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April 12, 2009, 10:19 PM

No one expects the Inquisition. And this time, Anonymous, as part of Operation Inquisition, raided the Scientology “Mission” in Richmond, under the theme of “Operation GENTLEMEN”.

Richmond was a little different than most, because in Virginia, wearing a mask is illegal. Seriously – it’s a class 6 felony. Thus Anonymous went unmasked. That’s not to say, however, that people didn’t go to this raid completely out in the open. While some people didn’t care about being seen and photographed completely unmasked, others used fake facial hair to disguise themselves. One Anon wore a set of “Groucho glasses” with a fake nose and mustache, while the women used spirit gum to attach fake mustaches and goatees to their faces. And so here we are, raiding in Richmond:

Raiding in Richmond

I, for one, took the mustache and goatee off as soon as this photo was taken. It itched, and wasn’t staying on very well. Besides, the cult knows who I am.

Otherwise, though, this was a spirited raid, and Richmond, like Philly, never bothered to come out to join us. The mustaches were fun, though.

Here's Tastee in his Groucho glasses.
Here’s Tastee in his Groucho glasses.

MaidofWin had one of the better beards, wearing an afro wig and fake goatee. All of us wish she had stuck that goatee on with spirit gum rather than tape, but the tape held remarkably well.
MaidofWin had one of the better beards, wearing an afro wig and fake goatee. All of us wish she had stuck that goatee on with spirit gum rather than tape, but the tape held remarkably well.

HT wore a big mustache that was different from the others, and designed in such a way that it made her look like Gene Shalit (photo). I sent a photo of HT's mustache to my parents, saying, "It's Daddy on TV!"
HT wore a big mustache that was different from the others, and designed in such a way that it made her look like Gene Shalit (photo). I sent a photo of HT’s mustache to my parents, saying, “It’s Daddy on TV!”

For those wondering, when I was little in the early 1980s, my father had somewhat big hair along with his regular mustache. In the early 1980s, Gene Shalit also had big hair and a mustache. Thus seeing Gene Shalit on TV, Mom said I would say, “It’s Daddy on TV!” And when HT had that mustache on, I couldn’t resist.

And of course, we raided to music, as we do in DC…

And MaidofWin danced…

And we raided to more music…

And MaidofWin danced some more.

And in going with the old-timey “Gentlemen” theme, HT challenged Scientology to a duel. Pistols at noon!

And that was basically it. Raiding other cities is fun, because it serves to break things up a bit, since you get to see the piece-of-crap properties that Scientology has in these other cities (whereas DC’s Org is a beautiful historic mansion), plus we get to see the sights in these other cities. However, while Philly was full of interesting landmarks that we wanted to see, Richmond doesn’t have as many interesting landmarks. We did, however, go to Hollywood Cemetery while we were around, to see the 90-foot granite pyramid that was constructed there in 1869. And here it is:

The Hollywood Cemetery pyramid

And here we are:

The Anons in front of the pyramid

Two Anons stayed at the cemetery for a bit longer, while the rest of us went back to the cars to wait for them. Imagine our surprise when these same two Anons came running to the cars at lightning speed, shouting, “GO, GO, GO!” I don’t know what prompted this, but I presume they got in some sort of trouble while there.

Then before leaving Richmond, we headed to the headquarters of Division 1 of the Virginia State Police in order to pose for a photo with the sign. You see, the Virginia Fusion Center, in their 2009 Virginia Terrorism Threat Assessment document from March 2009 that was leaked to the Internet, lists Anonymous and Project Chanology in their list of “Domestic Terrorist Threats” under the subheading of “Anarchist Extremists”. They list Anonymous along with a few anarchist groups, most of which I am familiar with through other activism. So really, this seems to boil down to state suppression of free speech, and no one is exempt from the long arm of state oppression in this case, it seems.

But in typical Anonymous form, we made fun of them:

Trolling the State Police

However, to their credit, when the Richmond Police came by our raid to see what we were up to, they were very friendly, and perhaps even amused by our presence.

And then as quickly as we arrived, we left, to head back to Washington, but not before first stopping at Cracker Barrel in Ashland for some “authentic” Southern food. After all, Richmond is definitely part of the American South, and Washington, despite its location next to Virginia, is definitely not the south. Really, one leaves the south after getting to Prince William County in Virginia, which is where I consider Northern Virginia and its very non-southern culture as beginning. So we had southern-style “road food”, but not before first making a wrong turn and ending up in a Wal-Mart parking lot. We made some very odd turns there, as we got stuck in a corner with no exit to the street and had to circle around. And all the weird maneuvers were done by not one but two cars, since I was following the lead car in the group, and had no idea what they were doing but needed to follow.

And then afterwards, we posed on the rocking chairs:

Posing on the rocking chairs at Cracker Barrel

And that was it! From there, we took I-95 back to DC, remembering that you know you’re home when you start seeing signs for Metro stations.

Web site: /i/nquisition Arrives in /r/ichmond by another DC Anon that was there, and using footage from my videos and photos.

Song: The "Hampster Dance" tune, which a number of people were surprised to learn originally came from the Disney movie Robin Hood.

Quote: Meanwhile, a description of this raid would be incomplete without a description of the traffic. Going down towards Richmond, it sucked royally. The weather was bad, and I-95 was congested due to a few accidents that morning. Traffic did not improve until south of Fredericksburg. Going back was smooth sailing the entire way, as traffic was somewhat heavy, but moving well enough that I had to be careful about not speeding. After all, the Virginia State Police is the Virginia state government's "other" revenue-raising agency, let us not forget...