Last Fall, there were several rallies throughout northwest Arkansas where Richard "Bigo" Barnett paraded through the audiences with his AR15 strapped to his shoulder. For those of us who were guest speakers, we appreciated his giving us protection from possible disruptions from potential would-be left-wing nut jobs.
The comments "Bigo" used in interviews to the media were the same that we were using from the podium: "Stand up; fight; be vigilant; be a patriot; if you see something that is obviously wrong, say something; etc." With those words and the applause that we gave to Mr. Barnett, I am afraid we emboldened "Bigo" to go do what he did at our nation's Capitol on Dec. 6. He not only stood up, but he also sat down in Speaker Pelosi's chair.
None of us approve of what he did, but in comparison to the burning and looting that went on for almost six months earlier by the leftwing extremists, "Bigo" did not commit the serious criminal acts of arson to churches, private property, and government buildings or theft of anything of great value.
What is ironic is that none of the perpetrators of the six months of "peaceful protests" spent five months in incarceration like Mr. Barnett and "Buffalo Bill" from Conway, Ark.
What I am concerned about is in the last few words of our American pledge of allegiance witch state "and justice for all." Our current justice system does not treat "all" equally. I agree both men need to be punished, but were they the only ones that stormed the Capitol that day? And is anyone going to serve five months of incarceration for the "peaceful protest" going on in Minneapolis right now?
I can relate to some of "Bigo's" frustrations of the unequal treatment of our justice system. Here in Benton County, I am probably the only one who has been punished with a fine of over $50,000 just because I spoke the truth about the secrecy of the Bella Vista POA and who was responsible for the creation of the Trafalgar Stump Dump fiasco. That punishment was meant to keep me silent. Lots of luck on that!
Freedom is not free, but silence can be devastating.