A mini-series dramatization of the controversial 1992 attack by federal agents on the Idaho home of Randy Weaver, a white seperatist. The ten-day siege, begun over a minor gun charge, resulted in the deaths of Weaver's son, wife and dog, and a U.S. Marshall. The incident caused major public outcry against the FBI and U.S. Marshals. Written by
Jonathan D. H. Parshall <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Where the Line Between the Military and Police Began to Blur
To my everlasting embarrassment as an American citizen, the stark injustice of the Ruby Ridge Incident somehow initially slipped by me. For some reason, it took the Waco Massacre to open my eyes and make me realize that our suddenly and scarily militarized police agencies--both federal and local--had but one enemy, and it was us. Although this progression has continued through the tragedy of 9/11, which just happened to give our legislators the perfect excuse to pass laws that shredded our inalienable Constitutional protections, a disappointingly small number of citizens seemed to have grasped what is going on.
That's why although the albeit imperfect "Siege of Ruby Ridge" is far from a great historical drama, it may well be an important one. If it smacks just a handful of still-clueless citizens over the head, it will be worth people's time.
I was actually surprised at how much this film got right. Certainly it was true that Vicki Weaver was the driving force behind the apocalyptic beliefs in the family. Despite his portrayal in the movie, Randy Weaver was far from a dim, subservient religious follower of Vicki, and he would not leave the major decisions regarding his family's fate to his traumatized young daughter. My main complaint would be the over-the-top portrayal of the Weaver family as obnoxious, bible-thumping, jackbooted Neo-NAZI wingnuts. Sharpening their tongues in preparation to lie about the Davidians and David Koresh, the national media did their best to simply repeat all federal agency statements that portrayed the Weavers as just the kind of neighborhood family that needs to be lined up and shot. The Weavers were far from the typical American family, but they were American citizens with the right to be left alone--a fact which the media conveniently chose to ignore.
There is a documentary film about this incident that centers on a grown-up and very appealing Rachael Weaver, along with commentary from the still irascible Randy, called "Legend of Ruby Ridge." Hearing Rachael fondly reminisce about her childhood on that mountain (which she now owns), makes the movie version seem downright ludicrous.
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