Councilman Paul Smith of Sterling Heights, Michigan received a visit from the Secret Service after a video of a 2009 Tea Party rally depicted him carrying signs with Obama’s head on a spike, Nancy Pelosi riddled with bullets, and former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm’s head in a noose.
The Secret Service visited Smith in his home, reportedly questioning him regarding his signs. It is unclear whether or not they found any cause to worry. Whether Smith is likely to actually commit these atrocities against the politicians is debatable, however they clearly do depict violence as an acceptable method of removal from office. The video depicts Smith making other inflammatory comments meant to embolden the right-wing and create enough of a hysteria and mob mentality to remove Obama from office. What the right does not realize is that a mob is not something easily controlled, and this kind of rhetoric, combined with the escalation of mob mentality can, has, and will continue to result in the creation of militias and right-wing domestic terrorists.
When Sterling Heights Mayor Pro Tem Michael Taylor discovered this video on YouTube, he called for Smith’s resignation, with the resolution passing 6-1, Smith himself being the only no vote. Smith’s explanation of his removal insists that he did no wrong, and that the council simply did not like him. Mayor Taylor insists that his removal was due to misconduct unbefitting a public official.
Here’s the video: