Thursday, October 07, 2004

the "pre-9/11 mindset"

We've all seen it grow in the last few years, the deference to the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001, a deference so strong that it sometimes seems our government is making all policy decisions based on this single event. Now, I am not trying to minimize the intrinsic and emotional importance of this day of tragedy, but I think it is time to try to bring some reason to the argument. The destruction of the World Trade Center towers and surrounding buildings, the horrible damage done to the Pentagon, and the loss of over 3,000 human lives on the ground and in the four airliners that were hijacked that day, mostly Americans, are historically unprecedented here and will hopefully remain the single greatest calamity to befall this country for a long time. However, does this horrible event justify all of the equally horrible things that are being done as a response? I submit that as dreadful as it was, this unique day in the United States has been elevated beyond all proportion in order to exploit the emotional response that has permitted our government to do uconscionable things. Did you hear people talking about a "pre-McVeigh mindset" in order to justify imprisoning and torturing militia types after the destruction of the Murragh building, wiping out their families with laser-guided munitions fired from supersonic aircraft?

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