There is no such thing as good terrorism but this must be figuratively and literally be public enemy number one. It is an awful and horrible act when a home is invaded and a family is hurt or worse yet murdered. When those acts come from within, from a member of that same family, well that can only be called sinister.
This is why domestic terrorism is so ugly, evil, and dangerous. Dealing with such an awful and seemingly faceless enemy, however, may not be so simple. As this story said citing the Director of the FBI, the roots and reasons for many of these acts are “racially-motivated violent extremist ideologies.” That doesn’t only make this a scary problem but a deep-seated one too.
Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your perspective, we have some experience confronting terrorism. While these aren’t identical monsters as the aforementioned story reported, there are measures we can take.
Some of those sounded much like the “see something say something” campaign used to encourage people to report crimes. Much like that but with an even more preventative mindset were some of the ideas mentioned by the Department of Homeland Security, Kevin McAleenan.
Some of those ideas included cooperative efforts with organizations like the Secret Service, community officials, the medical community and the National Threat Assessment Center.
McAleenan said that there are, “…indicators they need to look for to identify someone who is on a path to violence…” in order to prevent acts of terrorism before they happen.
This increased focus on domestic terrorism comes as the FBI, according to a statement from McAleenan, has nearly 850 active case investigations of domestic terrorism underway.
McAleenan was citing the Director of the FBI, Christopher Wray, as his source of this information. That means that his data must be reasonably accurate at least and that looks like a lot of hate in America.
When outsiders come in, when foreign entities attempt to harm, strike fear or terrorize us – we fight back. We can find the enemy, then destroy them.
Can we do that in the event of domestic terrorism? Aren’t these are friends, family members, neighbors… fellow Americans? Indeed they are and that is what makes this so difficult because it is true after all, every barrel is bound to have a bad apple or two.
What that doesn’t mean, however, is that we just surrender and throw our hands up. No, we take these proactive steps and follow the lead of our community leaders, leaders of our intelligence community and the leadership of the country. This isn’t all doom and gloom news either, because there is hope.
If it is true and the majority of those 850 ongoing investigations stem from hate, then maybe we can defeat that enemy. We belong to a country that in its darkest hours had Klan roots embedded deep into its fabric.
And we belong to a nation that has grown and matured, electing men and women of color to the highest offices in the land. We belong to an America that has defeated hate, many times. Now perhaps, we must do it once more.
We are the greatest nation on earth but we can be better. We are a collection of immigrants and workers from every background, race. creed, and color. What we are not is hateful, prejudicial or violent. Nor will we sit down and do nothing while those who are, continue to spread the disease of terrorism.
This is a fight for all of us and it may very well take all of us to win. There is no U.S. Marine Corps, there is no U.S. Air Force strike or any military force we have that can come in and settle the score. There is no leader of a terrorist ban we can capture, this is a different kind of fight. A great president once told his country to not ask what their country could do to help them but…
Now, could be that time.
We must strive to be a better America, that means being better people and that means it is our charge to be vigilant and on guard because this is terrorism of the worst kind.