The writer Thomas Paine wrote in The Crisis, “these are the times that try men’s souls.” Indeed, the present time in our nation is a time that will try the souls of even the strongest men. Our vast democratic republic has fallen into a state of arrant cataclysm; an abhorrent upheaval of the intentions and plans set forth for us by our forefathers. We have reached an impasse in the great experiment of America, the likes of which we may never fully recover. We have found ourselves in an egregious state of affairs by our own hand; our actions and our apathy have led us to this point. We have become a nation of parsimonious cowards, refusing to take the blame for our own failures. We have allowed into our midst the very things we fought against for hundreds of years, and now we must reap the fruits of what we have sown. In short, we have allowed ourselves to stand on the verge of collapse, and rather than step away from the edge, we continue to teeter ever so densely off the edge, as if we believe the fall to the bottom will not kill us. We have become arrogant in our actions, which has led us to where we are now.
This is not the first time our beloved nation has been so vehemently divided. Nearly two centuries ago, our nation fought—often brother against brother—in the bloodiest war many of our forefathers had ever seen. The equivalent of 6 million men died during that war, with many more left permanently disfigured and scarred. The war destroyed us, and we held the idea of unity in high regard for many years following, fearful of the possibility that we would see that kind of conflict on our soil once again. For years, we clung to the fantastical idea that we would suffer and rejoice as a united nation, a beacon of hope and freedom for the rest of the world. During the first World War, we were united. During the second World War, we were the victorious conquerors, the allies of freedom and champions of justice. During the time of Kennedy, we waged a silent war on communism and the Soviet Union. Our country had seen great strife, but we were the victors. We met every challenge with adversity. We continued where others failed.
Almost sixty years after President Kennedy, we are here, closer to another bloody war than we’ve ever been before.
North Korea, whether we wish to acknowledge it or not, is slowly gaining the capability to build nuclear weapons and long-range missiles. What North Korea lacks in technology, they make up for in expendable workers. Kim Jong Un is a ruthless man, an evil coward at his very core. It is of no consequence to him to keep killing engineers and scientists until he finally gets what he wants: the power to destroy his enemies. The Middle East is a wasteland of pestilence; we have spent billions of dollars and thousands of American lives on a conflict that cannot be won, fighting an enemy that has yet to be conquered. ISIS has taken control, and we willingly created a power vacuum when we removed Muammar Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein, whether we wish to admit it or not. We are also responsible for the crisis in Syria, as we helped put Bashar al-Assad into power. We are the ones that got firearms into the hands of the Mexican drug cartels. We are the ones that gave money to Iran. We are the ones that have allowed China to become the superpower that they are. We are the ones that allowed Osama Bin Laden to walk free the first time. We propped up Fidel Castro and supported his rise to power in the beginning.
In short, we have been responsible for calamity and catastrophe across the globe for decades, and then we pretended as if it never happened.
Currently, we are over $20 trillion in debt. We have a failing healthcare system. We have a failing education system. Our fiat economic system is on the brink of collapse, inflation continuing to increase. Americans have more debt than ever before, many of whom have hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of student loans for university education. And still, with more people obtaining four year degrees, many are unable to find decent paying work. Social security will not be able to continue with our current financial situation. Fourteen percent of our adult population is considered illiterate. Twenty-three percent of Americans can only read at a basic literacy level or below proficiency. Around 30 million adults can only read at or below a fifth grade reading level. In places like rural Beattyville Kentucky, the life expectancy is drastically lower, with the median household income so low that poverty becomes an understatement.
We have allowed ourselves to be taxed into oblivion, and yet our federal government cannot seem to get its own spending under control. Cities like Detroit and New Orleans have been run into the ground by poor leadership and mismanagement of funds. Cities like Chicago, Baltimore, Stockton, New Orleans, and Memphis have become so violent that people are leaving in droves. We have allowed the government to use us and grow rich off of us, and yet we keep knowingly electing these shallow, selfish politicians every election cycle. We have allowed them to make a mockery of our constitution and our individual rights. We have watched in apathy as we slip further and further from the ideas of Federalism and liberty into Socialism and slavery. We have lived as cowards under the idea of peace, and embraced the yolk of indentured servitude under the guise of protection. We have become a society of fools, believing the lie that false security is worth the seceding of our personal liberties.
Worse than all of these affronts, however, is the startling fact that we willingly allowed it all to happen—and sometimes encouraged it.
We allowed people like Margaret Sanger to decide who lives and who dies, and as a result we kill the most innocent among us under the guise of protecting the rights of women. We no longer value human life, so we kill because we can gain from it. We steal from those who have nothing to give. We have become a lawless society that confuses order and tyrannical control with morality and law. We sexualize children and claim it’s under the guise equality. We normalize degeneracy in Gay Pride events, refusing to acknowledge those in the gay community who are actually activists, trying to do good in the world. We allow, encourage, and normalize pedophilia and the exploitation of children. No longer is Christianity widely practiced; rather, it is persecuted. Churches can no longer speak out against homosexual marriage, because of the argument “love is love”. Churches are being sued into bankruptcy by those who claim persecution. We have allowed the threat of radical Islam to creep in, taking a stronghold in places like California, Michigan, and New York. We have ignored the warnings that we have seen from Europe, and have welcomed the Trojan Horse into our lands with open arms, with many believing the lie that Islam is a religion of peace.
In short order, we have made a mockery of the great American experiment. We have made a mockery of everything that our forefathers intended. And yet, we continue with our apathy, choosing to fight each other in superfluous matters rather than focusing on important issues. In short order, if we worked together as we ought, we could solve the problems that so frequently plague us. Rather than find solutions, we have spent our time bickering, using social media platforms to dissolve our communication and our relationships with others. No longer do we have healthy debates regarding the issues; we fight one another because we as a collective have lapsed into selfishness. How ashamed of ourselves we should be! While countries like Venezuela are clamoring for food, we fight over issues that no longer matter—that haven’t mattered for some time. We have allowed our economy to wither and our society to crumble, and we’ve done it all while being as easily distracted as primates at a zoo. Perhaps that is all that we’ve devolved to?
Truthfully, we have none to blame but ourselves for the state of affairs we have found ourselves in. We allowed it to happen, under the guise of progress and moving forward. In an attempt to be enlightened, we have forgotten the men like de Tocqueville, Paine, Locke, and Spinosa. In an attempt to sound compassionate, we have censored speech to the point that we are living in an Orwellian nightmare. In an attempt to give justice, we have punished those who did no wrong. In an attempt to police the world, we have forgotten ourselves. In short, we have forgotten our purpose. We are no longer a nation of innovators. We have become a nation of fools.
It is truly a terrifying notion to think that the age of men like Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford, Nikola Tesla, and JP Morgan no longer exists. Unfortunately, society has demonstrated that we no longer yearn for knowledge and success, rather, we can only focus on the immediate desires of our minds—the carrot dangling in front of us. No longer are we a nation of problem solvers; we have become a nation of victims. Too many adolescents and young adults—and even some middle aged men and women—have no concept of the true history of our beloved country. Further still, too many Americans have no understanding of our laws or how our government is supposed to function. Too many assume that the yolk of slavery we have been living under is normal. We have conditioned ourselves to believe that giving up our liberties for the idea of security is a better alternative than the potential for terrorist attacks on our soil. We say that we don’t want to see the horror again; millions of Americans clearly remembering the attacks that occurred on September 11th, 2001 in New York and Washington DC. The horrible truth, however, is that if those attacks occurred in today’s society, we would turn our televisions off, rather than deal with the problem. In this mentality lies part of our problem: we say that we cannot ignore the atrocities around the globe, but when there is trouble for our own people, we turn our eyes from it. We must remember the words of the philosopher Plato: “only the dead have seen the end of war.”
To fix a problem, we must acknowledge that the problem exists in the first place. We must acknowledge our own failures, as much as we acknowledge our victories. We must work together, rather than dividing each other. We must become a nation dedicated to freedom and liberty once again, rather than looking to blame others for our own mistakes. We must understand that the beauty in a democratic republic—which is what we are—is that it is our differences that make us unique, and our differences that unite us. We are a nation of people who have seen war and famine. We have fought communism and evil across the globe. We have stood up against injustice and won. We have produced innovators and thinkers, and put men on the moon. We have proved that grit and determination could see us through. We must remember the roots from whence we came.
We can no longer afford to be failures. We can no longer afford to follow the pattern of the rest of the world. We are the United States of America, the great experiment from a few bold men. If we continue down this path of failure—of lunacy—we will never be victors again. It is time for the silent majority to rise to the occasion and restore our beloved homeland to the glory it once was. There is no longer time to wait, we must act swiftly and with courage.
If this country fails, the blood will be on our own hands. It is up to us to give the future generations something to be proud of. It is up to us to do what is right because it is right. We are the captains of our own fate. It is time to determine whether or not we want that fate to be glorious or doomed.
Thank you all for continuing to read. Below, I've linked Thomas Paine's works, if you want to take a look. Also, if you want to donate to keep the website going, please do! This blog is made possible by readers like you. Thank you all!
As a millennial, I am used to hearing things like, “millennials are ruining this country”, and “you millennial kids almost elected a socialist”, and “millennials have zero life skills”. I hear about it all the time. I get it, boomers hate millennials. Gen Xers hate millennials. Honestly, I hate most millennials.
However, growing up in rural northern Alabama, with older, doomsday prepper parents, a grandmother that grew up on a farm and is still growing a garden at 76, and an aunt who regularly makes her own soaps, spins her own yarn, and forages for lifesaving plants, I am more like a Baby Boomer than I am a millennial.
As someone who myself believes that the end is indeed nigh, I have noticed that an overabundance of my generation is, in fact, useless when it comes to “doing for ourselves.” In fact, the statistics don’t lie:this article by Forbes shows that millennials are really struggling in the life skills department. This article mentions that most millennials don’t know how to cook, sew, or know anything about basic home repair. More millennials can afford to eat out, which means that many choose ready-made meals or fast food. Many millennials grew up in homes where cooking was not an every day occurrence, and even fewer millennials know basic sewing skills, like how to sew on a button.
I wonder how many millennials have actually thought about how long they would live if there were, in fact a zombie apocalypse?
Okay, maybe not a zombie apocalypse, but have you considered the Yellowstone Supervolcano? The San Andreas Fault? What about an EMP blast that would take out the power grid? Or what about a disease like the superflu from the movie Contagion? What if, somehow, Ebola or Marburg were to have an outbreak in North America?
Well, folks, I got news for a lot of you: you’d probably die pretty quickly. Either by starvation, dehydration, or being killed by the hand of someone else; after all, it's a rough life once the apocalypse starts, gotta look out for number one.
I don’t mean that in a bad way, it’s just that so many of you have no clue how to survive. So many of us have become pretty dependent on electricity, smartphones, and internet that we have no clue how to survive if things went sideways in a hurry. As someone who grew up hearing, “PREPARE FOR THE END” speeches regularly, and was trained in doomsday preparation, I feel that I should impart to you all some of the things that I have learned. Without further delay, I present to you: the millennials guide to surviving the apocalypse, part one.
Water and Food: Your Main Priorities
So, the apocalypse is upon you. Maybe Kim Jong-Un succeeded in sending a nuclear missile, or maybe the Yellowstone supervolcano finally erupted. Either way, life as we know it is over, and you’d better get yourself together, or you will surely die. Or someone will try to eat you. The first things you need to be concerned with are food and water. The first thing I suggest in this situation is to be proactive. Before the apocalypse starts, you need to learn how to grow/hunt/forage for your own food, and how to preserve it. You can preserve pretty much anything in a pressure canner. I prefer them to water bath canners purely because it pressurizes the food and prevents bacteria from growing. Plus, the food is typically preserved for a lot longer. With freezing food, a lot of it will defrost and go rancid within a few days, so canning, drying, or storing stuff in a root cellar is your best bet. Though a canner can run on the pricey side, I’m going to link the Presto canner that I have below. You can make 6-8 quarts of marinara sauce at once, or can 6-8 quarts of potatoes fairly quickly. That way, you can preserve meats, vegetables, soups, stews, and stuff like bone broth for fairly cheap. Another way to preserve stuff like meat, vegetables, and fruits in a dehydrator. The Presto dehydrator I'm linking below is actually pretty cheap, and I personally love Presto products because they’re good quality and fairly affordable. I also recommend either growing and drying your own food, or buying things like dried rice, dried beans, and "non-perishable" food items. Check the sales papers, and use coupons. You can gets lots of stuff like rice, canned corn, green beans, and carrots on sale, and things like condensed soups, ravioli, and chicken noodle soup for pretty cheap, and you need to learn how to stock up. I also suggest learning how to do things like make your own spaghetti sauce, bread, and butter, all of which are easy to do. You can even preserve eggs, like it mentions in this article. If you want to stave off starvation, you’re gonna need to learn all about food preservation.
You’re also gonna need to figure out how to filter your water, too.
You can survive three minutes without air, three hours without shelter, three days without water, and three weeks without food. Likely, you’ll already have shelter, so your next priority is going to be water. Now, you have a few options. The best option is to start storing jars and bottles of water, but if you don’t have that option, you need to learn how to collect and filter out water, or guess what, folks? You guessed it, you’re going to die. Boiling water over a fire is one of the easiest methods, but you can also filter it with activated charcoal. You can do this by grinding charcoal from the wood, and turning wood into charcoal. You can also order charcoal pieces. If you can afford it, I recommend purchasing a few Sawyer Water Filters. They’re some of my favorites for water filtration. I also recommend learning how to collect rainwater, whether it be into giant drums, barrels, or bottles, it’s one of the best sources of water collection. Streams and creeks are good, but you still have to boil and filter, otherwise you’re liable to get sick from bacteria in the water. I’d filter the rainwater too, but if you set up a filtration system, you can save a lot of time and make sure you have water to drink so that you don’t die.
Speaking of Food, Know How to Grow It
That’s right, you’re gonna have to grow your own food. Now, I know some of you have no clue how to do this, but it’s so simple that you can regrow some stuff like green onions simply by sticking the roots in water, and most foods can be grown in containers in your home, as long as they have access to sunlight. Two of my favorite seeds companies are Bonnie and Heirloom, and you can order a variety of whatever you want. I suggest things like tomatoes, cabbage, herbs, okra, and squashes like crookneck and zucchini. I’d also recommend stuff like cucumbers, too. Learn what grows best in your climate, learn a little bit about soil, and try growing some plants on your window sill. You need to know how to grow food, and you need to be preserving seeds to grow when everyone starts eating each other. Walking Dead fans flipped out over the cannibals at Terminus, but the truth, friends, is that it ain’t that far off to suggest that cannibalism could start pretty quickly.
(Side note: during the apocalypse, start checking people’s hands. If they’ve got the shakes, they’ve got the human version of Mad Cow, called Kuru, and you need to watch your back...Or they’ll start munching on it.)
Waste Not, Want Not
My grandmother, who grew up during WWII and was the child of a cotton farmer who survived the Great Depression, taught me early on not to waste anything. This included washing and reusing Ziploc bags, repurposing fabric and household items for other uses, and learning how to forage for edible plants that grew in the yard. She was the first one who taught me that dandelions, pokeweed (poke salad), and honeysuckle. She, and my mother, also taught me how to do things like dry clothes on a clothesline, and use everything you can use. It’s important not to waste anything, because it could wind up being the difference between life and death for you.
In Part II of the Millennial’s Guide to Surviving the Apocalypse, I’ll detail everything you need to know about making shelter, learning to hunt and fish for food, and what you need to know about foraging for plants. If you like what you read, give it a share, or a like, and tell your friends!
Below are links to PayPal and Patreon, because this website operates from readers like you. I've also linked all the products that I've mentioned, so that they'll be easy for you to find. If you like them, let me know!
Until next time!
For many Americans, Thanksgiving signifies the beginning of the Christmas season (unless you’re one of those weirdos who put your tree up right after Halloween. That should be a crime, but that’s neither here nor there.) For some, Thanksgiving is a stressful time, for others, it’s very much looked forward to. Either way, it’s been a staple of American culture for many years, and it’s a significant part of American history. In recent years, some have suggested that Thanksgiving is a symbol of racism, that Thanksgiving shouldn’t be celebrated as a national holiday.
That’s why I’m writing this; to tell everyone the real history of Thanksgiving. Not what these lovely girls have to say in this video here.
See, Thanksgiving has a huge, sordid history, but it isn’t exactly a history of death and destruction. Well, kind of—but not the kind that you’d think. Without further adieu, I give you the History of Thanksgiving. Hopefully, you read this before your tryptophan induced turkey coma sets in on Thursday. Happy reading, friends.
For centuries, cultures have been celebrating the harvest in various ways. For some, Samhain signaled the end of the harvest. For others, harvest festivals took place just around the autumnal equinox, usually toward the end of September. Not only was it a festival to celebrate the end of the farming season, but it signaled the beginning of autumn, and the preparation for the coming winter. Later on, many Europeans had "festivals of Thanksgiving", in which they set aside time to give thanks to God for blessings, and for a successful harvest season.
Most Americans are taught that the "first Thanksgiving" took place between the Pilgrims and Native Americans in the New World in October of 1621. However, records indicate that the first Thanksgiving festivals were actually conducted by the Spaniards at St. Augustine, and by French Huguenots near Jacksonville, Florida in 1564. The French Calvinists believed they had found freedom from religious persecution in the New World, and in short order, had established a settlement and begun to build a life. They'd even developed a relationship with the local Native American tribe, the Timucuans, and had even been able to press grapes for wine. Unfortunately for these poor souls, they met their end just a year later, in 1565. It seems the Spanish, who had claimed Florida as their own, didn't care for "French heretics" who kept attacking Spanish ships as they traveled by. Because of that, King Phillip of Spain issued orders to "hang and burn the Lutherans", and Spanish officials did just that. A few weeks later, the Spanish also massacred 300 French shipwreck survivors near St. Augustine. This only served to disintegrate the relationship between Catholics and Protestants.
Remember that this Thanksgiving when that one aunt you can't seem to get along with makes a snarky remark about you majoring in philosophy.
Thanksgiving services were recorded in Virginia as early as 1607. The first permanent English settlement, Jamestown, held regular Thanksgiving services. Another group of English settlers who wound up at Berkeley Hundred had their first Thanksgiving service in 1619. Unfortunately for them, the settlement was obliterated a few years later, with the Indian Massacre of 1622, when a group of Native Americans from the Powhatan tribe (the Virginia Algonquians) came in unarmed with things to sell to the settlers, and then grabbed any tools they could find and killed every man, woman, and child in the settlement. This was just one in a series of attacks that wound up killing a quarter of the English population in Virginia; 347 people. From then on, all Thanksgiving services or feasts were held at Jamestown, which was the only settlement that survived.
Native Americans have mentioned violence as a part of Thanksgiving; what they forget is that Native Americans incited a lot of the violence.
The "First Thanksgiving" is the one recorded at the Plymouth Plantation in 1621. It was prepared by the four adult women in the settlement, as well as a few children and servants. The feast celebrated a successful harvest for that season, and the feast continued sporadically through the years.
In truth, a lot of "Thanksgivings" were declared over the next hundred years or so. The first "officially" declared Thanksgiving occurred in 1777, when Continental Congress declared a national day of Thanksgiving. Later on, the first observed day of Thanksgiving was November 25, 1782. Over the next few years, days of Thanksgiving would be declared, but it wasn't quite a national holiday just yet; it was more of a "we'll do a Thanksgiving whenever we feel like it" kind of scenario.
During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln declared a national day of Thanksgiving on the last Thursday in November in 1863. This proclamation by Lincoln, done at the close of the Civil War, was kind of the first annual "Thanksgiving as a national holiday." That's really where we can trace celebrating Thanksgiving back to. Post Civil War era, Thanksgiving continued to be celebrated, and today, it's the holiday we know and love.
Thanksgiving Fun Facts:
Thanksgiving is a holiday that doesn't get near as much recognition. Lots of food and family togetherness, yet none of the pressure of buying gifts. Be sure to tune in tonight on The Red Elephants' YouTube channel, where I discuss the history of Thanksgiving with Rick Write! Be sure to like, share, and subscribe, and watch the YouTube channel at 8PM CST!
In the 1950’s and 1960’s, Berkeley was known as the stronghold for the Free Speech Movement, Vietnam protests, and a garrison for the Civil Rights movement. Throughout the 40’s, Berkeley was the setting for protests against fascism. Though Berkeley has always been historically more liberal, it has also been a beacon for political activism and free speech—for everyone.
As referenced in my American Outliers interview with California activist Rick Write, Berkeley has most recently been in the midst of a firestorm of controversy. On February 1, 2016, former Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos was set to give a speech at UC Berkeley, signaling the end of his speaking tour. According to several people who came to hear Milo, the campus of Berkeley erupted in chaos. ATMs were smashed, people were pepper sprayed, flares were thrown at bystanders, and a generator was even tipped over and was set on fire. Milo had to be escorted out by his security detail. Later on, Ann Coulter decided to cancel her speaking engagement at Berkeley as well, for fear of her safety.
This spurred several protests, including the ones taking place at Berkeley on April 15th and April 27th, which spurred the fame of people like Kyle “Based Stickman” Chapman, Based Windu, and Based Skywalker--all of whom came to Berkeley to protect protesters against the terrorist group Antifa.
Being one of the most liberal cities in the United States, Berkeley is a haven for members of the radical leftist group, Antifa. They have shown their propensity for violence in places like Berkeley, where they incited riots. In New Orleans, they showed up in a deuce-and-a-half, maced pro-monument supporters and cut one pro-monument supporter’s leg open with a box cutter. In Boston and Philadelphia, they looted buildings and physically assaulted protesters. Most recently, in Europe, they have set the city of Hamburg, Germany, on fire, and assaulted journalists covering the G20 Summit.
For Antifa, Berkeley is perhaps the best place to be. With community support and a wide array of young, highly liberal college-aged citizens, Antifa can thrive. They are able to thrive so well that it has become a dangerous bastion for domestic terrorism and the suppression of free speech.
How do I know this?
I’ve seen it first hand.
On July 8th, 2017, I traveled to Berkeley with the media group The Red Elephants, Shuttershot 45, Very Fake News, and several other activists to conduct a social experiment: walk around Berkeley dressed in “Make America Great Again” hats, carrying American flags and Trump flags, just to see what the reaction would be.
It started out simply enough; we walked out of the parking garage and began walking toward the UC Berkeley campus. At first, we got a few questionable gazes and a few eye rolls from older people, and we even got praise from an older man who commended how brave we were to walk around Berkeley like that (though he could’ve meant stupid, too, because it definitely wasn’t the wisest idea). Once we got closer to the campus, things became much more heated.
One man with dreadlocks began to follow us, screaming obscenities and hurling insults. Several homeless people screamed “F*** TRUMP!”. Roadside merchants began to scream things at us as well, all the while, the man in the dreadlocks continued to follow us, screaming “F*** WHITE PEOPLE”, “F*** DONALD TRUMP”, “I HATE WHITE PEOPLE” and my personal favorite, “WHITE PEOPLE NEED TO DIE”.
One of the more infuriating aspects of this walk was that one family began to scream and curse us and even threaten us with physical violence, all the while pushing their toddlers in strollers. We aimed to be as non-confrontational as possible, and for the most part, tried to be respectful. See, the one thing people miss is that when people are hurling vile obscene insults in your direction, not responding doesn’t make you weak; it shows your character.
As we continued down the main strip in Berkeley, we saw several anarchists symbols. We also realized we were being followed by Antifa members. They were tweeting our location the whole time, all the while, the man in the dreadlocks continued to scream at us. One man who walked with us, who is known as Based Spiderman, was physically attacked at Berkeley on February 1st, and was the largest target of insults. Several people, identifying themselves as SHARPS (Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice) followed after us, calling us fa**ots, telling us to “go f*** ourselves”, and called Based Spiderman a “coon”, a “house n***er”, and an “uncle Tom”.
However, the biggest issue was when the SHARP who had been screaming at us threatened to stab us.
Three separate times he began to draw his knife on us, getting closer to us as we tried to walk away. One woman with us continually called the police, but for nearly three blocks, the police did nothing. It was no longer about the flags or the fact that we were “conservatives”; it became evident that the man in dreads, as well as the SHARP, wanted us dead--or at the very least, wanted to physically incite violence.
What stood out to me the most was that, while there were a few hardcore Donald Trump supporters, the rest of the group was fairly moderate. If the people threatening to harm us had bothered to take a moment to discuss that, they would’ve figured that out. In fact, I’d wager to bet there were only a few “classical conservatives” among the group.
Eventually, we ended our march after the police showed up, after the third time the SHARP man came at us with the intent to stab us. We asked for police to keep a buffer around us as we walked to our cars—which they agreed to do. By the time we left, it become abundantly clear that we had proved our point: Berkeley is no longer a place for free speech.
After my experience, I realized two things: first, it was apparent that to speak outside the narrative is truly a dangerous thing. Second, there is such a strong cultural divide in this country that it is dividing people more than the media would like you to believe. Intellectual discourse is a thing of the past; no longer do people approach the political spectrum with a sense of rationality.
Will I go back to Berkeley? Probably not unless I have a large group of people with me.
Was it worth it? It showed me quite a bit. It showed me that America has a lot of work to do to unify the country. It showed me that above all else, we need to protect the United States Constitution. It showed me that we have to treat everyone with respect and kindness. And, above all, it showed me that we have to educate ourselves; to understand history and politics, economics and how our government is supposed to work.
More than anything, I learned that I may be considered “alt right” or a “radical conservative”, but I believe in freedom of speech. I believe in a small government. I believe in the Constitution. And most of all, more than anything else, I believe in America.
After the events in July, Milo Yiannopoulos held "Free Speech Week" in Berkeley in September, which The Red Elephants attended and live streamed at. During this event, Berkeley police finally began to arrest Antifa and By Any Means Necessary protestors, including middle school teacher Yvette Felarca.
Featured in the gallery are some of my shots from our walk through Berkeley. Also featured is footage from The Red Elephants, Shuttershot 45, and Very Fake News. I will link them all, please be sure to check them out!
Look for the next American Outliers interview, and make sure to share and subscribe!
Alabama has always been known to be entertaining when it comes to politics. As an Alabama native, I am no stranger to the weirdness and sometimes downright comical antics of political constituents. I remember the Don Siegelman scandal, and I remember the craziness that was the gambling controversy with former Alabama attorney general Troy King. In the 60’s, former Alabama governor George Wallace, seemingly loved by everyone in the entire state, stood on the steps of the University of Alabama and famously said, “segregation now, segregation tomorrow, and segregation forever.” www.youtube.com/watch?v=6C-kBVggFrs
To say we have our problems is an understatement.
However, this past year has been truly a spectacle in the ring of Alabama politics. After former Alabama senator Jeff Sessions was appointed by the Trump Administration to be the US Attorney General, that meant that his senate seat was up for grabs. In the past two years, Alabama has been in kind of a whirlwind of corruption and scandal. Former Governor Robert Bentley resigned in disgrace in 2017, after he (stupidly, on his part) accidentally revealed his affair with his secretary and political advisor, Rebekah Mason, because he forgot that his iPhone was synced to his wife’s iPad.
So, with the announcement of the newly opened senate seat, came the inevitable senate race. On the Democratic ticket, hailing from Birmingham, came former U.S. Attorney Doug Jones, a Clinton appointee who was the lead prosecutor in the reopened 1963 Birmingham church bombing case. In the Republican corner, we had former lobbyist and Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange, who was backed by President Trump, and former gubernatorial candidate and Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore.
Now, a lot of people expected Strange to win. After all, he was backed by The Donald himself, so that must have insured a pretty big win for him, right?
Wrong. Oh, so wrong.
There are a few things Alabamians hate more than anything: lobbyists, adultery, and cover ups. Alabamians also don’t like being told who they should vote for. Unfortunately for Luther Strange, he happened to tick all of these boxes. He was a former big oil lobbyist in Washington D.C., before he decided to move back to Birmingham and open a law firm. He didn’t have an affair, but he was complicit with trying to sweep Governor Bentley’s vices under the rug. And, though Alabama voted almost unanimously for Donald Trump, we didn’t like the fact that big government was getting involved with our election. So, it was no surprised that Moore won the runoff election, which meant he would go on to face Doug Jones in the race for senate.
Surprisingly, Moore wound up pulling an overwhelming lead.
For Alabamians like myself, who have seen our fair share of outrageous things when it comes to politics, Moore throwing his hat back into the political ring was almost like a scene out of a Will Ferrell movie. Honestly, this senate campaign wound up looking more like the movie The Campaign. There were quite a few things that made us roll our eyes, including Roy Moore bringing a gun to one of his rallies to “stand up for the Second Amendment”. As much as we didn’t want him, Conservatives were going to vote for him, especially after Doug Jones came out in support of late-term abortion. For many Conservatives, the decision was clear.
With the quick-growing Conservative counter-culture movement taking the internet by storm, many began to realize that Moore just might be a decent choice after all. Three main things have brought the election to the center stage, and caused a lot of people across the country to look at this election in a larger light. It’s easy to say that Alabama doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things, but with companies across the United States, like Remington and Mercedes, moving their plants to Alabama because of the tax incentives, and with a large chunk of the defense industry centered in Huntsville, Alabama actually has more clout than people would think. First, Moore being elected means that there will be another Conservative in the senate. What does this mean? It means things like the Affordable Care Act will have a better chance at being repealed, and things like HR 3999, introduced by Carlos Cubelo of Florida, will have less of a chance to get passed. Second, this means that we will have one less RINO in the Senate, and as a result, we will have a better chance to fight globalism that keeps encroaching from Democrats in the House and Senate. Third, this means that things like immigration reform and taxes will have a better chance at being changed. Having one Republican senator does not automatically guarantee that things will change over night, but it does guarantee that there will be one less politician in the Senate to undermine the United States Constitution. A lot of people might think I’ve lost my marbles at that statement, but especially after HR 3999 was introduced, it became quite clear to me that we did not need another far-left politician in the senate.
However, Moore has run into a few roadblocks as of late.
In the past week or so, Moore has been accused of sexual harassment. One of the accusers, Beverly Nelson, whose attorney is Gloria Allred, read her statement aloud, only to have her claim refuted by her stepson, Darrel Nelson. Darrell Nelson claims that his stepmother is “doing this for the money”, and also pointed out something interesting: why wait until just before the election?
While everyone can agree, sexual assault is wrong, and it is harmful, and true rapists and child molesters should be punished, there are a few things I’d like to point out regarding Mrs. Nelson’s claim, which leads me to believe she’s either being paid, or this is a ploy, or both.
1.) Roy Moore’s past politics
Mrs. Nelson claims that she chose to get in the car with Moore because “he was the district attorney”. This claim is false. Whether it be a miscommunication on her part, or a clear attempt to slander Moore, he was never actually the district attorney in Etowah County, Alabama. He was an assistant DA, which is totally different. Yes, he had a little bit of power, BUT Mrs. Nelson, if she has long been a resident of Etowah County, would’ve known his position. Bear in mind, Moore has also been a circuit court judge, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Alabama twice, and ran for governor. If we in the state of Alabama have absolutely no problem locking up Don Siegelman, and we also have no problem forcing Robert Bentley to resign in disgrace, then why on earth would we ever let something like that slide? Why wait until 25 days before the election, particularly when these concerns could have been addressed easily WHEN HE WAS RUNNING FOR GOVERNOR?
2.) Alabama Culture
In college, I was harassed by a married man who was in one of my classes. He was persistent, and it he began following me to my car, and trying to figure out where I lived. It got so bad that I told my boyfriend at the time, my parents, my professor for that class, and pretty much everyone else in my circle, so they could be aware of what was going on. If this grown man had thrown her out of the car, and she went to her boyfriend, as she claims she did, I have a hard time believing that he didn’t try to do something about it. In the South, things like that do not go unpunished. If he’d thrown her out of the car, surely her parents would have noticed bruises, right? Assistant district attorney or not, Mrs. Nelson’s father, and just about every male relative in her family would likely have gone after him. Etowah county is not very populated. As someone who is from a small town, news travels fast. It was a “scandal” when the DA for my county (a practicing Catholic) got a little too tipsy at his victory party several years ago. Wouldn’t something like that have gotten around the county pretty quick?
IF this had been common knowledge, Moore wouldn’t have stood a chance. Had this come out when he was running for governor, I would’ve been more inclined to believe it. However, Jones was lagging in the polls terribly, and Moore was gaining the support of anti-establisment conservatives everywhere. This meant that establishment Republicans and Democrats would no longer be able to continue to do nothing in Washington as they’ve done for years. If this had come out even four months ago, I would’ve been more inclined to believe it. The fact that it’s coming out now, right before the election, in the midst of all of these allegations, make the entire thing seem completely suspicious to me.
A win for Moore is a win for conservatives as a whole. We cannot base our entire judgment off of accusations that may or may not be valid. (Looking at you, Dale Jackson). The correct thing to do would be to open an investigation. If they aren’t true, and Moore is innocent, then the accusations won’t hold up.
Do I agree with Moore on everything? No. Do I think someone like Mo Brooks would have made a better choice? Yes. Am I voting for Moore? Also yes. Because, even accused (and we must remember, in this country we are innocent until proven guilty), he is a far better choice than Doug Jones.
As always, Alabama’s politics will continue to be a long, satirical version of Game of Thrones. However, one can only hope that we will do the right thing, and elect the right people.
And if not, it’s on us for electing yet another repugnant, vacuous reptile into the United States Senate.
As for Alabamians, we’re eager to watch this play out.
I met Rick Write when he and a group of California patriots came to New Orleans, after they’d heard about the Antifa attack on May Day.
They’d driven 41 hours straight on no sleep, coming in during the wee hours of the morning. They’d heard we’d needed help—they’d heard we’d been physically assaulted—and they’d decided that they weren’t going to let things get ugly. They’d heard about the police standing down, about the threats made on us. They came despite the risk, and through the digital age, we all became linked.
Rick is one of the “originals”. He was ambushed by the mob of protesters at the UC Berkeley event that Milo Yiannopoulos was slated to speak at. Since then, he’s gone on to contribute to The Red Elephants and Taking Back America, and has gone to political events across the country.
A former Marine infantryman, he’s a native of northern California. More recently, he’s covered the This Is Texas rally in Houston, and the hearing for Eric Clanton, a Berkeley ethics professor on trial for assault.
Me: Were you always conservative? Were you always active in politics?
RW: Conservative? No. Involved in politics? From a young age.
Me: What do you mean by ‘not conservative’?
RW: I have conservative values, but I’ve never fallen into the political spectrum as a conservative, though? Politically, I fall into more of a libertarian or classical liberal category, but my values fall more in line with conservatives.
Me: When did you begin following conservative media personalities?
RW: I’ve always followed them. I listened to Rush Limbaugh before the internet age, and then later Ludwig Von Mises once the internet age became popular. I started researching more in depth into The Federalist Papers, some of the not-so-published facts about Ben Franklin. I also followed several ‘left’ personalities, too. I listened to NPR quite a bit when I was younger.
Me: What sparked your involvement with the Patriot Movement in California?
RW: I got tickets to see Milo, and then was stuck inside a riot because I wanted to see a flamboyant, conservative, gay, Jewish political comedian who was apparently a Nazi, according to the rioters. It was that moment that I realized that society had truly lost its mind.
Me: Can you take me through the events of that evening?
RW: I showed up and parked several blocks away, because I heard that there might be protesters. I walked in, and there was already a huge crowd in a bit of a ruckus. Pretty soon, I see people are gathering and there’s a tipped over generator that bursts into flames. I was trying to avoid being attacked, so I went over to an area that was a bit more calm, turns out that’s where the conservatives and the college Republican club were, and we were surrounded. We were yelled at, threatened, a man threatened to give me AIDS, and about four or five of us were surrounded by 200 plus protesters. There was no way to tell who was on our side at that point. People started walking around bloodied up—people that I’d met—and because I was wearing a sweater, I threw on my hoodie and tried to duck out of the crowd. The rest of the night, I just blended in and I was able to avoid getting attacked, except for one point where, completely unprovoked, I was surrounded by 15 to 20 people, with my friend who’d gone there with me. The police’s response was to pepper ball the center—where we were—to disperse everyone. Turns out, the crowd had just beaten up someone else. In one way, I can respect the police decision, but in another way, it shows the police weren’t doing their job, because they let it get to that point.
Me: You were at the April 27th Battle for Berkeley, correct?
RW: Yes. And April 27th, there were bombs involved. One kid tried dropping off a typewriter in the middle of the rally.
Me: What was the tipping point for you?
RW: The tipping point for me was Milo. I’d taken a day off of work, I’d taken money and time aside, and I was attacked. Not even for my beliefs, but someone elses’ beliefs. I knew something had to be done now.
Me: What happened after Milo and the 27th?
RW: After that, I began coordinating with other groups for defense strategies and other patriot groups to insure that these events could take place.
Me: There wasn’t a whole lot of time between the 27th and May 7th in New Orleans. What made you decide that you needed to go to New Orleans?
RW: I heard through a veteran group that a fellow veteran’s wife was attacked and Antifa had attempted to kill her. They went for her femoral artery. And Antifa rolled up in military vehicles, after they declared war. I did what any salty, disgruntled Marine vet would do—jumped into my car and drove 41 hours straight.
Me: What did you expect New Orleans to be like?
RW: From the information I’d gathered, I thought it would be a full-blown war.
Me: How do you think the Southern patriot movement from the California patriot movement?
RW: California is a lot more racist than the South. Most of California life is based off of what others identify you as. The South wasn’t like that at all. The South was much more hospitable.
Me: Had you ever been to the South before?
RW: Only fly-throughs.
Me: You’re pretty involved now. What’s the biggest positive thing you’ve noticed?
RW: This is the fastest growing counter-cultural movement I’ve ever seen, and I think it’s largely due to the internet.
Me: How has getting politically involved impacted your life?
RW: I lost my job because of it. It affected my family and friend relationships negatively, but it’s created several new opportunities and friendships with like-minded people.
Me: Do you see any change being made in California?
RW: I see a huge uprising, where people who were afraid to talk are no longer afraid. By area, California is a majority red state, but the population in San Francisco and LA—where people don’t understand where their food comes from or how to run a business properly—is voting in rules for the whole society. It’s caused many California businesses to leave. It’s primed for a complete collapse of it’s economy. I can only hope that our movement can correct the problem enough that when it fails, it recovers quickly.
Me: To anyone that’s wanting to get involved, what would you say?
RW: If you wanna get involved, you can’t be afraid. I’m not gonna lie and say it’s not dangerous, but it’s far less dangerous than anything anyone else has had to do to evoke change in our society—historically speaking. We’re not at the point where we’re saying, “I have but one life to lose for my country”, thankfully.
Rick is currently working on several different ventures, and can be found on Facebook and Twitter.
Stay tuned for American Outliers: Part III!
Let me preface this by saying: I have always been politically involved.
It began as a child, with my parents imploring me to read The Federalist Papers, The Articles of Confederation, Common Sense by Thomas Paine, works by Voltaire, Kant, and Locke. The Great Awakening was an ever present aspect of my childhood, and with it came a political involvement at my parent’s behest. I never missed an election, inauguration, or important presidential address as a child. As a teenager, I paged in the Alabama Senate and the Alabama House of Representatives. However, as a young adult in the 2016 election, I stayed quiet.
It’s no secret that I am a conservative, but for a long time, I tried to remain moderate. My “moderate” stance remained until May 1, 2017, in which I was confronted for the first time by a left-wing affiliated group known as Antifa. It started simply enough; I was there taking pictures after I'd spoken to people l earlier that day. I'd brought them food (that Antifa stole, by the way, just walked right off with the spaghetti), and I wanted to see what it was all about. I wanted to know why everyone was protesting. I wanted to know what it meant to them specifically.
I've always voted. Since turning eighteen, I've never missed an election. I've written my representatives and campaigned for those whom I supported. Whether it was quietly, or openly. However, I never got involved with grassroots efforts or went to rallies. I never believed protesting, or being involved with organizations, would make much of a difference.
May 1st 2017 changed my view on everything.
The sun was setting on May Day. Things had been quiet—eerily so once the sun began to set—and I assumed that the protesters that were already there were Antifa. They were holding up signs that said, “You Lost!” and “The South will NOT rise again”, in reference to the Jefferson Davis monument slated to be removed. I’d asked a few protesters if they even knew who Jefferson Davis was—the resounding answer was “no”. Around 7:30 that evening, Antifa protestors showed up in force, in a deuce-and-a-half owned allegedly by the Tulane University ROTC department, with the Deputy Mayor riding shotgun. They showed up with noise makers, Antifa flags, and numbers. They began screeching into megaphones, loudly cursing and calling us fascists and Nazis. Soon, the situation devolved; they were throwing bottles, macing people, and cut a woman’s leg open with a box cutter. I left that night, watching the New Orleans Police Department stand down, wondering how we as a collective had sunk so far into anarchy that lawlessness was the new “progressive”.
That’s why I’m creating this project.
I get it; the idea of “conservatism” isn’t popular. After all, aren’t conservatives regressive? Don’t they hate the rights of others? Aren’t they bigoted?
No. And I’ll tell you why.
These days, you can be classified a conservative for saying that you’re a proponent of free speech. You can be classified a conservative for believing everyone should be treated fairly. You can be classified a conservative because you believe it is fundamentally wrong to incite violence at a peaceful protest.
That’s why I have started this project.
These interviews and portraits are the stories of Americans who want to have their stories told. These are the silent majority.
The first interview is someone whom I consider to be a friend. He was there on May Day, his face plastered on every newspaper in New Orleans, and a few online. His name is Kanjaksha Katta. He is an Army veteran originally hailing from New York, who made New Orleans his home.
Me: What made you get involved in the movement? What made you want to go out and get involved in the first place?
KK: Because it was happening in my backyard. I was supposed to go f***ing fishing. I saw Black Rebel being jumped and I decided, ‘it’s about that time’.
AM: You’re not from New Orleans originally, correct?
KK: Nah. Commie nation called New York.
Me: After May Day, can you tell me what happened?
KK: May Day we got attacked by a bunch of commies. It was about ten or twenty of us on the monument—about ten of us on a monument—and they attacked us with bottles, knives, whatever else they had. After that, I realized the time to stand up and fight is now. It’s not about flying flags, it’s about now we take the fight to them.
Me: Antifa has done this stuff at Berkeley and Denver and other places--
KK: Only difference in the past is that they’ve done most of it in places where they can’t have guns.
Me: Yeah, exactly. How long had you been out there before Antifa showed up?
KK: Probably a week. We got there the 24th I think.
Me: So, after May Day, how were you feeling?
KK: “Let’s do this! We need to take America back, we need to have America as our America, we don’t need to pander to these f***ing commies.”
Me: We know the monuments were taken down. We know the situation with the mayor, obviously, so what’s your goal now? What’s your fight now?
KK: The destruction of Antifa, and other groups like that. You name it—anyone that has anything to do with race—that’s what’s destroying this country. We need to deal with it.
Me: What do you think about groups like Antifa trying to silence free speech? Trying to silent the First Amendment right to free speech?
KK: They’re not gonna silence me.
Me: Where do you see yourself going? Where do you see yourself taking your mission?
KK: I think we need to finish the ongoing fight in NOLA, and then go elsewhere.
Me: Do you think it’ll ever be done? Do you think it’ll ever be finished? This city has a history of corruption with corrupt politicians and police officers.
KK: I think yes, but the only way it’ll happen is if people start to realize what’s actually going on. It isn’t just about the Confederacy, or the Confederate flag; it’s about America and the American flag, because those groups want that gone too.
Me: Antifa and other groups will go wherever the fight is. They’ve got twenty-three cities listed, are you gonna follow them?
KK: We’ll see what happens. I want to continue the fight here in New Orleans before we go do anything else; we need to get people involved in other places. Too many people are just talking about the problem—they’re all about their live feeds and their publicity—I don’t want that. I just want to fight for our freedom. That’s what needs to be important.
Me: So, to anyone new to the game or just getting involved politically and they’re cautious about it, what would you tell them?
KK: Politicians aren’t gonna do anything. It’s our job as Americans to stand up and protect our rights. Otherwise, it’s never gonna change.
KK and the group in New Orleans are currently still protecting other monuments in the area from vandalism, especially after the Dreaux monument was defaced a few weeks ago. KK and the rest of the group’s mission is this: defend all American freedoms for everyone. In KK’s words, “We may not agree with what you’re saying, but we’ll defend your right to say it.”
He’s planning to travel the country aiding people however he can, wherever the need may arise.
Stay tuned for continuing stories in the American Outliers series. If you want to be featured, message me directly.
Thank you all!
Video of right before the May 1 riot here:
A link to Shuttershot 45's coverage of the May 7 protests:
Amanda D. Moss is a political writer and photographer from Florence, Alabama. Amanda is a graduate of University of North Alabama with degrees in history and geography. She created American Outliers in 2017 in hopes to bring awareness to issues not covered by the mainstream media.