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Friday, February 04, 2005

TO PROFILE OR NOT TO PROFILE


IS THAT A LEGITIMATE QUESTION?


Not If It's Coming From Racists, Sectarianists, Arab-Haters, Etc.


As you read the bitter invective emailed to me, below, you may actually see some good old "common" sense in it. Sense isn't too common, these days; not good sense. See, the problem is, the world is full of people who LOOK like they MIGHT be Arabs. But they're Latinos, Mediterraneans, South Asians, North Africans, East Africans, South Africans, Pacific Islanders, Balkans, Turks, Persians, Pakistanis, Afghans, Central Asians, American Indians, even Jews... Notoriously rigourous Israeli security has been fooled by Palestinians simply dressing more like Israeli's.

We're all really one race. And that means we don't have an infinite variety of "looks." I've been mistaken for English, German, Jewish, Italian, even African-American. My looks are often remarked upon as classically Irish, wheras they are actually a result of the Viking invasions. Ancient Celts were light-skinned, but dark-haired, with longer, narrower faces. Profiling is flawed, from the get-go.


Then there are the blond Muslims of Albania and the former Yugoslavia. Chinese Muslims. Black Muslims. Philippino Muslims. Red-headed Georgian Muslims, even. Not to mention converts, like our "American Taliban." So profiling breaks down completely there.


Finally, we have our own, home-grown terrorists here in Europe, and the Americas. Remember Oklahoma City? If they're only looking for Osama's, they may miss the Terry Nichols and Timothy McVey's. And if they find out you're only letting Grannies through, well, terrorists have Grannies, too. Some may even BE Grannies, crazy as it sounds. So, you're really stuck.


There is no way to absolutely guarantee perfect airline security. Our current system lets up to 50% of all weapons, and 25% of fake bombs get through, according to the G's own tests. And that's just the stuff we screen: They don't screen cargo. Or containers on ships and trains and trucks. So, what's the point of the dog & pony show at the airport? Are they just trying to scare us? Or is this meant to reassure us: A highly-visible but ineffectual symbol that they're doing something about terrorism?


But, if that's ALL they're doing, and it's no more than 75% effective, how come no more attacks? We certainly haven't wiped out terrorism: Remermber Bali? Or yesterday, in Iraq? Why no attacks here? I'm asking. I don't know. There's more Arabs and Muslims in this country now than there are Jews. If any of them meant us harm, like the first WTC bombers, what's stopping them? In Israel, they would just shoot up a schoolbus, or pipe-bomb a pizzeria. Even such small, but horrific attacks have not happened, despite almost no defenses against it. Why not? I'm just asking.


So, no, I don't think racial profiling works. In fact, I think it could HELP the terrorists, if there are any actually out to get us. But, are they? Or is this all bullshit? Did Muslim Arabs do 9/11, or not? We have only the government's word on that. A government that was looking for an excuse to finish Dubya's Daddy's war in Iraq, even before they were "elected."


The world is not a simple place. Things are not always what they seem. It's a mistake to buy into everything the Government says. So much of it turns out to be untrue, later. Sometimes too late. Especially this government. Let's not scapegoat decent, honest, innocent people based on what the Bushies say. Especially when it doesn't always make much sense.


Let me make it simple: All Arabs and Muslims are not terrorists. And all terrorists are not Muslims or Arabs. To assume so is stupid, dangerous and racist. Racism, and hatred, and irrational fear and the stupid actions they engender are as dangerous to our way of life as terrorism itself. Maybe even more so. Let's don't go there, hm?


Thanks to Uncle Omar of
"Dave Barry's Blog" for pointing this out:




HISTORY TEST

Please pause a moment, reflect back, and take the following multiple choice test. The events are actual cuts from past history. They actually happened!!!


Do you remember?
-1968 Bobby Kennedy was shot and killed by

a. Superman

b. Jay Lenno

c. Harry Potter

d. Muslim male extremist between the ages of 17 and 40


1. In 1972 at the Munich Olympics, athletes were kidnapped and massacred by

a. Olga Corbett

b. Sitting Bull

c. Arnold Schwarzenegger

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


2. In 1979, the US embassy in Iran was taken over by:

a. Lost Norwegians

b. Elvis

c. A tour bus full of 80-year-old women

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


3.During the 1980's a number of Americans were kidnapped in Lebanon by:

a. John Dillinger

b. The King of Sweden

c. The Boy Scouts

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


4. In 1983, the US Marine barracks in Beirut was blown up by:

a. A pizza delivery boy

b. Pee Wee Herman

c. Geraldo Rivera

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


5. In 1985 the cruise ship Achille Lauro was hijacked and a 70 year old American passenger was murdered and thrown overboard in his wheelchair by:

a. The Smurfs

b. Davy Jones

c. The Little Mermaid

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


6.In 1985 TWA flight 847 was hijacked at Athens, and a US Navy diver trying to rescue passengers was murdered by:

a. Captain Kidd

b. Charles Lindberg

c. Mother Teresa

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


7.In 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 was bombed by:

a. Scooby Doo

b. The Tooth Fairy

c. Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


8. In 1993 the World Trade Center was bombed the first time by:

a. Richard Simmons

b. Grandma Moses

c. Michael Jordan

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


9.In 1998, the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were bombed by:

a. Mr. Rogers

b. Hillary Clinton, to distract attention from Wild Bill’s women problems

c. The World Wrestling Federation

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


10. On 9/11/01, four airliners were hijacked; two were used as missiles to take out the World Trade Centers and of the remaining two, one crashed into the US Pentagon and the other was diverted and crashed by the passengers.Thousands of people were killed by:

a. Bugs Bunny, Wiley E. Coyote, Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd

b. The Supreme Court of Florida

c. Mr. Bean

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


11. In 2002 the United States fought a war in Afghanistan against:

a. Enron

b. The Lutheran Church

c. The NFL

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


12. In 2002 reporter Daniel Pearl was kidnapped and murdered by:

a. Bonnie and Clyde

b. Captain Kangaroo

c. Billy Graham

d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40


Nope, .....I really don't see a pattern here to justify profiling, do you?

So, to ensure we Americans never offend anyone, particularly fanatics intent on killing us, airport security screeners will no longer be allowed to profile certain people. They must conduct random searches of 80-year-old women, little kids, airline pilots with proper identification, secret agents who are members of the President's security detail, 85-year old Congressmen with metal hips, and Medal of Honor winning and former Governor Joe Foss, but leave Muslim Males between the ages 17 and 40 alone because of profiling.


Let's send this to as many people as we can so that the Gloria Aldreds and other dunder-headed attorneys along with Federal Justices that want to thwart common sense, feel doubly ashamed of themselves - if they have any such sense.

As the writer of the award winning story "Forrest Gump" so aptly put it,

"Stupid is as stupid does."

Come on people wake up!!!

Keep this going. Pass it on to everyone in your address book.

Our Country and our troops need our support!


Following came from a bloglit whom I emailed the above stuff; her response:


I know just exactly what you are talking about.
Last year when I was flying back from Minneapolis, I was pulled over along with another grandmother, body searched and our luggage was dumped on a table and completely scrutinized by holdin up each garment (embarressing)
In the meantime an entire contingency of men from the middle east got on the plane with out any questions what so ever. They had just flown in from Canada and were traveling on to Chicago. Well, the other grandmother was probably about 4'11" and weighed 200lbs, had graying red hair, glasses, and was wearing a domestic cotton dress that looked like it was made from a 'flour sack'. But, they chose us. In Chicago, they decided to search her again. Yes, the men from the middle east cleared there too.







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15 Comments:

Blogger tincanman said...

There are just so many things so obviously wrong with what people are spoon fed there, yet they believe it with a fervour that is almost ecclesiastic. Hail to the chief, for he hath spoken. That is just terrible. You cannot profile anyone based simply on looks, ethnicity, etc. I'm a South African. Are people now going to call me racist? 'kay, the wif happens to be Chinese. So am now a Communist Racist hater of Falung gong?

I'm none of those things. (Except the husband to the Chinese girl, and happy to be that, too)

Good stuff Cosa, a nice read!

11:34 AM, February 04, 2005  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

Yeah.

I can understand people being scared, angry, confused, even hateful over 9/11. Hell, I was ready to kill somebody that day. And I bought the Al Qaida story, even the Iraq connection, initially. But, as time went by, and no independent investigations were launched, and no evidence was forthcoming except from the Government, and their lies started piling up, I began to wonder what was really going on. I still don't know.

But, where I come from, we don't presume guilt. We presume innocense, until we have hard evidence of guilt. Even if Al Qaida did do it, that doesn't make all one billion other Muslims guilty, too. Nor does it make the other five billion people on Earth innocent. But you wouldn't know that from listening to Bush, and the US media.

We've been subject to a constant drumbeat of anti-Arab, anti-Muslim propaganda for a long time now. It has only intensified since 9/11. Most people are not even aware of it. They're being slowly, systematically branwashed by the media and even the arts. Arabs and Muslims are always the bad guys, the way South Africans were, for a while, in US movies and TV shows. Even supposedly liberal shows like the West Wing sound like right-wing Israeli propaganda, sometimes. It's understandable that people should be affected.

But it's not acceptable for us to stigmatize and violate the rights of a billion people, and anyone who looks like them, to punish or prevent a few of "them", if they were Arabs or Muslims, from hitting us again. As bad as that would be for all those innocent people, it's worse for us. Look what it's doing to us. We're becoming a howling mob, out to lynch anybody who looks like a person rumoured to be the bad guy. How can we object when they come back and behead just any Westerner they happen to get their hands on? Collective guilt and collective punishment are Nazi ideas. Worse yet, they don't work. If you don't find the guys who actually did the crime, they're going to go on doing it. And you have committed a crime against the innocent person you scapegoated.

Bushco propaganda is indirectly responsible for all this, and any crimes it may lead to. Even if it's not provable that Abu Graibh was ordered from the very top, the climate that allowed it to happen was controlled by Bush himself. He will never take responsibility for that. He never takes responsibility for anything. But he is responsible. The rest of us will just have to take responsibility for him. Whether we like it or not. For every misdeed or injustice Bush does, orders, or inspires, there will be a payback. If there are no terrorist attacks here now, there will be some day. And for that, blame rests clearly with Bush. But it's the rest of us who will pay, if we don't stop it now.

And stopping it starts in our own heads. We need to keep the hate from taking over there.

12:44 PM, February 04, 2005  
Blogger tincanman said...

http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/britt_23_2.htm

That is an interesting read.

1:49 PM, February 04, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your comments are spot on accurate. We have much clearerl dangers within our country and we cannot count on the surface to reveal the content of a person's character.

Content of character...hmmmm

Dr. MLK

weblackey

2:47 PM, February 04, 2005  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

TINMAN:

Yes, it is.

And yes, it does look familiar.

A point I've been trying to make, over and over again. It seems Bush will have to grow a toothbrush moustache before people here realize he's a fscist.

I use the term Corporatist, now. It's less dramatic, more descriptive, and preferred, by Mussolini himself.

3:10 PM, February 04, 2005  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

Character. Yeah. Like to see some, in the White House...

3:12 PM, February 04, 2005  
Blogger oldwhitelady said...

I went over to the cookies story on Dave Berry's blog. I am appalled by the posts. Those posters want to put roadkill or poop on this woman's porch because she sued the girls that left the cookies. The scare made her anxious and she ended up at the hospital the next day. The girls left something on her porch at 10ish at night. They rang the doorbell and ran. Scuse me, but when you remember how fearful this country is, how can you blame that woman? Once she opened the box and found cookies, how could she be sure there wasn't x-lax or even poison in them? She obviously has had a bad time with some of her neighbors. How was she to know? Personally, I blame this admin for the fear pushing.

7:33 PM, February 04, 2005  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

Honestly, she seems a bit over-sensitive. But who knows? And the girls don't seem real sharp. Nice though. Cookies. Mmmm.

You're right, they're nuts to be out so late. 17 & 18, they should know better. But if it's safe for them, why so scary for the lady? Or vice versa. Perceptions. Interesting.

The Dave Barry bunch are a rowdy crowd, but harmless. Mostly. Just a few rednecks. Mostly.

So, Ms. OWL, ya gonna keep that porch light on, or off, from now on? Hey, maybe she was watching a scary movie that night. Ya think? That could be it. ATTACK OF THE COOKIE MONSTERS!!!


"Cookie klatch lands girls in court""THOSE TERRORIST BASTARDS"

9:16 PM, February 04, 2005  
Blogger oldwhitelady said...

I keep my porch light off. Anyone wants to come up my porch steps will have to do so at their own peril. I've been gone at night and come home in the middle of the night to the dog acting really funny, as though she's been shot with something to make her sleep. The cats acted really funny, too, after that incident. The locks on the back door, unlocked... Yeah, I check my deadbolts.. and I keep them locked, when I sleep!

10:51 AM, February 05, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've seen this laughable "quiz" many times. Seems like they have a body count of less than 4,000 over 35+ years, which is about the number of people who meet their maker on American roads in a little over a month. They feel compelled to ignore almost every other assassin of American politicians in their quest to profile. They also forget about those lovely white Christians David Koresh and Jim Jones. Forgot about Mao, Stalin, Tojo, and Hitler - none of them Muslim males between 17 and 40, but responsible for tens of millions of horrors between them. Forgot the Spanish Inquisition. Forgot the white Mormons who dressed as Natives and butchered over a hundred pioneers. Promoters of gluttony somehow get a pass, too, though they end up creating rampant diabetes, heart disease, lung cancer, asthma, and so on. Skipped the fine folks of Ruby Ridge, every KKK lynch mob, and pretty much every major serial killer in the US.

Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, Bush I and II get passes, too, since they kill people "legally". Truman, too.

Right-wing dimwits have a problem known as "prideful ignorance". No sense in making much of it.

11:44 PM, February 07, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We've been subject to a constant drumbeat of anti-Arab, anti-Muslim propaganda for a long time now. It has only intensified since 9/11. Most people are not even aware of it. They're being slowly, systematically branwashed by the media and even the arts.Funny, I was thinking you were talking about the constant drumbeat of anti-Bush, anti-conservative propaganda being spewed by "the media and even the arts." Personally, I have heard very little anti-Arab, anti-Muslim propaganda but much handwringing over the anti-Arab, anti-Muslim propaganda that is supposed to be out there.

Have you actually heard anything from any responsible person? Or are you still buying the liberal lines, like that the Republicans are the party of hate when Howard Dean says he hates the Republicans and everything they stand for? Sure, they don't say they hate, you thing (or rather, mindlessly repeat): but "everybody knows" they do. There's no proof George Bush got out of Guard duty, but "everybody knows" he did (so said Eleanor Clift). Yeah, right.

Maybe you should wake up and listen to somebody other than like-thinking drones, and think for yourselves. I did, and I woke up from my long mindless liberal slumber to face reality.

5:06 AM, February 08, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I did, and I woke up from my long mindless liberal slumber to face reality."

On AM radio! LOL!

7:09 AM, February 08, 2005  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

Please sign in, or sign your name or "nick" within your post. Thank you.

12:12 PM, February 08, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The key phrase is "Muslim male extremist". Of course at a security point they could skip the word extremist and check all Muslim males or even drop the male and check all Muslims or further skip the whole phrase and check any foreign looking people with like darker skin and dark hair or any people who don't look like they come from small shit-hole town America, especially the mid-west where they are so isolated and scared of the big world outside of their pick-up trucks and ignorance that anything foreign is bad. They also could just check extremists but that would include the right wing fundamentalist Christians and would include Bush and reveal the Bush administration as a extremist theocracy. But that would be unfair.

Middle-of-the-roader driven left by right stupidity.

2:31 AM, February 09, 2005  
Blogger Alex said...

The only propaganda I've seen so far is that stinkin' email. And it's fairly obvious. He'd have a point if:

-the crimes mentioned didn't occur in eastern Europe and the Middle East, where a good number of Arabs are present (yes, in Europe, too)

-the other choices were actual criminals

-Muslim extremists were all Arabs. (Does the name "John Walker Lindh" ring a bell?)

We know that these things are clearly NOT the case, so there's no legitimate point. So how the heck did you make the Bush-hatemail connection if a point didn't exist in the first place? I'd much rather spend valuable time merely refuting the arguments for EVERYONE'S good, especially idiots who have blogged this as truth, regardless of their political opinions.

Is it just me, or haven't the political wounds from Nov. 2 healed yet?

2:45 AM, February 09, 2005  

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