Claire McCaskill: Why Aren’t We Calling Sandy Hook Terror?

Janet Napolitano is testifying before the Senate Homeland Security Committee, purportedly on the budget. Not surprisingly, she’s getting a ton of questions about the Boston Marathon attack and immigration.

But in a smart series of questions that will undoubtedly be controversial, Claire McCaskill challenged Napolitano to explain why we so quickly called Boston a terrorist attack, but wouldn’t call Sandy Hook a terrorist attack. Noting that we still don’t know the motive behind either attack, McCaskill asked (these are my immediate transcriptions),

Other than weapon, is there any difference between Sandy Hook and Boston?

[snip]

We are so quick to call Boston terror, why aren’t we calling man w/high capacity magazine a terrorist?

[snip]

As I look at it w/eyes of prosecutor, I find it troubling that one is treated to cause so much more fear than other.

[snip]

It’s possible both had same motive, just one chose military weapon, the other chose homemade explosive.

It’s a provocative, but necessary question. The crime of terrorism relies on having a political motive. In both these attacks, we don’t know motive. But two days after Boston, we’re treating it as terrorism, while the attack that killed 20 children in their school still isn’t called such.

My inclination would be to call neither terrorism. McCaskill is right that the term just serves to generate fear.

But I’m glad she asked the question.

Tweet about this on Twitter0Share on Reddit0Share on Facebook0Google+4Email to someone

7 Responses to Claire McCaskill: Why Aren’t We Calling Sandy Hook Terror?

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
Emptywheel Twitterverse
emptywheel @MikeDonnellyJr I had forgotten about estate tax. Another big one--you're right. Cause why should the Waltons pay their share? @lolgop
12mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel RT @brycecovert: Wives carving turkeys: “a sure sign that American women have gone beyond achieving plain equality” http://t.co/504tCZ8Cs2
25mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @ProducerCoop To be fair, 23 isn't as bad as it used to be, so if you come in that way you can sort of make it. 94 too. The rest, agree.
26mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @Praetorzic Yup. War funding will be huge. Subsidies to energy companies. Tax cuts for corporations. All stuff they've promised @LOLGOP
28mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Someone should make it their full-time beat to track all the ways GOP gonna blow the deficit again. It'd be busy job.
33mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel MI GOP wants to raise speed limit on roads they refuse to fix enormous potholes in. http://t.co/ZPCoOUfUqf Is it auto company welfare plan?
35mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @brianbeutler But it's also place where MC got best deal out of ACA. Did they vote? @richardmskinner @StevenTDennis
37mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @brianbeutler Has anyone done good study of ACA and KY vote this month? We know O didn't get credit for it @richardmskinner @StevenTDennis
38mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @LarryAkey Hahahahahaha bwahahahaha hahahahaha. Good one. Wyden. SSCI Chair. Wouldn't that be fun?
51mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @fuckyouimbetter Common mistake, no biggie. @bmaz
55mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @LarryAkey Yes, that's what I imagine. And who knows what happens when President Ted Cruz takes over.
56mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @fuckyouimbetter Oh, that's @bmaz, not me.
58mreplyretweetfavorite
April 2013
S M T W T F S
« Mar   May »
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
282930