Written by Charlotte Silver for Al Jazeera English
In the US, due process – one of the defining features of a democratic judicial process – continues to be badly bludgeoned: Obama fights tooth and nail to push through NDAA, which would allow indefinite detention of US citizens, and the definition of terrorism has expanded its unwieldy scope, casting a widening net that ensures more and more people are captured in its snare.
The US has pursued “domestic terrorism” by practicing pre-emptive prosecution, that is, going after individuals who have committed no crime but are alleged to possess an ideology that might dispose them to commit acts of “terrorism”. Maintaining that it can -and should – be in the business of divining intent, the government decimates crucial elements of the US justice system.
Thus, in cases where terrorism is charged, prosecutors need not prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Rather, only the defendant’s potential for committing a crime need be established in order to convict.
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It goes beyond this. As bad as entrapment is, or can be, as a method of “law” enforcement, simply put they can put your ass in jail for possibly being the a threat. Terrorism has become the current, most bused, excuse to turn freedom into tyranny. And it certainly isn’t limited to suspected thoughts of being a terrorist. Yes, folks. To quote my most recent column, if you haven’t done anything wrong “you DO have something to worry about.”