Thursday, July 8, 2010

Social Worker: "Beheading Can Make It Difficult to Connect with Terrorist Clients"

by Stan Tebbits, social worker

As one of the many social workers deployed to engage the extremists that deputy national security adviser for counterterrorism and homeland security John Brennan said are victims of "social forces," I know how difficult it is to convince bloodthirsty religiously-motivated mass murders determined to impose a worldwide theocracy that they are the victims of low self-esteem. But such is Mr. Brennan's noble charge to us.

I strive daily to help such clients overcome the addictions poverty brings. I've had clients even bring their improvised explosive devices to counseling sessions. But sometimes all they need is someone who will stay silent and listen, a breakthrough often achieved once their knives have cut past your trachea. Such meetings can often be emotional, so keep a box of Kleenex handy next to the tourniquet.

As John Brennan reminds us, the United States is not at war with terrorism because terrorism is only a "tactic," not an enemy. Similarly, beheadings can often be an elaborate "head fake" used by insecure clients to distract you from their true needs. Try to see through that, as spasmodic eye movements can occur for a short time following decapitation.

Finally, let your clients know they are not alone, and that there are hundreds of thousands others like them who are willing to assist them.

Associated articles: Krauthammer; Washington Times

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