By: Jim Geraghty – nationalreview.com –
San Francisco Tries to Redefine the Word ‘Terrorist’
We live in a time when authorities attempt to brazenly redefine the meaning of words by sheer force of will right before our eyes: “By a unanimous vote, San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors have passed a resolution declaring the National Rifle Association a domestic terrorist organization and urging other cities to follow their example.” The resolution also orders city employees to “take every reasonable step to limit” business interactions with the NRA and its supporters.
First, does the city of San Francisco have any business interaction with the NRA? Did the supervisors even bother to look before passing this resolution? Or were they too high on performative outrage to even ask?
But let’s assume the guy who heads up the company that makes the orange traffic cones that the city uses is an NRA member and big donor to the organization. Would the city cancel a contract for more traffic cones over the guy’s support for the NRA? Federal courts have overturned agency decisions to cancel contracts over perceived bias against a contractor, even when the contractor was behind schedule. “Objectivity must be the hallmark of any decision to terminate for default. Therefore, government personnel should remember to focus on the facts and make every attempt to work with the contractor before taking steps to terminate for cause.” A contractor who lost a job primarily because of his support for the NRA would probably have a winning court case.
But back to the label of “domestic terror organization.” You don’t have to like the NRA to recognize that it does not even remotely fit the definition of a “domestic terrorist organization.” What these eleven lawmakers mean to say is that they loathe the NRA and vehemently oppose their views on the Second Amendment and the right to own a gun. They’re free to have those views, but they do not have the authority to declare someone else a terrorist for having that different view.
These city supervisors aren’t the FBI. They’re not the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. They’re not the National Counterterrorism Center.
Terrorism is a crime, not merely a viewpoint. Being a member of Occupy Wall Street does not make you a terrorist. Being a member of Occupy Wall Street and planning to blow up a bridge makes you a terrorist. Being a Trump supporter doesn’t make you a terrorist. Being a Trump supporter and mailing pipe bombs to people you see as his enemies does make you a terrorist.
Can anyone in San Francisco grasp the danger in letting politicians declare by proclamation that those who have committed no crimes but who have differing views are terrorists? Can anyone over there imagine how this mentality could turn out badly for someone they like?
For example, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib wanted to go to Israel on a trip sponsored by Mitfah, an organization that runs articles contending “the Jews used the blood of Christians in the Jewish Passover”; and an American neo-Nazi screed about how Jews control the media; as well as praising suicide bombers, Palestinian terrorists, and bus hijackers who killed people, not metaphorical terrorists. Omar and Tlaib are associating with some really unsavory characters. This doesn’t make the congresswomen terrorists. But if we all decide to follow the San Francisco city supervisors’ example, we can label them terrorists morning, noon, and night. There’s no way that could possibly lead to something bad, right?
Leaders of the NRA frequently argue that they’re the only organization in America who is regularly blamed for the actions of people who aren’t members. I imagine that when they say that, somewhere the Koch network, AIPAC, Focus on the Family, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and National Right to Life grumble, ‘hey, it’s no picnic over here, either, pal.’ But being declared terrorists by a city government might take the cake.
This is the same city government that wants to restrict the use of words like ‘felon’ and ‘convict.’
Some examples include changing “felon” and “offender” to “returning resident” or “formerly incarcerated person.” A “parolee” could be described as a “person under supervision.” “Convict” could be referred to as a “currently incarcerated person,” while a “juvenile offender” or “delinquent” would be described as a “young person impacted by the justice system.”
The city government wants to take it easier on people who have broken the law, while vehemently demonizing people who have not broken the law.
To see the remainder of this article and others from National Review, click read more.