After the latest incident of foiled terrorism against the United States by Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab aka ‘CrotchBomber‘, I’ve come to some very simple conclusions.
Racial or Ethnic Profiling Will Not Work
Remember him? He was the American born Caucasian who sympathized with the Taliban and went overseas to fight American forces.
Without the dishelved bearded look, he seems like any guy on any street in America. But he was willing to kill his fellow Americans. How is racial profiling going to save us from him? His name was not Muhammad or Said. He didn’t have ‘BOMBER’ stamped on his forehead in bright red ink.
Are we saying there are no others on American soil right now who look like him and have the same idealogical leanings. In a nation of 300 million people I know we can’t say that.
But you’ll say well Brian, the odds are that the terrorist will be a man from the Middle East.
And when it is a disenfranchised white guy from the Midwest named John Lindh what are we going to say then? All you need is a ONE ‘success’ to blow all the plans straight out the window.
Shortsighted racial or ethnic profiling is NOT going to solve this. And terrorists are counting on this to make it easier for them.
“Yes yes Americans, keep looking for everyone named Abdul, while we send in Timmy from Nebraska, who no one even thinks of checking twice…”
Oh and how about this guy? Think if he cut his beard he would pass for a typical American kid going home for the holidays on your next flight?
EVERYONE needs to screened with the same intensity and diligence whether they carry a Koran or have Muhammed as a name or are coming in from Yemen. Everyone.
More Drastic Means of Screening Will Be Needed – Accept It
Nothing changes until something really bad happens.
On September 10, 2001, if world’s airport security forces said that:
You will be subject to more pat downs and no lighters or sharp objects in carry-ons
You need to take off your shoes
You can’t have more than 3.4 oz of fluid in any bottle
We would have cried a river, talking about our civil liberties being violated. We would not have seen the need.
Until 9/11 killed over 3000 people
The same situation is going on now. Why are people objecting when the threat so clear?
But people are concerned about their privacy. Really?
To that I say, no one is concerned that you had breast implants.
Or how REALLY fat you are.
Or that you’ve got a small penis.
Law enforcement is ALWAYS one step behind criminals and terrorists. Terrorists use all their imagination to come up with ways to defeat the system, to achieve their cowardly objectives.
People get all annoyed when the 70 year old Grandpa in a wheelchair is vigorously searched. Or when a mother is forced to drink her baby’s milk to show what it is.
But this is EXACTLY where the next bomb is going to be placed. Am I the only one who sees that?
There are no good solutions here. We’ve always tried to balance the convenience of the passenger versus the need to ensure public safety. But the terrorists have more imagination and determination than the good guys and gals.
If it means that a German Shepard has to get up and close and personal to sniff my crotch and the crotch of every other passenger to make sure we are not carrying plastic explosives, so be it.
If it means that the security line is going to be longer and my ‘package’ is going to be seen by the x-ray scanner technician, so be it.
To not become so reactive we will need to be more proactive and think like a terrorist, as uncomfortable as that may be. To fight the dirty you’ve got to think like the dirty. There is no way around this.
So to the world’s fliers, I say suck it up and stop complaining. The world is a vastly different place than it was September 10, 2001.
And we, the good, law abiding citizens of the world, need to keep up with the times, stop the grumbling and not impede our law enforcement agencies from doing their jobs.