On August 16, 26 year-old former United States Marine Brandon Raub, was taken from his Virginia home by the Secret Service, FBI, and local authorities, and sent to a mental hospital.
Raub, who has no criminal record or history of mental problems, had committed the offense of writing the “wrong” things on his Facebook page. Granted, Raub’s posts are nutty—9/11 was an inside job, the government is raping children, there’s a revolution coming, and other infowars.com-style rantings.
Here’s one example:
“Do you know why the American people will win the Civil War that is coming? Because we are Americans.”
But since when is saying crazy things illegal in America? This country has a long, illustrious history of crazy ideas and people. One of the great things about the U.S. is its acceptance of crazy people into mainstream society, including public office.
Which brings us to Judge Tom Head.
Head is a Lubbock County judge who recently told a local news station that a tax increase would be necessary in order to prepare for the “worst case scenario: civil unrest, civil disobedience, civil war maybe.”
“We’re not just talking a few riots here and demonstrations, we’re talking — we’re talking Lexington, Concord, take up arms and get rid of the guy,” Head said. “What’s going to happen if we do that, if the public decides to do that? [Obama's] going to send in U.N. troops. I don‘t want ’em in Lubbock County. OK. So I‘m going to stand in front of their armored personnel carrier and say ’you’re not coming in here.’
“And the sheriff, I’ve already asked him, I said ‘you gonna back me’ he said, ‘yeah, I‘ll back you’. Well, I don’t want a bunch of rookies back there….I want trained, equipped, seasoned veteran officers to back me,” he said.
As of Thursday, Head has not been sent to a mental hospital. Not only that, he remains a judge, meaning he is still in a position to make decisions that can and will impact people for the rest of their lives. Meanwhile, Raub, a private citizen, remains on a psychiatric ward somewhere in Virginia because he too believes the country is headed toward a civil war.
So what does this tale of two crazies tell us? It tells us that a U.S. Marine, who supposedly fought for the freedoms in the Bill of Rights—including the right to free speech—can be detained against his will by the very government he served because he advanced strange and unpopular opinions, while a judge gets to enjoy the freedoms for which Raub fought, even though the latter is currently being deprived of that same freedom.
If the government is truly going to make holding crazy ideas illegal in this country, we might as well wall-off four entire states to house all of the inmates that will surely be generated from such a policy. And we ought to be fully prepared to fill the slew of vacancies that will no doubt arise in the nation’s elected offices.
The Washington Times is reporting that a state circuit judge has ordered Brandon Raub released from the psychiatric institution. Judge W. Allan Sharrett deemed Raub's detainment invalid.