No One Is Safe Anymore
No one in America is secure in his or her home, as this story — one of the many in a long train of abuses and usurpations — related by Mark Steyn reconfirms:
…[The] US government is corrupt to a degree that government in the other anglophone democracies is not, and this should be a source of great shame to Americans.
~On the other hand, tea-wise, the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department is taking it to a whole other level. Two years ago, at 7.30 one April morning, a sleepy Bob Harte staggered to the front door of his home in Leawood, Kansas to answer a knock and found a fully-armed SWAT team outside preparing to use the battering ram. They shoved him to the floor, surrounded him with pointing rifles, and the whole rigmarole began…
When it was, eventually, over, and the home invaders left empty-handed, Bob and Addie Harte were naturally curious as to what they’d done to attract the attentions of the chocolate soldiers of Kansas law enforcement. The Johnson County Sheriff’s Department refused to say: There’s no sunshine in the Sunflower State, and the latest attempt to let some light in on the dank sewer of Kansas public records died in the legislature on March 25th. So it took a year and 25 grand in legal bills for Mr and Mrs Harte to find out why they and their children were on the receiving end of a paramilitary raid.
Here’s what happened:
1) The Hartes’ son was working on a science project: growing tomatoes and squash in a hydroponic garden in the basement.
2) So in August 2011 Mr Harte and his kids went to the Green Circle hydroponics store in Kansas City, Missouri to get some supplies.
3) They were seen leaving the store by a Missouri Highway Patrol officer, who noted the license plate.
4) In March 2012, the Missouri Highway Patrol passed on the license-plate information to the Johnson County Sheriff.
5) The Sheriff’s Department surreptitiously began going through the Hartes’ garbage.
6) After three examinations of the garbage, they showed up at the front door with the battering ram and SWAT team on April 20th.
So what’s going on?
The Missouri Highway Patrolman took down the license plate supposedly because hydroponic store supplies are used in the cultivation of indoor marijuana plants. Whatever criminality they suspected Mr Harte of was such a matter of urgency to the Missouri coppers that they sat on the plate number for seven months before passing it on to their Kansas colleagues.
Nevertheless, the Johnson County Sheriff took the matter so seriously that they made three overnight trips to the Hartes’ home to extract materials from their garbage. On the first occasion, they found “wet plant material” which they were unable to identify. So, on their two subsequent nocturnal visits, they performed “field tests” on it, and determined it was marijuana. So they ordered in the SWAT team.
A month after the two positive “field tests” and a raid that turned up nothing, the “wet plant material” came back from the real tests at the Johnson County Criminalistics Laboratory, which determined it was not marijuana or any other kind of prohibited substance.
It was loose-leaf tea.
Mrs Harte is not, as Anderson Cooper would say, a teabagger. She prefers her tea loose-leaf. So do millions of people around the world. See the definitive essay on the subject. I happen to be among their number. I’m partial to a nice pot of Darjeeling in late morning, and, more occasionally, a pot of Lapsang Souchong in the afternoon. My daughter is also a loose-leaf gal. I bought her some tea equipment for Christmas (no doubt the store was being staked out by undercover cops) and she takes a cuppa to school in the morning in an attractive mug with an individual tea strainer in the top. Full of “wet plant material”.
Almost everything is illegal now in America, especially on the food front. But apparently tea leaves have not joined the ever lengthening list of prohibited items.
Yet they were enough to earn Mr and Mrs Harte and their children a terrifying, traumatic and entirely unnecessary military raid from the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department. You put tea in a pot. But that doesn’t mean it is pot. This vital distinction is seemingly lost on the zealots of the Johnson County SWAT team….
~On the other hand, at least the Hartes and their kids are still alive….
While it appears that The Rule Of Law still exists in America, it is, in fact, dead, because it has become subject to the whims of those who work for the government at all levels. It is an empty promise, a false facade that hides the malevolent force of Despotism, and can be thrown aside in one swift and easy movement.
Trust no one who works for the government.
If a friend is employed by one, do not trust them fully because you can never be sure how he or she will act when they are ordered by superiors to come after you.
Do not trust the police or any official of law enforcement.
Do not trust firefighters, teachers, elected officials, clerks — any of those people whose security and freedom depend directly on the government, whose fealty to Freedom and Liberty cannot be confirmed with certainty.
We can not afford to trust anyone employed by a government because, like us, they want to survive and they will do what they think is best for their families [whether nobly or ignobly] or themselves before they stand-up for you or yours. This is Human Nature and cannot be denied, especially in these disordered, unsettled, and frightening times.
It is sad that we must live this way in the America of 2014.
But we allowed the situation to get this bad and the only way we will maintain our freedom to right our wrongs is if we remain free to act, free to resist Tyranny, free to defeat those who are fundamentally transforming The United States into a perverse version of what The Founders created.
And, further, we must prepare ourselves to act on a moment’s notice.
We must become Minutemen.
And we must not forget that the vast majority of the governments of The United States are run by those who respect no constitution or statutes. Therefore, we are under no obligation, as citizens who do respect our sacred covenants, to obey any of their edicts or rulings.
We are Americans, not slaves.
I know not what course others may take, but as for me: I will not be a slave; I will either Live Free Or Die.