Benjamin Baird

  • commented on FBI Entrapment Harms Vulnerable Muslims 2018-11-04 16:11:13 -0500
    Your reflexive attempt to attribute my criticism of CAIR and Roberts as inherently “Islamophobic” is the only argument that is “intellectually and morally twisted” here. I have devoted my life to helping Muslims, and have spent more than three years building hospitals and schools in impoverished Muslim neighborhoods, bringing humanitarian aid to Muslims living under Islamist oppression, and protecting Muslim families at risk to my own life. After my mind and body were too battered to go on at this operational tempo, I pursued a degree in Middle Eastern studies to continue my work helping moderate Muslims, this time in opposition to lawful American Islamist groups like CAIR or ISNA. I stand in opposition to the very bigotry you thoughtlessly condemn me for espousing and for which CAIR is a repeat perpetrator.

    I know that it is convenient to shut down an intellectual debate by accusing your opponent of xenophobia, but we really must rise above these brazen ad-hominem attacks if we are going to get anywhere.

    Now, to the heart of the matter. If CAIR is so concerned with protecting the mentally ill from prosecution, then why don’t they haven’t they defended Jeremy Christian, the Portland, Oregon man who killed two men who came the defense of two Muslim teenagers her was harassing? A clinical and forensic psychologist said Christian “exhibits reactions consistent with post-traumatic stress disorder,” and said he exhibited signs of obsessive-compulsive disorder and behavior on a “socialization disorder spectrum.” Here, CAIR politicized the event and used the double homicide to go after the president for failing to condemn what they perceive as a rise in anti-Muslim sentiment.

    There are certainly instances where Muslims have committed acts of terrorism where their poor mental health serves to explain their homicidal actions more than their invocation of extremist religious beliefs. Esteban Santiago comes to mind, the Fort Lauderdale airport shooter.

    However, we cannot arbitrarily decide after a case where the defendents, without provocation, stated a desire to commit terrorist acts and, again without provocation, took steps to carry them out, that they may not have actually determined to do so. Undercover operations are a vital tool of law enforcement, as evidenced by your own admission that one-in-three foiled attacks is subverted by undercover agents.

    You ask for a standard of ethics for law enforcement when interacting with members of the public, but one already exists. In the same jurisdiction as the case in question, one anti-terrorism case was thrown out because the agent brought up Hamas before the suspects. In another case, the Joint Terrorism Task Force refused to become involved because an agent initiated the idea for bombing a structure.

    Here are the ethical standards you are demanding, guidance from the attorney general for uncover operations.

    Police didn’t implant the idea of killing Jews in Ahmad Ferhani. They didn’t give them the idea of rolling grenades into a synagogue. They didn’t make him sell drugs to raise money for his would-be killing spree. They didn’t tell him to seek out weapons, and they only facilitated the sale because they didn’t want him getting his hands on actual weapons outside of a controlled operation.

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