Jose Pimentel’s Muslim name is Muhammad Yusuf. That is the name he uses since he converted to Islam. Why does the mainstream media persist in calling him by his slave name? The mainstream media would find it racist and disrespectful to call Muhammad Ali “Cassius Clay” or Kareem Abdul-Jabbar “Lew Alcindor,” right? Why isn’t it racist and disrespectful to continue to call Muhammad Yusuf “Jose Pimentel”? Is it because Muhammad Ali and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar are revered, beloved figures, while Muhammad Yusuf reflects poorly upon his adopted religion, having plotter to commit mass murder in its “defense”?
Muhammad Yusuf’s mother said: “My son was a normal American guy. He did what young people do. Then he became a Muslim and he changed.” AP, however, here gives no hint whatsoever of the motive for his terrorism plot; it is standard journalistic practice to minimize discussion of motive when writing about an Islamic jihad plot, but this story gives no hint that Muhammad Yusuf was a Muslim at all, let alone a would-be jihad mass murderer.
“Man pleads guilty in NYC pipe bomb terrorism plot; was accused of targeting police, soldiers,” from the Associated Press, February 19:
NEW YORK – A New York City man charged with building homemade bombs to attack soldiers, police or even the George Washington Bridge has pleaded guilty to a terrorism charge.
Jose Pimentel entered the plea Wednesday to attempted criminal possession of a weapon as a crime of terrorism. It was less than a week before his scheduled trial in a rare state-level terrorism case.
The 29-year-old has been promised a sentence of 16 years in prison. He would have faced a minimum of 15 years to life if convicted of the top charge, a high-level weapons possession offense as a terrorism crime.
Jury selection had been due to start Monday.
Authorities called the case a dramatic example of the threat of homegrown, one-person terrorism plots. Pimentel’s lawyers have portrayed it as an example of overzealous policing in the years since Sept. 11.