With the events of the past weekend splashed across my feeds I find myself grateful to see that some are finally starting to put the correct label on the actions of these monsters. Terrorism is defined as “the unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims.” The actions of anyone who uses violence to further their beliefs is an act of terrorism, it’s a pretty straight forward concept as long as we don’t start sub-labeling or categorizing it.
The man who ran over those people in Charlottesville is a terrorist. That is the most important label that we can attach to this man. He personally ascribes to the beliefs that one race is superior to another and he chose to attack those who oppose him with a violent assault that cost one woman her life and injured many others. While he, as well as all other terrorists, is mentally ill…(wouldn’t you have to be to do something like this) that does not and will never justify or excuse his actions.
The groups he is associated with and their hateful rhetoric are despicable. There is not a single redeeming quality to their message. But no matter the groups he chose to associate with, we need to start recognizing the power with just calling a spade a spade. When these people commit acts of violence or intimidation for the sake of promoting their nauseating agenda, they are terrorists.
Unfortunately too many people have a hard time with the idea of applying that word to this man or to any other Caucasian man who commits an act of terror. They want to equivicate and call them mentally unstable. They want to find ways to separate their actions from the actions of others who have committed atrocities. Why? Well in my mind it’s really pretty simple. For many years when you turn on the news, read a blog, or listen to a politician speak, you are confronted with the term “Islamic Terrorist.” This continuous use of the sub-label has created a situation where people hear “act of terror” and they make an automatic assumption as to the perpetrators.
What I would have to wonder would happen if we stopped using sub-labels and simply called these monsters out for what they are…terrorists. They are the most vile of human beings. They are so extreme in their views that they are willing to harm other people to further their cause. It really doesn’t matter what their cause is… the end game is the same…high damage and the spreading of their ideals. So what would happen if we started spending less time focusing on helping them spread their ideals by labeling their bullshit?
Perhaps I am oversimplifying, but I can’t help but wonder if we would be more able to accept that terrorism has no race, creed, religion, or gender. The people who commit these acts of violence come in a variety of colors, religions, nationalities, and belief systems. But their reasons for their actions should never be more important than the victims who suffer at their hands and frankly their reasons and affiliations should be but a footnote. All we really need to know is that they were a jackass terrorist.
So when we talk about that monster who ran over people in Charlottesville, let’s please not waste time of calling him a “white terrorist.” The man is a terrorist, much like those who bombed the OKC Fed Building, the man who attacked the people in their Mosque in Canada, and those who rammed a van into a crowd in Barcelona. ALL of them are just as worthless and all of them need to be no more than a blip…a Terrorist. Stop giving them their 15 minutes and start focusing on their victims. Start realizing that ALL acts of terror need to be thrown into the same refuse pile.