*The following is an opinion column by R Muse*
By now, it should be obvious that if anyone only ever only listened to liar-in-chief Donald Trump, they would firmly believe that the only terrorist threat to America was from adherents of Islam emigrating or traveling to America. It is too bad, too, because for the third time in a week another white domestic terrorist was arrested with nary a peep out of the Trump.
In fact, the response from the Trump administration to the dangers from homegrown white terrorists has been as absent as their non-acknowledgment that a white terrorist attacked a Mosque in Canada and killed six Muslims during their prayer services. It is likely what Trump and Steve Bannon considered a righteous Christian taking their religious crusade to the Muslims while they were peacefully praying.
The latest white supremacist, and ex-convict, to be arrested was Benjamin McDowell, an ex-felon, and avowed white power advocate. McDowell was arrested after buying a handgun and ammunition from an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The Associated Press (AP) reported that law enforcement authorities began an investigation into McDowell in December after see him complaining on Facebook that his comrades in the white supremacist movement “were all talk and no action.”
McDowell wanted to show his racist brethren how to “take action” and threatened a synagogue going so far as to tell an undercover FBI agent that he intended to launch a terror attack in the “spirit of Dylann Roof” according to Horry County Sheriff’s Office in South Carolina. Dylann Roof was convicted, and sentenced to die, for murdering nine African Americans in their place of worship in another white supremacist terror attack incited by racism. Police had already been keeping track of McDowell after being released from prison specifically because he made connections with white supremacists while he was behind bars.
The white supremacist even explained to the federal agent that in his racist mind, “Screaming ‘white power’” just wasn’t going to get the job done. “He indicated he desired a deeper response” according to law enforcement officials. He also told the agent that he would be committing a terrorist attack outside of Horry County so he could get away without being caught, but he didn’t give a specific time or place because he hadn’t chosen his victims yet. However, he did tell the FBI agent that despite not having a specific target in mind that “he might just shoot up a party of black people. I got the heart to do that s—, but I don’t have the good training” McDowell told the undercover agent.
The white terrorist had some particularly harsh words for members of the white supremacist movement that supported Trump’s bigoted rhetoric, and candidacy, for not putting Trump’s words into action and start “feasting on the enemy that stole their heritage.” He wrote:
“All they wanne (sic) do is stay loaded on drugs the Jews put here to destroy white man and they feast on the drugs. they should be Feasting on the enemy that stole their Heritage and their bloodline and trying to run us off of this Earth, if you ain’t got the heart to fight for Yahweh like dylann roof did, you need to shut the f— up.”
Barely a week earlier, another white man describing himself as a “White Racial Loyalist” who belonged to a white separatist organization, “The Georgia Church of Creativity,” was arrested after law enforcement found traces of ricin in his car. The white “racial loyalist,” William Christopher Gibbs, showed up at a Georgia hospital complaining to the medical staff about being exposed to the “deadly toxin ricin.”
A quick law enforcement investigation of Gibbs’ vehicle revealed ricin had been in the car prompting his arrest on state charges of reckless conduct and probation violation. Gibbs is currently being investigated by the FBI; likely to discover where the rest of the ricin is, and who the intended victims were. The FBI has plenty of reasons to be duly concerned because ricin was used by other Georgia white supremacists as recently as 2014.
Two Georgia white supremacists were sentenced to 10 years in prison for hatching a plot to make ricin and disperse it against their perceived enemies. An investigation into the 2014 plot turned up a recording where one of the men talked about the pair’s list of intended victims including government employees, politicians, and members of the media he said just had to die.
At about the same time that Gibbs was being arrested, agents with the FBI and ATF arrested another white guy, Mark Charles Barnett, in Florida after he “offered a confidential source (CS) $10,000 to place improvised explosive bombs in Target retail stores” up and down the East Coast. Barnett had made and delivered, 10 bombs to the confidential source that explosive experts said were “capable of causing property damage, serious injury, or death to nearby persons upon detonation.” A follow-up search of Barnett’s house by federal agents revealed components consistent with those used to create the explosive devices.
It would be curious why Trump is not raging about the threat to Americans from white terrorists if he wasn’t a racist and laser-focused on practitioners of Islam. One might tend to believe that three arrests of white terrorists intent on three separate acts of terror against other Americans would incite at least a passing comment from the Trump for all his bluster about protecting Americans from terror attacks that only he can prevent.
But none of the arrests, or terror plots, involved Muslims or people with Arabic-sounding names; they were all white guys and at least two were avowed white supremacists and all were arrested in within one week. In any other administration that flurry of prevented terror activity would have elicited at least a passing comment by an occupant of the White House; if for no other reason than to praise the intelligence community and law enforcement for their due diligence in protecting innocent American lives.
These incidents reveal exactly why Trump attacking the intelligence community, going so far as to call them Nazis and “low-lifes,” is beyond reprehensible; it is un-American. While the Trump is raging, threatening, raving and “tweeting” about the threat from Muslims, the IC and law enforcement are doing their jobs with due diligence and investigating and arresting white terrorists. All while Trump ignores the white supremacist threat, badmouths the intelligence community as Nazis and low lifes, and invents terror attacks by Muslims in America and overseas.
**The above article includes news reports with commentary by R Muse**
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.