Posted by on October 12, 2011 in Blog

Several weeks ago, we wrote about the problematic language in the Department of Homeland Security Reauthorization Act, which singles out “Islamist extremism” without considering other, more prevalent manifestations of extremism in American society. Today AAI issued a statement as follows:

We write in opposition to Section 102 of the Homeland Security Authorization Bill, “Countering Homegrown Radicalization and Violent Islamist Extremism.”  Language that singles-out the American Muslim community conflates the religion of Islam with the perverse ideology held by Al-Qaeda and its allies. Section 102 as written implies that Islam has a predilection towards terrorism.

Indeed, such language completely ignores the fact that domestic terror groups – including far-right militants, white supremacy groups, eco-terrorists and extreme animal rights activists – have historically posed a more wide-spread and dangerous threat than “Islamists.”  

Further, Section 102 is in contradiction to constitutionally protected rights and conflates first amendment protected practices without involvement in terrorism.   

The need to work together to combat domestic terrorism is imperative without stigmatizing or calling into question any particular community.

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