Another Crazy Group: Sovereign Citizens

The concept of Sovereign Citizens is a relatively recent phenomenon that has emerged in the United States over the past few decades. The term “Sovereign Citizens” refers to a loosely organized group of individuals who claim to be outside the jurisdiction of the government and the laws that govern it. They believe that they are not subject to the authority of the state, and that they have the power to make their own rules and live according to their own interpretation of the law. This paper will explore the history, beliefs, and practices of the Sovereign Citizens movement.


The origins of the Sovereign Citizens movement can be traced back to the Posse Comitatus movement of the 1960s and 1970s. The Posse Comitatus was a far-right, anti-government movement that believed in the supremacy of individual rights over the authority of the state. It rejected the legitimacy of the federal government, claiming that it was a foreign entity that had no right to interfere in the lives of American citizens. This movement was fueled by the economic downturn of the 1970s, which led to a rise in unemployment and poverty.

In the 1980s, a new wave of anti-government sentiment emerged with the emergence of the tax protest movement. This movement was made up of individuals who believed that they were not required to pay federal income taxes. They argued that the federal income tax was unconstitutional and that they had the right to keep their money. This movement was based on a misinterpretation of the 16th Amendment to the Constitution, which gives Congress the power to levy taxes.


Sovereign Citizens believe that they are not subject to the authority of the state or federal government. They argue that the government has no jurisdiction over them because they are not citizens of the United States, but rather “sovereign citizens” of their own independent nations. They claim that they have the right to reject any law that they believe is unconstitutional or infringes on their individual rights.

Sovereign Citizens believe in a number of conspiracy theories, including the belief that the federal government is controlled by a secret cabal of elites who are working to subvert the rights of ordinary Americans. They also believe in the so-called “Redemption Theory,” which holds that all individuals have been assigned a monetary value by the government and that they can access this value by filing certain legal documents.


Sovereign Citizens engage in a number of practices that are illegal and potentially dangerous. They may file fraudulent legal documents, such as “sovereign citizen” identification cards or driver’s licenses, in an attempt to avoid paying taxes or to gain immunity from the law. They may also engage in acts of domestic terrorism, such as the bombing of federal buildings or the attempted takeover of government facilities.


The Sovereign Citizens movement is a fringe movement that is based on a number of false beliefs and conspiracy theories. While it is true that individuals have the right to question the legitimacy of the government and to engage in peaceful protest, the practices of the Sovereign Citizens movement are often illegal and pose a threat to public safety. It is important for law enforcement officials and the general public to be aware of the beliefs and practices of this movement in order to prevent acts of domestic terrorism and to protect the rights of all citizens.

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