car thief who despised both sets of Eastern liberals—the draftcardrnburners who betrayed their country in wartime and thernpatriotic stockjobbers who would sell it to the highest bidders.rnResistance to the regime is always strongest in the hinterlands,rnbecause the people of the cities are either cowed orrncoopted by their education and their habits of dependence. Arnfew weeks before the bombing, gunowners and populists wererngleefulK anticipating the passage of concealed-carry permits inrnseveral states, but in the wave of antigun paranoia that sweptrnthe country, those bills were dropped, but not for long, if thernPresident and his friends know what is good for them. If thisrnnation is to be preserved in anything like its present form, thenrnthe vast apparatus of bribery and coercion we call the federalrngovernment must be reduced to its dimensions of 60 or 70 orrn100 years ago. We ha’c all been corrupted bv government, butrnthere remains a militant minority that is convinced that werncould solve our problems, if the federal government would on-rn1 sta in Wishington. As Steinbeck’s Tom ]oad explained tornhis mother, the people would be all right if only the governmentrnwould leave them alone:rnI been thinking how it was in that gov’ment camp, howrnour folks took care a theirselves, an’ if they was a fightrnthey fixed it theirself; an’ they wasn’t no cops wagglingrntheir guns, but they was better order than them cops everrngive. I been a-wonderin’ why we can’t do that all over.rnThrow out the cops that ain’t our people. All workrntogether for our own thing—all farm our own land.rnThis is neither communism nor anarchism; it is only whatrnmost Americans wanted in 1776—to throw out not all the police,rnbut only “the cops that ain’t our people”—and it is all thatrnanv sensible American wants today, including the poor fools inrnmilitias and separatist sects, eco-freak communards and gunnutrnsurvivalists, black nationalists and white supremacists alike.rnIf they cannot get it, if no one is to be left in peace to go crazyrnin his own way, to rear his own children and cleave unto his ownrngods, then we are in for a great deal more trouble than is dreamtrnof even in the nightmares at FBI and BATF headquarters. Thernstrategy of the federal cops is to make examples of a few designatedrnleaders; kill David Koresh or Gordon Kahl and leave therncarcass to stink on the front pages of the morning paper like arndead rabbit nailed to a garden fence post. For all any of us willrnever know, some kind of federal cop is behind the shootings ofrnGeorge Wallace, Malcolm X, and every other uppity cracker,rnnigger, wop, or greaser who dared to look his betters in the face.rnThe authorities love racial conflict; they do everything they canrnto provoke it, because if we fight each other, we cannot turn ourrnattention to them.rnPerhaps the convenient assassinations that adorn Americanrnhistor)’ (the honest Garfield, for example, or McKinley the reluctantrnimperialist) were just lucky accidents, like the bombingrnin Oklahoma City, but for every future accident there may be arnmartyr—like Steinbeck’s Preacher Casy whose murder turnsrnTom Joad into a revolutionary: “Wherever they’s a fight so hungryrnpeople can eat, I’ll be there. Wherever they’s a cop beatin’rnup a guy, I’ll be there. .. . An’ when our folks eat the stuff theyrnraise an’ live in the houses they build—why, I’ll be there.”rnAll we ask is to be let alone, as a defender of the Americanrnunion once declared, to eat the stuff we raise and live in thernhouses we build. Restore the Constitution, and there will bernpeace; take the occupying army of judges and federal marshalsrnout of our schools and neighborhoods, and no one will hate therngovernment. But, keep up the march step toward universal empire,rnand this nation will continue to split along fault lines thatrngo deeper than anyone imagined in Bosnia 1985 or in the UnitedrnStates in 1995. Devolution or revolution, those are the onlyrnchoices that lie before us. <‘crnBird in Winterrnby John Nixon, Jr.rnThe village ornithologistrnExamined my word-snapshot, thoughtrnPerhaps it was a kinglet orrnOne of the finches. Wren-like, pert.rnMore energy than matter, hernRepeatedly attacked my window.rnA feathered missile, this. He saw,rn[nside the room, real fern, live cactus,rnA hanging vine. Ah, summer! Now—rnAnd once again he hurled his weightrnAgainst the view—if he could justrnPersuade dumb glass to let him through.rnAUGUST 1995/13rnrnrn