3.27.2013

Impact of Terrorism in the US Today


by Tina Handrick
Introduction
On September 11, 2001 the United States of America changed forever. This was the day that the U.S. realized how badly a job they were doing on making sure that this country was protected from outside attacks and corruption. There were many lives lost from the terrorist attacks 
September 11 2001 Bell in Saint Paul's Church ...
September 11 2001 Bell in Saint Paul's Church next to Ground Zero (Photo credit: Whiskeygonebad)
that happened on September 11, 2001 and a huge blow to our country. On this day there were two planes that crashed into the twin towers in New York and another plane crashed into the Pentagon, in Northern Virginia, and a forth plane went down in rural Pennsylvania which was meant for Washington, D.C. thanks to the heroic effort of the passengers on that plane. Thousands of people lost their lives this day, many people lost a loved one, a wife, a husband, mother, father, brother, sister, grandmother, and grandfather over something as senseless as another man’s greed and thought process.
Terrorism Impact
Since September 11, 2001 there has been disagreements on whom and how information should be shared within the network of public and country safety. Police Chiefs, Mayors, and City Managers have criticized the FBI for being too secretive about its counterterrorism investigations 
English: The Seal of the United States Federal...
English: The Seal of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation. For more information, see here. Español: El escudo del Buró Federal de Investigaciones (FBI). Para obtener más información, véase aquí (Inglés). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
(E.J. Delattre, pg. 413, 414). They believe that to make the best use of their manpower and the local knowledge in safeguarding the public the police are in need of the information that the FBI has regarding any terrorist suspects, networks, potential local targets, and any other likely attack that could be in the works. Terrorism prevention doesn’t only depend on mutual candor and cooperation from local, state and federal agencies it could also benefit from creating a first response program that allows a better response from police, firefighters, hazardous materials experts, hospitals and other emergency personnel. If prior knowledge is known throughout these types of organization about potential terrorist threats that are pending then maybe some of what happened on Sept. 11 can be avoided in the future.
On October 26, 2001 President Bush signed into law the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 (U.S.A. Patriot Act), this new law enlarges the surveillance and search powers of federal agencies and expands their authority to share among themselves information and intelligence, including previously secret grand jury information. It allows for greater information to be shared with foreign governments. It grants the Department of State and the Immigration and Naturalization Service access to criminal history records and other materials maintained by the National Crime Information Center and expands federal authority to deny admission to any alien “who has been associated with terrorist organization and intends while in the U.S. to engage solely, principally, or incidentally in activities that could endanger the welfare, safety, or security of the U.S.” (Section 411).
Seal of the National Crime Information Center ...
Seal of the National Crime Information Center (NCIC), USA. — “Servicing Our Citizens” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Homeland Defense from terrorism requires police to undertake a larger mission to the public and government. Now police have to commit their personnel and budgets to expand to include new antiterrorism assignments, at the cost of other priorities, which means that the people and community that it serves suffers. Because police now have to move their officers around to now include historic sites and other targets of terrorism now it means taking away from areas that still have crime and the possibility of that crime rate going back of because of the changes. Sure these agencies receive money to help with some of the cost but with the rising economy, and the loss of jobs the streets just do not have the amount of police present that it needs to stop other crimes from happening. Most police agencies are already spread thin and when you add more work and fewer officers then you are looking at more criminal activity and corruption.
Social stigma varies vastly from country to country. Depending on a country's foreign policies, including countries they are possibly at war with, or have immigration issues with another, the social stigma attached to certain ethnicities or creeds can have a great effect on the public. This attitude from the general public, or rather, sections of the public prejudice against other sections can directly influence law enforcement. Islam has perhaps been the biggest source of social stigma in the Western World over the past decade or so.
People argue and discuss with protestors at th...
People argue and discuss with protestors at the fifth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
 While Islam is a peaceful, global religion with over a billion Muslims, the religion's reputation has come under unfair scrutiny because of insane or terrorist individuals. This is largely due to terrorist factions hiding behind the protection of their religion to justify their own misguided intentions that what they believe is what should be. After September 11, there was wide spread animosity towards people of an Asian ethnicity, often regardless of their religion; many Hindus, Sikhs and members of other religions were harassed indiscriminately just because of what or where they might have come from. The American Christian belief is that you can have your own religion without prosecution or ridicule; the same should be applied to any other country as well. Just because they may have a few rotten apples we should not judge all of them and put them in the same basket.
 These events and news stories cannot help but influence an individual's outlook of things. While the law is supposed to judge all members of its society equally and fairly, the people enforcing these laws are individuals in their own right. They may have professional codes of ethics to abide by, but in some situations, an officer of the law's own perceptions of threats can weigh in, sometimes for the better, and sometimes unfairly. It’s very important that when doing a job an officer is not looking at the color of a person skin but on how that person may be behaving and their mannerisms.
Ethical
Police abuse of force and police corruption usually follows accord with each other. If 
September 11, 2001
September 11, 2001 (Photo credit: wallyg)
an officer goes out and deals drugs or steals evidence to sell out on the street, is just as bad as having an suspect in custody and using force to obtain a confession or information that can be used against them or others in a court of law. It is everyone’s right to be treated fairly and without due harm. If someone is treated when in custody then anything that they have said could be thrown out of court due to the way the information was obtained and if their lawyer plays the right cards. Police officers need to use their training when dealing with potential suspect, or corruptive thoughts. You should follow the policies and procedures that your agency has so that you don’t have to worry about crossing any lines. If there are any other personnel that you know that are committing such crimes, ethically and morally you should report them to your supervisor as soon as possible with any proof that you might have attained. Some of the examples of this would be
·         Excessive use of deadly force
·         Excessive use of physical force
·         Discriminatory patterns of arrest
·         Patterns of harassment of such "undesirables" as the homeless, youth, minorities and gays, including aggressive and discriminatory use of the "stop-and-frisk" and overly harsh enforcement of petty offenses.
·         Chronic verbal abuse of citizen, including racist, sexist and homophobic slurs
·         Discriminatory non-enforcement of the law, such as the failure to respond quickly to calls in low-income areas, and half-hearted investigations of domestic violence, rape or hate crimes.
·         Spying on political activists.
·         Employment discrimination -- in hiring, promotion and assignments, and internal harassment of minority, women and gay or lesbian police personnel.
·         The "code of silence" and retaliation against officers who report abuse and/or support reforms.
·         Overreaction to "gang" problems, which is driven by the assumption that most or all associational activity, is gang-related. This includes illegal mass stops and arrests, and demanding photo IDs from young men based on their race and dress instead of their criminal conduct.
·         The "war on drugs," complete with overboard searches and other tactics that endanger innocent bystanders. This "war" wastes scarce resources on unproductive "buy and bust" operations to the neglect of more promising community-based approaches.
·         Lack of accountability, such as the failure to discipline or prosecute abusive officers, and the failure to deter abuse by denying promotions and/or particular assignments because of prior abusive behavior.
·         Crowd control tactics that infringe on free expression rights and lead to unnecessary use of physical force (N.A., 2004)
If for any reason anyone in an agency behaves in this manner then it would be a good idea to turn them into I.A. (Internal Affairs) and make it clear that you are not a part of the situation. Having strong ethics is a must when you are serving the public, you are constantly being judged from those that you are protecting and if for any reason the community is to doubt your judgment it could make it hard for them to trust you.
Training
When a new officer goes through training he/she goes through classes that can make it easier for them to deal with the public and the criminal elements. Hopefully this new recruit already has good ethics instilled into them because at this late date it is hard to change a person outlook in life
English: FBI Mobile Command Center in Washingt...
English: FBI Mobile Command Center in Washington DC. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Some of the jobs that an officer has to undertake are:
·         Patrolling their districts, responding to calls for service, conducting preliminary investigations, investigating traffic related incidents, writing reports, pursuing and detaining suspects, and making arrests
·         Enforcing traffic and parking laws
·         Participating in Community Policing activities
·         Working with other police department units as well as other local, state, and federal entities
·         Preparing for and attending court appearances
·         Participating in mandatory and elective training
·         Keeping proficient with firearms
Learning how to use critical thinking skills is a plus when you are faced with a situation that doesn’t allow you to make a mistake. Training should be done every year as a refresher course so that you have the tools that you need in case there are in changes to policy or regulations.
Conclusion
Since September 11, 2001 the way that people look at each other in America is different. They are either against everything that the bombing has changed or they have united against it but one of the things that is more upsetting is that a lot of American’s are forgetting, and when that happens that allows for it to happen again.  All law enforcement agencies should help each other when it comes to terrorist threats and not withhold critical information when it is needed. The security 
US Navy 060911-N-9578C-002 Sailors from USS Jo...
US Navy 060911-N-9578C-002 Sailors from USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67) read names of New York Fire and Police Department members who lost their lives during the terrorist attacks (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
in America should be on top of the list to make sure that what happened on September 11 never happens again. By stopping some of the immigration into our country for a while can help keep some of these people out that can cause such destruction. The U.S. has enough inner turmoil that having outside terror as a constant threat just seems to be another layer of pressure on the law enforcement agencies.






References:
Ethics in Policing Character and Cops By: Edwin J. Delattre 2011
Preventing Police Abuse: PoliceCrimes.com http://www.policecrimes.com/police_abuse.html
Social Control and the Policing of Terrorism: Foundations for Sociology of Counter-Terrorism; http://www.cas.sc.edu/socy/faculty/deflem/zpolterror.html



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