Chuck Norris–the man who destroyed the periodic table because he only recognizes the element of surprise–turned 69 this week (March 10). I was going to write something smart-ass or mean (or both) but then thought better of it.
And then this came my way. Seems old Chuck is celebrating that milestone by giving us a glimpse into the cuckoo that lurks in the mind of this martial arts legend. Sadly, it’s more scary than funny.
In a “think piece” published at WorldNetDaily, Norris declares “I may run for President of Texas.” Here are some excerpts:
“That need may be a reality sooner than we think. If not me, someone someday may again be running for president of the Lone Star state, if the state of the union continues to turn into the enemy of the state.
From the East Coast to the “Left Coast,” America seems to be moving further and further from its founders’ vision and government.”
. . .
“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…”
. . .
“On March 1, 1845, then-President John Tyler signed a congressional bill annexing the Republic of Texas. Though the annexation resolution never explicitly granted Texas the right to secede from the Union (as is often reported), many (including me) hold that it is implied by its unique autonomy and history, as well as the unusual provision in the resolution that gave Texas the right to divide into as many as five states. Both the original (1836) and the current (1876) Texas Constitutions also declare that “All political power is inherent in the people. … they have at all times the inalienable right to alter their government in such manner as they might think proper.”
Anyone who has been around Texas for any length of time knows exactly what we’d do if the going got rough in America. Let there be no doubt about that. As Sam Houston once said, “Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may.”
Norris concludes by inviting “those losing hope, and others wanting to rekindle the patriotic fires of early America” to join him and Glenn Beck for the broadcast of “We Surround Them,” an upcoming FOX News feature that smacks of a right-wing militia movement. “Thousands of cell groups will be united around the country in solidarity over the concerns for our nation,” says Norris, including a viewing party from his ranch in Texas. “We’re united, we’re tired of the corruption, and we’re not going to take it anymore!”
Norris and Beck are both part of a radical posture in the U.S. which sees plays out Conservative fears of government to an extreme. As they do so, they pick up people who fear we have strayed from God, whiteness, and our “true” creed.
The upcoming telecast–“We Surround Them”–uses the metaphor of Oz as it promises to “show America what’s really behind the curtain.” This FOX News-sponsored movement advertises “Nine Principles” which they use to garner support by suggesting your personal identification with their agenda. If you believe in seven of them, they say, “then we have something in common.” They are:
1. America is good.
2. I believe in God and He is the Center of my Life.
3. I must always try to be a more honest person than I was yesterday.
4. The family is sacred. My spouse and I are the ultimate authority, not the government.
5. If you break the law you pay the penalty. Justice is blind and no one is above it.
6. I have a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but there is no guarantee of equal results.
7. I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable.
8. It is not un-American for me to disagree with authority or to share my personal opinion.
9. The government works for me. I do not answer to them, they answer to me.
Those of you who know what is at work here–in both Norris’ half-cooked analysis and in the list above–know what I’m talking about. Fear is a heavy part of this “movement” and, as such, it serves to help nurture the radical, anti-humanist and ideological “pure” stances they take.
As a person of color, I get scared at this kind of stuff. As a parent, too. But as a historian, I am a little bit interested in the way they construct a sense of history and then employ it to their ends. In a perverse way, they are actually more historically rooted in the past than they think. While they think they are being more “true to the Founders’ ideals” of government, they are actually far more in line with the Founders’ shortcomings–cultural chauvinism, racism, fear of the “other,” as well as a healthy dose of fear of government tempered with John Winthropian dystopia (omnes sumus licentia deteriores–we are all made worse by license).
This nation is still struggling with the same two-hundred year-old demons. Let’s hope we get some therapy before we hurt someone…again.