In October of last year, I wrote
Rezwan Ferdaus, the Muslim would-be terrorist who allegedly planned to fly explosives-laden model airplanes at the Pentagon, is referred to in Main Stream Media as “ Ashland man”, ” Mass. terror suspect” “"a local boy from the Boston suburb of Ashland" and “a radicalized Boston youth.” Actually, he’s a guy named Ferdaus. That’s all you really need to know.[Suspect pleads not guilty to terrorism charges, By Akilah Johnson and John R. Ellement, Boston Globe, October 4, 2011]
Ferdaus has decided to change his plea—sample headlines:
It's still a guy named Ferdaus. In fact "Rezwan Ferdaus is a U.S. citizen, born and raised in Massachusetts, of Bangladeshi descent..." as Wikipedia puts it. That means that he can legitimately called a Mass. Man, or US man in a headline...except that that's insane.
What he should be, for the purpose of headlines, is a Bangladeshi-American, or a Muslim-American. That would help communicate the idea that there are, as a result of post-1965 immigration, a lot of disloyal Muslim-Americans, so that America no longer has to go abroad "in search of monsters to destroy"—they're right there at home.
That's why my article was called “Ashland Man” Ferdaus? “American Citizen” al-Awlaki? American’s Emerging Assimilation Disaster.