Originally Posted by Bump
A Tennessee state official reportedly told residents who were concerned about dirty drinking water that complaining about water quality could be considered "an act of terrorism."
Yeah, there's a great expose of new laws by Michael Rozeff, widening the definition of what an act of terrorism is. It's become a brave new world. These laws stifle dissent and all manner of political speech. See if I can relocate it.
EDIT: Found one of these as an introduction
What Exactly Does "Making a Terrorist Threat" Mean?
Analysis of these laws by Rozeff:
The crime of "making a terrorist threat" is a recent creation enacted at both the state and federal levels after the terrorist attacks of 9/11. It is a very general law that can be used to prosecute terrorists, but has been used far more often to prosecute situations involving domestic violence, hate crimes, bomb threats, and school violence. Indeed, in many states, the term "terrorist" has been amended to mean simply "criminal."
Although the exact definition varies from state to state, generally one makes a terrorist threat if one threatens to commit a violent crime for the purpose of terrorizing another or of causing public panic. Some states laws are very narrow, meaning the threat must be very specific and direct, while other states adapt a looser approach, allowing even negligently made threats to be prosecutable.
More here by Rozeff on how these relate to gun laws:
This tells us, among other things, that a person can commit this crime by his speech alone, even if he has neither the intent nor the means to carry the threat out. The intent need only be that the words spoken are intended to be taken as a threat. Imagine a hate crime where there is no crime except the expression of hatred, that being enough to have committed the hate crime. This is analogous to these terrorist threat laws. Imagine calling in police because some little kid points a toy gun or his finger, and says "Bang, bang, you're dead". This is already happening. These things are all birds of a feather. Penalties are severe.
These laws are oppressive. They make crimes out of many varieties of ordinary statements made by ordinary people in many situations. Someone who speaks in anger, or when tipsy, or because they're upset, or without meaning what they say, can suddenly be in hot water. It is not uncommon for people to say "I'll kill you" without meaning it. These laws give the justice system heavy artillery to fire against anyone who falls into its clutches for any reason or who happens to say something resistant to authority or police or any other person. These laws provide ammunition to any ordinary person who wants to make trouble for someone else by accusing them of uttering threats. These laws suppress all speech for fear of saying something that can be taken as a threat. These laws lead the way to even more oppression in which anything said or written that is against the system is taken as threatening to it. India has such laws. Ecuador has such laws. I am sure that we could fill many volumes with examples of oppression by restriction of free speech.
he anti-gun lobby is using terrorism as a convenient gimmick to jack up the penalties on ordinary misdemeanors and felonies. The extreme law and order lobby, who are disposed to lock people up for spitting on the sidewalk, are using the charge of terrorism for their ends. The crony capitalists in the prison industry are glad to see criminals charged with terrorism. The many companies in the surveillance business are glad to see surveillance extended under the name of stopping terrorists. The extreme feminists who want to make wimps out of young boys are happy to use the cloud cover of terrorism to impose strict rules on boys in school and to call the police for the most ridiculous of "infractions". The anti-hate lobbies, who are happy to see hate laws passed, are overjoyed to see similar anti-terror laws passed and to identify hate and terror as one. The local police are happy to use terrorism as an excuse to get all sorts of subsidized military contrivances and equipment. The lawmakers are only too happy to be seen doing something about terrorists by passing more laws. The bureaucrats running the DHS are pleased when any sort of terrorist attack, real or trumped up, occurs on American soil or when they can add another homegrown terrorist to a tally, because these events assure them that their budgets will rise.
And Another Black Man up on "Terrorist" Charges
I agree with Rozeff's analysis, these are OPPRESSIVE laws. Another reason, I think the WoT is a scam, as in using that crisis, to change our laws.