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This section is highly misleading and should, I think, be rewritten:
Activists who trespass on private property to photograph or videotape images of alleged animal cruelty may be considered "terrorists" as a result. In addition, the definition of what comprises terror is left intentionally vague so that anything which economically damages or inhibits the business of an animal enterprise could be classified as terrorist activity. This allows the government to prosecute individuals as "terrorists" simply because they were practicing their consitituinal right of free speech by calling for the closure of animal testing lab.
Despite the name, the AETA doesn't define people as "terrorists". It doesn't define "terror" because "terror" is not a term used anywhere in the act. It does have a few vague spots -- what is "real or personal property", for instance, or what makes economic disruption "lawful" -- but this isn't one. In addition, S 3880 is much less vague than the older versions. The purpose of the act is to punish those who damage property, threaten people, or conspire to do so. The name is just window dressing. Purple Screws 02:00, 6 December 2006 (UTC)
How is the part above about trespassers "highly misleading"? The 1st amendment does not protect going onto private property to videotape images of alleged cruelty; and the aforementioned activity distinctly causes the property "economic damage". So clearly, a person who did this would be guilty of violating the AETA. And a trespasser who videotapes inside of a slaughterhouse may be a criminal, but he/she is certainly not a terrorist.
And if the intention is not to label animal rights activists as terrorists, then why use the word terrorism at all? Why not just call it the "Animal Enterprise Act"?
And why did Mr. Sensenbrenner and other house members decline to include the words "whistleblowing" or "undercover investigations"?
How would you like to be a categorized as a terrorist? I love my country, and I resent anyone implying otherwise! So it's a hell of a lot more than "window dressing" to me! 126.96.36.199 07:31, 6 December 2006 (UTC) Joe Daniels
Um. Sorry if I offended. I wasn't trying to start an argument here, in fact I pretty much agree with you. What I should have said was this. "Terrorism" or "terror" are never used within the bill -- only in the title, which has no legal force behind it. Yes, it absolutely is an attempt to label activists as terrorists! But only in the newspaper headlines, not in any legal sense. It's just propaganda, like any number of other catchy titles we've heard in recent years. The way to fight propaganda is with facts, not by spreading confusion. Now I'll try to answer your questions: (1) How is this text misleading? Because it suggests that the law actually defines a new type of "terrorism," which it does not. (2) Why use the word "terrorism" in the title? FUD. (3) Why were the sponsors of the bill unhelpful? Because that's what their backers wanted, and they had a chance to get the bill passed as it was, and even the ACLU didn't directly oppose it. (4) How would I like to be categorized as a terrorist? No, thank you. I love my country as well, I don't want to see laws that harm our essential freedom of speech and assembly, and if we want to get laws like these off the books, the first step is good information.
I feel the article ought to say something along these lines: "The definition of an offense under the AETA is so vague that nearly any action, even a minor offense such as trespassing, could conceivably be prosecuted, and punished with the full force of the resulting 'economic damage.' Furthermore, the name of the act suggests that such actions should be equated with violent, 'terrorist' attacks." And maybe even that's still a bit POV. But please, I'd like to hear how you think it should be worded. Purple Screws 02:40, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
Sorry, Purple Screws, I think I misunderstood your post, and I apologize that I was rude about the issue. Regarding the actual definition of terrorism, I think you are correct in pointing out that distinction. I think the way in which you reworded the paragraph sounds more NPOV and factually accurate. Anyways, I will let you or someone else reword the section, since I'm too biased to do so. 188.8.131.52 07:42, 9 December 2006 (UTC) Joe Daniels
removed the wikify box. it has sections, links and an alib box. that's pretty wikified if you ask me. frymaster 07:45, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
Cannot say bad things about the cattle industry
There's a guy on the Coast to Coast AM show right now who claims that this act forbids criticism of, say, the cattle industry and that truth is no defense. Does anyone know what's up with this? Frotz (talk) 06:23, 19 May 2008 (UTC)