Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Not a terrorist
Yesterday, employees at a San Francisco Starbucks found a bomb in the Men's restroom. A few hours later the police, using photos from the coffeeshop's security cameras, arrested a suspect.
A 44-year-old man was arrested Tuesday night on suspicion of planting an explosive device in the bathroom of a Starbucks coffee shop, police said.

Ronald Schouten, of San Francisco, was being held in San Francisco County jail on an unrelated drug charge, police spokesman Dewayne Tully said.

"There is no connection to any terrorism or anything against Starbucks," Sgt. Neville Gittens said. "Everything at this point and time indicates that this particular individual acted alone and this is an isolated incident."

In what way is a bomb left in a public place not terrorism? Even without detonating it, the scare and disruption of the evacuation create terror. Are the SF police working from the wingnut definition that it's only terrorism if the suspect is a brown foreigner, a non-Christian, or and environmentalist? If they have determined that Mr. Schouten is none of these things, what crime are they going to charge him with? Conspiracy to commit noise pollution?

I have an idea, maybe Schouten's a Bill O'Reilly fan who is simply acting on the permission that O'Reilly gave to anyone who wants to blow up San Francisco. I suppose in that case he's not a terrorist; he's a patriotic, real American who has become fed up with those bad liberals. It's certainly a defense worth trying.

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