Common Sense Approach to Coping with Domestic TerrorismPBSO
Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw has a common sense approach to coping with domestic terrorism. It’s called personal involvement. Unfortunately, involvement is a concept that many people today shy away from for many reasons—fear of criticism from others, fear of being wrong, fear of retaliation, just don’t want to bother, etc. But Sheriff Bradshaw feels that lack of willingness to bring suspicious activity to the authorities’ attention can allow domestic terrorism to flourish.
In a recent interview with CBS12 News, Sheriff Bradshaw commented that the California mass shooting might have been prevented had the neighbor of one of the shooters reported the suspicious activity she saw to the authorities, “In the case that we just had in San Bernardino, you go back to the same issue that we have every time,” he said. “Somebody knew ahead of time.”
Sheriff Bradshaw stated that a woman saw several Middle Eastern men going in and out of the garage across the street. They were building something around 2a.m. and there had previously been a lot of package deliveries. She told someone that she was uncomfortable about what she saw, but she did not report it for fear of looking like she was singling out Middle Eastern people. Her fear of seeming racist kept her from reporting suspicious activity. “If you see something, say something,” Sheriff Bradshaw exclaimed. “It’s our best deterrent!”
When asked if he concurred with the concept of preventing people who are on the terrorist watch list from buying a gun in light of the recent gun control laws not passing, Sheriff Bradshaw agreed wholeheartedly. “I don’t even understand it common sense wise,” he said emphatically. If you’ve got someone on a no-fly terrorist list and you don’t even want them to be on an airplane, and it’s okay to let them buy a gun! I mean, that’s kind of ridiculous to me!”
Sheriff Bradshaw said he feels that keeping guns out of the hands of people who don’t need them and are not mentally stable enough to be trusted with them is also vital to keeping people safe from these mass shootings. Making sure that screenings are done on prospective gun purchasers is one of the key methods he would use to help reduce occurrences in the future.
When asked if his department was prepared to handle a crisis like the San Bernardino Police Department had dealt with, Sheriff Bradshaw replied that the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office is also trained and equipped to do so, but they didn’t want to have to. “That’s why ‘See Something—Say Something’ is important,” he stressed. “If you see something that’s not right, let us know!