Here on Virginia’s Northern Neck, in Lancaster County, is the village of Weems. Weems has the unwanted distinction of being home to a real, serious flake — Ms. Catherine Crabill.
Back in the heyday of the 99th District Tea Party, Crabill was their nominee for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegate. She failed. Then, she wanted to be the nominee for Virginia’s First District Congressional seat — the Republican Party of Virginia put a stop to that.
Ms. Crabill is a frequent contributor to the letters column of our local paper, the Rappahannock Record. The content of her letters is taken from various wacky rightwing conspiracy sites.
Here — in no particular order — are background articles describing My Favorite Flake, Catherine Crabill.
“We may have to go to the bullet box . . . “
The high point of her nuttiness occurred in October 2009 when she spoke to a Tea Party crowd from the front steps of the old courthouse in Heathsville, VA. In her speech, she stated that “Second Amendment rights” could be used to defend the Tea Party movement. “We have a chance to fight this battle at the ballot box before we have to resort to the bullet box,” ranted Crabill. Since this, she has denied she ever said such a thing . . . video does not lie.
She was immediately denounced by local and state Republicans, thereby widening the gap between the Republican Party and their own Tea Party Frankenstein monster.
Crabill and the federal invasion of New Mexico
In September 1994, word spread through Catron County New Mexico, that two FBI agents and a dozen National Guardsmen were combing the mountains north of Luna, a small town near the Arizona border. Officially, the men were searching for the body of an alleged drug dealer who had disappeared mysteriously a year earlier. But a buzz went around the county that they were really the advance party of a darker event: a pending firearms raid by U.S. government forces.
“The federal crime bill had just been passed, and the government had already conducted sweeps in several communities,” says Chris Crabill, a 43-year-old cabinetmaker who lives with his family in the nearby town of Reserve, the county seat. “Ruby Ridge and Waco were also on our minds.” On the night of September 7, Crabill gathered several guns and moved into the woods, hunkering down in view of his house so he could watch over his family while they slept.
The next morning someone called a right-wing radio talk show beamed deep into the Southwest from Bakersfield, California, and told the host that “5,000 National Guardsmen have invaded Catron County.” That night, prompted by the new rumor, Catherine Crabill piled her four kids into the family Wagoneer and drove them to her mother’s home in Corrales, in another county, so that “my husband could sleep in the house. We did not flee in terror as some have suggested. But I was scared.” About a dozen other locals also moved to “safer” houses for a day or two. The county’s phone lines hummed with forebodings of invasion.
There was no invasion, but eight months later, on May 3, 1995, the Crabills helped organize a community meeting in Reserve to discuss the creation of a militia. Some 250 residents showed up, roughly 10 percent of the county’s population. One by one, cowboys, loggers, and homemakers, folks who generally wave to strangers and keep their doors unlocked, stepped forward to describe a government assault that they clearly believed was imminent.
In the end, Catron County did not create a formal militia that night, mainly because the county commission, the previous August, had passed a resolution “encouraging” heads of households to own and carry guns at all times and to keep sufficient ammunition on hand. Before the meeting wound down, the point became abundantly clear: Plenty of people in the county already were armed and prepared to do battle with the federal government or other alien invaders. The citizens of Catron County didn’t need to form a militia. They were a militia.
Dripping sandwich in hand, I walk over to Main Street, site of the Independence Day parade, to see how Smokey Bear, official symbol of the hated U.S. Forest Service, will be treated when he appears amid the floats and bands. I’ve been told he might get hissed, booed, possibly pelted with eggs. But when Smokey rounds the corner onto the parade route, he waves, dances, and tosses candy to children. No hisses are heard. Today even Smokey, and everything he represents, gets a holiday.
Later, Catherine Crabill, who missed the parade this year, tells me that if she’d been in town, she might have hissed or booed. “I once revered Smokey as a symbol of all that was good,” she says. “But that was before cowboys were seen as the source of all that is evil–as land rapers.”
Obviously, the Crabills’ perceptions and philosophies have changed radically since they moved to Catron County in 1992. The last place they lived before that was Santa Fe; before that, Aspen, Colorado, [consistent with Catherine Crabill’s biography information on her employer’s website -ed.] where, Catherine says, “We were definitely part of the coffee-and-croissant crowd–committed environmentalists.” But soon after coming to Reserve, she says, “We began to see through the propaganda and lies of traditional environmentalism. We no longer believe, for example, that cattle are hurting the land. And we don’t trust the things we used to trust.” The startling about-face has everything to do with the Crabills’ immersion in the town of Reserve, the hotbed of Catron County conspiracy theorizing. Catherine believes, for example, that the State Department, at the UN’s behest, is pushing through a “three-stage plan” to disarm the world for its own dark purposes.
Crabill and the Oklahoma City Federal Building bombing
Crabill also told the convention that she had been “beaten, humiliated and ridiculed” by bloggers who discovered a 1995 newspaper article in which she blamed the Oklahoma City terrorist bombing on the federal government. At the time, Crabill lived in New Mexico.
The Washington Times quoted her as saying:
“‘If any militia group is truly responsible for the murderous bombing in Oklahoma City, then I say, ‘Hangin’s too good for ’em,’” said Catherine Crabill of Aragon, N.M., who belongs to a group called New Mexico Citizens Action Association.
“But Mrs. Crabill said it’s her belief ‘this heinous act of violence was the work of our government,’ which will ‘use it as an excuse to aggressively attack the growing militia movement across the country.’”
Crabill denied making the 1995 statement, but, in a recent posting on her Web site, catherinecrabill.com, she said: “I did and do believe that our government was culpable in the [Oklahoma City] bombing. I am not ashamed of standing with my friends and neighbors in New Mexico from the domestic terrorists known as our own government.”
How do I know . . .
How do I know that Catherine Crabill of Aragon, New Mexico is the same Catherine Crabill currently residing in Irvington, Virginia (Lancaster County) and pursuing the Republican nomination for the 99th district? Three reasons:
1.) On the 99th district committee’s website (since defunct) as well on her own campaign site (also long gone) her biography notes that she currently has a realtor’s license. On her employer’s website, The Virginia Land & Real Estate Company, it notes in her biography that she is former resident of Santa Fe, New Mexico, amongst other places. Another article from 1995 chronicles Ms. Crabill’s delusional conspiracy theories. In the article, it notes that Catherine and Chris Crabill, formerly of Santa Fe, moved to Aragon, New Mexico in 1992.
2.) In the same article, it notes that Catherine Crabill’s (the one from Aragon) husband’s name is Chris Crabill, and he is a “cabinetmaker”. According to Catherine Crabill’s own candidate website, she states the occupation of her husband — also named Chris — as a “custom cabinet maker and fine woodworker”.
3.) According to a handy search engine called “People Search Now”, a Catherine Crabill, currently 51 years of age and residing in Irvington, VA, used to live in Aragon, NM.
There is no possibility that there could be more than one couple by the names of Catherine and Chris Crabill who happened to live in the exact same town in New Mexico, especially when the county they resided in (Catron County) only had a population of 3,543 people in 2000 according to the United States Census Bureau.
Crabill occasionally contributes to a blog, iPatriot
She seems to be entranced by transgendered people. Maybe she . . . .
More on Crabill
Here’s a link to an old blog titled “I Am Surrounded by Idiots” that has several pages of commentary about Crabill and the dingbats who surround her. At the bottom of that page is a link to OLDER ENTRIES 00 click that link to go to page after page of Crabill’s nuttiness.
I’ll post more on My Favorite Flake — she’s forever making a fool of herself, so, I will never run out of material.