Double standards exist in plain sight these days, especially in politics. Embezzlement, for example, is theft of funds placed in the trust of one’s employer, of which the accused is supposed to face between five and 20 years in prison. But some people can weasel their way out of custody in a single year, particularly if you’re a governmental figurehead like Russia-businesswoman Marsha Lazareva who was released on bail from Kuwaiti prison after being locked away for 470 days.
Another type of double-standard is the application of the term terrorism. The literal definition of terrorism means to incite or use unlawful acts of intimidation and violence, most specifically against unarmed civilians for political gains. In modern times, it has been largely associated with banned religious- or Islamic-based militant groups such as Al-Qaeda, the Taliban and more recently, ISIS.
The thing is, international terrorism or terrorism in general, has been around since old times, which was classified as an act against the monarch. In modern times, it is considered a political crime against a state.
This perception of terrorism garnered global notice since the Sept. 11th, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center buildings in the US. The unfortunate circumstance of this perception is that most of the world’s western population now associate the word terrorism with Islam or anyone that follows this religion especially under the US Department of Justice. In short, anyone who identifies as Muslim or appears Middle-Eastern in skin color will automatically be viewed as a terrorist and will be charged with.
However, this perception takes a turn for the strange, if not biased when the color of one who fulfills the definition of a terrorist, is white or caucasian. This is most notable with Stephen Paddock from Las Vegas, James Alex Fields Jr in Charlottesville and just recently the El Paso Shooting. Most of these perpetrators are viewed by the Justice Department as either mentally ill or at, best domestic terrorism. The problem here is that unlike international terrorism, people who commit acts of domestic terrorism will be indicted on separate federal charges such as weapons possession or hate crime. This is because domestic terrorism is not classified as a law that can be prosecuted in the US legal code even though the actions of these perpetrators are identical if not the same as international terrorists, or those who claim to be affiliated with outlawed militant groups like ISIS, Taliban or Al-Qaeda.
Such classifications are met with immense controversy from the eyes of the general public as well as politicians and government officials from other countries around the world.
Here’s the official definition of domestic terrorism from the FBI:
“Domestic terrorism are acts perpetrated by individuals and/or groups inspired by or associated with primarily U.S.-based movements that espouse extremist ideologies of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature.”
Which then leads to the big question….
What’s the difference between “terrorism” and “domestic terrorism”?
That’s just it, there is none! If the intention to intimidate or harm innocent lives exists, then it doesn’t matter what your skin color, religious affiliation or nationality is – such people will be and should be classified as terrorists and should be prosecuted under federal charges.
Yet, the Justice Department has a very skewed perception of charging a perpetrator as a terrorist if they are white or caucasian as seen in cases with the Patrick Crusius, Stephen Paddock and James Alex Fields Jr. If they had been Muslims who were affiliated with an international terrorist group, the Justice Department would have wasted no time in deeming such events with crimes of international terrorism and given it widespread media attention.
So now that we know how biased the Justice Department is when it comes to ascribing someone with terrorist motives or actions, it is fair to conclude that the US government uses terrorism as a political tool when it deems to be so in its favor.