Day 4 of my Boycott of TSA and the Airlines
The citizen-activist, a free press, the innocent’s freedom from persecution: Essential elements of a democracy.
We have none of these elements functioning in America, so I would like to move that we stop referring to America as the Land of the Free. We should rewrite it on all official documents, reword every pop song, and change it on all monuments. It could say something like: Land of the Ideal of Freedom. Because we have it as an allusive, elusive and illusive concept, an aura or maybe even a past life, but our reality is much different.
To all the men out there, and the friends and family who care about them: The government counts all military-age males in a strike zone as combatants unless there is explicit intelligence posthumously proving them innocent.
An enemy combatant is “any human being whose life is extinguished when an American missile or bomb detonates.” http://www.salon.com/2012/05/29/militants_media_propaganda/
That’s what we call here in the South: Shoot first and ask questions later!
Now you might think this could never happen to you, because you don’t travel to “war-torn” countries like Colombia, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Mexico.
Or do you? There are about 40 countries on the “current wars” list. Before you travel, it might be a good idea to double-check and also to remember that our government doesn’t need our approval to start a war anywhere they want, at any time. Also remember that today, 75 % or more of those killed or wounded in wars are non-combatants.
What’s the purpose of having a secret Terrorist Watch list?
Who has access to this list?
What might happen to us?
U.S. citizens Anwar Al-Aulaqi, Samir Khan, and 16-year-old Al-Aulaqi who were targeted and killed by drones were on the list for sure.
“The killings were part of a broader program of “targeted killing” by the United States outside the context of armed conflict and based on vague legal standards, a closed executive process, and evidence never presented to the courts.”
The citizen-activist has been replaced by the citizen-consumer and dissent has given way to an agenda promoting group-think: Collective optimism, collective avoidance. The power structures want nothing more than to have the average person be overwhelmed with life–both its responsibilities and its pleasures–so the sheeple don’t question them en masse or hold them accountable. And if the TV, illegal drugs, work schedule or keeping up with the Jones’ don’t numb us all enough, they promote very effective legal pharms that will finish the job.
As long as we are not engaging in civic life they’re safe to run things as they please. Should they choose to create a corporatocracy right underneath our noses, it’s because we feel indignant even to have to give up our vacations. I know, because that’s exactly how I’m feeling.
One friend believes I’m “giving in to them.” Letting “them” have their way with me by allowing them to restrict me, causing suffering, so to speak. Maybe she’s right. I DO WANT to be packing right now! But what other leverage do I have? The ACLU is overwhelmed, the mass media is drugged with their hands tied and the government and corporations are warring over who is going to get a bigger piece of the power pie.
If I don’t put something at stake, can I really expect others to? Vacation is important, and I’m still going to find a way to take one, just not by air.
Sounds futile doesn’t it. But more than just that, now my dearest friend is mad at me because we were supposed to be Fringing together starting tomorrow, it seems she’s not even speaking to me, and these things matter just as much as civic duty does.
Her questions are: Why now, Why this, Why this time? What about ME!?
And I know in some ways she’s right, and I’m sorry! I want to be there with you, I do! My new guidebooks, checked and highlighted, are taunting me from the coffee table. I keep repeating: There’s still a few more hours to change my mind.
Everyone who knows me knows how I love to travel. And just in case you’re reading this and you don’t know me–there’s a strong common thread to why I teach languages, joined the Peace Corps, read and write travel stories. I’ll bet you can figure it out. I’ll give you a hint: It’s not because I’m a spy who deserves to be on that list.
Denial isn’t feeling so beautiful anymore.
And, if not me, then who?
Please support me in my boycott of TSA and all Airlines by following this blog for the next 2o days concerning our dwindling civil liberties and in the comments section write:
Not in my House!