Sunday, March 25, 2007

9/11 Changed Everything (In The Wrong Direction)

2,974 people died on 9/11. 24 others are presumed dead. That is just under 3,000 who perished from that horrible act.

Since that terrible day, other bad things have occured as well. Around 42,500 Americans die in traffic accidents annually. Most of these could be prevented. It has been 5 1/2 years since 9/11. Approximately 275,000 Americans therefore have been killed.

In response to 9/11 we passed the Patriot Act, the NSA began spying on our emails, our phone calls. We are going to end up spending over $1,000,000,000,000 in Iraq by the time we are done. Our country has tortured suspects to get information on terrorist attacks, we have suspended habeus corpus for our citizens. We have sent prisoners who haven't been charged with crimes to places like Syria and Iran to get tortured as well. We take off our shoes before flights. We live with terror color codes. We do this in fear of terror. Terror has won.

We could have saved most of those 275,000 traffic victims by re-organizing our society and taking away our freedoms. We could legislate a computer chip in all cars that doesn't allow one to speed. We could install a breathalizer in all cars so drunks can't drive. We could do random drug and urine tests all the time to prevent impaired people from driving. There could be road tests for all drivers every year to make sure people are skilled enough to stay on the road.

We don't do these things though, because we don't want our freedom to drive stripped from us, and 116 deaths a day spread throughout 50 states is easy to ignore. That is 2 deaths per state per day roughly. But it adds up. Almost 100 times as many people have been killed in accidents since 9/11 than that very event.

I would rather be killed by terrorists than live in terror. Live free and die, or we can live in fear and die spiritual deaths afraid of our own shadow. What we have done in response to 9/11 is a much greater tragedy than the actual events that transpired that day.

Those who demand that we live in terror to defeat terror don't seem to grasp the irony of their beliefs. Blow me up if you must radical terrorist, but damned if my government will blow up my constitutional rights in the name of saving them.