4 Ala. C.R. & C.L. L. Rev. 33 (2013)
Were Timothy McVeigh and the Unabomber the Only White Terrorists: Race, Religion, and the Perception of Terrorism

handle is hein.journals/alabcrcl4 and id is 41 raw text is: WERE TIMOTHY MCVEIGH AND THE UNABOMBER THE
ONLY WHITE TERRORISTS?: RACE, RELIGION, AND THE
PERCEPTION OF TERRORISM
Tung Yin'
INTRODUCTION          .................................................. 33
1. TERRORISM: BEFORE 9/11 AND AFTER, AND CASE STUDIES .......... 35
A. Terrorism, Historically       ............................. 36
B. Case Studies.      ................................    ..... 43
II. A MICRO-LEVEL VIEW OF THE CASES ...        ...................... 53
III. A MACRO-LEVEL VIEW OF THE PROBLEM ................      ....... 58
A. Bad Assumptions and Racial Profiling     .................... 58
B. Bad Assumptions and Overlooked Leads................. 61
C. Overcompensation by Deliberate Ignorance....        ........... 64
D. Terrorism as Sentencing Enhancement.     ................... 67
IV. WHAT TO Do: FIRST STEPS AT SOLVING THE PROBLEM ............... 67
A. Recognizing and Reducing Cognitive Biases ....      ........... 68
B. Defining Terrorism Colloquially      ....................... 70
CONCLUSION.         ....................................................73
INTRODUCTION
Since 1990, it has seemed as if scarcely any significant length of time
passes without another announcement of an attempted terrorist plot against
the United States-with increasing frequency in more recent years. Almost
invariably, the perpetrators or suspects have been Muslim-mostly Middle
Eastern or of Middle Eastern descent-with the notable exceptions of the
Unabomber and Timothy McVeigh.
Who is a terrorist? is a predicate question that must be answered in
connection with counterterrorism efforts. It can be a difficult question,
plagued with claims of moral equivalence,] as demonstrated by the apho-
*  Professor of Law, Lewis & Clark Law School. J.D., 1995, University of California, Berke-
ley. Thanks to attendees at the Race and Terrorism in a Post-9/11 World panel session at the Race
and Criminal Justice in the West conference at Gonzaga University School of Law, participants at a
faculty workshop at the University of Iowa College of Law, Shahid Buttar, and John Parry for
thoughts and feedback, and to Ricky Nelson ('13) for research assistance.
1.  See, e.g., Interview with Noam Chomsky by David Barmasian, The United States Is a Lead-
ing Terrorist State, MONTHLY REv. (Nov. 2001), http:/ / monthlyreview.org/ 2001/ 11/ 01/ the-

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