“Concerns about the increasing frequency of recent terror attacks in Europe, Australia and North America caused the White House to convene a summit meeting last week on how best to counter violent extremism. But none of the current efforts to prevent homegrown terrorism in the United States will be sufficient without addressing the ease with which would-be terrorists in the United States can obtain firearms and explosives.” That’s the conclusion mooted by New York Times guest editorialist Mary Lewis Grow [above], co-founder of Protect Minnesota, “a nonprofit organization that works to prevent gun violence.” Grow wants to prohibit Americans on the Terrorist Watchlist from exercising their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. Fair enough? Uh . . .
Before I take her “reasoning” to pieces note that Grow’s Op Ed is not a lone voice in the wilderness. It was timed to coincide with The Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act, re-introduced this week by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.).(yes, a Republican). Like the Act, Grow’s editorial is based on fear-mongering, misdirection and an unstated desire to disarm all Americans. So . . .
Can we invent a term for gun control advocates who refuse to use Google to check their facts? Hoplogooglephobia? Here’s the thing: Grow wants readers to believe that the FBI’s “terror watch list” (as she calls it, without once mentioning the government agencies running the list) is a reliable indication of evil intent. All she need do to disabuse herself of that notion is Google “FBI terrorist watchlist.”
Seventh hit: Watch Lists | American Civil Liberties Union:
Our country’s watchlist system is grossly bloated and unfair with over a million names — including many unlikely suspects— and not effective as a security measure . . .
We can’t have terrorist watch lists that affect people’s rights without due process — the right of innocent people to challenge their inclusion through an adversarial proceeding and get off the lists. But no such system has been created . . .
The consequences of being mistakenly added to a terror watch list can be more severe than simply missing a plane. Law enforcement routinely run names against the watchlists for matters as mundane as traffic stops, and innocent individuals may be harassed even if they don’t attempt to fly.
How do you know if you’re on the list? You don’t. Until you do (e.g., when you attempt to board a plane). How do you get off the list? You contact the DHS. How’s that work? Not so well. Googling “How do I get off the terrorist watch list” yields this gem [via huffingtonpost.com]:
[You contact the] Department of Homeland Security’s Traveler Redress Inquiry Program, which begins a review “that is not subject to oversight by any court or entity outside the counterterrorism community.
And if you were to get your name removed from the watch list, the intelligence agencies aren’t even obligated to inform you of your updated status. Helpful.
In short, the Terrorist Watchlist sucks. Denying Americans their civil rights because of their inclusion on the List – as Grow would have the government do – is, well, unAmerican. Here’s how Grow deals with these issues, in the midst of arguing that anyone on the FBI Terrorist Watchlist should be prohibited from purchasing a firearm:
Distrust of the list itself and confusion about who is on it have been obstacles. Well-publicized errors in the no-fly list — which is not the same as the international terror watch list — have provided justification to deride all watch lists as based on poor intelligence and discriminatory profiling.
In fact, only a very small percentage of the roughly one million people on the international terror watch list are American citizens. Among the objective criteria that cause someone to be listed are active membership in an organization devoted to jihad, a record of transfers of money to a terrorist organization, and the incitement of acts of terrorism. Civil libertarian concerns should be allayed by the fact that there is an appeals process for those who say they have been misidentified.
Hang on. Where’s the citation for Grow’s claim that the List is mostly comprised of foreign nationals? Also note: the TSA’s “no-fly” list is a subset of the Terrorist Watchlist. Those “well-publicized errors” affecting travelers are part and parcel of the overall List. The bill in question would use the Terrorist Watchlist – not a “terror watch list” – to ban those [secretly] listed from purchasing firearms. Clear? Here’s the official government graphic.
Talk about conflating facts. OK, let’s do that . . .
Grow clams the Terrorist Watchlist is based on “objective criteria.” Paragraph 1.3 of the report Grow cites states “It is important to remember, however, that watchlisting is not an exact science. There are inherent limitations in any primarily name-based system an analytic judgements may differ regarding subjective criteria [emphasis added] have been met.”
In other words, Grow is making up “facts” to support a gun ban on people who are on the FBI’s Terrorist Watchlist. Or lying. And the New York Times’ fact checkers are all on strike (I assume).
It’s also interesting to note that Part III of the report specifically cautions participating agencies – which are legion – against trampling on Americans’ “Constitutionally protected activities.” It only lists freedom of speech and equal protection. Second Amendment-protected gun rights? You must be joking.
The risks posed by a more diffuse and autonomous terrorist diaspora, including self-radicalized domestic jihadists, underscore the need to deny access to arms to those on the terror watch list. In the wake of the Paris attacks in January, the attorney general, Eric H. Holder Jr., said that “worrying about the lone wolf or a very small group of people who decide to get arms on their own and do what we saw in France” was what kept him up at night.
As long as the United States fails to widen the category of prohibited purchasers of firearms and explosives to include those on the terror watch list, we are neglecting to take the most basic protective measures. And worse, we are making it easy for would-be domestic jihadists to obtain the means to do us harm.
Now I know what you’re thinking: preventing people on the Terrorist Watchlist from legally purchasing a firearm or explosives would do nothing whatsoever to stop them from purchasing these items illegally. You’re right. And . . . that’s it, really. What else needs to be said?
This: Grow’s beloved Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act would give the Attorney General absolute power to revoke Americans’ gun rights. Text as follows:
The Attorney General may deny the transfer of a firearm pursuant to section 922(t)(1)(B)(ii) if the Attorney General determines that the transferee is known (or appropriately suspected) to be or have been engaged in conduct constituting, in preparation for, in aid of, or related to terrorism, or providing material support thereof, and the Attorney General has a reasonable belief that the prospective transferee may use a firearm in connection with terrorism.
“Appropriately suspected”? As if that’s not scary enough – and it bloody well is – here’s the part of the Act stating that the suspect has no right to see the full evidence against him or her:
To make this showing, the United States may submit, and the court may rely on, summaries or redacted versions of documents containing information the disclosure of which the Attorney General has determined would likely compromise national security. On request of the petitioner or the court’s own motion, the court may review the full, undisclosed documents ex parte and in camera. The court shall determine whether the summaries or redacted versions, as the case may be, are fair and accurate representations of the underlying documents. The court shall not consider the full, undisclosed documents in deciding whether theAttorney General’s determination satisfies the requirements of section 922A or 922B.
Grow’s “argument” for this unconstitutional Act is nothing but a ploy by a gun control advocate to capitalize on the fear of terrorism to further the effort to disarm Americans. How long before a member of the “particularly worrisome” Oath Keepers would be placed on the terrorist Watchlist and face a gun ban? What about NRA members? In Grow’s and Feinstein’s dreams. Make that plans. You have been warned.
Pre-Crime at its finest. Lets deny people’s rights before they commit a crime, because, you know, they might commit a crime!
But they’ll “feel” safer, at least until Jihad Johnny sets off his butt bomb and the plane goes down.
“Butt Bombs” have a serious flaw.
Your intestines. It seems a while back a Saudi prince had an assassination attempt when a plastic explosive butt-bomb detonated a few feet from him.
The bomber’s guts attenuated much of the blast. Made one *hell* of a mess, but the Prince survived.
I’m more concerned a Jihhadi-Jackoff could get a job as an A&P at an airline or repair shop and plant a of bomb in a wing set to detonate at altitude maybe a few weeks-months in advance.
Yeah, space is also an issue. You could probably do something impressive with some surgery, but I think at some point you just have to throw up your hands and accept that if someone is willing to go far enough they might be able to kill you.
I knew the terror watch list was a bunch of crap from the time that my good friend (whom I have known since we were 7) tried to board a plane and was pulled aside and told he was on the “No fly list”. Turns out they mistook him with someone else who has the same first, middle, and last name. Never mind the fact that he had flown plenty between 9/11 and that incident…
…yup – the “same name” pull-aside happened to me also.
Serves him right for not having an uncommon name.
Mine is Hopey McChange and I’ve never had a problem!
Another major, disingenuous, deceitful disarmament initiative coming our way from the usual suspects.
This time instead of emotional angst about “the children” it’s the threat of “terrorists” amongst us. And of course all gun owners will be suspects since the ‘watch list” is secret.
More “Big Brother” focus on restricting and abridging our right to keep and bear arms using the ‘terrorism’ excuse.
They will dangle a DOA bill in front of Congress … where it will go precisely nowhere. Then we’ll get the klieg light rally treatment, where we will be told by a certain executive … to a hand-selected, roaring crowd … that if Congress will not act, he will (cough m855 cough). And on the basis of this public affirmation of support shall he derive the just power to do so.
Incidentally, will it become a prosecutable felony to *attempt* to make a purchase and be denied under this Brave New Dictate, as it is for pretty much any other current prohibition?
Incidentally, will it become a prosecutable felony to *attempt* to make a purchase and be denied under this Brave New Dictate
The best part is you won’t know you’re committing a felony until they run your check, and the database is of course, restricted from public viewing or lookups.
Precisely my point, as you gathered. Talk about being able to wish for more wishes …. we need to make people felons to prohibit them. We can’t make jay walking a felony (yet), so let’s make a list … anyone performing an otherwise lawful activity while on the list makes the formerly lawful activity felonious, but the list will be kept secret.
I’m reading through it – FFLs will be revoked under just as flimsy pretexts as individual transfers. Just add “universal background checks” and you have anti-2A orgasm
I had a deja vu when I read your comment and it was about people that buy too much sudafed that have gotten arrested. Basically there is a database of how many sudafed people buy and if you go over the limit you get arrested on a “promotion of meth manufacturing” charge, which is, of course, a felony!
And the really neat part of this idea is that they can put EVERYONE (except rich/influential leftists) on the “Watch List”. POOF! No 2nd Amendment!
Sure wish Congress would exhibit some courage and impeach the SOB.
Then you get President Double-Barrel Biden. Impeach him, then you get President Boehner.
Joe BIden – better protection than a level 29 vest, 69 Secret Service agents or The Beast with addon reactive armor.
You assume that congress doesn’t want this.
Parrot don’t know what its poop don’t show.
While it is important to know what your enemy is doing, the next person to quote the bird cage liner buys the next round.
PLEASE! Pass a law like this so I can grow my illegal guns and explosives business. I need the money.
*** Note to any federal agents who monitor this site: my statement above is purely SARCASM.
And yet somehow the French/Arab terrorists who attacked Charlie Hebdo and the Kosher market got full-auto AKs in gun-free Europe. So clearly the threat is legally purchased semi-autos.
Oh, it is better than that. From Ms. Grow’s editorial
Newsflash: it is exceedingly easy to ambush an unsuspecting police officer and acquire their sidearm, spare magazines, and “patrol rifle” along with its spare magazines … and you don’t need a firearm to do it.
A crossbow would do nicely…
It’s getting to the point where all I have to do is look at the dress, their age and their demeanor as to whether or not they are anti-gun whackos.
I picked her as one.
Yes. That’s what statist hoplophobes look like.
Defenders of the constitution (and logic) among the news media look like S.E. Cupp, Emily Miller, Dana Loesch, Ann Coulter, etc.
Really not hard to tell the difference.
I’m not positive about the other three, but Ann Coulter supports having the executive branch violate the 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th amendments by executive fiat. At least when it’s a republican doing it.
I’m curious how you justify that comment. Ann Coulter is pretty hardcore rightwing.
The fact that the #1 rated comment proposes restricting rights based on political affiliation is really all you need to know about that rag.
Is she suggesting a system like the French or Danish gun control system?…. because they work so well in preventing terrorism. How can any adult actually fall for this garbage?
Agreed that the watch list’s are full of a certain amount of crap, and certain types of crap are conspicuously missing from those same watch lists. Hell in some cases they are guests of the White House.
It would seem to me that banning the people on the watch list and either deporting or revoking their citizenship would solve the problem far better than banning their ability to obtain firearms.
But hey if you went to Syria to fight with ISIS, it’s cool you can come back to America.
Why stop at gun rights? If the people are the List are Evil Terrorists and Subversives, surely they shouldn’t be allowed to vote. Or teach your kids. Or join the military. They should probably not get driver’s licenses either. In fact, they should probably just be deported.
Don’t laugh. Some idiot legislator from So.Cal (L.A.) has proposed a bill providing that anyone who has a domestic violence restraining order issued against him/her should be reported to the DMV and refused renewal of vehicle registration and licenses. Why? I have no clue.
Reading through it, FFLs will be yanked using the same flimsy pretext as denying individual transfers. (Pardon if this is a dupe, I tried to post this a moment ago but it vanished and never came back with multiple page refreshes.)
Just add to “arbitrary revocation of FFLs” a universal background check requirement and you have …
National security is for these disarmament proponents simply a convenient new excuse using current events and the blanket and supposedly unassailable anti-terrorism enforcement actions of the Federal government to once again go after gun owners any way they can.
These bastards REALLY want to get at gun owners on a national level so as to bypass all the state protections that exist in gun friendly jurisdictions.
All you need to know is Feinstein’s famous statement; “Mr. and Mrs. America, turn ’em all in”.
Yeah I guess…didn’t we get that s##t last week that the biggest threat to America was right-wing prepper types? BTW King may be the worst Quisling Rino in existence…
And he’s supported the IRA, so he should be on the watch list.
But he claims they’re not terrorists.
By Ms. Grow’s logic, no one on the list should have a gun, and if you are on the list mistakenly, you still shouldn’t have a gun. So it doesn’t matter if the watch list is flawed. Either way, no gun for you.
That’s the whole point of Grow et. al.’s exercise.
The watch list (or whatever other measurement employed against gun owners these anti-gunners can come up with) is just another tool for them to use to leverage firearms out of the hands of respectable, honest, law abiding citizens.
Terrorist (or wanna-be’s) are already prohibited from acquiring guns because they don’t possess the above law abiding attributes and will have to lie on the 4473 if they were to attempt to make a purchase through an FFL, thus making them felons, as if they care. Such bad actors will go outside lawful acquisition to obtain any arms they desire.
So again who will unjustly be caught up in and affected by the machinations of these disingenuous arrogant blow hards; honest, patriotic, law abiding gun owners.
“ease …. obtain…. explosives
BS name where this might be libtard bimbo.
The current administration has NO interest in fighting/stopping mohammadan terrorists. Does not even admit there is such critters and the admin is fully in sympathy with the Mideast community organizers of he koranean bent. The objective is to remake America and guns must go if this is to happen. Inciting rebellion would be the Alinsky/Obumer way.
From http://www.justice.gov/oig/reports/FBI/a0925/final.pdf which is the DOJ’s Office of the Inspector General report on the terrorist watchlist nomination practices:
“Non-investigative Subjects – In addition to the watchlist nomination process for its terrorism investigation subjects, the FBI uses other processes to nominate to the watchlist individuals who are not the subjects of FBI terrorism investigations.”
That’s right, the terror watchlist intentionally includes people who are not actually subjects of terrorism investigations.
New Jersey already has this as a law…
Aren’t we great?
This constitutes “the most basic protective measures…” we can take to protect the country against terrorism?
What about, I don’t don’t, CLOSING THE DAMN BORDER?!
Hmm…yes…it was terrible when the OKC Federal Building and the WTC were attacked with Walther P22s. Guns are certainly the most horrifying thing in the terrorists’ arsenal, and we should ban “civilians” from owning any type of weapon!
I have a very generic surname, one of the top ten in the US. Combine that with a given name of “John” and my grandfather was barred from boarding his flight to come to my basic training graduation because his super-generic name was on the terrorist watch list.
It’s utter bullsh!t. The whole War on Terrorism has done massive damage to our rights and our mentality of freedom vs. security (imagined security would be more accurate).
Of course, you actually mean “Jihadi John”…
obama needs to be put on the terrorist watch list.
You had me at due process.
A person can be placed on the list for having a record of transfers of money to a terrorist organization. So I’m good, then, because I’ve never given a dime to the Democrat Party and won’t buy The New York Times.
Then I’m good also. I told a telephone advertisers trying to sell me a subscription to the LA Times that the only use I could find for their liberal rag was to line birdcages.
Before people can commit terrorism, they need weapons. Before terrorists need weapons, they need to be recruited to the cause. They are recruited by individuals, in places of worship, by the internet and by literature through unrestricted speech. Obviously, we need to eliminate free speech. [I’m not sure if I’m being sarcastic.]
They would have a point if terrorists actually acquired their weapons in the same county through legal means. There really isn’t a valid point there except to try to draw a connection between law abiding gun owners and terrorists. They want to frame the argument in an extremely skewed way and define us all as domestic terrorists.
Hmmm….. From the link to the NYT article:
“The comments section is closed.”
Interesting. The article published today and the comment section is already closed? And it looks like it closed about thirty minutes ago so not even a full business day.
And with just a quick scroll through the 419 comments it looks like most of the comments are more or less Pro-Gun, or at least Pro-Rights, so that might explain why the comments closed so quickly. Can’t have too many opposing voices cluttering up the echo chamber, can we?
“Can we invent a term for gun control advocates who refuse to use Google to check their facts? Hoplogooglephobia?”
Why create a new one, when a perfect phobia already exists.
Fear of Knowledge- Gnosiophobia or Epistemophobia.
Classic Saul Allinski tactics: demonize, isolate, freeze, destroy. There are clear constitutional violations involved in much that HHS does and I’m sure they’ll be challenged. But, after the years of deliberation those challenges will take, it may be too late to preserve the freedoms that have already been lost. The most effective counter to this kind of political skulduggery is the bright light of public visibility. Americans don’t like star chamber bureaucracies. The more people are made aware of this stuff, the less powerful it becomes. Keep up the good work, Robert.
Apparently, being in possession of a flight simulator computer game can put you on the terror watch list also.
Don’t use Google Earth then. It has a flight sim component.
Well, all gun owners should be appropriately suspected. For the rich white people of course!
I still say all of these gun control freaks look like they have had a lobotomy.
A mind is a terrible thing to loose.
You want to Protect Minnesota? Throw all the Somali’s out first, then we can talk about arming whoever is left.
I have a better idea: let’s get rid of the damned list. If somebody actually needs watching, they bloody well need to be watched, not have their name put on a list somewhere and otherwise ignored until they try to board a plane or buy a gun.
Holy shit, it’s Mcarthyism and the Red Scare all over again.
These people are so stupid. Like someone set on making a bomb or acquiring firepower will be unable to do so because a law saying not to is enacted.
I’m going to go full Godwin here.
Nazism. Sounds like similar actions taken by the nazi party. Due process? No. Your rights are determined by the whim of a select few within a bureaucracy. Trial? Courts? No, we don’t need those.
Any deviation from current accepted wisdom could land you in dutch. We have a society based on privilege for the rich, and punitive torture for the poor, who are placed on zero hour work contracts at a minimum wage that is progressively shrinking. Our leaders awarded themselves huge backdated pay rises, and the minimum adult wage was increased by 50c per hour (in New Zealand). I have made my views on this known to the people in Parliament and Government, with the solution provided (link wages and benefits to the Average Weekly Wage), so no doubt I am on many lists of disaffected troublemakers. Just because I dare to think for myself and express an opinion. So far no black helicopters, but if you never hear from me again you will know what happened.
Viva la revolucion!!
I guess this stupid woman missed the part where the guns in the European attacks were acquired on the black market. In California, for example, the could get full automatic weapons, grenades and rockets from former state senate president, Leland Yee.