Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Equal treatment

Several Muslim and Arab groups have proposed what seems to be an eminently sensible change to Canada's terrorism laws:
Courts should be able to convict people of terrorism even when there is no strong evidence of a political or religious motive for the crime, Canadian Muslim and Arab groups told a parliamentary panel reviewing the federal Anti-Terrorism Act yesterday...

The groups suggest a definition of terrorism along the lines of one adopted by the Supreme Court of Canada in a refugee case: as an act intended to cause death or serious injury to civilians in order to intimidate a population or to compel a government action.

The article doesn't actually present an argument against the proposed definition; instead, it cites a Con MP who argues against equal focus on all religions, without answering the critique that the focus shouldn't include religion in the first place.

But let's see if readers can do better. Is there a situation included in the proposed definition that we wouldn't want handled as a terrorism investigation?

To start things off, it looks like a case could be made out that targeted violence within gang wars would fall under the definition to the extent that it has the effect of "intimidating a population". But then I'm not entirely sure it's a bad thing to deal with gangs on those terms.

Have at it.

No comments:

Post a Comment