A Tale of Two Murders, by Guest Hoyden Slave2TehTink

tinkSlave2TehTink is normally found making posts with no redeeming social value whatsoever[1] in her LiveJournal, or posting pictures of her small menagerie on her flickr. Offline she lurks on the Civil War battlefields of northern Virginia with her fawn Doberman Tink, and knits.

Last Sunday, Scott Roeder took the “law” into his own hands and in a sweeping act of vigilante justice, killed Dr. George Tiller at Tiller’s church as he stood handing out programs to arriving parishoners. Roeder was motivated by a political and religious ideology that says anyone who performs abortion deserves death and must be stopped, and that if citizens must take the law into their own hands to stop it, that’s just fine and dandy. There is speculation in the MSM that he had been planning this act since attending a trial at which Tiller was acquitted of performing late-term abortions illegally.

Roeder had ties to extremist anti-government groups in the US, such as the Freemen, along with his ties to groups like Operation Rescue (although OR is making a huge effort to disavow any knowledge of Roeder while simultaneously patting him on the back for committing murder). He committed an act designed not only to stop this one doctor from performing abortions, but to intimidate health care providers and the women they serve and prevent them from seeking necessary reproductive health care which may include abortion. Roeder had been previously arrested for carrying the materials to build explosives, but had the conviction overturned after a judge ruled the materials were found via an illegal search. The clinic where Tiller worked had previously reported Roeder to law enforcement, but had been told there was nothing that could be done.

On Monday, Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammed, a young African-American man who was born Carlos Bledsoe and changed his name after recruiting to Islam, pulled up outside an Army recruiting station and opened fire. He killed one young soldier, just out of boot camp and assisting the regular recruiters, and injured another as he sprayed gunfire towards an otherwise empty building. The MSM reports that he was angry about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and ABC news reports that the FBI had been investigating him after a trip to Yemen, when he was found to have a forged Somali passport.

The FBI are also now “taking apart his life, examining his friendships, educational records, travel within the United States and possible contacts with extremists overseas,” despite the fact that overwhelming evidence is that he acted alone. His act, while an atrocity, is unlikely to intimidate anyone: not the US gov’t into changing its policies on Iraq and Afghanistan; not the Army recruiters, who will continue recruiting while using this incident to demonstrate why we must “win”; not the potential recruits, who these days are mostly desperate young men and women with no better option than to volunteer to get shot at.

Scott Roeder has been charged with one count of first-degree murder and two counts of aggravated assault. Abdulhakim Mujahi Muhammed has been charged with one count of capital murder and fifteen (yes, fifteen. one five. 15.) counts of “terroristic acts”. I demand that someone explain to me how these charges are rational without resorting to egregious sexism and racism. Really. I want some damned answers here.

Because what I’m seeing is that if you’re a white man, you can go be a violent extremist and commit terrorist acts that mainly impact women, and have a small pamphlet lobbed gently in your general direction, whereas if you are a young African-American with a Muslim name and become a violent extremist and commit terrorist acts aimed at the military, we will heave the entire US Code, bound in hardback, straight at your face. Do not mistake me, I believe both of these acts to be utterly reprehensible and deserving of the fullest prosecution under the law and preferably long and miserable prison sentences with lots of time spent, say, breaking large rocks into small rocks. With a spoon. But it looks like I’m only going to get my wish in one of these cases, and that sucks.

Categories: gender & feminism, law & order, Politics, religion, social justice, violence

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

4 replies

  1. Well said, STTT. I too have noticed the discrepancy, and have also noticed Malkin et al complaining about where’s the same level of outrage aimed towards the Muslim assassin’s terrorism? Of course totally missing the point you made – he was caught and charged with multiple terrorist acts, so everybody who wants him treated as a terrorist has already had their wish for justice fulfilled as well as it can be until he actually stands trial.
    The case of Roeder is not the same because everybody in the justice system is avoiding the word terrorist, therefore the outraged have not had their wish for justice fulfilled, and if he stands trial without being charged with a terrorist act, we still won’t have our wish for justice fulfilled.

  2. Yes, I had that Mission Impossible moment while reading about the Operation Rescue response to the murder of Tiller.

    This is your mission, should you choose to accept it… As usual, should you or any member of your Pro-Life Force be captured or killed, the organisation will disavow any knowledge of your existence.

    DeusExMacintosh’s last blog post..Selective Termination

  3. The Salon piece on Protecting Abortion Providers in the femmstroppo links I think goes some way to explaining the difference in treatment.
    Whilst the motivating factors for both your examples are roughly based in religion, the damage being done by the pro-lifers follows a model of harassment, assaults and murder that has more in common with the activities of animal rights activists. Yes, all three of these cases can be properly described as terrorism as one of the major motivation of these campaigns is to frighten opponents into submission, but the targets of pro-life and animal rights are very specific. There is a qualitative difference in killing an individual doctor and an attempt at the mass murder of anyone who happens to be handy – if Roeder had instead turned up at an abortion clinic and sprayed it with indiscriminate gunfire like Abdulhakim Mujahi Muhammed then I think he’d be facing similar charges. Not as many, I think you’re right, but not because he is white. It may simply be because Islamic terrorism is currently villain of the week and considered judicial “fair game” by the authorities but this sort of prosecutorial overkill isn’t unique when offences are against institutions of the american state. UK Hacker Gary McKinnon used his home computer in the UK to break into files at a naval air station in the States while looking for evidence of UFOs. The US authorities are charging him with terrorism and demanding his extradition to face prosecution over there. By labelling him a terrorist they are able to exploit a new extradition agreement supposedly designed to speed up the exchange of Al Qaida suspects between the two countries – creating in effect ‘extradition on demand’ without the traditional checks and balances process.
    British police have only recently begun to realise that domestic terrorism (non-islamic) needed to be taken much more seriously and major changes to the law have been required to give victims appropriate protection. No one has yet been killed by animal rights people (though there have been a couple of beatings that verged on attempted murder and they do use bombs). Perhaps the most positive legacy of Dr Tiller’s assassination is that US authorities will have to re-think their response in similar ways and be forced to recognise that the pro-lifers are a serious threat.

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