Wednesday, August 22, 2007
ARREST ME NOW! GUEST BLOG BY SHANNON EVANS
Arrest me now. I may not be Arab, Muslim, or male but I do fit the profile of the two schmucks currently being much maligned by the FBI and the local papers for their “suspicious activities.” You see, I once lived in a fundamentalist Muslim country and was married to a Palestinian. I grew up in a small southern town where the tallest building was the Merchants and Farmer’s Bank and so I often stare up at the buildings in Seattle and any other large city I happen to be wandering. I was a civil engineer in my previous career and find myself fascinated by bridges, viaducts, railroad bridges, locks, dams, and other key pieces of urban infrastructure. I sometimes go on line to study architectural drawings. I have even been known to photograph these critical pieces as well as churches, mosques, and even the airplanes on the tarmac at SEATAC. I live on an island and yet I am still fascinated by the roar of the engines and the speed of the water as it rushes beneath me on the ferry. I still take pictures of the skyline, the Colman Docks, the stern, the bow, the galley, and other urban places that interest me on the ferries that come and go from our bucolic little island port. I once took a picture of the cute little coast guard fellow on the ramp leading to the boat because he was just cute as hell in his battle dress. I feel guilty as hell for all my subversive activities! Where do I turn myself in and to whom? The FBI? The Port Authority? Screw that! Send me the hotties from the Coast Guard!
There are more subversives in my family to arrest as well. Consider my son who is a commissioned officer in the US military currently training at a prestigious flight school sponsored by Uncle Sam. Seems to me he should be an object of great concern. Could he, an Irish/Cherokee/ Scottish/Arab American, be a deeply embedded covert Al Qaeda operative? Due to his deep-seated ancestral roots steeped in carnage and jihadist tribal behaviors could this red-blooded Arab American boy turn? Could he possibly be pre-programmed from infancy to ride his aircraft into a large building all in the name of Allah? Why else would he have gone to university to study to be an aviator? Why else would he have joined the military? He has to be a mole for Osama and the Boys!
How did the Arabs become the bad guys? When did we become so steeped in this new brand of ignorant isolationist bigotry? Islam, Muslim, Arab, Jihad. These words strike fear into the hearts of the ignorant masses of our country. FBI, CIA, Homeland Security, Patriot Act. These are the words that should strike fear in our hearts. They are the weapons of Mass Destruction. Being scared all the time and spying on my neighbors doesn't seem to be a real productive way to live one's life. Less than a century ago some of the finest men in the world fought against this same oppressive behavior in places called Omaha, Utah, Gold, Juno, and Sword beaches along the coast of Normandy. Have we as a nation forgotten the nationalistic behaviors of the Germans as they sought to rid themselves of their Jewish population? Jews were different looking and accused of manipulating the world monetary institutions thus causing the great depression so they could profit and grow their ambitions. The NAZI party was a small but vocal group that instituted a system to spy on and seek out subversives who were Jewish or Jewish-looking. Photos and drawings were circulated to help the common folks identify potential suspects. Watched, photographed, and finally the leadership, knowing what was best for the “real” Germans, instituted a plan to take care of their “Jewish threat.” Their initial solution? Isolated “work camps” in other countries where Jews and non-conformist others (gays, lesbians, jazz musicians, gypsies, the mentally handicapped, and pacifist clergy to name a few) were sent for further interrogation and evaluation. This was all done in the best interest of the German people by their government.
Need we forget our own colorful past rampant with bigotry? I am a child of the south and frankly, I do remember White only/colored only washrooms, drinking fountains, and theatres. I lived through the hangings, the cross burnings, integration and George Wallace. I can remember a hot August when the local sheriff was up for re-election and all the local kids white and black were at the market getting an ice cream. One of the white kids stole a piece of penny bubble gum and slipped it in the shirt pocket of one of the “colored” boys. The minute the black children left the store the kid who planted the evidence said, “Mister, that nigger stole some gum and stuck it in his pocket!” The store owner ran out, confronted the boy, and held him until a deputy showed up. Cuffed, searched, and crammed in the back seat of the squad car he was driven away. The next day the headlines of the local paper screams, “BLACKS RESPONSIBLE FOR SMALL TOWN CRIME WAVE!” The arrest of an 8 year old child sparked near riots in the black community. There were those in the white community who called for a hanging but the prompt gun wielding riot gear clad sheriff’s response quashed the uprising. The grateful white population promptly re-elected the overweight tobacco chewing uneducated bigoted lawman.
If our reason for profiling is to stem terrorism then we better expand the list! Guantanamo will have to be enlarged to house our home grown redneck militia members who have attacked such auspicious government and private sites as the Oklahoma City federal court house, abortion and Planned Parenthood clinics. We should also create a special section on the base for the members of ELF who target the EPA and other environmentally linked facilities.
In the interest of saving the rest of the world from terrorism we better round up and tag all South American communists, Basques, Japanese Cult members, and Irish people. They have a propensity for blowing cars, buses, and trains up as well as carefully placing biological agents. Maybe these are all Al Qaeda satellite organizations that act as cells or Mastermind groups for the mass destruction of those who do not follow Sharia!
So, the next time you are on the Washington State Ferry and notice a skinny, red haired fellow with bad teeth and an Irish accent taking photos, detain him! Notify the authorities! You will only be doing your civic duty and saving us from the Celtic arm of Al Qaeda!