Published Online: April 12, 2016
Published in Print: April 13, 2016, as FBI Urged to Dump Extremism Website

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FBI Urged to Dump Extremism Website

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A coalition of groups, including the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and the American Civil Liberties Union, asked the FBI last week to dismantle its Don't Be a Puppet website, which the agency created to educate youths about violent extremism but has been criticized as targeting American Muslims and encouraging the policing of thoughts in schools.

"Not only will Don't Be a Puppet hinder the free exchange of speech, ideas, and debate on controversial topics because students are afraid of being labeled suspect and being reported to the police, but it will also isolate students and possibly subject them to bullying," the coalition wrote to FBI Director James Comey.

The FBI unveiled the interactive website in February for use in schools to teach teenagers about violent extremism groups, and to try to keep them from being radicalized and recruited. The website urges students to report suspicious behavior to teachers or others, including law enforcement.

Vol. 35, Issue 27, Page 4

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