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John W. Whitehead is an attorney and author who has written, debated and practiced widely in the area of constitutional law and human rights. Whitehead's aggressive, pioneering approach to civil liberties has earned him numerous accolades and accomplishments, including the Hungarian Medal of Freedom. His concern for the persecuted and oppressed led him, in 1982, to establish The Rutherford Institute, a nonprofit civil liberties and human rights organization in Charlottesville, Va. Whitehead serves as the Institute's president and spokesperson. His thought-provoking commentaries call people to action and address a wide range of contemporary issues from faith to politics and television to constitutional rights. He is also a frequent commentator on a variety of issues in the national media, as well as the editor of the award-winning pop culture magazine, Gadfly. Whitehead's book A Government of Wolves will be published in June 2013. Please visit On Target to view Whitehead's weekly video commentaries. He also blogs daily about the emerging police state at http://agovernmentofwolves.com/

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The First Amendment Explained so you can understand the Constitution of the US... Thursday, October 18, 2018 (2 comments)     

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You Want to Make America Great Again? Living in a representative republic means that each person has the right to take a stand for what they think is right, whether that means marching outside the halls of government, wearing clothing with provocative statements, or simply holding up a sign. That's what the First Amendment is supposed to be about.

Crazy statue of liberty sees you all. Thursday, July 26, 2018 (21 comments)     

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No Doubt About It: The Deep State Is Real and Trump Is Its Latest Tool Apart from tweets that are little more than sound and fury, Trump is not a man who is raging against the machine. He is too much a part of the machine. Trump is not advocating for peace with Russia, or North Korea or any other nation. He is selling us out to the war hawks.

Trump TV Thursday, July 19, 2018 (4 comments)     

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It's All Fake: Reality TV That Masquerades as American Politics The political scene in the United States has devolved over the years into a carefully calibrated exercise in how to manipulate, polarize, propagandize and control a population. Likewise, "The Trump Show" keeps the citizenry distracted, diverted and divided. This is the magic of the reality TV programming that passes for politics today.

New world order is Coming! Thursday, July 12, 2018 (18 comments)     

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A New World Order To anyone who's been paying attention to the goings-on in the world, it is increasingly obvious that we're already under a new world order, and it is being brought to you by the Global-Industrial Deep State, a powerful cabal made up of international government agencies and corporations. This marriage of governmental and corporate interests is the very definition of fascism.

US Constitution Saturday, July 7, 2018 (3 comments)     

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The Constitution is Not Neutral We no longer have a representative government, a rule of law, or justice. Liberty has fallen to legalism. Freedom has fallen to fascism. Justice has become jaded, jaundiced and just plain unjust. And for too many, the American dream of freedom and opportunity has turned into a living nightmare.

What happens to separated children after Trump's executive order? Even though President Trump signed a Tuesday, June 26, 2018     

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Caging Children, Separating Families: Has the War on Immigration Gone Too Far? Dragging young children kicking and crying and screaming from their parents, separating those children from their parents indefinitely, locking those children up in cages ("dog kennels") like animals, and subjecting them to the predators of the American police state: these are acts that no decent people should tolerate from their government.

Prison Trump Wednesday, June 6, 2018 (4 comments)     

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There Is No 'Get Out of Jail Free' Card for the President Someone needs to alert Donald Trump: there is no "Get Out of Jail Free" card just for being president.

Statue of Liberty Saturday, June 2, 2018 (2 comments)     

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Whose Country Is This? Is the Constitution Even Welcome Here Anymore? ACT: Say "enough is enough" to government-sponsored violence. The systemic violence being perpetrated by agents of the government has done more collective harm to the American people and our liberties than any single act of terror or mass shooting. Violence has become the government's calling card. We are no longer "innocent until proven guilty."

Tuesday, May 29, 2018 (2 comments)     

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We're All Trespassers Now in the Face of the Government's Land Grabs The American Dream has been reduced to a lease arrangement in which we are granted the privilege of endlessly paying out the nose for assets that are only ours so long as it suits the government's purposes.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018 (3 comments)     

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The Age of Petty Tyrannies Federal and state governments now require on penalty of a fine that individuals apply for permission before they can grow exotic orchids, host elaborate dinner parties, gather friends in one's home for Bible studies, give coffee to the homeless, let their kids manage a lemonade stand, keep chickens as pets, or braid someone's hair, as ludicrous as that may seem.

Police State Wednesday, May 2, 2018 (5 comments)     

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Dial T for Tyranny: While America Feuds, the Police State Shifts Into High Gear What characterizes American government today is not so much dysfunctional politics as it is ruthlessly contrived governance carried out behind the entertaining, distracting and disingenuous curtain of political theater. All the while, a different kind of drama is unfolding in the dark backstage, hidden from view by the heavy curtain, the elaborate stage sets, colored lights and parading actors.

Thursday, April 19, 2018 (4 comments)     

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Crimes of a Monster: Your Tax Dollars at Work We get taxed on how much we earn, taxed on what we eat, taxed on what we buy, taxed on where we go, taxed on what we drive, and taxed on how much is left of our assets when we die. While we may not have much choice in the matter of how our taxes are used, we still have a voice and a vote, and it's time the American people made their voices--and their votes--heard.

DOD to observe Constitution Day, Citizenship Day > U.S. Air Force ...780 × 443 - 946k -  Tuesday, April 10, 2018 (1 comments)     

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The Slippery Slope to a Constitution-Free America We are sliding fast down a slippery slope to a Constitution-free America. We've been heading in this direction for some time now, but this downward trajectory has picked up speed since Donald Trump became president.

Iraq Wednesday, April 4, 2018 (12 comments)     

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Enough Is Enough: If You Really Want to Save Lives, Take Aim at Government Violence Why is no one taking aim at the U.S. government as the greatest purveyor of violence in American society and around the world? The systemic violence being perpetrated by agents of the government has done more collective harm to the American people and our liberties than any single act of terror or mass shooting.

Free Speech Zone Wednesday, April 4, 2018 (3 comments)     

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Tolerance Cuts Both Ways: Freedom for the Speech We Hate Tolerance cuts both ways. This isn't an easy pill to swallow, I know, but that's the way free speech works, especially when it comes to tolerating speech that we hate. The most controversial issues of our day have become battlegrounds for those who claim to believe in freedom of speech but only when it favors the views and positions they support.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 (2 comments)     

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America Hasn't Learned a Thing: Racism, Materialism and Militarism Still Reign Supreme The "giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism" that Martin Luther King Jr. railed so passionately against have yet to be conquered. In fact, the evils of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism have got us in a death grip. America hasn't learned a thing.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 (1 comments)     

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Say No to "Hardening" the Schools with Zero Tolerance Policies and Gun-Toting Cops Just what we don't need: more gun-toting, taser-wielding cops in government-run schools that bear an uncomfortable resemblance to prisons. Microcosms of the police state, America's public schools already contain almost every aspect of the militarized, intolerant, senseless, overcriminalized, legalistic, surveillance-riddled, totalitarian landscape that plagues those of us on the "outside."

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 (17 comments)     

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Dictator for Life: The Rise of the American Imperial President Just recently, China announced its plan to make its president, Xi Jinping, president for life. President Trump thinks that's a great idea. Trump thinks the idea of having a president for life is so great, in fact, that America might want to move in that direction. Here's the thing: we already have a president for life.

ROTC Affair Wednesday, February 28, 2018 (2 comments)     

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Merchants of Death: America's Toxic Cult of Violence Turns Deadly We are caught in a vicious cycle. With alarming regularity, the nation is being subjected to a spate of violence that terrorizes the public, destabilizes the country's fragile ecosystem, and gives the government greater justifications to crack down, lock down, and institute even more authoritarian policies for the so-called sake of national security without many objections from the citizenry.

Police BADGE Tuesday, February 27, 2018 (22 comments)     

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Armed and Dangerous: If Police Don't Have to Protect the Public, What Good Are They? According to the U.S. Supreme Court, police have no duty, moral or otherwise, to help those in trouble, protect individuals from danger, or risk their own lives to save "we the people." This begs the question: if the police don't have a duty to protect the public, what are we paying them for? And who exactly do they serve if not you and me?

Bankrupt Tuesday, February 27, 2018 (1 comments)     

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The Military Industrial Complex Strikes Again: War Spending Will Bankrupt America Mark my words, America's war spending will bankrupt the nation. Right now, the U.S. government is operating in the negative on every front: it's spending far more than what it makes (and takes from the American taxpayers) and it is borrowing heavily (from foreign governments and Social Security) to keep the government operating and keep funding its endless wars abroad. This is how military empires fall and fail.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018 (1 comments)     

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Little Barbies: Sex Trafficking of Young Girls Is America's Dirty Little Secret They're called the Little Barbies. Children, young girls--some as young as 9 years old--are being bought and sold for sex in America. The average age for a young woman being sold for sex is now 13 years old. This is America's dirty little secret.

Greyhound Bus Friday, February 2, 2018 (2 comments)     

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Things Are Getting Worse, Not Better: Round Ups, Checkpoints and National ID Cards Here in Amerika, things are getting worse as the nation inches ever closer towards totalitarianism, that goose-stepping form of tyranny in which the government has all of the power and "we the people" have none. With the government empowered to carry out transportation checks to question people about their immigration status, you're going to see a rise in these "show your papers" incidents. Here's why that's a problem.

Thursday, February 1, 2018     

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The True State of Our Union: A House Divided, Enslaved & Mired in the Mistakes of the Past History has a funny way of circling back on itself. The facts, figures, faces and technology may change from era to era, but the dangers remain the same. This year is no different, whatever the politicians and talking heads may say to the contrary. Brush up on your history, and you'll find that we've been stuck on repeat for some time now. You want to know about the true State of our Union? Listen up.

Image created from image crediting Thursday, January 18, 2018 (10 comments)     

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Silence Is Betrayal: Get Up, Stand Up, Speak Up for Your Rights The United States of America is run by a cabal of racist, classist, sexist, militaristic, misogynistic, greedy, heartless thugs who are obviously satisfied that their latest CEO -- Donald Trump -- is doing such a great job of keeping the nation polarized and pole-axed by his reality show antics.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018 (8 comments)     

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Justice Denied: The Government Is Not Going to Save Us The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled: it will not hear the case of Young v. Borders. Despite the fact that a 26-year-old man was gunned down by police who banged on the wrong door at 1:30 am, failed to identify themselves as police, and then repeatedly shot and killed the innocent homeowner who answered the door while holding a gun in self-defense, the justices of the high court refused to intervene to address police misconduct.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018 (4 comments)     

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A Tale of Two Americas: Where the Rich Get Richer and the Poor Go to Jail Aided and abetted by the likes of Jeff Sessions--a man who wouldn't recognize the Constitution if it smacked him in the face--the American dream has become the American scheme: the rich are getting richer and more powerful, while anyone who doesn't belong to the power elite gets poorer and more powerless to do anything about the nation's steady slide towards fascism, authoritarianism and a profit-driven police state.

Protesting Obama at the UN Wednesday, December 27, 2017     

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Apocalypse Now: 2017 Was Another Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Year Just our luck that 2017 gave us more of the same bad news that we've experienced in recent years. Here's just a small sampling of what we suffered through in 2017.

Monday, December 18, 2017     

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Jesus Was Born in a Police State The Christmas narrative of a baby born in a manger is a familiar one. Yet what if, instead of being born into the Roman police state, Jesus had been born and raised in the American police state?

Tuesday, December 12, 2017 (2 comments)     

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The Deep State's Christmas Present to America: Surveillance That Never Ends Just in time for Christmas, the Deep State wants to give America the gift that keeps on giving: never-ending mass surveillance.

John Lennon portrait Friday, December 8, 2017 (3 comments)     

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John Lennon Was Right: The Government Is Run by Maniacs for Maniacal Means Not much has changed in the 37 years since John Lennon was gunned down by an assassin's bullet. All of the many complaints we have about government today--surveillance, corruption, harassment, political persecution, spying, overcriminalization, etc.--were used against Lennon, who never refrained from speaking truth to power and calling for social justice, peace and a populist revolution.

Charlottesville Tuesday, December 5, 2017     

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What Went Wrong in Charlottesville: At All Levels, Government Is Still the Problem As Charlottesville makes clear, it's hard to make a difference locally when the local government is as deaf, dumb and blind to the needs of its constituents as the national government. Still, it's time to clean house at all levels of government.

Traffic stop Monday, November 27, 2017 (6 comments)     

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Nervous About Traffic Stops? I Am. You Should Be, Too At a time when police can do no wrong--at least in the eyes of the courts, police unions and politicians dependent on their votes--and a "fear" for officer safety is used to justify all manner of police misconduct, "we the people" are at a severe disadvantage. Add a traffic stop to the mix, and that disadvantage increases dramatically.

Kelly Ingram Park, Birmingham, Alabama Tuesday, November 21, 2017 (4 comments)     

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Don't Just Give Thanks. Pay It Forward One Act of Kindness at a Time How do you give thanks for freedoms that are constantly being eroded? How do you express gratitude for one's safety when the perils posed by the American police state grow more treacherous by the day? How do you come together as a nation in thanksgiving when the powers-that-be continue to polarize and divide us into warring factions? It's not going to happen overnight. Or with one day of thanksgiving.

Image created from image crediting Thursday, November 9, 2017 (4 comments)     

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America Breaks Down: The Anatomy of a National Nervous Breakdown With alarming regularity, the nation is being subjected to a spate of violence that terrorizes the public, destabilizes the country's fragile ecosystem, and gives the government greater justifications to crack down, lock down, and institute even more authoritarian policies for the so-called sake of national security without many objections from the citizenry.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017 (1 comments)     

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Trick or Treat: One Year Later, Is Trump a Blessing or a Curse to the Deep State? Has Donald Trump been a blessing or a curse to the architects of the American police state? One thing is for sure: a year into his presidency, Trump hasn't done much to improve the lot of the American people.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017 (1 comments)     

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Don't Call the Cops If You're Autistic, Deaf, Mentally Ill, Disabled or Old Here's another don't to the add the growing list of things that could get you or a loved one tasered, shot or killed, especially if you are autistic, hearing impaired, mentally ill, elderly, suffer from dementia, disabled or have any other condition that might hinder your ability to understand, communicate or immediately comply with an order: don't call the cops.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017 (2 comments)     

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This Is How Tyranny Rises and Freedom Falls: The Experiment in Freedom Is Failing Donald Trump may be the smartest move yet by the powers-that-be to keep the citizenry divided and at each other's throats, because as long as we're busy fighting each other, we'll never manage to present a unified front against tyranny in any form. The facts speak for themselves.

Saturday, October 14, 2017 (1 comments)     

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Power Corrupts: A Culture of Compliance Breeds Despots and Predators Power corrupts. Worse, absolute power corrupts absolutely. It doesn't matter whether you're talking about a politician, an entertainment mogul, a corporate CEO or a police officer: give any one person (or government agency) too much power and allow him or her or it to believe that they are entitled, untouchable and will not be held accountable for their actions, and those powers will eventually be abused.

Video Games Wednesday, October 4, 2017 (1 comments)     

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Mass Shootings: The Military-Entertainment Complex's Culture of Violence Turns Deadly We're left with more questions than answers about this latest mass shooting in Las Vegas, none of them a flattering reflection of the nation's values, political priorities, or the manner in which the military-industrial complex continues to dominate, dictate and shape almost every aspect of our lives.

Burning US Flag Monday, September 25, 2017 (2 comments)     

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Patriots and Protesters Should Take a Knee for the Constitution At a time when the American flag adorns everything from men's boxers and women's bikinis to beer koozies, bandannas and advertising billboards, and the National Anthem is sung by Pepper the Parrot, this conveniently timed outrage over disrespect for the country's patriotic symbols rings somewhat hollow, detracts from more serious conversations that should be taking place about critical policy matters of state.

Folsom Prison Wednesday, September 20, 2017 (1 comments)     

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Freedom Is a Myth: We Are All Prisoners of the Police State's Panopticon Village The Prisoner's Village is an apt allegory for the American Police State: it gives the illusion of freedom while functioning all the while like a prison: controlled, watchful, inflexible, punitive, deadly and inescapable. The American Police State, much like The Prisoner's Village, is a metaphorical panopticon, a circular prison in which the inmates are monitored by a single watchman situated in a central tower.

Monday, September 11, 2017 (2 comments)     

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Let's Make America Free Again: 230 Years After the Constitution, We're Walking a Dangerous Road Our national priorities need to be re-prioritized. For instance, Donald Trump wants to make America great again. I, for one, would prefer to make America free again.

blood draw Wednesday, September 6, 2017     

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What Country Is This? Forced Blood Draws, Cavity Searches and Colonoscopies Forced cavity searches, forced colonoscopies, forced blood draws, forced breath-alcohol tests, forced DNA extractions, forced eye scans, forced inclusion in biometric databases: these are just a few ways in which Americans are being forced to accept that we have no control over our bodies, our lives and our property, especially when it comes to interactions with the government.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017     

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Battlefield America Is the New Normal: We're Not in Mayberry Anymore While the nation has been distracted by a media maelstrom dominated by news of white supremacists, Powerball jackpots, Hurricane Harvey, and a Mayweather v. McGregor fight, the American Police State has been carving its own path of devastation and destruction through what's left of the Constitution.

Atlanta Airport Free Speech Zone Tuesday, August 22, 2017 (2 comments)     

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Freedom for the Speech We Hate: The Legal Ins and Outs of the Right to Protest Instead of encouraging people to debate issues and air their views, by muzzling free speech, we are contributing to a growing underclass of Americans who are being told that they can't take part in American public life unless they "fit in." This attempt to stifle certain forms of speech is where we go wrong.

Police brutality Thursday, August 17, 2017 (3 comments)     

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Anything Goes When You're a Cop in America President Trump needs to be reminded that no one is above the law, especially the police. Unfortunately, Trump and Jeff Sessions, head of the Justice Department (much like their predecessors) appear to have few qualms about giving police the green light to kill, shoot, taser, abuse and steal from American citizens in the so-called name of law and order.

Hate Background Thursday, August 17, 2017 (4 comments)     

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Chaos in Charlottesville: No One Gave Peace a Chance, Including the Police Let's be clear about one thing: no one--not the armed, violent, militant protesters nor the police--gave peace a chance during the August 12 demonstrations in Charlottesville, Va. One young woman is dead because of the hate, violence, intolerance, racism and partisanship that is tearing this country apart, and it has to stop.

USMS Asset Forfeiture poster Monday, July 24, 2017 (3 comments)     

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Policing for Profit: Jeff Sessions & Co.'s Thinly Veiled Plot to Rob Us Blind Jeff Sessions, the nation's top law enforcement official, would not recognize the Constitution if he ran right smack into it. Whether the head of the Trump Administration's Justice Department enjoys being the architect of a police state or is just painfully, criminally clueless, Sessions has done a great job thus far of sidestepping the Constitution at every turn.

Monday, July 17, 2017 (4 comments)     

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Tear Gas, Guns and Riot Squads: The Police State's Answer to Free Speech Is Brute Force Forget everything you've ever been taught about free speech in America. It's all a lie. There can be no free speech for the citizenry when the government speaks in a language of force.

The People Not Admitted Tuesday, May 16, 2017 (13 comments)     

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America's Reign of Terror: A Nation Reaps What It Sows The U.S. government isn't protecting us from terrorism. The U.S. government is creating the terror. It is, in fact, the source of the terror. Just think about it for a minute: almost every tyranny being perpetrated against the citizenry--purportedly to keep us safe and the nation secure--has come about as a result of some threat manufactured in one way or another by our own government.

EFF version of NSA logo Thursday, May 4, 2017     

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Big Brother Is Still Watching You: Don't Fall for the NSA's Latest Ploy Supposedly the National Security Administration is going to stop collecting certain internet communications that merely mention a foreign intelligence target. Privacy advocates are hailing it as a major victory for Americans whose communications have been caught in the NSA's dragnet. If this is a victory, it's a hollow victory. Here's why.

05.Dismantle.OccupyDC.McPherso nSquare.WDC.4February2012 Tuesday, April 25, 2017 (13 comments)     

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The Iron Jaws of the Police State: Trump's America Is a Constitution-Free Zone Please. Somebody give Attorney General Jeff Sessions a copy of the Constitution. And while you're at it, get a copy to President Trump, too. In fact, you might want to share a copy with the nation's police officers, as well. I have my doubts that any of these individuals--all of whom swore to uphold and defend the Constitution--have ever read any of the nation's founding documents.

Monday, April 17, 2017 (4 comments)     

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Run for Your Life: The American Police State Is Coming to Get You Daily, all across America, individuals who dare to resist--or even question--a police order are being subjected to all sorts of government-sanctioned abuse ranging from forced catheterization, forced blood draws, roadside strip searches and cavity searches, and other foul and debasing acts that degrade their bodily integrity and leave them bloodied and bruised.

Monday, April 10, 2017 (3 comments)     

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Beware the Dogs of War: Is the American Empire on the Verge of Collapse? Waging endless wars abroad (in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and now Syria) isn't making America--or the rest of the world--any safer, it's certainly not making America great again, and it's undeniably digging the U.S. deeper into debt. In fact, it's a wonder the economy hasn't collapsed yet.

Speak No Evil Tuesday, April 4, 2017 (20 comments)     

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When Government Evil Triumphs, Freedom Falls If America ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great. Unfortunately, the American government has been very, very, very bad: so bad, in fact, as to be almost indistinguishable at times from the evil it claims to be fighting, whether that evil takes the form of terrorism, torture, drug trafficking, sex trafficking, murder, violence, theft, pornography, or some other diabolical means of inflicting pain on the citizenry.

Monday, March 27, 2017 (1 comments)     

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Death at Your Door: Knock-and-Talk Police Tactics Rip a Hole in the Constitution Police insist that there's nothing coercive about knock-and-talk tactics. Yet whether police are knocking on your door at 2 am or 2:30 pm, as long as you're being "asked" to talk to a police officer who is armed to the teeth and inclined to kill at the least provocation, you don't really have much room to resist, not if you value your life.

USMS Asset Forfeiture poster Monday, March 20, 2017 (6 comments)     

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Stealing from the Citizenry: How Government Goons Use Civil Asset Forfeiture to Rob Us Blind In jolly old England, Robin Hood stole from the rich to give to the poor. In modern-day America, greedy government goons steal from the innocent to give to the corrupt under court-legislature-sanctioned schemes called civil asset forfeiture.

Monday, March 13, 2017 (2 comments)     

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Rule by Thieves: One Week in the Life of the American Kleptocracy In the same week that Wikileaks dropped its bombshell about the CIA's use of spy tools to subject law-abiding Americans to all manner of government surveillance and hacking--a revelation that caused barely a ripple of concern among the citizenry--the government quietly and with little fanfare continued to wage its devastating, stomach-churning, debilitating war on the American people.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017 (4 comments)     

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The Government Is Increasingly the Enemy of Freedom The protest laws being introduced across the country--in 18 states so far--are supposedly in the name of "public safety and limiting economic damage." Don't fall for it. No matter how you package these laws, no matter how well-meaning they may sound, no matter how much you may disagree with the protesters or sympathize with the objects of the protest, these proposed laws are aimed at one thing only: discouraging dissent.

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