Confederate Flag Activist Behind Georgia Terror Plot

Waffle House: Where bad decisions are made.<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/vosburg09/2654623380/sizes/z/in/photostream/">Voburg_09</a>/Flickr

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My colleague Adam Serwer reported this morning on one of the more bizarre domestic terror plots in recent memory—the alleged plot by four senior citizens in north Georgia to produce and spread ricin and botulinium toxin in Atlanta and Washington, DC, in order to kill millions of people and “save the Constitution.” (Because that’s not strange enough, the plot was hatched at a Waffle House.)

The whole plot is pretty ridiculous, but what’s also interesting is the men behind it. The affidavit names four individuals, Samuel Crump, Frederick Roberts, Ray Adams, and Dan Roberts. According to his Facebook page, Crump is a big fan of a number of conservative grassroots and astroturf organizations, including Americans for Prosperity. He’s also interested in “anything about guns,” and he’s really offended by the concept of paying a 5 cent tax on plastic grocery bags:

Courtesy of FacebookCourtesy of Facebook

Another conspirator, Dan Roberts, is a long-time Confederate flag activist. In 2001, a Jacksonville Times-Union story about the state of Georgia’s efforts to change the flag noted Roberts’ presence outside the statehouse. According to the paper, Roberts had attempted to burn a replica of the newer flag (with a smaller Confederate emblem), but failed to do so because it was made out of nylon.

In 2004, Roberts joined with the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens to hold a protest rally outside a Georgia middle school whose principal had supposedly offended their southern culture “by her alleged banning the display of St. Andrew’s Cross on school grounds,” the local Toccoa Record reported. According the Record‘s account of that event, protesters threw a rock at school bus with children inside. 

An ensuing lawsuit noted of Roberts that he “co-sponsored and assisted in flag rallies organized by the Southern Rights Association,” and “is widely known in that area as a flag supporter.” Roberts was a “Captain” and Northeast Georgia Liaison for the Georgia Militia, a neo-Confederate organization. (Here’s a photo gallery from a 2003 Confederate flag rally in Toccoa for which Roberts was the emcee.)

In an ironic twist, Roberts published a letter to the editor of the Toccoa Record in late September to complain about a local publication, Bad and Busted! that posts embarrassing mugshots and arrest details.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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