Domestic terrorism refers to the commission of violent acts against civilians or infrastructure by the authorities or other groups (Choi & Piazza, 2016). The main reason people engage in domestic terrorism is to intimidate and coerce others to accept their request. Historically, Americans have experienced domestic terrorism. During the 1950s and 1960s, the white-dominated administration used coercive tactics to suppress the African Americans who were demanding for equality and inclusivity. One particular act of terrorism occurred in 1955 when the police in Birmingham, Alabama, arrested Rosa Parks, an African American, for refusing to obey segregation laws (Moore, 2016). The arrest was a deliberate tactic by the authority to instill fear among the African American population.
In the wake of the Alabama incident, the authorities repeatedly subjected African Americans to extreme brutality. The authorities used violent tactics in order to enforce the segregation laws in the Montgomery Bus System (Moore, 2016). The authorities clearly committed acts of domestic terrorism, as they instilled fear in the black citizen communities with the intention of forcing them to accept laws. According to Choi and Piazza (2016), governments commit domestic terrorism by using existing national resources such as the policing unit. In Montgomery case, the white administrators used existing institutions such as the police unit and the legal structures to intimidate the African Americans.
The traditional human rights entities and constitutional protection laws are as relevant today as they were in the 19th and 20th centuries. Even as modern governments continue to combat domestic terrorism, human right institutions are indispensable because of their roles in preventing violation of people’s rights (Adeola, 2017). Over the years, governments have played a significant role in controlling cases of domestic terrorism. Even so, international bodies such as the United Nations have been instrumental in preventing the escalation of violence, especially in situations where governments are involved in committing domestic terrorism and human right abuses
Governmental agencies can use the constitution as a guiding framework for deterring domestic terrorism. At the same time, citizens always have alternative of using the constitution whenever governments subject them to domestic terrorism (Sen, 2017). In addition, the constitution is a legal document that clearly outlines the rights and entitlement of citizens. Most importantly, governments have a duty to safeguard the constitution and respect the rights enshrined therein.