Bill would give Attorney General power to classify people as domestic terrorists
By Susan Johnson
A new bill rapidly moving through Congress has an amendment that would allow the Obama administration’s attorney general to classify Americans as domestic terrorists if they are pro-life, pro-gun and anti-big government, according to News With Views (NWV) writer Jim Kouri.
Impeached Florida judge Rep. Alcee Hastings, now a Democrat Party member of the House of Representatives, introduced the amendment, calling for the U.S. Attorney General to decide who is called a terrorist and which groups will be treated as terrorist groups.
Political strategist Mike Baker said: “This is arguably one of the worst pieces of legislation to come down the pike in a long, long time. In essence, Attorney General Eric Holder—appointed U.S. Attorney to the District of Columbia by Bill Clinton and appointed Acting U.S. Attorney General by George W. Bush (until John Ashcroft was confirmed by the Senate)—will have the discretion to label Americans terrorists. Hastings is a dangerous man and should be forced to resign from Congress. He’s also proposed the creation of ‘emergency camps’ that are nothing more than prisons.
“This amendment is part and parcel of the trend in this country to suppress dissent by patriots by calling them domestic terrorists,” he added.
In an unclassified report on “Rightwing Extremism,” Secretary for Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and her agency defined “extremists.”
“Rightwing extremism in the United States can be broadly divided into these groups, movements, and adherents that are primarily hate-oriented (based on hatred of particular religious, racial or ethnic groups), and those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration.”
Congressman Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) commenting on the House floor, stated: “The Hastings Amendment to the National Defense Authorization bill…prohibits the recruitment, enlistment, or retention of persons with known affiliations to ‘groups determined by the Attorney General to be of a violent, extremist nature.’ …We recognize that there are legitimate concerns about the enlistment of persons who may seek to use their military training to cause harm to innocents, but we should take pause to consider the breadth of this amendment carefully. … Specifically, it confers upon the Attorney General the ability to categorize groups as hate groups, and this sounds an alarm for many of us because of the recent shocking and offensive report released by the Department of Homeland Security which labeled, arguably, a majority of Americans as ‘extremists,’” warned Franks.
Rep. Hastings also introduced another bill calling for the Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano to build at least six facilities that can be designated as “emergency centers.” The rationale for such facilities is to gather and “house” civilians on what are basically detention centers guarded by armed soldiers or paramilitary troops.
The House bill (H.R. 645)—National Emergency Centers Establishment Act—is not even on the radar of mainstream media. According to critics, the plan, if passed, will create camps or centers that, by their nature, restrict the activities of U.S. citizens herded into them. In fact, one provision, Section 2(b)(4), states: “[To] meet other appropriate needs, as determined by the Secretary of Homeland Security.”
According to the office of U.S. Rep. Don Manzullo (R-16), the bill was introduced by
Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) Jan. 22, 2009. The bill has two other sponsors of 435 members of the House, Arthur Davis (D-Ala.) and Jim Gerlach (R-Pa.). There is no companion bill in the U.S. Senate.
Political strategist Mike Baker claims “the idea of such detention centers smacks of the type of concentration camps for political dissidents, such as occurred in Nazi Germany, which Americans find repugnant.”
“Why aren’t the news media covering this story? Could it be because they fear being the first occupants of these so-called emergency installations? Where is the outrage by our nation’s Fourth Estate?” asks Baker.
In 1989, Judge Hastings was impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives for alleged bribery and perjury. The Democratic-controlled Senate convicted Hastings of accepting a $150,000 bribe in 1981 in exchange for a lenient sentence and of perjury in his testimony about the case. Hastings said the charges against him smacked of racism.
Even Rep. John Conyers, who is also black, said he “found no trace of racism during the investigation.” He urged his colleagues to remove Hastings from the bench. He said, “[Hastings] is unfit to serve.”
For a complete report, see http://www.newswithviews.com/NWV-News/news152.htm.
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