Homeland Security Adviser Warns Parents That Their Mouthy Kids May Grow Up To Be Terrorists

from the just-when-you-thought-the-'terrorist-twos'-were-horrible-enough dept

Our nation's singular focus on terrorism has led to various branches of the government and counterterrorism pundits declaring all sorts of things to be warning signs of terrorist activity. Here's a short (but by no means all-inclusive) list of activities that are supposedly indicators of terrorism-in-progress.

Now, here's a new one to add to the list. If Lisa Monaco (White House Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Advisor) is to be believed, nearly every parent, especially those with stereotypical teens in the household, is harboring potential terrorists.

“Parents might see sudden personality changes in their children at home—becoming confrontational. Religious leaders might notice unexpected clashes over ideological differences. Teachers might hear a student expressing an interest in traveling to a conflict zone overseas. Or friends might notice a new interest in watching or sharing violent material.”
That's right, parents. If your child seems moody, unreceptive to your religious leanings, enjoys watching violent "material" or wants to travel nearly anywhere in the world (not a whole lot left outside of the First World that can't be described as war-torn), he or she is your family's very own "insider threat."

Monaco understands this might be troubling for parents to hear, but it's all for the best. Remember, parents: only you can prevent terrorism.
“The government is rarely in position to observe these early signals, so we need to do more to help communities understand the warning signs, and then work together to intervene before an incident can occur.”
The nation's counterterrorism forces are profoundly sympathetic for these terrorist-raisers. They truly wish they could be in the position to catch these early warning signs, but our short-sighted predecessors have prevented them from observing first-hand, thanks to obstacles like the Third and Fourth Amendments.

Not to worry. As Monaco points out, the nation has mobilized parents' neighbors against them, providing them with any number of see-something-say-something venues with which to turn in your confrontational, agnostic, R-rated movie-watching hellspawn -- just in case you don't love America enough to do it yourself.

Oh, and P.S.: the DHS reiterates its commitment to flooding small towns with military vehicles and weaponry.
Monaco said that in addition to citizen alertness, the Department of Homeland Security is increasing its partnerships across the country and making hundreds of millions of dollars in grant money available annually to local law enforcement to help improve anti-terrorism security at the municipal and county level.
A terrorist in every household and a military assault vehicle in every unincorporated township. USA! USA! USA!


Reader Comments (rss)

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    silverscarcat (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 5:01am

    Now if this doesn't fall into the WTF America category...

    I don't know what does.

    Seriously, the government flat-out admits it sees the citizens as the enemy here.

    So... When's the revolution to overthrow everything?

     

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      Rikuo (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:12am

      Re: Now if this doesn't fall into the WTF America category...

      I cannot vote for this enough. This comment from SSC clinces it. Whatever happened to the saying "The children are our future"? Now the children are viewed as potential terrorists.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:17am

      Re: Now if this doesn't fall into the WTF America category...

      About the same time that Anakin is born.

       

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      Trails (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:38am

      Re: Now if this doesn't fall into the WTF America category...

      I keep coming back to this; 1984 was supposed to be a warning, not a play book...

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 12:09pm

      Re: Now if this doesn't fall into the WTF America category...

      The revolution is when you get off your lazy ass and contribute to it instead of asking when someone else will do it for you.

       

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        silverscarcat (profile), Apr 22nd, 2014 @ 1:13am

        Re: Re: Now if this doesn't fall into the WTF America category...

        Oh look, it's the person who attacks me at every moment because he's pathetic and has nothing better to do.

         

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    Violynne (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 7:59am

    Add 1/3 cup of irony about a Homeland Security adviser complaining about complainers.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:11am

    ATTENTION, CITIZENS! REPORT ZAZZLE AND CAFE PRESS ACCOUNTS IMMEDIATELY FOR GIVING AID AND COMFORT TO THE ENEMY BY SELLING SNARKY CHILDREN'S CLOTHES!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:15am

    My mother had a saying about puffed-up pompous busybodies and professional shroud-wavers - "they need to get a proper job".

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:16am

    Parents might see sudden personality changes in their children at home—becoming confrontational.

    Wouldn't it be much more worrying if teenagers remained compliant, as it possibly indicates that the hormones are not kicking in, and they are not growing up.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:19am

    and then we send them off for Re-education ?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:19am

    A tank on every corner! An officer for every home! America America! You don't hate America do you?

     

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    Just Another Anonymous Troll, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:28am

    So basically, normal teenager=terrorist? Is this just an excuse for the U.S. to wiretap/arrest all teenagers, as well as people who were once teenagers?

     

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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:28am

    So raise your children to be boot licking serfs, or you'll end up on the news saying how your child used to be nice and everyone else judging you.

    The real terrorists in this country are those charged with protecting it.

     

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    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:31am

    Sociopath?

    I think it was on a Criminal Minds episode where the TV BAU, in discussing a teenagers behavior stated (paraphrased) "All teenagers profile as sociopaths. That's why we don't diagnose that until they are at least 18." Now I know that show is fictional, but one of the fiction writers tools is to include some facts with their fiction. This may be one of them, and a believable one at that.

     

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      nasch (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 6:43pm

      Re: Sociopath?

      "All teenagers profile as sociopaths. That's why we don't diagnose that until they are at least 18." Now I know that show is fictional, but one of the fiction writers tools is to include some facts with their fiction. This may be one of them, and a believable one at that.

      Sociopaths are superficially charming and charismatic, which certainly doesn't describe all teenagers.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2014 @ 4:37am

      Re: Sociopath?

      Complete bullshit by the way. Both psychopath and sociopath are depreciated terms and are not a valid diagnosis any more than crazy is - insane is a legal criteria. Closest would be antisocial personality disorder. The reason eighteen is used as an official diagnosis limit is plasticity - a changing brain can grow out of it. That is just standard demonization of the mythical "teen-aged menace" crap they have been pushing to grab eyeballs for decades.

      Reminds me of the downfall of the old news media. All of the trivially disprovable moral panics they push, rainbow part, pharm parties, and their ilk. Then they wonder why they have lost the younger demographics. They're not teenagers any more so it shouldn't matter right? The fools haven't realized that they have already committed demographic suicide. Demonizing your audience is a good way to alienate them. They have proven themselves less trustworthy than comedians as a news source.

       

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    avideogameplayer, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:36am

    We're already seeing signs of it...

    Pop tart guns
    Fingers made to look like guns
    My Little Pony schoolbags
    Screaming 'Bang! Bang! You're dead!' using paperclips

    and let's not forget a personal favorite...

    The Magical Cellphone that can be used as a AK-47 assault rifle!1!!

    Maybe those schools with these zero tolerance policies might have been ahead of the curve...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:37am

    Why not add 'breathing' to the list too? Terrorists breath, so everyone must be a terrorist!

     

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    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:38am

    Who's the Terrorist?

    Dear Lisa Monaco,

    Are you a terrorist? If not, why are you terrorizing us, and what are you doing about your fellow government employed terrorists?

    Sincerely,

    Citizen AND People of the United States of America, and a whole bunch of the rest of the world.

     

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    OldGeezer (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:39am

    I guess when I mouthed off to my parents the only "terror" I had was worrying if I was going to get smacked!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:46am

    Oh my. Let the relentless mocking begin...

     

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    Charles (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:02am

    Adding to the list...

    Reading Techdirt

    Commenting on Techdirt

    Raising a child/future terrorist

    Having once been a teenager

    Seriously, our government has gone nuts!

     

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      Just Another Anonymous Troll, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:10am

      Re: Adding to the list...

      You forgot "not being an easily led sheeple who agrees with everything the government does"

       

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    weneedhelp (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:12am

    Everything else we know aside

    When you make natural human behavior suspect it is a clear indicator that something needs to be done... other than sitting behind our monitors click click click clicking away.

     

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    ahow628 (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:15am

    Uh oh

    Is your newborn crying all the time? Terrorist.
    Is your 1 year old pooping in their pants all the time? Terrorist.
    Is your 2 year old out of control? Terrorist.
    Is your 3 year old whiny? Terrorist.
    Is your 4 year old indecisive? Terrorist.
    Does your 5 year old ignore everything you say? Terrorist.
    Does your wife never want to have sex? Terrorist
    Is your husband always horny? Terrorist.
    Does your grandmother complain about health issues constantly? Terrorist.

    Seriously, isn't this just a list things that teenagers just do? Like all the time?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:27am

    It's the PMRC all over again! Satan's out terrorists are in!

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jul 9th, 2014 @ 7:17am

      Re:

      Yeah, they just change potential criminal behavior by terrorism. Because everyone knows terrorism = crime nowadays.

       

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    gorehound (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:46am

    All of us Citizens are now the enemy.We are constantly spied on........we got this type of News here.We see all politicians are corrupt.The economy is frakked up......global warming heating up.
    Yes, this Century we will have a French Revolution Part 2.

     

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      Just Another Anonymous Troll, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:57am

      Re:

      We all figured this was true... USG has officially confirmed it.

       

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      Pragmatic, Apr 23rd, 2014 @ 5:55am

      Re:

      AGAIN with this...!

      The surveillance, etc., is to get us peasants to accept the astroturf "taxation-is-theft" and "government is eeevilll!" baloney. You know, the baloney that led to the deregulation of Wall St. and the banks, and brought in "Right to Work" laws that leave a man I know lying on the floor for at least an hour every night waiting for his hernia to slip back in. He's fallen through the cracks in Obamacare because the state he lives in won't extend Medicare and he can't take time off to get it fixed - they don't provide paid sick days and he's terrified of losing his job. And you wonder why I bash big "L" Libertarians! The market hasn't rushed valiantly in to save this man, has it?!

      The push for violent revolution is coming from the right. Increased militarization is coming from... guess where?

      The winners would be the ones with the biggest guns and the most of them. That would not be us. They would also have control of the main media outlets and therefore the ability to spin the story to their own advantage. Again, that would not be us. Anyone planning or attempting to take part in an armed revolution would be characterized as a terrorist and vilified in the media before being carted off to prison for a very long stretch, assuming they don't get killed in the clash.

      Result: increased militarization of law enforcement and a more paranoid government at local, state, and federal level. Sound good to you? Me neither.

      Let's fight this war at the ballot box by voting the bums out at the next election. That will actually work if we can agree on the candidates to vote for. Which is why they're working to divide us. Don't let them.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:49am

    You know who else were terrorists? Our founding fathers to the British government. Those that don't learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 11:09am

      Re:

      These "people" have no excuse for this kind of behavior. Some of them have been around to see the failures of the McCarthyism, while others learned about them in history class or from their parents when they were young (back when it was recent history to them). Calling everything they don't like "terrorist" is this generation's version of calling everything they don't like "communist".

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 11:52am

        Re: Re:

        Nothing new under the sun.

        What's old is new again.

        Yep. The same thing as the Red Scare when the USSR was still around only now we call our teenagers cave-dwelling terrorists.

        Thanks Homeland Security but no thanks. We don't need any tanks around here. I swear this is a convenient excuse to sell off the tanks and swat cars that will never be used otherwise.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 2:36pm

        Re: Re:

        And before that, calling everyone a witch. US history already has this circle and it is going through its 3rd cycle.

         

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    Trevor, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:49am

    Interesting

    The last time I spent time in a hotel was last June, when I took the California Bar exam.

    The hotel had a main entrance, but I only used it upon checking in/out. Otherwise, the back/side entrances were more convenient because they were closer to the Exam site.

    Also, upon completion of the exam, I did not use the Hotel's wifi to upload my answers, because it positively (negatively?) sucked. Instead, I piggy backed off of a co-tester's hotspot.

    Guess I'm guilty :/

     

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    Trevor, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:54am

    Another thought

    I love the Third Amendment shout out. It never gets any love.

    Also,

    It's strange. Usually the government tries to get kids to report on their parents, not the other way around.

    DAMN WHIPPERSNAPPERS

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 9:46pm

      Re: Another thought

      That is because they're too damn stupid to realize why you don't do that. Provoking longstanding protective instincts by messing with their children is a certain path to downfall. Perhaps it is because they're too sociopathic to understand the concept of caring for something other than themselves.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:59am

    I can't even trust them with counter-terrorism, so why should I trust them with parenting advice? What's the point of having kids if they're just going to be shipped off to a re-education camp and/or shot when they turn 13 (or even before then, considering their lack of moral compass and the types of shooting targets they ordered a while back), assuming the media and government don't brainwash my wife into hating me first?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 11:31am

    Speaking of the TSA...

    ...did anybody notice their spectacular failure over the weekend? They were outwitted and humiliated by a 16-year-old boy.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 11:52am

    We have created a threat and are nurturing it like no tomorrow as a bone-headed effort to raise serious cash just like the millitary does. Oh look: a threat! Gimme money and we will dumb down the populace, invade countries, your mind, your values.....Really, when does this idiocy end? We need to have these people taken out and told that their comments ARE the problem. THEY are the problem.

     

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    PRMan, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 11:54am

    I guess I should go turn myself in...

    *making requests in person at the front desk,

    *not bringing enough baggage,

    *using entrances/exits other than the one in the lobby area

    *turning down room service.

    *Complaining about the TSA.

    *Complaining about the water quality.

    *Complaining.

    *Contributing to Wikileaks (or even frequenting the site).

    *Encrypting your data.
    Expressing dissatisfaction with government policies.

    I didn't realize what a terrorist I am...

     

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      John Fenderson (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 1:32pm

      Re: I guess I should go turn myself in...

      Me too. I think I do just about everything in that list -- especially the list about hotel guests.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 12:08pm

    Seriously?

    Dear Ms. Monaco,

    If you're going to bullshit me, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE at least make a better effort to make your bullshit BELIEVABLE.

    Sincerely,
    Fed up with your bullshit

    Not for nothing, this list is such a generic crock of shit, that I find it hard to believe she could sell it with a straight face.

     

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    DannyB (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 12:28pm

    Let's cover all the possibilities, YOUR KID IS A TERRORIST

    If your kid is a terrorist, then you probably are aware of this.

    There seem to be several possibilities:
    * You support your kids' activities and are laughing at Homeland Security for even suggesting you would report it
    * You don't support it, but you would not report your kids, regardless of anything Homeland Security might say.
    * Or you don't support it, and WOULD report it, even without prompting from Homeland Security.

    Covering other possibilities . . .

    Your kid is a terrorist, but you are blissfully unaware. And may not even want to be aware if they 'come out' to you. In this case, Homeland Security's message seems utterly pointless.

    Your kid is not a terrorist, in which case Homeland Security's message is utterly irrelevant.

    So that leaves me asking, is there any real world case where Homeland Security's message is actually useful, to anyone?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 12:59pm

    when are these fucking idiots going to get a grip on what they are saying and realise how they sound?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 1:00pm

    Soon the rebellion will be crushed, and young Skywalker will be one of us.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 1:08pm

    You know who also asked for communities to keep a close eye on their friends, family, and neighbors? The East German Stasi.

     

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    FM Hilton, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 1:44pm

    Who's a what?

    My daddy raised me wrong, of course:

    Expressing dissatisfaction with government policies.

    Writing letters to the Editor about highly controversial subjects.

    Hell, he did it, and I just follow his example.

    But the difference?

    He was a career Army officer-and lots of medals to put on his uniform.

    He'd be ashamed to call himself an American today.

    Thank goodness he's no longer alive to witness our rapid decline into a totalitarian country.

     

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    Vel the Enigmatic, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 2:00pm

    It's pretty stinking clear by now:

    I find it funny how some of the world stereotypes us Americans as dumb as hell idiots, and ironically we get sacks of stupid like Lisa Monaco running parts of our country.

    As it stands. I never want my friend who lives in France to ever come here just so he won't be subject to idiocy by the government.

     

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    bob, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 2:26pm

    govt response to finding a potential terrorist

    but.. if we see something and say something..
    won't the FBI just set up a sting to entice the troubled youth into rebelling in some fashion and then arrest the youth for conspiracy to commit a terrorist act?
    I mean.. it's what they're doing now, but maybe they're running short of prospects, so they need a bigger pool.
    Just a thought.

     

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      Pragmatic, Apr 23rd, 2014 @ 8:23am

      Re: govt response to finding a potential terrorist

      This is one of those times I find myself agreeing with you, Bob.

      Call me paranoid (excuse me while I adjust my tinfoil hat), but I can't help wondering where all the "let's have a revolution" crap is coming from.

      Think about it. If I approved of violent rebellion at all, I wouldn't be calling for it in public, anonymously or not, otherwise I might be on the receiving end of an extreme wake-up call somewhere down the line.

      This is WHY I keep slapping down people who do. I'm trying to do them — and anyone who might think of joining them — a favor.

       

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        John Fenderson (profile), Apr 23rd, 2014 @ 9:07am

        Re: Re: govt response to finding a potential terrorist

        I believe that calls for revolution are coming mostly from one of two places: agent provocateurs and people in that small militaristic subgroup of society that has been lusting for a nice, bloody revolution for at least a few generations.

        Calls for revolution are idiotic. In part for the reasons you cite, and in part for practical reasons -- a revolution is most likely to result in a much worse government than we have now.

         

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    Kronomex, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 3:49pm

    Please tell me this is a very April fool gag otherwise it's a new level of 1984.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 4:10pm

      Re:

      Unfortunately the US government wants people to distrust each other, as it makes their jobs more secure. If people do not trust each other they cannot organize themselves, and thus leaving the organization of society up to the politicians and their pay masters.

       

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        Pragmatic, Apr 23rd, 2014 @ 5:59am

        Re: Re:

        They're not the only ones. The political shills we have popping in from time to time want us to distrust everyone who disagrees with their position or team. One actually stated that liberal = terrorist the other day.

        Nonsense. Misguided at times, perhaps, but terrorist? No.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Jul 9th, 2014 @ 9:21am

          Re: Re: Re:

          We should speak about those talkingheads evil secrets too : Ann Coulter is a man, a person like that who hides its real identity should be put under scrutiny.

           

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    michael, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 5:13pm

    Terrorists

    I give you the new meaning of the word:

    Terrorists; those who stand up for their lawful rights.

     

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    Coyne Tibbets (profile), Apr 21st, 2014 @ 5:41pm

    Oh, no...

    "The government is rarely in position to observe these early signals, so we need to do more to help communities understand the warning signs, and then work together to intervene before an incident can occur."

    Is it just me, or does this sound like a complaint?

    Oh, Ms. Monaco, you terrorist, you!

     

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    My Name Here, Apr 21st, 2014 @ 10:42pm

    About time someone sane instituted some due process. Obviously, the freetards here wouldn't understand.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2014 @ 3:32am

    So all teens = terrorists?

    I wonder how long it'll be before Guantanamo Bay opens a "Summer Camp."

     

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    limbodog (profile), Apr 23rd, 2014 @ 9:23am

    Kids these days.

    When *I* was a kid, these were all warning signs that your teen was using the mariajuana.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 24th, 2014 @ 4:23am

    " . . . not a whole lot left outside of the First World that can't be described as war-torn . . ."

    Two words.

    Can ada.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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