Matthew Hein is beyond confused. He seems to convey in his article (“Faculty Senate terrorizes local task force,” Nov. 20. Read at www.dailyvanguard.com) some displeasure with the local/federal authorities for painting the people who blew up the trucks at the logging company as terrorists. Initially reading his argument, the idea that they are seems far-fetched. But alas, I stop and check my handy WWW dictionary. Definition of terrorism: The unlawful use or threatened use of force (Check) or violence by a person (Check) or an organized group against people or property (Check) with the intention of intimidating or coercing societies or governments, often for ideological or political reasons (and Mate). Well, based on our handy definition, it seems pretty difficult to be labeled a terrorist as the author asserts. However the people he appears to defend would quite adequately fit this label. The author (and everyone else who thinks Hillary Clinton is a conservative bitch) seems to think that since last September the government in its rush to label everything terrorist has done so unfairly to these criminals also. I would like to point out that the term eco-terrorist (born out of actions exactly like those perpetrated by the truck bombers) existed well before most of us had even heard the name Osama. Hence, we have always referred to “them” as terrorists. Not for a minute is anyone labeling people as terrorists those who are part of the “active political participation”, i.e. “discussion.”
Walking down the street carrying a sign, screaming at bystanders and essentially calling for the United States to switch to socialism (or replace the president with that fella who invented the Internet) annoys quite a number of people, but those who are annoyed certainly don’t view the “active participants” as terrorists, just confused misguided “Misanthropologists.” No, they and our DOJ leaders are labeling terrorists those who cause destruction and violence for ideological/political reasons against those they disagree with. It is very similar to the idea of a hate crime. Yes, assault is bad, but the punishment is far more severe if the reason behind the crime (assault/blowing up truck) is for racial or political reasons.
The author states: “For those who believe that the word “terrorist” may be assigned with equal intelligence to murderers and vandals, the kindest descriptions I can offer are: obnoxious, odious and dangerous.” Well, obviously murder and vandalism are not the same, but based on my handy definition of terrorism, courtesy of Dictionary.com, the author is the one who is obnoxious, odious and dangerous. Unfortunately, the ketchup, bus and bank mailing he mentions wouldn’t qualify as terrorists due to the lack of a few key ingredients from the definition. Better luck next time. What the author and our faculty do not seem to understand is no one is stopping him from voicing his political opinion. That has been strongly encouraged for years and has CONSISTENTLY occurred in our city. If you don’t believe me, take a trip downtown every May 1 or whenever Dubya comes to town. Since last September, more and more people have voiced their opinion and will continue to: It’s all in how you deliver the message. The only time the PJTTF or the DOJ cares what the hell your political opinion is, is if you plan to do something stupid like go and blow up a couple of trucks because they have the gall to assist in cutting a tree down.
In conclusion, no a truck bomber isn’t as bad as a building bomber, and no one is calling you a terrorist if you happen to have asinine political views. Most importantly of all, the term eco-terrorist has been used for people like Tre Arrow for far longer than gentlemen named Osama and Mohammed Atta, so stop your crying already!!!
J. Adam Wilkie
grad student, finance