While traveling by air, I am often amazed at the nearly world-wide response to a single terrorist act or threat. I’m not so much amazed that the response is wide-spread, but at the apparent inability of those who make and those who enforce these reactionary rules to think logically. For example, a few weeks after the infamous events of September 11th, 2001, I witnessed a security guard confiscating a cuticle remover of about 4 cm in length from a business man flying out of Los Angeles. One evil-doer tried and failed to detonate a bomb concealed in his shoe in flight, and now millions of travellers with no intention of doing any harm are made to remove their shoes for x-ray inspection before boarding an airplane. A plot was uncovered and foiled to smuggle liquid components of explosives on board an aircraft, and as a result, I couldn’t bring juice aboard for my 20-month-old daughter and an empty water bottle got confiscated by airport guards. Obviously, fear of repeated or even potential terrorist crimes interferes with people’s ability to think rationally. Has anyone ever considered the statistics on number of successful shoe bombings before and after the x-ray rules? (No improvement– both zero.) What about the number of serious crimes committed aboard aircraft in flight by toddlers wielding sippy cups with juice in them? Just how far will we disregard the Bill of Rights, especially the fourth amendment of the U. S. Constitution, and limit our freedom in a futile attempt to improve security?
I could rant on and explain what rules I would change if I were in charge, but I’m not in charge, so let me jump to the solution. Perfect love casts out fear. When the fear is gone, replaced by the perfect love of Jesus Christ, we are capable of thinking rationally about security. The airport security guards really can’t stop every possible attack on traveller safety. Not even close. Love them anyway, and be polite. Love the rule-makers and pray for them. Love even the people who are so decieved that they believe they would do God a favor by murdering people, and pray that they would see the Truth and be set free of the bondage of sin (preferably before they kill someone). Pray for protection for those who travel. Pray that the plots of the enemy of our souls would be revealed and defeated.
Pray. Now there is a security precaution with no bad side-effects, and you don’t have to convince a government agency to do it. Just do it. 🙂