White House counterterrorism and Homeland Security adviser Lisa Monaco gave a speech this week in which she urged parents to watch their children for signs of “confrontational” behavior which could be an indication of them becoming terrorists.
During the speech at at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government on Tuesday night, Monaco, who replaced John Brennan last year in overseeing the executive branch’s homeland-security activities, said that parents need to be suspicious of “sudden personality changes in their children at home.”
“What kinds of behaviors are we talking about?” she asked. “For the most part, they’re not related directly to plotting attacks. They’re more subtle. For instance, parents might see sudden personality changes in their children at home—becoming confrontational.”
Monaco lamented the fact that, “The government is rarely in a position to observe these early signals,” encouraging parents to act as watchdogs to detect radicalization in line with President Obama’s goal of combating homegrown extremism.
Over the last decade, the federal government has broadened its definition of what constitutes potential terrorism to such a degree that the term has lost all meaning and is clearly being used as a political tool to demonize adversarial political activism.
Indeed, only yesterday Senator Harry Reid caused outrage when he labeled supporters of Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy “domestic terrorists”.
Although such tactics pre-date the 2009 release of the MIAC report, the Missouri Information Analysis Center document was perhaps the most shocking in that it characterized a whole swathe of conservative Americans as domestic extremists, including Ron Paul supporters, people who own gold and people who display political bumper stickers.
A Homeland Security study leaked in 2012 upped the ante even further, demonizing Americans who are “suspicious of centralized federal authority,” and “reverent of individual liberty” as “extreme right-wing” terrorists.