Meet Jon Ritzheimer, one of many mostly white males who occupied a bird sanctuary in Oregon over the weekend. He and his brethren, led by Cliven Bundy’s son Ammon, occupied the federal land to protest the federal government’s prosecution of two ranchers on terrorism charges for arson. The occupants claim their armed protest will go on indefinitely, so Ritzheimer released a video message to his family in which he tearfully tells his children, “Your daddy swore an oath. He swore an oath to protect and defend the Constitution.”
Ritzheimer and his ilk have since been mocked and ridiculed any which way by social media. And thanks to his serious-yet-unintentionally-hilarious YouTube video, the Internet has yet another way to condemn the militia’s actions in the Pacific Northwest. On Tuesday morning, Deadspin noticed a rather interesting phenomenon on Twitter — a hashtage titled #DaddySworeAnOath, modeled on Ritzheimer’s words.
John Darnielle, lead singer of popular American indie folk rock band The Mountain Goats, posted a short parody of the original video on Twitter.
Darnielle then called on “patriotic Twitter” to follow his lead. Dozens of similar videos lampooning Ritzheimer’s original have since popped up all over social media, and they’re wonderful.
Obviously these short videos are making light of Ritzheimer’s much longer YouTube post, which is almost 14 minutes in length. They’re still funny and ridiculous, though, and there’s just enough satire to poke a few gaping holes in the original video’s “daddy swore an oath” quote.