10 Everyday Activities That Expose YOU As a Terrorist?

buying coffee with cash

Terrorist! A word that strikes fear into every single red-blooded patriotic American.

But who is a terrorist?

What makes a person a terrorist?

What puts them on the “Watch List?”

Odds are that when you hear the word terrorist, you conjure up a certain and very specific image in your mind.

But what would you think if I told you that what you think a terrorist looks like and what the government describes as a terrorist are completely different?


What if I told you that YOU could be on that very same watch list for doing 10 incredibly common and everyday activities? (They’re not what you might think.)

The FBI and Department of Justice distributed flyers to local businesses, advising them how to spot “suspicious activity” and encouraging them to report such behavior as potential terrorist activity.

These are just plain ridiculous.

Some of the ordinary activities that are considered by the FBI to be suspicious include:

  • Buying coffee with cash regularly (Because using cash is un-American.)
  • Paying cash to get a tattoo or rent a car.
  • Taking “inappropriate photographs or videos”
  • Being somewhere means “you don't belong.” (Or, as some may call it… profiling?)
  • Having a missing hand or fingers.
  • Traveling an “illogical distance” to use an Internet cafe. (I own a coffee pot, so I think driving any distance to get an overpriced cup of coffee is illogical… but I still do it.)
  • Demonstrating an unusual interest in remote-controlled aircraft.
  • Wear a backpack when the weather is warm. (Students beware…)
  • Making suspicious comments regarding radical theology or anti-U.S. sentiments that appear to be out-of-place and provocative.
  • Conducting financial transactions in bursts of activities within a short period, especially in previously dormant accounts. (Does this make my wife a terrorist during one of her shopping sprees?)

But it doesn't stop there…

The FBI released at least 25 different flyers to businesses for them to be more informed and “help” the FBI out by reporting possible terrorist actions You can see the guidelines for different types of businesses in the slideshow below. (Click the slides to make them bigger, then use your left and right arrow keys to scroll through them.)

I can count at least eight of these that apply to me (I still have all of my fingers and toes)

Funny, I don't feel like a terrorist.

How many of these apply to you?

I understand that times are tense and we are constantly on high alert. But some of these “suspicious” activities are a joke.  Taking an interest in remote-controlled aircraft? Personal drones are one of the top American hobbies right now. The personal drone market is already a 5.6 billion dollar industry, and over one million drones are currently in the hands of American citizens. The “Watch List” just got a whole lot bigger…

Another “suspicious” trigger is fidgeting or being impatient while standing in line. I can’t count how many times I’ve been aggravated and visibly tense while standing in line at a Wal-Mart for 15 minutes while they refuse to open another register. But does that make me a terrorist? No, it makes me a normal person who has somewhere else I’d rather be!

What do you think? Do you agree with the FBI’s release of these flyers that ask for American business owners to self police their customers? The very same people they rely on to stay in business?

Let me know in the comments below.

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Editor's Note: This article was originally published on May 20, 2013, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

29 Responses to :
10 Everyday Activities That Expose YOU As a Terrorist?

  1. Jake says:

    This is the “official” blanket or net that allows them to invade the privacy of all citizens. Everyone is under their “umbrella” of suspicious activity at one time or another. Like the IRS scandal hearings are revealing, this profiling allows for a government sanctioned fishing expedition. It’s DHS sanctioned tyranny. Washington’s anti-American filth and stench has permeated every household and thus the lives of every citizen.

    1. ALAN18 says:

      Did anyone really think they weren’t keeping a close eye on anyone involved in the tea party or who visit certain political sites or “prepper” sites for that matter? If you didn’t then you arena fool! Screw’em! I hope they are scared to death of our numbers! If you think they aren’t then why was the IRS involved to begin with?

    2. Your right,DHS sanctioned tyranny and to think that when people shop at walmart they are supporting DHS and paying for their future prison center

      1. Scott says:

        How So? Just wondering ; what does Wal Mart support DHS and their prison center?

  2. Shawn says:

    How true it is. Seems to be some narcissists of the past have done this exact same thing. Let us not forget, obama says to “ignore the voice of tyrrany”…in other words, just let me do what I want when I want. I would think it is safe to say that we, average “Joes”, by sounding off online (exercising our 1st Amend rights) could be considered “terrorists”.

    1. Don says:

      Welcome to the new America. The government will control every aspect of your life.

    2. wizzardous says:

      BHO is correct when he says that tyranny is not around the corner. It is staring us in the face.

  3. Craig says:

    Even though I find these disturbing, it would be interesting to see what businesses really take this to heart or just shake their heads at it and throw it in the trash.

  4. agbjr says:

    I am a loyal Constitution-abiding United States Citizen. I am a long-time Boy Scout leader, a Christian, and active in my hometown community affairs. I continuously – and publicly – refer to Obama as “that Marxist sonofabitch in the White House.” Freedom to publicly express my personal views; it is my God-given right guaranteed by the First Amendment and protected under the Constitution. By the current administration’s ‘guidelines’ I am a terrorist.

    1. I like and respect your views on your perspective as what a real patriot is suppose to be about, I don’t know how old you are since you had experience in the boy scouts,in case you are not aware of Obama’s administration has been recruiting a private civilian army since his first presidential term that brainwashes today’s youth about the patriot act and the homegrown prevention terrorism act of 2007. Such examples as members that join this secretive police force type are boy scouts and girl scouts that spy on people’s political views to report it to a secretive digital thought police force so they can consider who may be a threat to their administration,if you can make a difference to our country warn the ones you think you can trust that are opened minded enough not to get involved with this big government group,there are references in alex jones prisonplanet.com

  5. gipb says:

    Sad to say but we’re ALL terrorists and have been for a long time – that is the hard working the law abiding, informed citizen that stands for God & our Constitution….

    1. wizzardous says:

      My favorite T. Jefferson quote: “…what country preserved its liberties that did not remind its leaders from time to time that the people preserved their spirit of resistance?”

  6. snowman8wa says:


    They forgot the two most important signs; First, BEWARE of Christians who profess their Faith. Second, those who have a great love for their Country and show it through their Military background or fly an American Flag on their property. As we all know these types of people are crazy…

    Oppps….that would be ME!!! uhhh…pay no attention to the man with the American Flag and Bible in hand……

    Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis

    1. yes I know what you mean, no wonder someone had stolen the support our troops magnet and american flag off my car and some american churches supporting muslum faith

  7. 1. Coffee = Terrorism? Who knew?

    2. Tattoo or rent a car = terrorism. I’m sure the goth girl behind the Hertz counter needs gov’t scrutiny.

    3. No, that makes you a pedophile. Wow! They got this one right!

    4. Like…in a mosque?

    5. I think that makes you a VICTIM of terrorism.

    6. Thank you, Mr. Spock. I’ll look closer to home next time.

    7. Like these guys.

    8. Like these guys.

    9. Like these guys.

    10. I think the mafia would take umbrage at being called terrorists.

  8. rand says:

    Interesting about using cash; apparently a primary function of the banking industry is tracking private citizens and reporting on their activities. The right to privacy extends to activities OTHER than murdering your child.

  9. Kyle says:

    LMFAO I think I fall under 8 of these haha

  10. Burton James III Esq. says:

    According to 12 USCA 95A.4, anyone who accepts and uses Federal Reserve Notes is an enemy of the State. We all have been “terrorists” for a long time!

  11. Jay says:

    Okay, I have to admit, some of these apply to me. But I am NOT a terrorist,
    it is just part of my regular routine, and to change would make daily life
    more difficult for me.

    So nothing illegal going on with me, or in my life.

    Now excuse me while I go out and run some errands while carrying my backpack,
    and pay for everything in cash in short bursts of financial activity,
    while maybe passing thru places I do not belong, while taking inappropriate photos
    (but nothing that would be considered illegal of course), I am a photographer after all.

    God bless America..

    P.s. By the way, I do have all my hands and fingers, despite having some other body parts surgically removed.

  12. Mike says:

    It may sound strange, but this is why I am starting a real world run for the seat that is supposed to be a Privilidge. Not a rite! Impeach him, I’ll take over till 2016. My hope is to restore yhe Pride we once had in our Country! My Ancestors were Imigrants, They stayed in a camp, learned the new Language and Customs. And was Thankful that I was there. America LET me stay, it was note a rite.
    Any one can here.
    Future President of the United States.

  13. Charlie says:

    It is my understanding that because I served my country in uniform I am considered a threat to National Security (I have the training to be able to resist). Because I have a permit to carry a concealed firearm I am a threat to our country ( I have the equipment to resist). Because I am vocal and knowledgeable about my rights under the Constitution I am a threat to the establishment ( I have the will to resist).

    I have broken no laws, incited no riots, caused no trouble, but I am considered a “Probable Terrorist”.

    And this WAS considered the Land of the Free.

    1. texastwin827 says:

      Charlie, you are not alone. What the elitists do not seem to understand is that, through their wars, they have created a wealth of seasoned, combat vets who are not likely to accept their future plans. You have a full compliment of vets from Vietnam, forward, who still believe in their oath to the Constitution (not politicians).

      It was said that after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, that the Japanese felt they “awakened a sleeping giant”. Washington should keep in mind that there are still many “sleeping giants, among us”.

  14. Rev. Scott U says:

    Under this wacky logic, if you watch Wild Wild West reruns on TV, you might get screened for “Dr. Megalito Loveless” syndrome…

    It’s unfortunate that fed agencies–spawn of BOTH political parties–supposed to protect us have cast such a wide net, the REAL troublemakers slip through (notice the 2nd Boston Massacre etc.)

    How widely were these goofy posters distributed? And does anyone doubt they went right to birdcage-liner status?

  15. Debra D says:

    Well I guess I am a terrorist…Mom who loves her children enough to fight for their constitutional rights, fight to make sure they have a chance to live in a better world. I love being prepared, as any good mother would. I love a good cup of coffee and out and about will drive the distance to get one. I use cash if I have it, these days it is harder to come by. I dislike everything about government and am not afraid to say so. Too many have shed blood to give me that right and I don’t intend to let them down. I believe in God and am not afraid to tell you so. Don’t care what you believe in so stop caring so much about my beliefs. Sometimes I am in places I don’t belong, I call it being lost! I believe in the Constitution and the freedom to think for myself. Yes, I am a terrorist according to our government and their brainless followers. In reality I am a God fearing, family loving, patriotic American ~ according to the intelligent part of the world.

  16. Sam A says:

    It’s like we have been invaded and the occupiers are seeking out the resistance and hoping the collaborators/rats will give up those who choose to fight for the Constitution and Biil of Rights. We must all stand up and defeat the scum that wish to rule us and also exterminate the rats that cooperate with these gravy sucking gestapo pigs. Long live the American Patriot !!!

  17. Ernie says:

    1. Buying coffee with cash on a regular basis – nobody’s business how much coffee I buy or how I pay for it.

    2. Paying cash to get a tattoo or rent a car – same as above.

    3. Taking “inappropriate photographs or videos.” – as defined by whom?

    4. Being someplace “you don’t belong.” – Nobody’s business where I travel. Who’s to say I don’t belong there?

    5. Having a missing hand or fingers – maybe I’m a veteran who served my country and got wounded. Ask to see my Purple Heart …

    6. Traveling an “illogical distance” to use an Internet cafe – I have WiFi at home so …

    7. Demonstrating an unusual interest in remote-controlled aircraft – does an ‘unusual interest’ include shooting at one over my house?

    8. Wearing a backpack when the weather is warm – this is stupid.

    9. Making suspicious comments regarding radical theology or anti-U.S. sentiments that appear to be out-of-place and provocative – radical theology likely includes adherence to the Bible, the Constitution and other American ideals. Define ‘anti-US’. Anti-government, absolutely. Anti-US, never.

    10. Conducting financial transactions in bursts of activities within a short period of time, especially in previously dormant accounts – bursts like when the tax refund comes and I can actually afford some stuff?

  18. Ross Blankert says:

    Whatever your political ideas, the government is clearly violating all of your rights and makes no bones about it. Illegal searches at airports and spying on your phone and internet tend to make you wonder at least. DHS considers who potential terrorists? Returning veterans and Tea Party folks. Not Muslims. If you don’t like what the government is doing, you are either a racist or terrorist. If you are a patriot or for smaller government, you are the terrorist. If you dare to take a political stand on gay marriage or are a Christian, you are a terrorist. Elections do matter.

  19. Lucy Mauterer says:

    I was just wondering, and noticed that no one else brought this up, what particular businesses were given these lists? We might want to stay away from them.

  20. J. Smith says:

    When the Tea Party held its first local rally in a publi park next to a library every alphabet agency was taking pictures of attendees. One stopped me and asked why I was there pissed when I replied trying to get past to return2 overdue library books

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