Europe's vax disaster shows Trump, UK's BoJo got biggest COVID challenge right
Justice Thomas shows how we can end Big Tech censorship for good
New WHO-China report on COVID origins is just more of the old runaround
Will Team Biden ever get tough on China over COVID's origins?
US schools — and students — will pay a price for Biden's open borders for minors
Top congressional Democrats, including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, are pushing new laws to stamp out “domestic terrorism.” But they’re targeting only right-wing organizations. If rioters are looting and setting fires for a leftist cause, that’s OK.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has a better approach. He signed a law Monday that guarantees violent protesters who destroy property or attack cops land in jail. Regardless of how virtuous their cause.
Unfortunately, Democrats aren’t interested in ensuring the public has peace and safety. Instead, their goal is to label even peaceful right-leaning groups domestic terrorists and put them out of business. That’s un-American.
The First Amendment guarantees that we can join any political group we like, as long as we don’t commit a crime. Protesters who cross the line and break the law should receive the same tough punishment, whether they’re left-wing or right-wing.
Tell that to Schumer. He introduced a Senate resolution calling on the FBI and intelligence community to examine the leadership and membership of right-wing groups and “prioritize the investigation and prosecution of such groups.”
Schumer’s proposal is dangerous. Belonging to an ideological group — far left or far right — isn’t a crime in the United States. You can be a Nazi, a Communist, a member of Antifa or the Proud Boys. Or any other despicable movement. The FBI’s job is to investigate violent crimes, not ideology, though Schumer’s resolution suggests it should do the latter.
Schumer also promises to fast-track the proposed Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act of 2021, calling for law-enforcement “monitoring” of right-wing groups. You could become a target by interacting with such a group, even if you don’t commit a crime.
The bill would stiffen penalties for lawbreakers motivated by political beliefs the authorities don’t approve of. Picture jails filled with right-wing protesters serving long sentences when Democrats are in power and lefties when the GOP is in charge. Welcome to Putinville.
In the past, the United States has dealt effectively with extremist violence. In the 1970s, when lefties from the Animal Liberation Front and the Symbionese Liberation Army committed violent crimes, the perpetrators were punished, but the federal government didn’t designate the groups as terrorists.
Now Democrats claim a right-wing threat justifies drastic action. The Washington Post says “domestic terrorism incidents have soared to new highs in the United States, driven chiefly by white supremacist, anti-Muslim and anti-government extremists on the far right.”
That’s untrue. The Washington Post cites a highly woke report from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, which recorded 73 “far-right” violent incidents with two resulting deaths in 2020, compared with 25 leftist incidents with one resulting death. The numbers are relatively small, and the comparison between left and right incidents is meaningless because CSIS didn’t count many of the violent events during last year’s nationwide unrest after George Floyd’s death.
During those riots, as many as 700 law enforcement officials were injured and property damage reached $2 billion. That shows leftist protesters, often acting with impunity, are a major threat.
That’s why Attorney General Merrick Garland’s recent testimony before the Senate is concerning.
Garland’s predecessor William Barr labeled the destruction in Portland and Minneapolis in the summer of 2020 “domestic terrorism.” But Garland refuses to condemn burning the Portland courthouse as domestic terrorism, though he applied the label to the US Capitol assault.
People are more likely to call something terrorism when they disagree with the ideology of the perpetrators. Therein lies the danger. That’s why the American Civil Liberties Union and some Democratic lawmakers oppose a domestic-terrorism law.
It’s not needed to keep the peace. What’s needed is a clear message that if protesters resort to looting, assaulting police or destroying public buildings, they’ll be punished, even if their cause is just. That means Antifa and Black Lives Matter, not just Proud Boys and other right-wingers.
Before the Derek Chauvin verdict, California Rep. Maxine Waters urged Minneapolis protesters to be even “more confrontational” if they didn’t like the jury’s decision. Yet she’s urging federal law enforcement to crack down on right-wing protesters. Waters’ one-sided view of justice shows how dangerous a domestic-terrorism law could be.
Betsy McCaughey is a former lieutenant governor of New York.
Share this article:
Source: Read Full Article