Terror Plot Stopped: Or was it?

A young man, in his twenties was arrested and charged with planning a terror attack on the capitol building in Washington.

Christopher Lee Cornell, 20, was arrested on charges of attempting to kill a U.S. government official, authorities said. He allegedly planned to detonate pipe bombs at the national landmark and open fire on any employees and officials fleeing after the explosions, according to government documents.

Now, this blogged questions this whole thing for a couple of reasons.

1) So the guy was making threats online.  Ok.  Keep an eye on him. No problem there.

2) He was led to believe that the FBI agent “helping him” was his “partner”.

Ok, honestly I don’t care one wit how they catch or stop a terrorist.  But, I have children, and all of them were 20 once.  I was 20 once.  I have grand children approaching 20.

Twenty is considered “adult” for voting and getting killed in wars.  But, you know, not old enough to have a beer yet.  And most of us in our 50s and 60s understand that 20 is still a very, very malleable age.

What if this had been approached in a different manner.  Remember the old “Scared Straight” programs where they took kids who were getting into trouble and set them up inside prisons for a day to scare the living crap out of them?  Honestly, I don’t know if those work, perhaps they didn’t, but at least it was a shot at changing the kids’ minds.

If you were writing nonsense on the Internet and the FBI knocked on your door at twenty years old and said, “Son, we are watching you. You can’t hide from us. We aren’t going to LET you do this.  We will shoot you when you try.  Or we might simply arrest you a ruin the rest of your life if you don’t stop it.  Now, you have the choice, straighten up and fly right or end up being used as a virgin goat by your Muslim buddies in prison….” don’t you think that maybe the kid would change his mind a little?

Then there’s the whole “he’s my partner” thing with an FBI agent.  Isn’t that, technically conspiracy?  I mean, if it were ME leading the kid on, *I* would be charged with conspiracy.