Lawless NYPD Spying on Muslims
by Stephen Lendman
America's war on Islam
Post-9/11, America declared war on Islam. Muslims became public enemy number one. They're stereotypically portrayed as culturally inferior, dirty, lecherous, untrustworthy, religiously fanatical and violent.
Doing so turns truth on its head. It also violates the Constitution's First Amendment. It guarantees religious freedom. It means free from persecution.
It's rhetoric, not policy. Muslims are scapegoated for political advantage.
They're unjustly targeted and persecuted. What Bush began, Obama continues. His policies trickle down to local communities. Washington works cooperatively with them. It's official policy. Homeland Security plays a leading role.
On March 4, New York Times editors portrayed things both ways. Their editorial headlined "Surveillance, Security and Civil Liberties."
It said Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly acted responsibly. They "wisely decided to beef up the Police Department's counterterrorism program significantly."
They did so despite no terrorism threat. Times editors suggested one existed then and now. Washington's only enemies are ones it invents.
American Muslims "paid a real price".Unearthed police records noticeably lack any apparent link to suspected criminal activity, or any obvious payoff for public safety."
For months, Times editors said nothing. Responding days ago was too little too late. Doing it irresponsibly matters most.
Muslims were targeted despite no evidence of wrongdoing. Mistreating them doesn't arouse "nearly the protest that it should." Where were Times editors when it mattered? Silence endorsed official policy.
Bloomberg calls NYPD activity "legal," "appropriate," and "constitutional." Police "follow(ed) leads," he said. How could they when none existed?
Pretexts are invented. Lawless operations follow. Unaccountability reflects it. Kelly vows to keep spying.