Friday, November 26, 2010

Common Sense and Airline Security, Part II

We don't like profiling because it exposes innocent people to indignity. The TSA's "non-discriminatory" solution is to expose everyone to indignity.

Kevin O'Brien writes in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Emphasis added.

"The truth is, the other side keeps proving that even though they're incompetent at bomb-making, they're good at beating our defense. It's time we let our offense on the field.

That means profiling. Oh, that dirty, dirty word. That means using what we know about our enemies against them.

We know who they are: They're Muslims fighting a religious war. They're from identifiable hot spots of Islamic militant activity -- Middle Eastern and African countries, and radicalized enclaves in Europe.

Anyone getting on a U.S. commercial carrier who fits the description ought to be carefully watched and ought to have to answer some probing questions on their way to a scanning and/or a pat-down. Every item of luggage associated with that person should be painstakingly checked, too.

Yes, the Muslim grievance lobby will scream. So what?

That will be a lot less screaming than we hear now, as law-abiding people who we know very well pose no threat are given their pick of needless, pointless humiliations.

The forces of political correctness will advance the argument that once we start profiling, the terrorists will recruit people who buck the profile.

Fine. That's called making the other side work harder. And when they go prospecting for blond, blue-eyed, non-Muslims willing to fry their nether regions, they instantly make their command structure easier to infiltrate."

The argument is sometimes made that Islamic profiling will alienate the majority of good Muslims whose support is needed in infiltrating terrorist organizations. But it is certainly thinkable that being inconvienced could make them more willing to take a stand against the terrorists as the ultimate cause of their being inconvienenced and subjected to indignity. And after all, a normal Muslim is just as opposed to being blown up as anybody else.


Anonymous said...

Muslims already come in all eye and hair colors. Didn't Jesus say to stop judging by appearances?

Bill said...

Given the alternatives:
- profiling
- blind sampling
- doing nothing

I prefer profiling. Intelligent profiling, such as Israel has been forced to practice for decades. So long as cowardly attacks on our society are a real risk, doing nothing would be irresponsible. But what is equally irresponsible is for us not to learn from the Israelis, whose experience with terrorism dwarfs our own.