Ever since the horrific events of September 11, 2001, terrorism has been at the forefront of federal concern. However, classification of an act of terrorism isn’t restricted to the hijacking of an airplane by foreign entities. The FBI breaks down terrorism into two categories: domestic and international. International terrorism, according to their website, is denoted as “violent, criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups who are inspired by, or associated with, designated foreign terrorist organizations or nations (state-sponsored).” 

Domestic terrorism entails “violent, criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups to further ideological goals stemming from domestic influences, such as those of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature” according to their site. Essentially, any major act of violence against a large group of people could qualify as an act of terrorism. The penalties can include a prison sentence of 20 years to life and, in extreme cases, a state-sanctioned death sentence (per Carmichael Ellis & Brock).

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