Political Persecution: How the US Govt. Is Silencing the “Domestic Terrorists” of the Opposition
If I wrote that we’re living in a world that bears an ever-increasing similarity to Communist regimes throughout history, a lot of people would scoff and say that I was being melodramatic. But research compiled by the Media Research Center and shared on social media by The Heritage Foundation shows, through documents acquired via the FOIA, that the Biden administration is using tax dollars to actively target political opponents and dissenters as potential domestic terrorists in a program with the acronym TVTP.
It’s an important read, and the supporting documents that follow the money are all here in this PDF. (I originally came across this information on a very interesting episode of Dan Bongino’s podcast.)
So, by definition, are you an extremist? A budding domestic terrorist? A violent threat?
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What is the TVTP?
The Targeted Violence and Terrorism Prevention Grant Program (TVTP) is administered by the Department of Homeland Security. It provides funding to funds to public, private, and non-profit institutions — like colleges, universities, and county governments — “to establish or enhance capabilities to prevent targeted violence and terrorism.”
On the face, it doesn’t sound that bad.
But when you look closer, you’ll see that this funding is only doled out to groups that align with a specific agenda. And that agenda is to target conservatives, Christians, and Republicans in what MRC calls a “coordinated effort to make America into a one-party system.”
Fox News reports:
The Biden administration has awarded 80 grants through the TVTP totaling just under $40 million. The lowest grant was for $85,000, the highest was over $1.1 million, and the median was about $442,000. TVTP grant recipients are prohibited from engaging in viewpoint discrimination, according to DHS.
Started by the Obama administration under a different name, the TVTP was broadened and revamped by the Biden administration with a new focus on violent extremism and white supremacy. DHS named one of its TVTP goals as “media literacy and online critical thinking initiatives,” which many grantees listed as the mission of their projects.
One such grantee was the University of Dayton for its PREVENTS-OH program, which DHS awarded $352,109 to “draw on the expertise of the University of Dayton faculty” to fight “domestic violence extremism and hate movements.”
The university’s grant application submitted to DHS linked in a footnote to a controversial Dayton conference where an academic researcher presented a chart titled the “Pyramid of Far-Right Radicalization.”
From the report, here’s a look at that pyramid.
So if you support the NRA, are a Republican, consume media right of CNN, back your local cops, or are a Trump supporter, according to this pyramid, means you’re well on your way to a lifetime membership to the KKK and a free white hooded outfit. It conflates these innocent acts as stepping stones to becoming a neo-Nazi and joining a hate group.
So to summarize, if you are not with them, you are against them, and your own government has thrown 40 million taxpayer dollars at organizations who are trying to figure out how to identify you.
One of the most radical grant recipients was quite disturbing.
The University of Dayton PREVENTS-OH received. The webpage describing their program is mysteriously down. and a time-travel trip on the Wayback Machine to https://udayton.edu/blogs/udhumanrights/2023/2023-5-11-preventsohstudent.php only shows us a calendar, which we can all agree is most likely not the original use of that page.
According to The MRC, PREVENTS-OH “hosted a series of events that maliciously equated mainstream organizations with neo-nazis and other extremist hate groups.” (One of their events is where University of Cincinnati researcher Michael Loadenthal rolled out the Pyramid of Far-Right Extremism. He’s a self-proclaimed member of Antifa.)
At a separate taxpayer-funded PREVENTS-OH seminar, Loadenthal showed his true fascist colors, gloating about the illegal things that he’s done.
At this event, Loadenthal explained how “antifascists” could “pressure financial services” like “GoFundMe, Patreon, PayPal, Venmo” and others or “pressure 5 retailers” like Amazon and “service providers” like “AirBnB” and “Tinder” in order to “kick people off.”
Loadenthal likewise complained about “right-wing” social media platforms that provide “free speech” and celebrated “de-platform[ing]” so-called fascists (which he used interchangeably with “the right”) from Twitter and Facebook.
He even gave specific advice on how to create dummy accounts on social media platforms like Gab, Telegram and Rumble in order to “paralyze” movements and “manufacture … infighting.” Loadenthal seemed particularly venomous towards the existence of encrypted messenger service Telegram, calling it “a cesspool of awful.”
In his presentation, Loadenthal boasted openly that “a lot of things we’re doing are illegal” and “a lot of it involves breaking the law.”
He claimed this was necessary because “hate speech is more than speech. It’s materiality. It’s organizing. It’s mobilization. It’s not an exchange of ideas in the marketplace and the best one wins. It’s something else. It’s the strategic deployment of organizational energy and power.” Censorship efforts are not enough to fight against so-called fascists, Loadenthal outrageously claimed, also calling for a more aggressive approach. “To deny people that, to shut down their websites, to close their meetings, [and] to physically prevent them from assembling in public…
…Loadenthal also displayed infographic instructions to teach attendees how to “infiltrate” social media platforms to “identify targets, create dossiers … surveil, interfere, misdirect [and] disrupt” those the left opposes.
These events also hosted people who think Florida Governor Ron deSantis “might try to conduct a second Holocaust through a 2021 proposed civilian military force” and another dude who compared President Trump with the Khmer Rouge of Pol Pot’s regime, which perpetrated a genocide that killed at least 1.7 million Cambodians in the 1970s.
But you know, look out for those pesky Republicans. They’re the real threat.
Taxpayers are funding our own persecution.
Let me reiterate:
These are not just random grassroots groups popping up. These groups are funded in the millions of dollars by the United States government. Our tax dollars pay for us to be labeled potential domestic terrorists.
The Biden administration spent nearly $40 million in American tax dollars spread across 80 grants to teach “media literacy and online critical thinking initiatives,” among other initiatives, in an effort to weaponize TVTP against conservatives, Christians and the Republican Party.
The Biden administration awarded eighty TVTP grants totaling $39,611,999 The lowest grant was for $85,000, the highest for over $1.1 million, and the median being about $442,000. Fifty-two percent of the programs have gone to public institutions like universities and county government, whereas 48 percent have gone to private organizations, such as the LGBTQ+ advocacy group Out Boulder County and the aforementioned University of Dayton.
Instead of focusing on preventing actual violence and terrorism, a staggering number of grantees appear to be—with the DHS’s knowledge—using the funds to target the Biden administration’s political opponents through the guise of so-called training seminars for topics such as “media literacy and online critical thinking initiatives.”
In addition to PREVENTS-OH, the Media Research Center has obtained documents for several other grantees, which depict similar degrees of extremism, demonization of political opposition, and calls for censorship.
And let me be clear – you may think this doesn’t affect you if you’re not a Republican or a Christian, but it does. I myself have been targeted, defunded, and defamed repeatedly over the years, and I regularly state that I am neither a conservative nor a Republican. I’m very carefully secular in my work. In fact, a recent attack by the group NewsGuard downgraded me because I refused to lie and say my website has a right-wing bias. It doesn’t.
Right-wing people are not safe. Libertarians are not safe. Christians are not safe. Neutral people are not safe.
If you are not for them, you are against them, and you are conflated with “extremists” and “domestic terrorists” by your own government.
Let’s take a quick look at other regimes that targeted dissenters.
This isn’t the first government that went after those who dissented. There’s a long and horrifying list of dreadful periods in history, both ancient and modern, when those in power sought to stay in power by villainizing the opposition.
Before someone in the comments yells at me, this list is not comprehensive. I haven’t “lost all credibility” because I omitted your favorite despotic government. This is just a handful of examples. I’m not writing a full-length book here, and that’s what it would take to name everyone.
- Philippine leader Rodrigo Duterte has a brutal history of silencing the opposition. One example was the Davao Death Squad that killed over 700 dissenters and was allowed to operate without prosecution. He also saw to it that a political opponent, Senator Leila de Lima, was imprisoned after she opposed him. (source)
- Russian President Vladimir Putin is well-known for eliminating opposition politicians, exploiting the justice system and branding journalists critical of the Kremlin as “foreign agents” and this has only intensified during the war with Ukraine. (source)
- Opposition groups in Bangledesh have been violently repressed by ruling party supporters, and those supporters have not faced legal consequences for their actions. (source)
- Remember all those people who faced criminal consequences after the Brazilian election? They were most definitely not on the side that is in power. (source)
What we’re seeing is not unique in and of itself. What’s different about it is that it’s happening in the United States of America, a country that was founded based on the right to disagree with the government. That right is enshrined in our founding document, and yet it is being trampled with enthusiastic aplomb by the aforementioned government.
It’s a dangerous time to disagree.
This is an incredibly dangerous and confusing time. Prudence demands that we be “gray” and try to stay off the radar, yet freedom demands that we refuse to be silenced.
If you’re engaged in the practice of regularly defending freedom in America, criticizing the government, or standing up for your rights, you should take great care to abide by the law. Make sure your taxes are paid, that you don’t speed, that you don’t publicly threaten others, and that you don’t provide any easy route to being punished. (Just ask journalist Matt Taibbi and commentator Tim Poole.)
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
What do you think of all this? What are your thoughts about our extorted tax dollars going to fund the silencing of our dissent? What are your thoughts about the DHS targeting people based on their political philosophies? Will you go the gray route or the kicking-and-screaming route?
Article posted with permission from Daisy Luther