Republicans triggered by Homeland Security chart showing right-wing extremism begins with GOP activism
Photo via Jim LoScalzo/AFP

Far-right groups are complaining about being included in a Department of Homeland Security chart called the "Pathways toward terrorism" which includes research on terrorism and political violence and was written in 2008 by Sophia Moskalenko and Clark McCauley.

The researchers show how radicalization generally increases from benign political involvement, "increasing extremity of beliefs, feelings, and behaviors in support of intergroup conflict and violence," the study's abstract explains. "Across individuals, groups, and mass publics, twelve mechanisms of radicalization are distinguished."

So, political activism on the right can begin at the party level and slowly increase to anti-government militias, it says.

The Heritage Foundation was quickly triggered by being included in the bottom rung of the pyramid among the right entry-level groups. One piece they were miffed about was a researcher's comments that fringe extremists can infiltrate groups or rallies. For example, anti-government activists saw the COVID lockdowns as a unique opportunity for recruitment. The same happened on the left when the 1999 Seattle anti-WTO and Occupy Wall Street protesters were opportunities for anarchists.

The argument from the right is that President Joe Biden's administration is weaponizing the government against Republicans. Still, the administration explains that domestic terrorists come from far-right groups like those at the Jan. 6 attacks. Militia groups like the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers were working with Republican Party leaders and lawmakers.

Speaking to Fox Business on Thursday, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), behind the so-called "weaponization" committee investigation, expressed outrage.

"This is really scary too," Jordan said. "But this is consistent, frankly, with what President Biden said last fall at Independence Hall with that eery background he had where he called half of the country fascists."

Jordan's reference was the Biden speech about "MAGA extremists," generally considered as the people who attacked the U.S. capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

Jordan says that this belief exists in far too many U.S. Leaders.

Republicans have consistently attacked investigations into domestic terrorism. In the Feb. 2021 House Homeland Security, the FBI explained that there has been a steady rise in domestic extremism and violence.

“There’s no question in my mind that the rhetoric inflamed it and turned the boiling water from a hot pot of water to overflowing,” said Rep. John Katko (R-NY).

Yet, throughout the Donald Trump presidency, the administration took "steps to weaken the federal government’s response to the growing crisis," American Oversight claimed at the time.

See Jordan's commentary below or at the link here.

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