Friday, March 26, 2010

Right-winger call to vandalize Democratic offices over #hcr actually "terrorism" under Patriot Act

By Ali Abunimah

"The Washington Post reports this evening:

Former militiaman unapologetic for calls to vandalize offices over health care

By Philip Rucker

Thursday, March 25, 2010; 3:52 PM
"To all modern Sons of Liberty: THIS is your time. Break their windows. Break them NOW."
These were the words of Mike Vanderboegh, a 57-year-old former militiaman from Alabama, who took to his blog urging people who opposed the historic health-care reform legislation -- he calls it "Nancy Pelosi's Intolerable Act" -- to throw bricks through the windows of Democratic offices nationwide......

What continues to interest me is the avoidance of the use of the term "terrorism" in connection to white non-Muslim people even when they clearly espouse political violence (as here), or engage in suicide bombings (such as the gentleman who recently crashed an aircraft into an IRS building).

This is further evidence that the term "terrorism" is a political/racial label, much more than a useful descriptive term. The Patriotic Act's definition of "domestic terrorism" is so laughably broad that even throwing bricks through a window can be defined as a crime legally indistuinguishable from, say, flying an airplane into a building. But it's also so broad as to provide alarming discretion to authorities such that the actions of one group of people will be defined as "terrorism" while those exact same acts, when carried out or planned by another group, are merely "vandalism.""

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