I quite agree that straight, white, able-bodied men are a big threat but in the interest of clarity would also add a few more adjectives such as:
- those that have privilege without accountability or social conscience
- executive level management who have access to politician and senior public service ears
The difference lies in the motivation of the perpetrator. In many instances, where there is a violent, bl00dy attack like what happened in Paris, it was undertaken in the name of Islam and/or to forward the ideology of their interpretation of Islam.
When a white, middle class man goes on a shooting spree the most likely motivation would be a combination of factors including mental illness, displaced anger, revenge and a culture that normalises guns (thinking USA). An exception to this would be that awful, tragic case in Norway a few years ago where the perpetrator when on a shooting spree in the name of Christianity.
When a white, middle class man rapes a woman, the most likely motivation would be a combination of wanting to exert power and control over their victim with a strong dose of privilege.
(Note: I do not profess in any way to be an expert on such motivations and would bow to the knowledge of those with more expertise in this area)
Whilst there are active men's rights groups, to date (and to the best of my knowledge) there is been no organised strategies using violence to further their cause.
Terrorism, by definition, is the use of violence or threats of violence for political gain. So I would reason that where an atrocity has been committed to further the cause of Islam or in the name of Islam, it is an act of terrorism. (In contrast, there are plenty of instances where right-wing Christian lobby groups in the USA have used their positions of power to further their interpretation of Christianity, just without the violence. I'm not sure if there is a word that means terrorism but without the violence. I'm specifically thinking of instances where people are denied birth control in their health care because they work for a Christian company.)
I wouldn't like to speculate the specifics of how 3 men came to believe it would be a good idea to storm a newspaper and shoot people - backgrounds of such perpetrators can vary. I remember one of the most worrying aspects of the London 2005 bombings were that 1 or more of the perpetrators were from very normal, mainstream Muslim families who certainly did not advocate such acts. From what I have read it is most likely a combination of violence being the cultural norm, madrassas that teach extreme interpretations of Islam (bear in mind that in some countries/communities what we consider "extreme Islam" is "every day Islam"), the desire to be a 'good Muslim' (their interpretation of Islam) combined with access to charismatic leaders who support such violent acts as a means to do so.
I feel like I've written an essay and I need to attend to the kidlets but if anyone has any issues with what I have written I genuinely ask that they ask and seek clarrification on what I am trying to say rather than assume you've understood and make a fiery post in retaliation. If I had the time I would double check everything I have written but kids need showers, dinner and DH is going to be home any minute.
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