The Cable

Oregon Occupiers Again Trolled on Social Media

An Oregon occupier who tearfully pledged loyalty to the Constitution gets trolled hard on Twitter.

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Move over, #YallQaeda. Make room for Jon Ritzheimer and #DaddySworeAnOath.

Ritzheimer is the former Marine who planned an armed biker rally outside a mosque in Phoenix last May. According to the video below, posted on New Year’s Eve, he’s now in Oregon as part of the armed anti-government group, calling themselves the Citizens for Constitutional Freedom, that has seized empty administrative buildings on a federal refuge for wildlife. In the video, he gives a tearful confession to his children about why he can’t be with them for the holidays: “Your daddy swore an oath. He swore an oath to protect and defend the Constitution.”

He appears to have unleashed a social media monster, with Ritzheimer getting savaged on Twitter by people posting videos showing them pledging allegiance to everything from cereal boxes to comic books. The hashtag? #DaddySworeAnOath.  

The trend appears to have begun Tuesday when John Darnielle, frontman for the Mountain Goats, an American indie folk group based in North Carolina, posted the video below.

It didn’t take long for #DaddySworeAnOath to light up Twitter. Here are just a few of the videos posted mocking Ritzheimer’s weepy pledge.

It remains to be seen whether Ritzheimer and his compatriots will get what they want: reconsideration of the sentences of ranchers Dwight Hammond Jr., 74, and his son, Steven Hammond, 46. Both have reported to federal prison to serve five-year sentences for arson on federal land.

In the meantime, the Internet trolling — like the standoff itself — goes on.

Photo credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

David Francis was a senior reporter for Foreign Policy, where he covered international finance. @davidcfrancis

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