Falsely invoking terrorism is a form of terrorism. If the idea behind terrorism is to terrorize (use tactics to make others instantly and incredibly afraid) some group into doing either a) what the terrorist wants and/or b) something other than what the group would normally do, then the outcome of calling someone a terrorist is to get others to be afraid of being around or associating with that individual. Since 9/11, the US has been in the thrall of the word terrorism. It has been used over and over to make us afraid of “others” in the world who would do us harm. For some, such as myself, this can become numbing. I don’t tend to think much about anyone labeled a terrorist anymore since it is used so often and incorrectly.
Now the definition I am using to describe terrorism may be objected to as being too broad, as it may include such tactics as using fear to get someone to stop smoking, or brush their teeth, or be good or receive a lump of coal at Christmas, or worship one specific God or spend eternity listening to New Kids on the Block. I added the qualifiers instantly and incredibly to offset the difference between simple fear and the full blown terror that terrorism is attempting to invoke. The fear involved in terrorism arises from sudden and unexpected actions that is of a much grander scale than the examples of fear I gave earlier. And this leads to my conclusion that given the climate of our country and the rhetoric of its leaders since 9/11, calling someone a terrorist who has not done the actions of a terrorist is an act of terrorism. It is an attempt to make someone so suddenly afraid of that individual that they will abandon their previous way of living and thinking and adopt one more in line with the invoker or will at least stop what they were doing.
Lately, McCain/Palin supporters have gone in public and proclaimed Obama a terrorist (see last post.) Now I’m not saying this is representative of all of his supporters, nor am I disagreeing with my earlier post that most of these individuals are mostly saying these things to rile those they see on the other side of the ticket. But to use the term terrorist to describe a Senator who is running for President is to try and scare someone into either a) voting for the other party or b) getting them to not vote for someone else, or not at all.
I’m calling them out as terrorists.
The Rational Moderate