Defense Opening Statement

Another person who designed that slogan and adopted it was the famous general Richard Henry Lee of the American Revolutionary Army, who signed the Declaration of Independence and was a delegate to the First Continental Congress in Philadelphia and introduced the famous resolution of June 7, 1776, which called for the dissolutionment (sic) of ties between the United States and Great Britain; and he proposed the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution, which was adopted, and later served as a United States senator from Virginia.

The third person who participated in the selection was George Wythe, who signed the Declaration of Independence and was a delegate to the continental Congress.

So sic semper tyrannis is not the exclusive property of John Wilkes Booth. It has a meaning in the historical conservative community of people who follow the revolutionary rule and its antecedents, has really nothing to do only with John Wilkes Booth; likewise with the statement that Mr. McVeigh made to his sister that something big is going to happen.

There is no question that the evidence will show that Mr. McVeigh was a political animal. He studied history, the Constitution, the amendments to the Constitution. He carried them on his person. He carried them in his car, he carried them in his briefcase, and they were stacked in his house and he laid them out on tables at gun shows. There isn't any dispute about that.

Likewise, he was extremely upset with the subject of government abuse. Among the collection of literature, including that found in his car at the time of his arrest on Patriots' Day were John Locke's Second Treatise of Government, quotations from Thomas Jefferson, quotations from Winston Churchill and the Declaration of Independence.

Tim McVeigh, along with his sister and his friends, wrote letters to newspapers. They voted. His politics were open and known to everyone that spent any time with him. There was no secret about the politics that Tim McVeigh had.

And part of those politics had to do with the events, as Mr. Hartzler has described them, at Waco and Ruby Ridge.

Our proof will be that Tim McVeigh believed that the federal government executed 76 people at Waco, including 30 women and 25 children. That was his political belief. He was not alone in that opinion.

He believed that the federal law enforcement at Waco deployed in a military fashion against American citizens and children who had committed no crime and that the Branch Davidians were not a cult who lived in a compound. He believed that they were what they were, a breakoff of the Seventh Day Adventist church who had lived at Mount Carmel since the 1930's.

He believed that the federal government undertook a course of action including the use of tanks and CS gas and other military weapons against the Branch Davidians which was certain to result in their death. He believed that federal agents fired upon the Davidians as they attempted to escape the fire. He believed that these actions and cover-up of these actions, as he saw it, pointed to a federal government out of control; and he made no secret about it. He was at Waco. There is a videotape of Tim McVeigh which you will see in evidence in a flannel shirt sitting on top of his car, talking to a television reporter. And on the top of the car are bumper stickers that he is selling or giving away which describe his political beliefs.

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