LIONS AND TIGERS AND VIGILANTES, OH NO! | 2005-04-09
Bush and the media are attempting to smear the Minutemen by calling them "vigilantes." Do you think the average American has any idea where the term comes from? Bush and the media are counting on the fact that the average American has no idea what the word means. They are counting on the fact that the average American will recoil in horror at the term.
A "vigiliante" was a member of a "vigilance committee." What is a "vigilance committee" you might ask, if you are braver than the average American?
Break down the phrase into two words to make it easy. Everyone knows what a committee is.
What about "vigilance?" It means "alert watchfulness" according to the dictionary.
A "vigilance committee" is a group of men assembled to maintain watchful alertness.
In the old west, they were citizens who had to keep watch against lawlessness. There was no government to protect them. They had to do it themselves. Of course in that sense they were a government, and they were freely elected.
So why are George Bush and the media so afraid of "vigilantes?"
Maybe the last thing they want from Americans is "alert watchfulness."
After all, isn't that the job Americans expect from Bush and the media?