The proposal to bar folks on the no-fly list or terror watch lists from buying weapons has been repeatedly criticized on the grounds of civil liberties, but now Democrats are being criticized for what some see as a racist measure.
Alex Pareene, editor of Gawker, wrote a piece Wednesday titled “The Democrats Are Boldly Fighting For A Bad, Stupid Bill.”
[dcquiz] “The no-fly list is a civil rights disaster by every conceivable standard,” Pareene wrote. “It is secret, it disproportionately affects Arab-Americans, it is error-prone, there is no due process or effective recourse for people placed on the list, and it constantly and relentlessly expands.”
“House Democrats are going to the mat for a shitty, racist, useless bill,” he continued.
CAIR has come out against the bill, saying, “It would seem the Senate is willing to only apply constitutional limitations on the American Muslim community, which is disproportionately impacted by federal watch lists.”
Author Rema Kanazi tweeted: “Democrats: Donald Trump is a bigot! House Democrats: Oh here, let’s push this racist & discriminatory bill that will target Muslims.”
“I wonder who Democrats think will end up on these secret suspicion-based lists they are trying to implement? Any guesses?” Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept said over Twitter Wednesday.
The American Civil Liberties Union has objected to the no-fly list, terror watch list gun control bill primarily over due process concerns. The group also sees it as disproportionally harming Muslim Americans.
“Publicly available information and the ACLU’s experience with people who know or credibly suspect that they have been watchlisted raises serious concerns that the government applies the watchlists in an arbitrary or discriminatory fashion, particularly against American Muslim, Arab, and South Asian communities,” the ACLU wrote in a letter to senators Wednesday.
The letter went on to say: “An internal August 2013 government document, for example, shows that Dearborn, Michigan — home to the country’s largest concentration of Arab-Americans — was second only to New York City in the number of the people on the government’s “known or suspected terrorist” watchlist.