Teaching confrontation

Gun lobbyist preaches to Tea Party choir

There is a war raging in this country, people. A battle for the hearts and minds of Americans. Right now the leftist-humanist-socialist lying evil-doers are winning. But the Judeo-Christian Puritans have had just about all they can take. They are turning off their TVs and organizing in cities and hamlets across the nation in an attempt to take back America.

Witness: Last Saturday, Aug. 7, members of the Butte County Tea Party gathered at the Chico Elks Lodge for what amounted to a call to arms.

Sam Paredes, the executive director of Folsom-based Gun Owners of California (GOC), gave a six-hour PowerPoint pep talk to the 50 to 60 attendees who were tired of what they saw as big government eroding their rights, enabling a decay of the nation’s collective moral standing, and rejecting God and the principles that made this country what it is—or was, anyway.

“Dogs bark, jackasses bray, snakes wiggle and liberals lie,” Paredes said. “It’s their nature to do so.”

Paredes’ presentation was based on the book Confrontational Politics, written by former state Sen. H. L. Richardson, who founded Gun Owners of America in 1975. GOC is a spin-off of that organization, and some of its members view the better-known National Rifle Association as weak and too eager to compromise with the gun-grabbers.

A hefty man with a contemporary sense of humor—he made Darth Vader-like breathing sounds into the microphone—Paredes, the son of Latino immigrant parents, said his priorities are “God, family, guns and the Tea Party.” Chico was one stop on his mission to bring Richardson’s lessons of aggressive politicking to that long-forgotten segment of our society: middle-aged and older white people.

He said a recent wave of conservative activism is a reaction to the devastation current government leaders have unleashed on, among other things, the economy, the institution of marriage and our schools. “Finally, there is a great awakening,” he said. “Many people are turning off the TV and starting to do something about it. Others are angry enough to at least attend meetings.”

Paredes credited the local Tea Party for defeating “the last vestige of communism/socialism on the Board of Supervisors.”

He was referring to the primary-election defeat of longtime Butte County Supervisor Jane Dolan. He went on to claim that, as he understood it, Dolan, a person with no “real employment skills, is now drawing unemployment.”

Dolan has a day job; for the past 20 years she has run Dolan Appraisals, the family business her father established. And she remains a salaried supervisor through December. But if anyone in the audience knew that, they didn’t bother to correct the speaker.

Paredes went on to say liberals don’t have real jobs—that’s why they get involved in politics. Conservatives have jobs and thus don’t get caught up in politics. He then explained the dynamics behind the progressives’ political success: “Liberals will put conservatives on the defensive every time. You gotta look ’em in the eye and be brief but honest,” he said. “Liberals have no moral compulsion to be direct or to answer any questions asked of them.”

Instead, he said, they answer questions with questions of their own. Then they change the subject. But if you stand your ground, he advised, they will get frustrated and start calling you names.

The problem is conservatives politely try to answer the question. And that’s a mistake.

“I’m talking conservative vs. liberal, here; not Republican vs. Democrat. The war here is between liberals and conservatives. It’s easy to be a liberal. They are duplicitous; they lie, cheat and steal,” he said. “Conservatives are too modest; they respect others and are honest because they have the Judeo/Christian/Puritan ethics.”

Conservatives, he said, believe in right and wrong and consequences.

“For [liberals] it’s ‘anything goes, baby,’ as long as you can get away with it. Radical liberals don’t feel guilty about telling a lie.”

He said liberals invent problems like environmental degradation to rally special interests who in turn keep the liberal politicians in office. (The BP oil spill, he observed, amounted to little more than “a few plumes of oil in the water.”)

At the end of the presentation, Paredes compared America to a great mansion that is falling apart under its current owner.

“We need to plant roses and start culling out the noxious weeds…” He stopped mid-sentence, unable to continue because he was emotionally overwhelmed. He handed the microphone to a silver-haired man in a black ball cap and Harley-Davidson vest and asked him to finish, which he did, reading the words on the PowerPoint screen.

In the end, Paredes found his voice and urged his audience to fight on.

“We need your help,” he said. “You can work under the radar screen, and the media won’t know what’s happening.”