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The Truth About The Alcee Hastings FEMA Concentration Camp Legislation

Lee Rogers of Blacklisted News warns that a bill has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives that would lead to the creation of FEMA camps that could be used as concentration camps if the federal government imposes martial law. The legislation, H.R. 390, is real. It was introduced by Congressman Alcee Hastings last month.

Is the danger of FEMA concentration camps from H.R. 390 real?

conspiracy theory barbed wireRogers writes, “One of the minimum requirements of a national emergency center as defined by the bill is that it is capable of meeting for an extended period of time the housing, health, transportation, education, public works, humanitarian and other transition needs of a large number of individuals affected by an emergency or major disaster. It basically sounds like a concentration camp… Considering how much the federal government has lied to the American people in the past, you would be absolutely insane to set foot in one of these proposed national emergency centers.”

Rogers is correct that the legislation would create facilities capable of meeting the basic needs of large numbers of Americans during an emergency. The legislation describes the purpose of the proposed centers as follows:

“Purpose of National Emergency Centers- The purpose of a national emergency center shall be to use existing infrastructure–
(1) to provide temporary housing, medical, and humanitarian assistance to individuals and families dislocated due to an emergency or major disaster;
(2) to provide centralized locations for the purposes of training and ensuring the coordination of Federal, State, and local first responders; and
(3) to provide centralized locations to improve the coordination of preparedness, response, and recovery efforts of government, private, and not-for-profit entities and faith-based organizations.”

The National Emergency Centers would be explicitly authorized to help Americans during an emergency, giving food, shelter, medical care and other “humanitarian assistance”. Conspicuously missing is any mention of the authority for the proposed National Emergency Centers to operate as concentration camps.

Lee Rogers writes that any facility that provides assistance with food, housing, medical care, education, transportation, and other humanitarian needs “basically sounds like a concentration camp”. I see things differently. I think that any facility that provides this sort of assistance basically sounds nice.

Within the core of most people’s definition of a concentration camp is that it fails to provide adequate food, housing, medical care, and other humanitarian assistance. Also within that definition of a concentration camp is the presumption that people are forcefully imprisoned, compelled to do labor, and subject to interrogation, torture, physical assault, and execution. None of these features of a concentration would be authorized if H.R. 390 was to pass into law.

All that H.R. 390 would do: Establish centers ready to help people in times of emergency. The bill would even provide economic assistance to communities outside of times of emergency, because it would establish National Emergency Centers in former military bases. Converting wasteful military spending into helpful domestic spending isn’t a horrific conspiracy. It’s compassionate and sensible.

Lee Rogers writes that H.R. 390 “does not necessarily prevent a member of the military” from forcing people to go to National Emergency Centers and preventing them from leaving. That’s true. It’s also true that H.R. 390 does not necessarily prevent federal agents from engaging in acts of ritual cannibalism. Nor does H.R. 390 necessarily prevent the National Emergency Centers from being used as brothels, or casinos, or as centers for the distribution of illegal drugs. Other laws do that. The lack of a specific clause the explicitly prohibits activities that have already been outlawed elsewhere is not evidence of a conspiracy to undermine the law.

Here at Irregular Times, we’ve written plenty of material calling attention to the disturbing growth in unconstitutional federal government powers, through laws such as the Patriot Act and the FISA Amendments Act. These laws have explicitly created specific unreasonable government powers in violation of the Bill of Rights. H.R. 390 doesn’t do that. Not at all.

Fanciful, paranoid speculation about harmless bills like H.R. 390 doesn’t aid in the struggle against excessive government powers. It distracts from legitimate concerns about the growth of an authoritarian security state.

To use language Lee Rogers would be familiar with, you would be absolutely insane to assume that H.R. 390 is part of a secret FEMA conspiracy to put Americans into concentration camps.

6 comments to The Truth About The Alcee Hastings FEMA Concentration Camp Legislation

  • Bill

    The FEMA concentration camp meme is beloved by paranoid gummint-haters, just as UN black helicopters were by their out-of-wedlock fathers. Their problem to date has been that they couldn’t, you know, actually point to one. So it’s probably unreasonable to hope they could resist the temptation to commence gum-flappin’ once HR 390 showed up. I mean, c’mon.

    Emergency preparedness sounds like a pretty darn good idea to me, and it’s a great idea to use shuttered military bases to this end. Judging from the number of people who look at me like I’m crazy because I have a month’s worth of MREs, bottled water, batteries, wet-wipes, TP, first aid supplies, and other essentials stockpiled (yes, including ammo, cigarettes, and wine) I can conclude that precious few people are prepared to ride out a month without normal social and commercial services this way…so it’s a good thing for the gummint to be prepared to help these folks, because sh*t happens. Does this make me a crazy-@ss ‘prepper’? Sure…in the same way that you carrying a spare tire around in your trunk makes you one, too.

  • jay

    Who signed the NDAA act… Talk about Our leader /s going against the the Bill of Rights…. where dose the government get it’s enumerated powers….. oh yeah an Old piece of paper signed in the 1700’s
    It’s still We the people..right?

  • Jane Doah

    The notion of our govt putting us in camps seems off the radar insane! BUT a few questions for you: why would they put emergency shelters on military bases? People found this objectionable in the first attempt HR645. For 180 million a year, they can build trailor parks, hotel-like establishments, etc. Military bases automatically give security. This I believe is what many “conspiracy theorists” are afraid of. It would be wise to make emergency centers without military security/personnel/physical barriers to coming or going.

    One thing that worries me is, what sort of emergency are we anticipating that would require the movement of massive portions of a population? Does the government have reason to believe that large portions of the country will become uninhabitable even temporarily?

    Also, HR390 need NOT state that people would be compelled to work, there is already an executive order allowing the govt to put people in work gangs in an emergency. The bill need not say it will detain people there: the Patriot Act and NDAA establish this, in the teeny chance such a thing was ever considered by the govt. But I doubt this would happen without some serious crisis like a civil war or something equally improbable…

    • Jane Doah

      Also, why must these places be near train lines? I just want to know what are we preparing for that would require such extreme action? Maybe climate crisis?

  • Bill

    Jane, most of the questions you pose are remarkably silly. Why should the government prepare for disasters by provisioning camps for displaced people? Simple: earthquakes; hurricanes (think Katrina); power grid failures; industrial accidents involving toxic chemicals, nuclear power plants, or the like; floods; droughts; the potential for large-scale terrorist incidents such as dirty-bomb attacks…the list is nearly endless. Feces happen. As everyday life becomes ever more technologically complex and as city populations increase, disasters which 50 years ago would have been relatively small matters become enormous threats to the lives and well-being of millions. Why shouldn’t the government be prepared to help? That’s its job, for gosh sakes.

    Why should such camps be located on shuttered military bases? Again, simple. The government already owns hundreds of huge, unused bases. Why buy new land instead? Also, these bases are already equipped with large dormitory and cooking and sanitation and medical care facilities. Why re-invent those wheels? Finally, because such bases are pretty huge, they offer lots of room to expand housing capacity, as needed, with tent camps. Personally, as a taxpayer I would be up in arms if the government proposed to build such camps anywhere but on abandoned military bases.

    Why do such camps need to be near railways? Because in a large-scale emergency evacuation of a metropolitan area the first thing that happens is the highways and even back roads become totally impassible with abandoned cars. Relying on highway transportation to transport evacuees to such camps would be stupid. Airlifts are out of the question, too…transporting a million people by plane, on 24 hours notice, would be a logistical impossibility. Railroads are the only dependable transport solution, both for getting evacuees to the camps and for getting supplies to them.

    To my mind, the question you haven’t asked is the most important question of all: why do some people (such as yourself, apparently) believe that government taking its emergency preparedness responsibilities seriously is “insane?”

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