As I write this blog we remember the first anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing. Two young men deposited two backpacks with pressure cooker bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. The subsequent explosions took three lives and injured scores more. And for what purpose?
Did this act of violence further their cause, no matter how misguided? Not likely.
Did it do anything to improve their lives? Not really. One died, and the other will not likely ever see the light of day again.
Did government policy toward their cause, whatever that was, change? Not at all.
But, in reflection, did they in some way win? You be the judge.
Since September 11, 2001 our lives have changed. And those changes are as a direct result of the actions of those terrorists bent on causing the destruction of our way of life.
We are now treated as if we are terrorists every time we fly. Enter Comerica Park for a Tiger baseball game, and you will pass through that same airport scrutiny. Your bags will be inspected, you will be scrutinized, and cameras will follow your every move.
The NSA will stash a list of all your phone calls. Your text messages are housed in super computers. Just ask Kwame Kilpatrick.
And back to the Boston Marathon. No bags, backpacks or the like will be permitted. Increased security will be everywhere at a huge cost to taxpayers.
Osama Bin Laden purportedly said the way to the American jugular vein was through its economy, the same philosophy we used to defeat the old Soviet Union. Are we headed down the same path?
Just look at our debt. It is near $17 trillion and growing with each deficit budget. How long can we survive when the debt exceeds our Gross National Product?
Yes, we need to feel secure. And, yes, it is the job of government to provide that security while respecting our constitutional rights. We now have to describe the limits to which we will accept government intrusion into our lives, and at what cost.
I’m not wise enough to provide the answers, but I do know that the aforementioned question will need to be answered in the not too distant future.
Opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Andy Rapp, Q-TV, Delta College, or PBS.