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New 'Eco-Terrorist' Legislation A Hidden Assault On All Americans

Prison Planet | March 30 2005

Comment: This has nothing to do with stopping over-zealous environmentalist whackos and everything to do with classifying American citizens as terrorists under broader legal frameworks.

The Weathermen and other eco-terrorist groups were never properly punished because in many cases they were being deliberately protected by the government.

Meanwhile, anti-abortion protesters get labelled as dangerous as police break their arms with nunchucks as featured in a video we posted last month which is available by clicking here.

The fake right will support this kind of legislation under the naive belief that it will curtail the extreme left. The legislation is then used to target US citizens guilty of nothing more than accidentally shining lasers, as we saw in the Banach case.

FLASHBACK: Man Who Shined Laser Indicted Under Patriot Act

Way back in November 2001, Alex Jones brought to light a flyer put out by The Phoenix Federal Bureau of Investigation which listed 'single issue terrorists' as eco-terrorists and animal rights activists. It also listed people who "Make numerous references to the US Constitution" in the same context.

Click here for the flyer and its history.

It is important for us to protect the freedoms of both the right and left otherwise we'll be caught in a police state vice which will crush us from both sides.

FLASHBACK: The Patriot Act: Targeting American Citizens

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Terrorism bill would stiffen penalties for animal rights threats

By CARRIE SPENCER
Associated Press Writer

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A terrorism bill would add Ohio to a growing number of states seeking harsher penalties for attacks by animal rights activists and environmentalists, including those against dog food makers, farms where animals are caged and university animal labs.

Arson, vandalism, assault, break-ins and other tactics used by extremists already are illegal. A national group of conservative state lawmakers has been promoting laws creating a separate offense of ecoterrorism since 2003, when California passed such a law. Similar bills have died in Texas and Arizona, and others are pending in Pennsylvania, New York and Missouri.

Sponsors say the bills are needed because of fire-bombings at ski resorts and new subdivisions, break-ins to free disease-carrying laboratory animals and threats against corporate executives and their families.

The Humane Society of the United States opposes using violence in the name of protecting animals but considers the bills too broad, lobbyist Julie Janovsky said. The New York and Missouri proposals would outlaw videotaping without permission at farms and labs.

"At the root they are trying to prohibit investigations into animal cruelty," Janovsky said.

Sen. Jeff Jacobson included the animal language in a bill that would outlaw many activities considered domestic terrorism, such as donating money to groups on the U.S. State Department's list of terrorist organizations. No particular animal rights attack in Ohio inspired him, he said. He found the language in an Arizona bill on the Internet.

"I was drafting this about the time there were home bombings and SUV bombings (elsewhere)," the Dayton-area Republican said.

Jacobson said he would work to ensure the animal provisions apply only to felonies. His bill would add attacks on lawful animal activities such as farming, food processing and hunting to the list of offenses that could be prosecuted under state racketeering law, allowing the state to seize assets after a conviction, or sue if the suspect is acquitted.

Democratic Gov. Janet Napolitano vetoed Arizona's bill a few weeks ago as too broad.

A 1992 federal law forbids interfering with "an animal enterprise" but enforcement is difficult, said FBI Special Agent James Turgal, who heads the agency's Ohio terrorism unit. He said the state ecoterrorism bills could allow more federal terrorism prosecutions under the Patriot Act.

Only small percentage of the FBI's active terrorism investigations in Ohio involve environmental activists, but they are increasing, he said.

"Ohio has a significant number of companies and research facilities that are very large targets for these terrorists," Turgal said. "Nowadays they're bypassing the warm and fuzzy protester types of activities and going straight for the criminal activity."

The states take varied approaches.

Besides the photography ban, the proposed bill in New York _ considered the toughest by the Humane Society _ would ban any attempt to impede animal research or commerce, forbid financial donations to "animal or ecological terrorist organizations" and create a registry of such groups.

Missouri's anti-photography bill, introduced this month, would expand a state law that bans damaging or stealing records from animal and research facilities.

Pennsylvania's bill, like Ohio's, creates harsher penalties for people convicted of vandalism, assault or other offenses if they involve intimidation or obstruction of legal research and commerce involving animals and natural resources.

A Washington state law against damaging animal laboratories has a separate declaration that it gives "full consideration to the constitutional rights of persons to speak freely, to picket, and to conduct other lawful activities."

Nathan Runkle, head of Mercy for Animals, a Columbus-based animal rights group that has videotaped conditions at egg farms, said he fears Ohio's bill would infringe on lawful, peaceful demonstrations.

Activists had the same concerns before the California law took effect in January 2004. The San Diego-based Animal Protection and Rescue League had filmed ducks and geese being force-fed several pounds of corn mush to fatten their livers for foie gras. The tapers pleaded guilty to trespassing, but the video helped a successful campaign for the state to outlaw force-feeding.

The group is still taping and protesting a year later, member Kath Rogers said.

"It hasn't really affected us too much," she said. "It's pretty much a misdemeanor either way."

On the Net:

Ohio Senate Bill 9: http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/bills.cfm?IDP>126_SB_9

Model legislation fact sheet: http://www.alec.org/viewpage.cfm?pgnameP>2.59951

Humane Society: http://www.hsus.org/legislation_laws/state_legislation/

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