Snopes Labors to Discourage the Word 'Terrorist' for Convicted Leftist Bomb-Carrier

July 21st, 2020 10:39 PM

“Terrorism” has always been a politically loaded negative word. Violent radicals don’t want to be tagged with it. But should “fact checkers” really try to deny that bombing U.S. government buildings fits the T-word? ran a “fact check” headlined

Did a ‘Convicted Terrorist’ Sit on the Board of a BLM Funding Body?

Snopes took exception to this tweet by @asdomke, an account with less than 4,000 followers: “This is convicted terrorist Susan Rosenberg, she sits on the Board of Directors for the fundraising arm of Black Lives Matter. She was convicted for the 1983 bombing of the United States Capitol Building, the U.S. Naval War College and the New York Patrolmen’s Benevolent Assoc.”

Snopes tried to twist this into a “Mixture” ruling by noting her conviction, but  showing great trepidation at the word "terrorist." There's no "universally-agreed definition," they insisted: 

What's True

Susan Rosenberg has served as vice chair of the board of directors for Thousand Currents, an organization that provides fundraising and fiscal sponsorship for the Black Lives Matter Global Movement. She was an active member of revolutionary left-wing movements whose illegal activities included bombing U.S. government buildings and committing armed robberies.

What's Undetermined

In the absence of a single, universally-agreed definition of "terrorism," it is a matter of subjective determination as to whether the actions for which Rosenberg was convicted and imprisoned — possession of weapons and hundreds of pounds of explosives — should be described as acts of "domestic terrorism."

If it’s a “subjective determination,” then why are the “fact checkers” choosing to evaluate it? They demonstrate their bias by trying to rebut conservative arguments or simply cast doubt on them. They don't want "terrorist" and "Black Lives Matter" linked. 

The Rosenberg story made its way across conservative media, including the Daily Caller,, and Tucker Carlson Tonight on Fox News. Snopes pointed out these reports were largely based on a June 24, 2020, report published by the Washington-based Capital Research Center, which carried the headline “A Terrorist’s Ties to a Leading Black Lives Matter Group.”

Is "violent revolutionary" going to sound better to the fact checkers? Because bombings aren't "peaceful protests."

There was a minor factual quibble in all this: Rosenberg was arrested in 1984 when she was “found transferring 740 pounds of explosives, an Uzi submachine gun, an M-14 rifle, a rifle with a telescopic sight, a sawed-off shotgun, three 9-millimeter handguns and boxes of ammunition from a car into a storage locker.” She was not convicted for the 1983 bombings, in part because of the harsh maximum sentence given for the 1984 arrest -- 58 years. In 2001, President Clinton pardoned her right before he left office. She had served 16 years behind bars.