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Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by D_N Flay Table, Jun 12, 2007.
Are street gangs, Bloods, Crips, MS13, the same as "Terrorists?"
Yes, they are most definitely terrorists, and should be treated as such.
In general I'm against the gross overuse and misuse of the word "terrorist" in recent years so I would say no, not unless they turn to actual terrorist activity. Performing a drive-by shooting at a rival gangmember's house doesn't count as terrorism. Unlike terrorists, they are targeting specific individuals (rival gang members) with specific goals directly related to the act (reducing competition for turf by reducing the number of members in your rival gang). There may be an indirect consequence of the act that would, through fear, reduce the number of new recruits in that gang or encourage some members to drop out when they witnessed the carnage... but that was not the primary goal. This act may then also inspire reprisals and acts of revenge by the other gang, which would be closer in definition to a terrorist act, but still not quite the same thing. For the sake of the word "terrorist"... which is in danger of being applied to everyone and everything... I would not use the word in this case even if it does fit in an abstract and roundabout way.
Incidentally I also would not call most of the sectarian violence in Iraq right now acts of terrorism, either. Exploding a bomb in a crowded city market where there are no soldiers or police or important infrastructure around is an act of terrorism. Flying planes into crowded and iconic buildings is an act of terrorism. Many other ways the word has been used lately is in my mind kind of reaching... including everyone who wants to call the U.S.A. terrorists. (though I think we were in the past when we dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki)
Interesting. But, violence is violence, folks. State mandated or not. Terrorism is given special powers when we set it aside and give it special treatment - and appropriate special powers in turn. Rule of law is the great leveler. Also, World War ll was one of the deepest nightmares of modernity - and of all time in the history of mankind. Unfortunately, the bombing of Japan was the finale. Fortunately - it spelled the END of violence in that deep dark chapter of the world, but always with a price. My own private mistake was to give our current leaders benefit of the doubt in their sense for simplicity. I probably mistook the simple thinking for what actually turned out to be stupidity, greed, and a grey heart. It's extremely sad for me. I think it's important to STAY SMART (unlike some current leaders) but also to keep things clear and simple when dealing with evil. Sometimes seeing things in black and white is smart, sometimes it's dumb and distructive. One must stay awake in order to understand what to do. 'To everything there is a season.' Evil loves to grow in the grey areas and none of us are immune to its toxic psychic mold. As my favorite sex God of all modern times (Jim Morrison) once shouted to a waisted and stupid crowd... "WAKE UP!"
Sad. O, stop. You guys are make'n me sad this mornin'!
NO! Sorry DJG but by even voicing this question you are just reflecting the insane handwringing hysteria far too prevolent in American society since the WTC and Pentagon attacks. Terrorism, terrorism, terrorism - Bollocks! There appears to be an American lead campaign to redifine terrorism at the moment but as far as ANY educated person should be concerned the following definition (or thereabouts) should stand:
Terrorism: The unlawful use, or threatened use, of force or violence by a person or an organized group against people or property with the intention of intimidating or coercing societies or governments, often for ideological or political reasons.
What is it exactly the gangs are seeking to coerce the government into - a subsidy on 9mm handguns, free crack for the under 12's, tax-free pimping? No? Didn't think so.
Sure - there are law enforcement agencies that would like to have the right to use so-called anti-terror legislation against these nasty pieces of work, but that doesn't mean we should buy the argument.
You aren't even sticking to the definition that you posted. While I do agree that "terrrrrist" has been overused by many governments, especially the US, (and actually, in effect, becoming a form of terrorism in itself), I would argue that drive-by shootings are in fact a form of intimidating a segment or segments of society - and therefore fits the description. Many of the gangs use random rapes or murders as part of their initiation. The initiate has to pick a stranger off the street and rob or rape or murder that victim. And they use terrorist tactics to discourage rival gangs from encroaching on their "turf."
Then why is it just now that are gangs are deserving of the terrrrrist label? It's just fear mongering on the part of Americans, pure and simple.
Do gangs terrorize, sure, are they terrorists by the historical definition? No.
Sometimes the only way to get to a bad guy is to indict him on the Rico Act. Perhaps the same can be said for indicting a gang/member as a terrorist.
Terrorists are identified by their actions. What actions have "street gangs" taken which would identify them as terrorists?
The definition of terrorist is slippery. Assassinations, acts of war, and general intimidation are not committed by terrorists.
I wouldn't say it is "just now" that they've been called terrorists.
So I suppose I'm wrong. The "terrorist" label cannot be applied to anyone unless they are middle-eastern muslims who use specific techniques, make specific claims and demands, and hate Americans.
The Irish Republican Army aren't Muslim or Middle Eastern.
Agreed. They are a growing problem.
To paraphrase Bart Simpson:
There's no such thing as a terrorist. It's just something they made up to scare sheeple, like the boogeyman or Michael Jackson.
Seriously, how do you decide which group deserves the label "terrorist" and which group does not?
Bart is half right. Terrorists are as real as Michael Jackson.
Incidentally they both like to hang out in Dubai.
Good point. I agree with this one.
"NO! Sorry DJG but by even voicing this question you are just reflecting the insane handwringing hysteria far too prevolent in American society since the WTC and Pentagon attacks."
So, but asking this question I am "handwringing"?
Is this going to turn into another post that you have to leave due to anger?
I wouldn't include "threatened use" in the definition.
I'm not too wild about the rest of that definition, either. It doesn't really capture the essence of "terrorism" as a strategy.
The definition given isn't unique to terrorism. It would include warfare or the RICO Act, which, whatever their merits, aren't terrorism.