|By: Dr. Ted Baehr; ©2003|
|Once upon a time, arguably the most civilized country on the face of the planet, a leader in art, science, technology, academics, was wracked by terrorism. Their legislature was bombed, so they instituted “homeland security.” No, Dr. Baehr isn’t talking about America. What concerns him about the current trend in security?|
Once upon a time, arguably the most civilized country on the face of the planet, a leader in art, science, technology, and academics, was wracked by terrorism. Their legislature was bombed, so they instituted “homeland security,” with national ID cards and a new category of police to protect the citizens.
The name of the country: Germany. When? In the 1930s. Who was the conservative, right-wing, law and order candidate? Adolph Hitler, elected to office to clean up crime, restore the economy and get the country back on track.
There is no indication that those in power today share the demagoguery of the leader of the German people, but, once these laws are in place, it becomes simple for those who do not share the self-discipline and virtues of our current leaders to use these laws against their own citizens.
Almost every day at MOVIEGUIDE®, we get calls from travelers who are upset at their treatment in airport security. Not wanting to offend anyone who might be involved in terrorism, quite often the lines of people going through the special airport security screenings are the elderly, the infirm, and the balding, middle-aged men whose work demands that they fly frequently. Several times, it has been old women in wheelchairs.
One friend who has been on chemotherapy for years went through a degrading search. One woman with heart trouble said she had the same embarrassing search of her belongings, and she thought she was going to have a heart attack on the spot.
Of course, this is not to mention the health consequences of the airport security personnel who are working with and next to the magnetic and X-ray equipment. Although no one has undertaken an environmental impact study of the airport versions, a recent article in the Los Angeles Times outlined the health hazards of the medical versions of such machines. (I carry the article with me to show the security people as I tell them that I will pray for them! And, who wants to see the taxpayer bill for all the airport security people who will be suing the government for the damage these machines cause to their health.)
The question is, will this stop terrorists?
Perhaps, but having worked for the U.S. Attorney’s office in the Southern District of New York, it is more likely that it will just punish the general population, including the airport screeners. These security measures are merely window dressing which has a dark shadow…should these measures get in the hands of more malevolent rulers.
And, whatever happened to the legal principle of “innocent until proven guilty”? In fact, to protect our populace, there should be more effort into tracking down the groups who have called for the overthrow of the United States of America and less harassment of the general population.
Aristotle noted freedom is the ability to travel without restrictions. Clearly our freedoms are being severely limited.
Who will continue to speak for liberty!