New Community Group, Stake in NorCal, Celebrates Flag Day Their Way

Stake in NorCal members gather at Caldwell Park in Redding to recognize Flag Day, as well as President Donald Trump’s birthday. Photo by Annelise Pierce.

“We’re damn proud of our flag, and damn proud of our freedom.”

It was with these words that Jesse Lane, co-founder of Shasta County’s newest community watch group — “Stake in NorCal” — opened the group’s first Flag Day celebration Sunday evening at Redding’s Caldwell Park.

“It’s also the President’s birthday,” Jesse continued, “and some people want to shit on him.”

The crowd of about 50 men, women and children cheered. Some were wearing Stake in NorCal’s newly made signature yellow shirts with #STAKE in bold black letters. Many carried American flags and wore cowboy hats. Yet others were dressed in pro-Trump T-shirts and hats. Little girls wore red, silver and blue spangles in their ponytails. There were Reagan/Bush ‘84 shirts, and State of Jefferson and “don’t tread on me” flags mounted on trucks.

Photo by Annelise Pierce.

“Let’s sing Trump happy birthday!” one participant called out.

“It’s our turn now!” shouted another.

“Yes, it’s our turn now,” Lane said calmly, keeping the group on track as he presented opening announcements, led the Pledge of Allegiance and asked a pastor to pray.

“We always say a prayer for protection,” Lane said. “You can pray to whoever you want; a rock, a frog, or whatever it is. We don’t care who you pray to.”

Inclusion is a common theme in statements professed by Stake in NorCal members and leaders, both in person on on the group’s Facebook page.

Stake in NorCal was founded only two weeks ago, just before local racial equality protests began. The impetus, Lane told the group, was Stake in NorCal founders’ concerns about reports of “bad people coming to town to do some bad stuff, just like has been happening all around the country.”

The “bad people” and “bad stuff ” were references to what co-founder Ian Smart called “paid protesters” who, he said, often show up at racial equality protests. Smart said he and his group support locals who peacefully protest as a way to practice their constitutional rights, but he is concerned about those from out of town who may be here for the wrong reasons.

Stake in NorCal’s speedy start

Smart told the story of Stake in NorCal’s birth, and rapid growth.

“I got on my computer at 1 in the morning and made the group on Facebook,” he said, ” When I logged back in the next morning at 8 a.m., I had 500 members.”

Over the next week the number of Stake in NorCal Facebook group members burgeoned to thousands. Lane and Smart began looking for ways to vet members, including printing T-shirts to distribute to trusted group members. Vetted group members have worn the yellow shirts at a few recent Redding protests, participating with the mission to help keep the peace during peaceful protests, as well as to hand out bottled water.

On June 2, some Stake in NorCal members volunteered to help keep the peace during Redding’s largest George Floyd protest to date, joining other groups, including some North State militia organizations.

Various local militia organizations and community watch groups gathered for a photo-op break as the protesters headed toward Shasta Street on Tues., June 2. Many Stake in NorCal members were there. Photo by Doni Chamberlain

Stake in NorCal creators have ambitious plans in store for their fledgling group. They set up a Go-Fund-Me page to raise $5,000 for the group to help with upcoming group projects, including, said Lane, a website, because “Facebook could kick us off at any minute.”

Stake in NorCal leaders are also initiating the process to become an official 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

Lane announced additional priorities, such as helping veterans with things like defensible spaces around homes, and keeping the homeless away from parks that children use, and working on goals with Redding’s City Council, as well as California’s state government.

Some funds will also invest in a special Stake in NorCal Independence Day celebration. “We plan on a peaceful protest, since everything’s been cancelled for COVID,” Lane said. “We’ll have vendors, peaceful messages, songs … We are going to protest against California corruption.”

Stake in NorCal participant David Akman explained his presence at the Sunday evening event.

“I’m here because I’m trying to protect this community,” Akman said. “I’ve been here my whole entire life, and I’m seeing the whole community get torn down because some people’s beliefs matter and other people’s beliefs don’t matter.”

Kimmie Pullen said for her, Stake in NorCal is about family, and about being heard.

“Family values have gone by the wayside,” Pullen said. “We are a small community and we are always bending and curtailing to the bigger cities. We want to make sure American values are brought back and we are able to share them without being looked down upon or called names.”

According to Smart, Stake in NorCal’s founder, the organization is “a group of proud American people.”

During the Flag Day celebration at Caldwell Park, Trump/Pence flags and various sized American flags fluttered in the evening breeze under blue skies as Stake in NorCal members posed for a group photo. Two little girls volunteered to come forward and offer a special message for President Donald Trump on video.

“We’ll tweet it to him,” one woman said.

“Say something from the bottom of your heart,” the videographer told them.

“We love you Trump, and thank you,” said the first girl.

“Happy birthday,” said the second girl. “We hope you have a good one, and just keep on doing what’s right.”

With that, the group sang “Happy Birthday” for Donald Trump, America’s 45th President.

Stake in NorCal ended their Flag Day event by heading with their flags to Redding freeway overpasses at Hilltop Drive and South Bonnyview.

Photo by Annelise Pierce.

Gathered along sidewalks beside the freeway overpasses, Stake in NorCal members displayed their red, white and blue flags, brightly adorned with stars and stripes that flapped and snapped in the wind.

On the freeway below, passing motorists honked their approval.

Photos below by Steve DuBois

Annelise Pierce
Annelise Pierce is fascinated by the intersection of people and policy. She has a special interest in criminal justice, poverty, mental health and education. Her long and storied writing career began at age 11 when she won the Louisa May Alcott Foundation's Gothic Romance short story competition. (Spoiler alert - both hero and heroine die.) Annelise welcomes your (civil) interactions at
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130 Responses

  1. Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

    Love it and good reporting.

  2. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    Just what Shasta County needs – another self-entitled vigilante group formed with the excuse that it’s needed to protect the community from “busloads of Antifa” supposedly traveling around the country committing violence at Black Lives Matter protests (a baseless rumor manufactured out of whole cloth by Trump-supporting white supremacists).

    In fact the FBI and other national intelligence agencies have determined that white supremacist groups are behind most of the violence and destruction at these protests, in an effort to discredit protestors and their cause.

    And I can’t imagine what “right thing” Trump is supposedly doing. Do they mean things like attacking peaceful protestors (including a group of ministers) in a park without warning with tear gas and rubber bullets so Trump could walk through the park to have his picture taken waiving a bible in front of a church?

    • Avatar Kay Robinhood says:

      AW. I was sad to read your comment and come away with the idea that you consider this group some sort of ‘vigilante’ group. We are families, with children, men and women, coming together to help care for this community. It was ANTIFA coming to down with the possibility of doing damage to our local businesses that got us together. Now, it is the hope and faith that we can all stay together and help local officials with address issues that need to be addressed but aren’t, like the homeless population who desperately needs reforming. The groups admins have talked about community efforts to help those in need in our community, the elderly, the veterans, the youth homeless, and that is why we all want to be a part of it. Love you passion, and your right to free speech. You had yours. We have the right to ours! Love & Light, Patrecia

      • Avatar Matt Grigsby says:

        You can do a great service to your community right now, today, by wearing masks in public, especially during a group photo.

        • COVID was a ruse, Matt. The CDC already backtracked on COVID death numbers. It killed less people than Influenza does on a yearly basis. Forcing people to wear masks violates the ADA. Wearing masks, when healthy, is dangerous to your health and can cause COPD like symptoms. It’s all very well documented! Our community has no cases of COVID or positive COVID tests. 🙂

          • Avatar Matt Grigsby says:

            There is literally no proper response to anything you said, but at least science doesn’t care how you wear your tinfoil hat.

            I think we’re done here.

          • Avatar Connie Koch says:

            Do you even know or understand what Antifa stands for? If not, here is the definition from Merriam Webster:

            Definition of antifa
            1: a person or group actively opposing fascism.

            The groups … prominently featured about 100 Christian ministers in clerical garb, angry Charlottesville residents, peace advocates, Black Lives Matter activists, and self-styled anti-fascists who call themselves “antifas” … — Peter Weber

            After the war, Antifas varied in size and composition across the former Reich, now divided into four zones of occupation, and developed in interaction with the local occupying power. — Loren Balhorn

            An anti-fascist movement: Antifa is the backlash to the backlash, a defensive response to the growing presence of right-wing extremism. — Todd Gitlin

            History and Etymology for antifa borrowed from German Antifa, short for antifaschistisch “anti-fascist,” in Antifaschistische Aktion (multiparty front initiated by the German Communist Party in 1932 to counter Nazism) and in other collocations.

            AND from Cambridge dictionary:

            Antifa: groups of people who oppose fascism (= a political system based on a very powerful leader, state control, and being extremely proud of country and race, and in which political opposition is not allowed), and who show this using protests and sometimes violence.

            Our troops fought facism in World War II! So, you do support facism? If so, I suggest, if you want to live under a dictatorship, move to North Korea.

            Also, you are wrong about Covid-19, I lost a dear friend to it who lived here in Shasta County.

          • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

            This one has got to be a troll. Nobody is this breathtakingly stupid and wrong.

          • Avatar Miguel says:

            Kay — “Covid was a ruse.”
            Okie-dokie then. Glad we got that out of the way.


      • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

        There are no “busloads of Antifa” traveling the country to wreck havoc on unsuspecting towns and cities. As I mentioned above, those baseless rumors were started by white supremacist groups, which are themselves behind much of the violence and destruction.

        It seems to me that the local police and sheriff’s departments are capable of dealing with any problems that arise. That’s what we pay taxes for. I don’t recall the majority of local citizens asking for the participation of vigilante groups looking for a fight.

        And being right-wing Trump supporters I doubt you are interested in extending any help to the homeless other than to drive these predominently local people out of the area.

  3. Avatar Damon Miller says:

    Reminds me of The Third Wave with a dash of the obligatory Shasta County grifting—gotta have that GoFundMe!

  4. Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

    Only two weeks old and almost 4,000 members. Friends, former co-workers and even some extended family. I have found my new home.

    • Avatar Candace says:

      Jesse, as an American you certainly have the right to form pretty much any group you choose. You chant “It’s our turn!” You playing “white Monopoly?”; it’s been “your turn” for hundreds of years. American values, American “Family Values” , what does that mean to you and your group? What “American” values are you talking about and who in our community isn’t reflecting them to you or your group’s satisfaction in order to be considered an American? If I don’t support your group or Trump am I less American than you? If I believe in the separation of church and state, support Transgender health care protection, support BLM, etc. am I no longer an American in you or your group’s eyes? Does your group’s claim of inclusivity stop there and paint me as being un-American ? I was born and raised here; I’m 63 yrs old and in fact the Aunt of someone I think you likely know well and respect. He and I are polar opposite on many issues and I love him dearly. Without being asked he takes it upon himself to hand out water during our hot summers and coats during our rainy winters to our Redding homeless. He’s also been known to set up and BBQ on the fly and feed the homeless until he runs out of food. He never brags about doing these things and in fact doesn’t talk about it at all; I typically find out about it in casual conversation with other family members. I’m extremely proud of him for doing that; it’s commendable and represents the good part of recognizing our shared humanity but I think one can do those things without wrapping it in our American flag. As a longtime Redding resident (63 years) who’s lived through many chapters of our local history ( it was not always conservative) myself and others have neither asked for nor want your group’s “protection”. Imo a vote for Trump is not a vote for inclusivity; far from it. All sorts of FB groups exist which claim members in the thousands. The amount of followers doesn’t translate to a FB group’s ideals as inherently “just” and/or “good”. In your case it simply means you’ve tapped into Trump’s base and/or those who share is “ideals”; nothing new or remarkable there. Personally, I want my, yours, our community to move away from this president’s campaign of division; not embrace his hate by wrapping that hate in our American flag and calling it an “American value”. A “value” which needs to be brought back to any community, including ours. For many, that hate has never left. As an American, the American Flag is my flag too; “shitting” on President Trump doesn’t make me un-American, it makes me someone who supports TRUE inclusivity and the ideals that our flag is supposed to represent which is not to paint “others” as un-American but represent justice for ALL.

      • Avatar Renee says:

        Well said. I was disappointed to see the writer painting this group in such glowing terms without even a hint of what your comment speaks to. So thank you for chiming in. I feel the same way.

  5. Avatar Larry Winter says:

    Redding Tea Party Patriots, Jefferson State, Trump supporters and now Stake in NorCal.

    Different names but the same sentiments.

    They fear losing what they don’t own.

    Social values.

  6. Avatar David Boone says:

    Looks pretty white, but I guess that goes without saying. Like a happier-faced Taliban with brighter colors.

    I just never understood the value placed in all the patriotic symbolism and posturing – to me it always reeked of insecurity and fear. Why flags, symbols, slogans, ideologies, and geopolitical abstractions are seen by these people as more important and salient than vibrant and healthy community, is beyond me. It feels and looks like sickness of the soul. I guess when everything in your worldview rests on a monotheism which evolved in a literal desert, then hegemonic monoculture is the end result. As with the tree, so the fruit.

  7. Avatar Laurie says:

    Stake in NorCal claims to not be a militia and not be connected to any, but went straight to their militia buddies to “find out what was happening“ when they came en masse to “support the sheriff” and “defend businesses” at the large Black Lives Matter/anti-racism demonstration that was entirely peaceful — other than a militia associate who drove his car into a few peaceful protesters (and was not detained). Instead, RPD ignored the driver and the armed militia groups, but kettled the peaceful demonstrators from behind — and allowed the militia cohort to follow, unsupervised, in their wake.

    Why would RPD be so blatantly careless of community security to leave hundreds of armed citizens unsupervised in such a high-tension situation? Perhaps because said armed citizens and Stake in NorCal were invited/encouraged to come by the sheriff himself — at least that’s what several members of militias & the Stake group itself insisted — and who seemed a bit miffed that when Magrini denied it.

    Sadly, this isn’t the only vigilante group getting all riled up about a phony fear of mythical busloads of Antifa. As Patrecia Barrett noted above, it’s really the rightwing vigilantes who are behind the vast majority of domestic terrorism in the U.S. that we need to be concerned about— as a terrified Washington family found out just last week on a camping trip when they were harassed and then followed for miles in remote territory by a convoy of people who threatened them with semi-automatic rifles and felled trees to block the road, preventing their exit. (

    What made this family so suspicious to these self-styled vigilantes? They weren’t packing heat, they weren’t causing trouble, they weren’t even in a “suspicious” car… but they are a mixed-race family.

    Since Stake in NorCal fell hard for the Antifa myth—even basing its origins in fear of it— I wonder about the validity of their news sources — most probably Fox, which has been rated as mainly fiction by several independent journalism monitors. I wonder how they can determine who are “outsiders” and who aren’t.

    I also wonder if they are as concerned with protecting the highest-risk folks in Shasta County — people of color – FROM the militias that they themselves are politically in synch with — as they are about “defending” the sheriff and his militia buddies.

    And perhaps if they’re truly all about protecting Shasta County citizens, instead of singing happy birthday to Trump and scaring peaceful, law-abiding protesters, they might want to look into the inordinately high number of RPD’s shootings of local civilians — which puts us at number two in the state —and thus, ironically, is the most evident threat to local civil safety.

    But instead of these very real threats, it was the George Floyd / BLM rally, along with a trumped-up (or, more accurately, Trumped-up) fear of mythical “busloads of outsiders/Antifa” that got this group and their 4K followers galvanized to go viral and start “providing security” in our community.

    The prospect of self-styled policing by multiple militias and vigilante cohorts, many with firearms in large, uncoordinated groups, scouring our streets in search of “outsiders” to harass, is hardly conducive to public security.

    And isn’t public security what we pay RPD to do?

  8. Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

    Don’t you just love all the diversity and concern for Covid-19 displayed? But wait, where’s LaMalfa and the Dahles?

    Typical alt-right, all-white, pro trump and trumpublican agenda, fueled on fantasies of antifa by the bus loads, and more GOD – GUNS and Trump baloney. Please, by all means, have little gatherings, just leave the guns and camo at home on in your car.

    True, groups like this have a fair following in Redding, but they represents only about 20% of the rest of California. Bad news for groups like this? Biden 57.5, Clorox 33 %.

    Thank GOD we live in California. Let the Stake in California know the South lost the Civil War and that there’s a place waiting for them in a nice little compound in Northern Idaho.

    • Avatar Edith says:

      There were not just white Americans, I am 100% Hispanic and support, and am part of this group. We are a diverse group of American loving people. These are the kindest people you will ever meet. Full of life. This is my family, my home. Those are my brothers and sisters. Get to know us before you assume something. We are of all backgrounds and stories. Get to know us all before you judge.

  9. Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

    Foundational paranoia and xenophobia, embracing of bizarre and disproven conspiracy theories, group victim mentality, heavy reliance on rumor-mongering for information, strong in-group attachment, demonization of all but the like-minded, power-tripping leaders who prescribe the narrative with zero tolerance of dissent, and embracement of a divisive and megalomaniacal false messiah.

    What could go wrong? 🙂

    • Avatar Candace says:

      Steve, I think I can say with fair certainty that this group of people honestly consider themselves as being all-inclusive, diverse and respectful of all people’s right to vote and practice any religion they choose. They think they’re misunderstood and are simply wanting to be their brother and sister’s keepers. They honestly see themselves as “lovers of all” with only good intentions in their hearts. I have no problem whatsoever with an organized group wanting to help out vulnerable people in our community; that in itself is great and a laudable goal. What I find as not laudable is coupling that goal with “Let’s get back to “American family (which sort of families does that include?) values”; “It’s OUR Turn now!”; “Happy Birthday Trump!” “Wave the American flag in support of an overtly racist president!” and the very concerning statement by one commenter “…helping to reform (?) Redding’s homeless population”. If the true intent is to help others, a FB group called “Let’s help the less fortunate in Shasta County; it’s THEIR turn!” might be a better way to go. There’d be no need then to include “Let’s return to “American family values”; performative flag-waving or “Trump 2020!” in the representation of that group’s goal. Help for the sake of helping is one thing; Trump campaigning and using 2nd Amendment rights to claim the “protection” of the 1st Amendment rights of other private citizens who say they don’t welcome/need/invite that protection is quite another.

    • Avatar michelle I nicolls says:

      What could go wrong Steve? Ummm…turn on any news station. A lot could go wrong.

  10. Avatar Chad Magnuson says:

    From the comments from the leaders of Stake in Nor Cal this group is simply another feel good, right wing, pro LE at any cost, bunch of headline grabbers.
    They fell for the bus loads of Antifa protesters.
    They fell for the the vigilantes helping out LE.

    I wonder if woody and Les are members?

    As for me my voice is loud enough. I do not need to be part of another phony group thinking they have somehow found the answer to the brutality of LE, thinking they are the only pro constitutional group, but worse, support vigilante yahoos.

    Thank you Annelise for bringing this group of wannabes to our attention.
    It is important for us to look beyond this group mentality, especially when motives and talking points are based on lies and right wing BS.

  11. Avatar Gary Tull says:

    Conservative Christian, right-wing Republican
    Straight white American males
    Gay-bashing, black-fearing
    War-fighting, tree-killing
    Regional leaders of sales
    Frat-housing, keg-tapping
    Shirt-tucking, back-slapping
    Haters of hippies like me
    Tree-hugging, peace-loving
    Pot-smoking, porn-watching
    Lazy-ass hippies like me
    – Todd Snider

  12. Avatar Gary Tull says:

    Yet with all the American flags and trump banners, not one stitch of material used for a mask. Not EVEN in their shoulder-to-shoulder group photo. Wow!

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      There’s both an explicit (“Don’t come round our FB page with your liberal agenda,” says one of their head honchos) and implicit demand for uniformity.

      It would take a strong-willed person for one of them to break ranks and say, “We agree on almost most everything, but I’m wearing a mask because it’s the easiest and most effective way to combat the pandemic and keep our community safe—especially the elderly among us.”

      But in addition to distrusting experts, they’re reticent to get out of line. Seemingly down to the last person, conforming to group norms is a highly valued attribute.

    • LOL Why? You might want to get informed, sir.

      • Avatar Diane Campbell-Hepburn says:

        That video is from March 26. The president had barely recognized the virus–it wasn’t going to be a big deal.

      • Avatar Gary Tull says:

        I thought I told you to wait in the truck.

      • Avatar Connie Koch says:

        Please STOP posting lies! My friend whowas raised and lived here in Shasta County his entire life, died from Covid-19. I am sick to death of tRumper’s who keep spreading the lies! Tell his family he didn’t die from Covid-19. You are a disgraceful human being! Are you going to laugh if one of your family members gets it and dies from it?

        You might want to get informed yourself!

    • Avatar Hank Delgado says:

      California PC 25300 makes it illegal for civilians to wear a mask while armed.

  13. Avatar Kay Robnihood says:

    Annelise Pierce, excellent reporting! Your article was spot on with regard to this groups agenda and transparency! I see quite a few comments coming from members of this community and see a lot of complaining but not stepping up to do something about it! Our family, our children included, feel proud and honored to be a part of this group and look forward to participating in any calling they ask of us from building ramps for the handicapped who can’t for themselves, helping vets in our area, community volunteering, working with local officials with regard to the homeless population and doing what little we can to keep our communities safe! Annalise, thank you, for giving Jesse and the group a platform to share their unique vision!

    • Avatar Randy says:

      I am very curious Kay, do any of your group accept the scientific realities of AGW(human caused climate change) or do you all agree with Trump that it is just a ‘hoax’ ?

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      What exactly qualifies your group to “work with local officials with regard to the homeless population”? Given your extremist political persuasion my guess is that all you people are interested in helping to achieve is driving a lot of mainly local homeless people out of town.

  14. Avatar Miguel says:

    “we’re against the paid protesters” .. and here’s my GoFundMe page.

    • Avatar Jen says:

      they’re not protesters.

      nor are they paid.

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      “…and we’re forming a no-for-profit.”

      Maybe they just want to be a social club of the like-minded, but if they’re going to have effective programs, they’ll need funding. Ironically, by coming out as stridently and confrontationally anti-liberal, they’ve likely ensured that many of the biggest grant funders of not-for-profit organizations in California and locally are going to view them with a large measure of stink-eye.

      Way to think ahead, yahoos.

  15. Avatar Jen says:

    The amount of hate spewing from these comments is just disgusting.

    The people in this group have been watching reports across the country of towns being attacked by “protesters”. When word started circulating that Redding could be next, they stepped up with the ONLY intention of making sure our community wasn’t desecrated. Nothing more.

    Now they’d like to begin working towards doing some good for the community and y’all just want to bash them.

    Why don’t you talk to some? Attend a gathering. Find out what they’re about before you start spewing hate.

    I for one am thankful that these ordinary citizens stepped up to protect us all.

    • Avatar Miguel says:

      Jen — “Why don’t you talk to some? Attend a gathering. Find out what they’re about before you start spewing hate. ”

      Umm ..
      Because I see giant Trump 2020 flags at first official gathering. Because group sings ‘Happy Birthday’ to President Trump. (I’ve never actually been to an event, public or private, where they sang ‘happy birthday’ to a president. Seems a little .. off. I’d throw in an allusion to Marilyn — but the imagery is just too .. icky) Because the founder/leader of the group has previously and publicly warned off “snowflakes” from joining?

      Thanks .. but I think I got y’all pretty squarely pegged.
      And, no .. I don’t feel particularly “included.”

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      Jen sez: “Why don’t you talk to some? Attend a gathering. Find out what they’re about before you start spewing hate.”

      Yeah…one of your founders told us to check our liberal snowflake opinions at the door, or we’d be drop-kicked from participating in this select and secretive group. So by “talk to some,” I assume you mean listening to a monologue while keeping our mouths zipped.

      Thanks, but no thanks. Self-appointed authoritarians bug me.

    • Avatar Randy says:

      Jen, “I for one am thankful that these ordinary citizens stepped up to protect us all”. This is great having a group of citizens “stepping up to protect us all” and this is exactly why I would like to know if the members of this group accept the scientific realities of AGW(human caused climate change) or if your members stand with Trump in the claim that AGW is a “hoax”. I think this is fair question for a group formed to “protect us all”.

  16. Douglas Craig Douglas Craig says:

    Good journalism Annelise. Informative and factual. Thank you! As others have implied or stated, we live in a post-truth era when rumors of “paid protesters” become assumed, unquestioned realities for those among us who need an object for their misguided paranoia. We have much to fear in this world including a deadly virus that is relentless killing hundreds of thousands of us, systemic racism fueling routine, homicidal racial hatred, the fear and ignorance of small-minded bigotry and tribalism, global economic collapse affecting working people everywhere, global climate change, species extinctions, sea-level rise swamping coastal communities, the death of 25% of ocean life in the the near future, voter suppression, stolen elections, the decline and possible death of newspapers, further erosion of democracy, economic inequality, loss of hope, and social collapse. But paid protesters? This is what they fear? Really?

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      Not just *any* paid protesters. Antifa (commie) and BLM (non-white) protesters paid by George “Beelzebub” Soros (International Jewish Conspiracy).

  17. Avatar Brennen says:

    It’s pretty sad when someone would back the idea of a threat of violence on their community than entertain the thought of someone protecting it.

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      “…back the idea of a threat of violence on their community…”

      Yeah, Brennan. That’s what’s happening here. If we’re not unquestionably supporting your group, we’re backing a threat of violence to our community. Because it goes without saying that your group is the only option for containing that threat.

      Hell, I might as well go bust up a Starbucks this afternoon.

    • Avatar Connie Koch says:

      Please explain where and what the threat is? Peaceful protesters did NOT pose a threat! It wasn’t until the militia group and your buddies showed up with guns, baseball bats, trucks that tried to run over bystanders, that any stress and tension developed. Perhaps, we should start our own group to protect our county from the your group and the militia group.

      Honestly, our LE does one hell of a job and if they need you and your buddies to help them, then maybe we need to take a second look at our law enforcement departments. I cannot for the life of me believe our LE need your groups!

  18. Avatar Debbi says:

    I agree. I think Shasta is fortunate to have this group. Hopefully any troublemakers think before stopping in from Portland and wherever. Love the community service in your plans.

  19. Avatar Christine says:

    I’m not surprised at all the negatives Comments. It’s too be expected when a group of people come together for a common good, and the Agitators aren’t getting their way anymore. I’m willing to bet my bottom dollar that IF anyone “Of Color” were to want to join, they would be welcome with open hearts and arms. But Naww, It’s so much easier for the Division of the Country for you to sit in you Fanny and Complain. You have no idea the positive that comes from the men and women of Steak in Nor Cal

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      What “agitators” are you referring to? The “busloads of Antifa” rumor has been completely debunked, which was started by white supremacist groups who are themselves responsible for much of the violence and destruction, per my links above. If there is any violence at local protests, it’s likely armed groups like yours will be the ones to start it.

      And frankly what self-respecting, informed person of color is going to join a bunch of rabid Trump supporters?

      • Avatar Hank Delgado says:

        A rumor started by a white supremacist group?! You do realize you’re talking about the California Highway Patrol, right? Because they were the first to warn local authorities that a busload of protesters were coming down from Klamath Falls.

        • Avatar Larry Winter says:

          Are you sure of this information? Did they just warn of “reports” of a busload of protesters and didn’t actually see or talk to the busload of people involved? How else would they know where they were going?

        • Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

          This trump group, like trump himself, is down to lies…. That’s all they got to prop up Clorox and his white nationalism, problem is, we’re aren’t idiots.

          UPDATED: CHP Cannot Confirm Antifa Buses… Sheriff Honsal Stands By ‘Antifa Bus’ Reports Despite Evidence That It Was All a Hoax all of these cases, including here in Humboldt, the buses never materialized. Many of the rumors were traced to bogus social media accounts, such as the one below, which came from a Twitter account claiming to represent ANTIFA America. It turned out to be the work of white nationalist group Identity Evropa.

          • Avatar Hank Delgado says:

            The article you linked to says nothing of the sort. The lost coast outpost, the actual source from which your above text was copied, has a second update you conveniently ignored:

            SECOND UPDATE, June 10, 4:54 p.m.:

            This afternoon the Outpost received a call from Captain Stacy Barr, commander of the California Highway Patrol’s Arcata office. She said Sheriff Honsal had asked her to reach out to us and relay that her office did receive information “regarding buses coming down from Oregon.”

            This information came via the CHP’s Northern Division office in Redding, Barr said, and it prompted local CHP personnel to notify the county’s Emergency Operations Center.


            Besides, this is a different alert than the one Sheriff Magrini received about a Klamath caravan.

          • Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

            UPDATED: CHP Cannot Confirm Antifa Buses) Sheriff Honsal Stands By ‘Antifa Bus’ Reports Despite Evidence That It Was All a Hoax
            SECOND UPDATE, June 10, 4:54 p.m.:

            This afternoon the Outpost received a call from Captain Stacy Barr, commander of the California Highway Patrol’s Arcata office. She said Sheriff Honsal had asked her to reach out to us and relay that her office did receive information “regarding buses coming down from

            UPDATE, June 10, 9:50 a.m.:

            This morning the Outpost received a callback from Officer Pieter Peruch from the Central Division of the California Highway Patrol. We had left messages on Monday asking for a response to Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal’s statement last week, in which he said, “The California Highway Patrol has confirmed with us that buses associated with Antifa were located in the Central Valley.”

            Officer Peruch left a voicemail saying that, to his knowledge, that’s not true:

            I asked around, and I don’t know where you got your information from, but none of us here has heard of any antifa buses traveling through the Central Valley.

          • Avatar Larry Winter says:

            Mr. Delgado, you’re quoting the Lost Coast Outpost one sentence too soon.

            “[We] shared the information about busses coming out of Redding with screenshots from posts online,” Barr told the Outpost.

            Apparently the “screenshots from posts online” were the source (anonymous) but then anybody could add the destination of their choosing.

            So, the buses were going to Redding, not to wreck havoc on Kohls, but to hang a right and head west to Humboldt County!

            Don’t you see a pattern here Mr. Delgado? First they were going to Klamath Falls, then to Redding and now to Eureka. I’m assuming using the same online pictures. We’ll see. LCO is seeking these screenshots using FOIA.
            Maybe ANC could do the same with the Northern Division of the CHP?

          • Avatar Larry Winter says:

            My first sentence should read “you’re quoting the Lost Coast Outpost and stopped one sentence too soon.”

        • Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

          Bull… Show us an official press release from the CHP that they knew for a fact that bus loads of anyone where coming to Redding. If they had facts, don’t you think they would have stopped them and checked it out? The CHP has never put out a press release about bus loads of anything coming to Redding… The whole thing was staged BS about an event that never happened. Just because Clorox has clocked over 15000 lies in the last 3.5 years doesn’t mean you can and think people are going to believe it. Complete BS. Go wage your make pretend war somewhere else. It’s getting ridiculous. Why do you people need to base your group on lies?

          • Avatar Annelise says:

            I too would love to see any information from CHP about this. If anyone has it, please share!

          • Avatar chad magnuson says:

            The info concerning the bus loads of protesters came from UCLA.

    • Avatar Steve Towers says:

      So we read the comments of one of the group’s founders in which he calls many of us “snowflakes” and tells us to check our opinions at the door. And when we respond with retorts that are the equivalent of eyebrows raised in suspicion, *we’re* the divisive ones.

      Sorry, lady. Not really interested in taking a ration of your bullshit scolding.

  20. Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

    I am proud to be a member of this group. As I know, and so do some of you listed as friends, lots of the members I would say their main passion is fishing, legal drag racing and making wine. Do I agree with everything they say, no, but it is their right to say it.
    These are long term residents whose families go back generations.

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:


      Shasta County also has a long, sordid history of blatant racism, going back “generations”.

      In fact, it’s STILL supporting it by voting for Trump by a 70 percent margin.

    • Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

      Not buying the BS Bruce. The pictures of all those fishing poll and drag cars… right. Your group was very clear about why they were gathering, to praise and support Trump, and protect themselves from their own unsubstantiated bologna consisting of paranoid fantasies propagated by Trump himself and the mostly white nationalists that support him and protest that we are defecating on him. BTW, no need for that, Clorox defecates on himself daily… And then proceeds to spew it out over our great nation.

      Your extremist group is just another Jefferson State want to be, but indeed you have full constitutional right to assemble and protest. In that I do support you!

    • Avatar Candace says:

      I’m a long-term resident who’s family goes back generations; so what? Just as this group has a right to espouse their opinions, so do others have the right to call bullshit. Not talking about Jesse’s group specifically but speaking in general terms, I’m pretty fed up with both liberal and conservatives saying “I don’t agree with all they do but I like some of the stuff they do so I’ll join and support”. It’s not ok to support a racist because racists also enjoy fishing. This “live and let live” obviously hasn’t worked out to well for black people, other people of color and poor people in our country and abroad. I believe that in our endeavor to be infinitely fair to all we run the very real risk of losing site of what actually IS fair and just. Liberal family members and friends of mine are some of the worse offenders; pick a damn lane and support your position or are you expecting a revolution without a revolution?

  21. Avatar Maureen says:

    People who love their county and celebrated Flag Day. Reading these posts turning that into a negative discourse is what is the problem with keyboard warriors and frankly makes me sad on a daily basis. Why cannot we be accepting and kind anymore?

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      Again, your leaders set the initial insulting, dismissive, crude tone. You then expect others to handle your group with kid gloves in return. Sorry “Maureeen” (= Christy, Debbi, Jen, Edith, and maybe Brennan).

    • Avatar Laurie says:

      Maureen, implying that folks expressing concerns about a self-styled citizen
      “security group” are unaccepting, cruel and don’t “love our country” is itself unaccepting and unkind. And, as I suspect many other commenters would chime in on their own lives, I’m not just a “keyboard warrior,” but a longtime local / independent contractor, editor, teacher, feral kitten foster mom and former homeschooling mom who has supported social justice activism up close and personal for decades, in causes as disparate as our local library and Native issues to environmental protections, our local women’s clinic, animal rescue and Black Lives Matter.

      In today’s tribally polarized political climate where cruelty is a feature and not a bug, especially living in a community with such a profoundly far-right bent, I know it’s a challenge not to demonize those who disagree with you, Maureen. But it’s beyond ironic to accuse us non–Trump supporters of cruelty and exclusion when the man whose birthday the Stake folks were celebrating embodies those awful characteristics in every statement he makes and action he takes.

    • Avatar Randy says:

      Any group that supports Trump has to support his policies, his lies, his pettiness and his ultimate goal to divide and create chaos in our population.

  22. Barbara Rice Barbara Rice says:

    With a sudden influx of new forum particpants, mostly with one-word names, I can’t shake the feeling that many of the comments are not organic.

    • Avatar Pamela says:

      Nope. Full time resident voting citizen.

    • Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

      Barbara, don’t worry about it. I love reading comments from the minority in Shasta County that are in the blame/don’t do anything mode.

      • Avatar Candace says:

        Bruce, Unless you personally know the, as you say “minority” commenters who frequent these pages there’s absolutely no way for you to know what they “do” or “don’t do” in terms of helping in our community. Many of those same people, including myself have more than once complimented and commended you on your service to your own community. I’ve mentioned this several times before in ANC conversations; the fact that individuals here don’t broadcast to the general public when they help out theirs and others communities however they’re able does not mean the help wasn’t given. Your cheap shot was just that, a cheap shot; it holds no merit.

        • Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

          Candace, everybody on here is posting cheap shots. As one of the minority posters posted 70% of Shasta County voted for Trump. So instead of posting the merits of Democrat challengers I have seen nothing on these posts but blaming Conservatives for the ills of Shasta County. That is all I have seen posted by the liberals and why I day blame/do nothing.
          Prove me wrong by posting solutions.

          • Avatar Candace says:

            Bruce, if you’re being honest and using the critical thinking skills I know you possess because I’ve had intelligent conversations with you where we’ve disagreed in the past, both you and I know that “cheap shots” and blaming all conservatives for all our social ills is not the only thing going on here. You’re comment had to do with labeling a group of people (myself included in that group) as “complaining do nothings”. I can assure you I am personally not a “do nothing” when it comes to helping those in need in our community; I simply don’t toot my own horn when I do so. I suspect there are many here like myself. Emotions are running high and there are indeed comments in this thread that classify as cheap shots and I’m not a fan of those either but you saying “They did it so I’m gonna do it too! is something we teach our children not to do and seems beneath you.

          • Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

            Solution one, vote the racist lying criminal and his monsters out of office. The stench of Clorox has permeated from Washington DC right down to your group here in Redding. After he’s gone you can focus on the fishing tackle and hot rods.

          • Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

            I am being honest when I say that I sat in the CSEA offices on Hilltop and called locals, Republicans, to vote for a Democrat State Education Superintendent. That was hard. Now it is easy to inform others about who is running for office vis social media but instead all I see on these pages are blaming, not informing.
            I am receiving all kinds of messages about people running for local offices here in Arizona, is there no one running for local offices in Shasta County? I see lots of blame about the officials you have but no alternatives.

          • Avatar Bill Vercammen says:

            “…is there no one running for local offices in Shasta County? I see lots of blame about the officials you have but no alternatives.”

            Age old American problem, Bruce – here and elsewhere. Those best qualified in terms of education, patriotism, community spirit, capacity for insightful-ness, etc aren’t interested in being a part of the shitshow.

            Every year the median age of Shasta County residents increases. Just can’t seem to draw kids back to the Redding area once they’re educated, and exposed to how wonderful their life is elsewhere.

            We have three boys – two have chosen to live in AZ, one in ID. Empty nesters on 10 acres. Lotta work. Kids won’t have much to do w/ Shasta County. No jobs, low pay,

            And zero grass roots effort to incentivize even moderate growth. By appearances, the incumbents are giving over Shasta to Bethel, and Bethel seems to be taking all they can get.

            Won’t be long till the median resident age is well over 65 up this way, and Bethel will still be attracting youthful players. Until the county develops a mandate to create jobs, Bethel will continue it’s tentacled hold. The Shasta I see is doomed to slow, tortured abandonment by attrition.

          • Avatar Damon Miller says:

            Bill, I get the sense Redding’s average age is no longer ticking up, but I’m afraid that’s probably due to becoming an increasingly popular destination for gullible young marks who tend to unthinkingly swallow right-wing dogma hook, line, and sinker.

  23. Avatar Pamela says:

    I was willing to give Stake in NorCal the benefit of the doubt for their intention to do good in their community until they sang Happy Birthday to Donald Trump and declared their full-in support. By this time in this man’s Presidency if you still support him whole heartedly, Charlottesville, sh*t-hole countries, Stephen Miller, tear-gas, clorox and all, it tells us all we need to know. To support him is to own him. Sorry, that’s just reality.

  24. Avatar Laurie says:

    Barbara, I’m not sure what you mean by an organic comment vs. an inorganic one, but since this isn’t chemistry, I’m thinking you may be worried that folks concerned about a self-proclaimed rightwing “security” group planning on pushing homeless people out of public parks and surveilling peaceful demonstrations to “help to make Redding safe” might be lib’rul “outsiders,” bots from Russia or something of that ilk?

    If so, have no fear — I may be a scary “new forum participant with a one-word name,” but I’ve lived in Redding for more than 30 years, followed and admired Doni’s journalism since her Record Searchlight days, and subscribed (admittedly belatedly) to support this admirable independent news source — a rarity in Fox/Sinclair/Rush Limbaugh land. And Doni herself can vouch for me as a 30+-year Redding resident who homeschooled both daughters here — one of whom used to help her in the kitchen back when she occasionally concocted (utterly delicious!) goodies for special events.

    I agree that it seems improbable, but even here in Calabama there ARE some real live progressive patriots (NOT an oxymoron) who don’t believe that self-serving, antiscientific invocations of God, guns and glory will make America great again. Why not come to one of our social justice rallies and marches — masked and unarmed, please — and get to know us? We are real live locals, we don’t bite, and we welcome all!

    • Avatar Candace says:

      Laurie, uhhhh…ummm. I’m pretty sure in my belief that Barbara is exactly the person who would be attending and championing your social justice rallies if she still lived in Redding. I fear you unwittingly misinterpreted her comment and may not be aware of her role at ANC.

      • Avatar Bill Vercammen says:

        Let her be, Candace…
        She appears to be amongst the more literate of the group, and her reference to Calabama indicates there may be an underlying sense of humor attached to all that animas.
        I’ll bet she’d even “get” one of my “pass the collection plate” commentaries…
        …without falling into a tizzie about my contemptible attitude.

        • Avatar Laurie says:

          Ha! Contemptible? Not at all… contemptUOUS, perhaps, but realistically and appropriately so. And yeah, I can’t help but laugh (bitterly) at “pass the collection plate” comments, since re: Bethel, sadly, that’s usually all too true.

          In another article’s comment, I pointed out that the astroturfed / Bethel-appropriated “BLM” protest didn’t allow attendees to, er, protest, and instead muzzling the marchers by insisting they remain silent. But one thing the two organizers (one described as a Bethel graduate and the other a Bethel minister) made sure to do was to post a GoFundMe — in advance — which I found not only unusual, but quite revealing.

          In my many decades of protesting for causes I deem worthy, I’ve seen a few impromptu coffee cans set out for donations at the events themselves, but I can’t say I’ve ever seen a GoFundMe in advance for a protest rally. Apparently if Bethel can’t afford to spring for a pack of markers and posterboards, their pockets might not be as deep as we thought .. or is it just their good old, tried and true OPM tactic?

      • Avatar Laurie says:

        Thanks for the correction, Candace, and my apologies, Barbara, for assuming the worst. Though I did include some conditionals (“I’m not sure…”, “I’m thinking that…” and “If so…”) I shouldn’t have done that. Guess I’m seeing too many folks online with knee-jerk “You’re a bot!” views, and wrongly jerked my own knee.

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Despite this group’s claims of being “inclusive” and just wanting to protect the free speech rights of BLM protestors, the truth is that – as a group – they are rabid supporters of the most racist president in more than a century.

      Far from caring about the free speech rights of anyone but themselves and their ilk, they praise Trump for “doing the right things”, which apparently includes brutally attacking peaceful BLM protestors, without warning or provocation.

      And what exactly is a “progressive patriot”? Someone who only believes 98 out of 100 ultra-right-wing talking points and conspiracy theories?

      • Avatar Candace says:

        Patrecia, I believe you’ve misread Laurie’s original comment. I believe “ Progressive Patriotism” is referring to those who believe one can be a “patriot” by supporting progressive causes and by doing so champion the typical conservative ideal of what constitutes being a “patriot”. I think. Pretty sure. I think she thought Barbara’s original comment was aimed at somewhere it wasn’t. She’s not a part of the FB group of topic. At least, that’s how I’m reading it. Guess we won’t know for sure unless and until she chooses to chime in and clarify.

      • Avatar Laurie says:

        Sorry for any confusion, Patrecia. I’m not sure what the FB group of topic Candace refers to is, but she’s correct in her interpretation of my comment: I resent the rightwing appropriation of the concept of patriotism, and was just trying to redefine it as a characteristic of progressives, but apparently I wasn’t clear enough about that. In fact, I agree with all of your commentary I’ve read here and elsewhere (on Facebook), and truly respect and value your brave and incisive voice in our challenged (and challenging) community.

  25. Avatar Chad Magnuson says:

    Stake in NorCal is nothing new.
    It is nothing but a rehash of the teabaggers, and the SOJ movement.
    Laurie welcomes all to come “get to know us” gatherings.

    Attended a couple of Tea Party meetings happened when Wally was there and when sheriff aprio were speakers.
    I was not welcomed.
    My voice was not given a chance.

    Same with the SOJ meetings.

    No thanks Laurie.
    Fool me once shame on me, fool me twice, we’ll ah, ah …….

    • Avatar The Old Pretender says:

      In the words of Dave Chapelle…”White Power!”

    • Avatar Laurie says:

      Chad, sorry for any lack of clarity in my comment/s. I agree with your view of the exclusionist Stake/Tea Party and SOJ mentality, and Candace is correct in surmising that I was inviting Barbara (and anyone else who cares to) to the alternative — progressive/leftist/social justice rallies and demonstrations (and the only kind I attend).

  26. Avatar Candace says:

    Ok, call me crazy, but reading her comments I don’t think “Laurie” is inviting you or anyone to a rally given by this particular Trump supporting group. She identified as a “progressive patriot”, invited people to participate in a social justice rally/march and asked that those who attend wear masks and leave their weapons at home. As I previously stated, I believe she originally misconstrued Barbara’s “organic” comment and commented in turn. If I’m wrong and that’s completely in the realm of possibility, I apologize to Laurie and I sorely need to work on my reading comprehension.

  27. Avatar Jist Cuz says:

    Brainwashed since childhood perhaps? Never even been as far as Sacto maybe? One more false God? OMG ANTIFA IS COMING…!! Fascists fear anti-fascists apparently. I remember when RED was something to fear Russia +!+

  28. Avatar Bill Vercammen says:

    Ya’ll have become such a difficult crowd to please, it’s suddenly difficult to know just what constitutes a grievance in Shasta County, so I figured I’d give ya’ll the latest: Tulsa declined the GOP rally. Les Baugh tweeted POTUS and offered up the Redding Convention Center. Trump accepted, and has assigned the Cottonwood Militia and Stake in NorCal for security. BLM is moving to occupy the RCC before the deal can consummate. Stay tuned…

    BTW- It’s official. “Black Lives Matter” is more popular than any presidential wannabe.
    Time for a write in candidate. I’m not doing much for the next 4 years…

  29. Douglas Craig Douglas Craig says:

    The polarized commentary here is a direct reflection of our polarized, divided culture where the segment on the right relies primarily on one news source (Fox News) for their information. The Pew Research Center’s recent report on media polarization and the 2020 election found that “Republicans in a right-leaning audience news bubble overwhelmingly name Fox News (70%) as their main source for political news.” However, “Democrats in a left-leaning audience news bubble” do not have a single source like Fox to turn to. Only 21% rely on CNN and 18% rely on NPR. Also, “Republicans in a right-leaning audience news bubble also express greater reliance on just one main source as opposed to a wider mix: 60% say they rely on their main source far more than any other source. Half as many Democrats in a left-leaning audience news bubble (30%) say the same thing.”

    Another good source is this Media Bias Chart that shows several news sources as the most neutral, balanced and reliable including AP, Reuters, ABC, Bloomberg, CBS and USA Today. Also listed among the most reliable sources include NPR, Aljazeera, Wall Street Journal, AXIOS, NY Times, Huffpost, The Hill, Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor, Newsweek and The Economist. Interestingly, CNN is listed highest on the chart (higher reliability) and closer to the middle (lack of bias) when compared with MSNBC and Fox News which are listed lower than most news sources on both reliability and neutrality.

    What is the point of all this? Merely, that it becomes increasingly difficult for people who consume extremely different media products to agree on what is actually true or real. People on the far right, for example, who watch Fox and support Trump are less likely to support BLM or understand, accept and welcome reforms that make police more accountable and people of color more safe. That is not their issue. It will never be their issue. Instead, they have been misled into believing in the lie that people on the left are being paid to protest. They have become fearful of a threat that does not exist while they ignore the real threat to our community which is COVID-19. This makes sense to anyone who watches Fox News even for a few minutes.

    Here is a list from Cosmopolitan of 25 Fake Reports about the BLM Protests, Debunked. #15 debunks the George Soros connections.

    Reuters also debunked the paid protester myth.

    According to ADL, there are half a billion negative tweets a day about George Soros accusing him of funding Antifa and other conspiracy theories. What does truth mean in a world where we have severed our common ties to a core reality? How can we unite our communities when we live in such different worlds?

  30. Avatar Austin H says:

    So, if these people care about the community so much, and want to protect businesses, where have they been as their own fellow community members of Shasta County carry out acts such as:
    – Smashing into the Palo Cedro Holiday Market
    – Stealing from businesses
    – Ripping off construction sites
    – Ransacking neighbors homes while those homeowners are out of town
    – And plenty more instances of thievery and looting

    There was no Antifa bus ever coming to Redding. Ever. Period.
    None were coming to Klamath Falls. Yreka. Mount Shasta. Chico. Etc.

    The real criminals have always been right here in your own community. Not the homeless. Not protestors or liberals. Plain old regular career criminal families that have for generations made a point of living off of the government and the hard work of decent people.
    But I’ve yet to ever see in the last decade a brigade of armed community members patrolling downtown and protecting businesses, or making the rounds and keeping an eye out for trouble.
    Shasta County, where no one ever needs to travel elsewhere to feel like they know everything.

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      Well said. Shasta County’s biggest problem? Home-grown white trash dirtbag criminals who spend almost all of their incomes on drugs, guns, beater trucks, and (real and faux) prison ink.

  31. Steve Du Bois Steve Du Bois says:

    Politics aside, Stake in NorCal reminds me of the global Guardian Angels. They were founded in New York City in 1979. The group spread to 13 countries.

    I met some of the members in Los Angeles and Hollywood 2-3 weeks after the Los Angeles uprising, which followed the acquittal of four officers after beating Rodney King. A former home of mine was in one of those burned out areas, now known as Koreatown. I was in a bit of shock to see what happened there. I took several pictures throughout areas of the riots including the intersection where Reginald Denny was pulled out of his construction truck and beaten severely. There was strong tension in the air. You bet I was cautious, yet, I spoke with Black Americans on the streets.

    The Los Angeles Guardian Angeles struck me as a group of like minded people who only wanted to help protect the community. They’ve been on hiatus for the past several years. Now, they’re recruiting again in Los Angeles for initial patrols in the Hollywood and Vienna Beach areas.

    I’m not a fan of the Stake in NorCal politics. I see a problem with politics being interwoven within their cause. I do believe, however, they have similar intentions with the Guardian Angels. I’m also sure, that perhaps, someone who knows far more about the Guardian Angels than I do, will put that on the table.

    Beware of perception: Perception can be conflicting, and/or dangerous.

    In the meantime, speaking with Jesse, he was calm, soft spoken, and seemed personable to me. I can only hope that peace will be with this group. We’ll see. One of the members told me they want peace. I told her, “The most peaceful thing is breath.” I think breath is a great place to focus.

  32. Avatar Annelise says:

    Conservative white Americans, including those in Stake, are not all the same. When we treat all Stake members like a single unit with the same Beliefs, we may miss some very important aspects of the picture. I would caution against hyperbole and painting the whole group with a broad brush. When you exclude and vilify people, that doesn’t tend to work towards peace and a healthy society, no matter who does the excluding and vilifying.

    • Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

      Statements from this group that liberal viewpoints are not welcomed and its rabid support for what is arguably the most divisive, racist, white supremacist-pandering president in the country’s history (even including Woodrow Wilson, who had nothing on Trump) doesn’t exactly speak of inclusion. In fact, everything about this ultra-right-wing group appears to be hyperbolic, exclusionary, and heavily based on harmful misinformation. Sometimes there simply are not two legitimate, equal sides to an issue, and compromise is not always the right way to go.

      • Avatar Damon Miller says:

        Bingo, Patrecia. The sooner liberal civility fetishists realize this, the better. I fear some of them will be still be trying to have a civil airing of differences with the right as they are lined up against the wall.

        • Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

          Lined up against the wall? Really? This in inflammatory and needs to be removed!

          • Avatar Damon Miller says:

            If you don’t think that’s the ultimate goal of right-wing extremist groups, you probably need to pick up a history book or a newspaper—a militia group shot a man yesterday in NM, as a matter of fact.

            Sticking your head in the sand will not make them go away.

    • Avatar CHRISTIAN Gardinier says:

      Annelise, of course no one is exactly the same! But regarding groups, when we have enough in common our particular qualities are our “ingroup,” and those who do not are the “outgroup.”
      However the ingroup commonalities of this group are very clear.

      1. Pro Trump and his administration’s agenda.
      2. Pro militia
      3. Fear and behavioral thinking that their outgroup, “antifa,” the thinking and fear that left are socialists and belief that people are going to disrupt their right wing homeostasis in the North Valley .

      The attributes and commonalities include right-wing “family values,” that are found in the Trump – Pence agenda, are often anti LGBQT, pro “Christian” education in public schools, open discrimination against people and cultures that are not American white, excepting of patriarchy and anti environmentalism. Does everyone believe in all these social -political – economic and spiritual attributes and to the same degree? I would say statistically speaking, the probabilities are low. HOWEVER, there is enough commonality to form their group. And that is how Authoritarianism or in extreme, fascism, can stake a claim in our nation in worst case scenarios. And in my ingroup, that is very dangerous and, “not working towards peace and a healthy society.”

      Sorry Annelise, we do gravitate towards tribes, it’s part of human evolution, for better or worse.

      Would we like to live in a world where the tribe is humankind? Sure! But right now the attributes of all that is much of what trump and the trumplblicans (a tribe that has enough in common with their leader trump, to form a group that promotes and supports trump and his agenda, permeates at different degrees right down to the social – political – law enforcement – economic and yes, even spiritual make up of our local environment.

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      Annelise — Well said. But….

      If you’re going to join a group, you had better be prepared to be associated with its leaders and what they say and do. The language of Stake leadership has been full of inclusion/exclusion tests from the beginning. Are all Stake members the same? Certainly not. Guilty by association? Sorry—that’s what followers sign up to.

      In response to the repeated scoldings from Stake members that we ANC regulars are all being intolerant, I’ve pointed out Stake leadership’s “libs, keep your mouths shut our we’ll 86 you” proclamations several times. None of the Stake members seem to want to acknowledge who started the heavy in-group/out-group rhetoric. That they refuse to counter those statements, or even acknowledge them, tells me plenty.

  33. Avatar Joanne Lobeski Snyder says:

    Thank you for attending and reporting this event Annelise. If the misinformation about terrorists coming to town got people organized and enthused about helping their neighbors…..building wheelchair ramps, clearing property, taking care of the elders and veterans in our community and helping the homeless…I’m all for it. All of these are worthy goals for any group of determined and hard working people.

  34. Avatar S says:

    Isn’t this the group that all those racist screen shots are connected to? That then accused one person, when several people were posting them in many places, of libel and whatever else they could think of. Screen shots.

  35. Avatar Carla says:

    “Covid was a ruse”.
    If that’s so, the amount of coordination and complicity between all local health departments, every state health department, the CDC, along with many other federal health agencies, the WHO, health departments in other countries, and of course, our own president is breathtaking and astounding. Not to mention the “crisis actors” taking up space in hospital ICUs and morgues.
    I guess there’s nothing we can’t do if we can stage that.

  36. Avatar Randy says:

    If we Americans want to ‘heal’ our divisions we must begin with the true facts of the issues we are divided about. No single issue can be more deserving of collective scrutiny than the issues of AGW. The ‘right’ cry foul for being villianized, mocked or called ‘liars’ when they repeatedly slander, without a shred of evidence, the entire global community of professional, working climate scientists. The ‘right’ have no problem at all passing along slanderous lies but cry like babies when they get called on it.

  37. Frank Treadway Frank Treadway says:

    Again, I count no more then 46 Yellow Shirts in the pix (all White skinned). Then we see that 500-4,000 have come on board. What’s with this numbers game, are you all trying to scare us with your ‘who’s got the most bodies’ in this effort to fight racism in our community ? As one militia told me at the Court St. demonstration, “I’m here to protect you from AuntieFa, I said, you mean Antifa’, he didn’t even know who, or what, AntiFa was, which was well described in an earlier comment by Ms. Koch. I said I can protect myself and I’ll expect the local law enforcement to do such as well. A legislator at the Capitol needs to introduce a piece of legislation that will outlaw this current approval of local citizens forming a faux law enforcement group. Take it to the CA Supreme Court if necessary.

  38. Avatar Rick says:

    Sounds like another weird QAnon movement to me. I’ll be sure to avoid them.

  39. Avatar Steve says:

    I wonder how many bethels are in it, seems like it’s their kind of ignorant, racist, right wing group that hides behind a false sense of community and acceptance.

  40. Avatar Ron C says:

    Awesome! Another group I can stand by and join. Were do I sign up!

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