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what's the point?

Reader comment on item: The Burqa Wars
in response to reader comment: I don't think Europe is "ahead" of us

Submitted by Mitch (Netherlands), Feb 3, 2017 at 06:33

what is the point of being competitive? What is Europe anyway? The article is about Austria, which should tell you that European nations set their own policies. The legislation, police practices and politics simply makes every country different. There is, for example, no doubt that Italy is far ahead of any country in the West in counter-terrorism efforts. The practice in the US, UK, Germany, etc. is to infiltrate groups and mosques to obtain evidence to be used in courts. The practice in Italy is to shut down mosques or prayer rooms which are not registered and remove imams preaching despicable views from the country.

Why can Italy do that? Because it has laws (some of them created to fight the mafia) which would not be constitutional in the US. For example, Islam is not a recognized religion in Italy; the right to practice a religion is not guaranteed by the constitution; there is no right of free speech; and, most importantly, a person can be accused of a crime 'by association'. For example, Muslims listening to an Imam can be charged, not only the Imam. In the US it would be impossible to do these things.

The US can learn a thing or two from some European countries, but, remember, it is the US constitution that makes domestic counter-terrorism difficult in the US. I hope this is helpful.

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