Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Is It Paranoia If They Really Call You a Terrorist?

Low-level terrorism in Springfield, IL

I'm trying hard to be the voice of reason, here, but this is the kind of thing that makes it hard:
Days of our Trailers: Low Level Terrorism

Apparently, the DoD is teaching its personnel that "protests" are "low-level terrorism." No, I haven't seen a lesson plan or a presentation, but according to Fox News, the ACLU has obtained copies of a written exam with a question where the correct answer to "Which of these is an example of low-level terrorism?" is "protests." I've been a teacher for some time now, and I can tell you this: there are probably things being taught that aren't on the test, but it's very unlikely that there's anything on the test that's not being taught in depth.

The Defense Department defends this document in the Fox News story Roy linked by saying that it may be part of training for overseas personnel, and it may simply mean that protests are events to be avoided because they can be low-level terrorism in those other countries. I'm not really buying that one, but I suppose it's possible.

The thing that worries me about this is that Roy at Days of Our Trailers walked the state capitol here in Illinois with me back in March. We gathered in a convention hall, marched through the streets with uniformed people blocking the traffic (well, that was the Springfield Police Department, and we did, after all, have a parade permit for our low-level terrorizing, but they didn't have to enjoy it so much) and then held a rally on the lawn of the Capitol . . . there may have been some shouting and possibly some signs were waved in the air. Then we went inside and petitioned our representatives for redress of our grievances. I think I might be in some trouble if Roy decides to turn me in, but maybe I can explain that it was all his idea.

Low-level terrorists indoctrinating youth members in Chicago

I think it's very likely that this will go away as the test is quietly
retired and the new version miraculously loses the terrorism language . . . . which is good, in a way, because it's good that they realize they messed up and that something needs to be done. I worry that it's not good in the sense that this is not just a one-time slipup, but an attitude that's been slowly becoming more common for years now. The thing I hate to hear most is when someone says, "Sure, it's your right to protest, but it makes you look weird." Sure, it might, but I don't care. No one is going to embarass me out of exercising my rights. And guess what? If protesting is low-level terrorism, then next Friday I'm going to be a low-level terrorist again, and I'll wear that badge proudly. Come join us in Chicago on the 26th. We're going to be upbeat, we're going to have fun, but we're going to insist on our rights as Americans and as human beings, and if anyone tries to label us "low-level terrorists," they're going to be the ones embarassed.

Seriously, are these people the terrorists?


Anonymous said...

Yes, everyone who defends the right to arms is a terrorist!

Mayor R. Daley, King of Chicago

Don said...

The brief conciseness of your comment, combined with the concise brevity, makes me suspect that I may not be dealing with Da Genuine Mayor. I think it's only fair that you provide some evidence that you are who you say you are.

Give my brother-in-law a job.

Anonymous said...

Er, um, let me say this, we need to manage, manage these schools . . . look, it's, um, the Republicans fault, we all need to pay more taxes, it's about the Olympics people and lining my pockets for my retirement with the construction kickbacks, GUNS! Guns are killing our kids.

Mayor R. Daley, King of Chicago