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US Government’s terrorist watch list (gun buyers, security, etc.)

The whole article is definitely worth reading. And, the situation is so interesting. In previous administrations – Clinton who supported NAFTA and fought the Seattle-minded-environmental-folks and George Bush who was against the peaceniks – it was the left who was afraid of being unfairly put on terrorist watch lists. Now, with our country’s shift green and with Obama’s administration, there have been stories of profiling right-wing groups unfairly – including one state where the police were told by a state report to beware of people with Ron Paul bumper stickers.

So, the “Terrorist Watch List” is and has been an odd injustice for American citizens. But, now, instead of the peace people and the left being afraid, it is the right wing being afraid.

And, the most interesting thing is that the Terrorist Watch List may get reformed so that people can feel free to buy more guns! The gun lobby may save the Constitution for the tree huggers and peaceniks.

(excerpt from) The Christian Science Monitor
Easy for suspected terrorists to buy guns in the US, report says
by Patrik Jonsson / June 22, 2009 edition

In all, some 90 percent of the people on the watch list who applied passed the required background check, said the report, which was requested by Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D) of New Jersey.

Gun-control activists say the report demonstrates potentially lethal flaws in gun laws. But gun-rights advocates counter that the terror list is perhaps a greater menace in itself. They see it as ripe for manipulation – allowing the government to tar people as terrorists when it is politically expedient to do so.

The FBI can halt the purchase of a gun by someone with a criminal conviction, so the 900 people in the GAO report “are people who have no criminal conviction, but they’re on this mystery list,” says Gary Kleck…

There’s currently no basis to automatically prevent a person from buying a gun simply because they appear on the terrorist watch list, wrote Ellen Larence, the GAO’s director of homeland security and justice issues.

Senator Lautenberg calls this “the terror gap,” and he wants to fix it with new legislation…

Civil libertarians, too, have concerns about the list. “There’s no way to find out if you’re on the list or not, and no way to assure that you can see the evidence that got you on the list or got you off,” says Chris Calabrese, counsel for the ACLU’s Technology and Liberty Project in New York.

“There’s no reason why it couldn’t become a political list,” he says.

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