "driv[ing] a stake through the heart of the bloodsuckers." [Glenn Beck, 3/30/09]
Hannity "inspired" by Bachmann's call for "orderly revolution": "[A]s they attack you, you're going to have conservatives like myself in your corner." During the March 25 edition of Sean Hannity's radio program, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) told Hannity she is calling for "an orderly revolution" so that Democrats can't "achieve their ends any longer." In response to Bachmann's statement, Hannity said: "Well, I'm inspired by what you're saying, Congresswoman, and I only hope that your fellow Republicans get as energetic and as outspoken as you are here." At the conclusion of the interview, Hannity encouraged Bachmann to "keep going, and I promise you, as they attack you, you're going to have conservatives like myself in your corner, I promise you." Hannity then added: "Boy, that was inspiring." [ABC Radio Networks' The Sean Hannity Show, 3/25/09]