Leftists Upset Domestic Terror Laws Might Still Apply to Them
In a dispatch from a surreal bubble, Politico has a longread whose gist is that domestic terrorism laws shouldn't apply to lefties.
It begins with the case of some eco-terrorists who were upset to discover that they were being prosecuted under domestic terrorism laws.
But administration officials have emphasized that the government will pursue domestic terrorists regardless of their ideological sympathies. And some progressive civil liberties advocates say the Biden strategy likely means people like Reznicek — whose concerns about the environment the Biden administration might share — may increasingly find themselves in law enforcement’s crosshairs.
Betsy Woodruff seems to have trouble processing the concept that domestic terrorism might apply to people whose politics the Biden administration (not to mention, presumably Betsy and Politico) agree with.
It's almost as if the law should be objective and unbiased. And should apply regardless of political affiliations.
Worse still, domestic terrorism laws, Politico unhappily whines, apply to the leftists who were burning down cities and beating cops.
A top congressional office says one-fourth of the FBI’s current domestic terror probes are related to the civil unrest last summer
Wound hundreds of cops, kill a number of people, and cause billions in harm, and you might occasionally face a "probe".
Notably, the Justice Department did not seek the terrorism enhancement at the sentencing of the first Jan. 6 rioter.
Notably, that's because trespassing is not a domestic terror act. The prosecution had trouble arguing domestic terrorism because Hopkins wasn't accused of assaulting anyone or damaging properrty. Nor was he accused of making any threats of violence.
Does Betsy really want trespassing to be prosecuted as a domestic terrorism act because that would apply to lefty protesters who trespass?
FBI Director Christopher Wray... discussed the bureau’s investigations of illegal activity that occurred concurrently with last summer’s massive racial justice protests...
“Antifa is a real thing,” Wray added at that hearing. “It’s not a group or an organization, it’s a movement or an ideology, maybe one way of thinking of it, and we have quite a number — and I’ve said this consistently since my first time appearing before this committee — we have any number of properly predicated investigations into what we would describe as violent anarchist extremists. Some of those individuals self-identify with antifa.”...
So what's the problem?
Andy Stepanian, a progressive communications professional, said the document’s reference to certain topics could discourage activism.
“Whenever I hear animal rights, environmental, or anti-racist activists named within sprawling counter-terrorism strategies, I am concerned about the chilling effect it will have upon activism writ-large,” he told POLITICO. “While in practice the administration's proposed strategies may only result in a handful of federal charges against activists, the less visible impact on social movements is a chilling of otherwise constitutionally-protected activities.”
It's only a chilling effect to those committing crimes.
Nobody's being arrested for "activism".
But what lefties really want is to be able to commit crimes in pursuit of their causes while criminalizing even the speech of their opponents.
That's the undertone of the whole terrible article which is outraged that lefties might get caught up in a domestic terror crackdown.
Anyway why is Andy concerned about this?
Stepanian served three years in federal prison after being charged as a terrorist for his role in a campaign to close down an animal testing laboratory.
"Progressive communications professional".
Stepanian was part of the nightmarishly vicious Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC). The Southern Poverty Law Center, hardly conservative, called them "terrorists" with good reason.
What was the reason?
A Chicago insurance executive might seem like one of the last people who'd be opening a letter with this succinctly chilling message: "You have been targeted for terrorist attack."
In February 2001, Huntingdon's managing director in Great Britain, Brian Cass, was badly beaten outside his home by three masked assailants swinging baseball bats. Shortly after the attack, British animal rights activist David Blenkinsop, a friend of SHAC-USA's Kevin Jonas, was arrested and sentenced to three years in prison for the assault.
At around the same time, Andrew Gay, Cass' marketing director, was attacked on his doorstep with a spray that left him temporarily blinded, writhing on the ground in front of his wife and young daughter.
Does it get worse? With these creeps it always gets worse.
"SHAC displayed placards with photos of Brian Cass after his beating, with his injuries highlighted in red, at protests."
Good thing Betsy Woodruff doesn't bother informing Politico readers of any of this.