Did you hear about the terror attack in Boston?
Yes. who was responsible?
Two Muslim brothers
What happened to them?
They were tracked down by the police. One brother was killed, but the other got away.
How did the police go about finding the other brother?
They shut down all of Boston.
They shut down an entire city just to find one man?
Yes. They closed all public transportation and told everyone to stay indoors.
Was the terrorist in Boston?
No, he was miles away.
Did he have a car?
No. they found his abandoned car near the location of the shootout
So did they think he would go to Boston on foot?
Unlikely, because they also found a pool of blood near the car, so he was wounded
I am sure the authorities had the safety of the people in mind
Of course. But in trying to protect the citizens, they handed the terrorists a victory
What do you mean?
The primary goal of terrorism is not to kill, but to frighten.
So when we shut down entire cities just because of one boy, we are acting out of fear. When we are afraid, the terrorists win.
You can’t blame them for being cautious. the terrorist had explosives on him and might have terrorized again.
What you meanis he might have attacked again.
What’s the difference?
Terrorists can only attack us. Its up to us to decide if we will be terrorized or not.
Easy for you to say, you weren’t in Boston at the time
No I was not
And you weren’t one of the people injured in the marathon bombing
So you weren’t in any danger
Yes I was. we are all in danger, all the time
What do you mean?
Every year in America over 30,000 people die in automobile accidents. Over 10,000 are murdered, and thousands die in workplace accidents.
We still choose to drive, live in dangerous cities and go to work. The odds of dying from a terrorist attack are tiny
Are you saying we overreact to terrorism?
Yes. and every time we do, the terrorists win.
But we can’t just do nothing.
There is a difference between doing something and over reacting.
That’s true. and by reacting so severely to simple attacks we give future terrorists an easy blueprint for disrupting our lives.
Right. why bother trying to hijack airplanes or build dirty bombs when simple homemade devices elicit such a strong reaction, a reaction that persists long after the original attack
What do you mean?
Our politicians have been proposing lots of changes as a result of this attack
More monitoring and more police powers. The mayor of New York even said we need to change the way we interpret our constitution
In the past century, our constitution has withstood 2 world wars, a depression and a presidential assassination
But the mayor of new york wants to change the way we interpret it because￼ 2 brothers set off homemade bombs?
Isn’t one of the reasons why the terrorists hate America because of our open and free society?
But in response to terrorism,￼ the politicians want to make society less free and open?
Yes. and not only does the climate of fear make us less free, it also makes us less safe
After he got away, the wounded terrorist was found by an ordinary citizen in a boat just 5 blocks from his vehicle
Didn’t the police search the boat?
What where they doing all that time?
Throwing nearby residents out of their houses while pointing machine guns at them
Isn’t that illegal without a search warrant?
Yes, but during a manufactured crisis, the government cares little about what is legal
And while they were busy violating innocent peoples rights, they never searched the boat
Right. excessive police powers leads to bad police work.
But maybe the police had reason to be so aggressive since they got into a shootout after the terrorist was found in the boat
There was no shootout
But I saw the video of cops firing their guns
The terrorist was unarmed at that point and never fired at the police. The cops were the only ones shooting.
So all the bullet holes in the walls of the houses of nearby￼ residents were from police fire?
Yes. in the earlier shootout the police shot and killed one of their own, and more recently they killed a suspect related to the attack that they were interviewing
At the going rate￼ soon the cops will have killed more people than the terrorists
Yes. the climate of fear is making the police dangerous and less capable of preventing future attacks
One of the brothers was already on a terror watch list
So why didn’t they stop him?
Because there are 500,000 people on that watch-list
But there aren’t half a million terrorists in America
Of course not, and when you are monitoring that many people its hard to see the few that are actually dangerous
And now we are arresting people who show up at airports with pressure cookers
Of course, but that doesn’t mean Michael Bloomberg will not propose a database to track all middle easterners who visit bed bath and beyond
Feel like somewhere in a cave out there, a terrorist is laughing at us
We have played right into their hands
Is there anything we can do as citizens to stop this
Yes. we can stop being afraid, and we can go on our lives like nothing has happened
That would be the ultimate slap in the face of the terrorists
Not to mention, the best way to defeat them