Opponents of profiling are missing the point. Profiling makes a lot of sense. The main problem is that we are profiling the wrong kinds of people.
Instead of watching out for people who actually have a track record for mass destruction and terrorism, we are directing our efforts against folks who might be pissed off at us because we have bombed them, strip-mined their economies and plundered their futures.
(The fact that almost all people detained at our borders, coincidentally, are brown or black, leads some to conclude our government is racist because it is engaged in “racial profiling.” While this may be true, that is the subject of another post.)
We have, in the words Stephen Harper, used a “long gun registry approach” that criminalizes everyone when we should limit our efforts to catching “the bad guys.”
So, in the interests of air safety and national security, as well as more convenient air travel, here are my suggestions for Canada’s border watch and no-fly lists.
1. Anyone who has ever used or authorized the use of weapons of mass destruction. While it might seem unfair to single them out, this would include Barack Obama, George Bush (father and son), Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter. Collectively, these fellas have slaughtered millions.
But we shouldn’t stop there. Any current or former head of state who told the his military to kill people would qualify for the list. This would crimp Stephen Harper’s travel schedule, or course, but it would also ensure that Jean Chretien and Paul Martin would have to stay home. I’d let Kim Campbell, John Turner and Joe Clark on the plane, but only because they weren’t in office long enough to do much damage.
2. Anyone who has implemented the decisions of their political masters to engage in the above mentioned mass destruction. This would include cabinet ministers, military commanders at all levels, heads of government departments, and so forth.
3. Anyone who has used, or attempted to use a weapon equivalent in destructive power to that of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab’s underpants (UFAU), which, if you have been following the story, have been deemed by US Justice officials to be a weapon of mass destruction. This means that any military grunt of either gender who has participated in combat loses their opportunity to get on a Canadian plane, or visit Canada. (I guess we should let our grunts come home, soon, today even.)
4. Anyone who benefits from the development, production and sale of weapons of mass destruction (once again, these weapons are defined as being UFAU equivalent.) Now, I’m not arguing that we should outlaw war industries (that’s a subject for another post). I’m just saying that we shouldn’t let these bastards or their products cross international borders.
5. Academics, politicians, religious leaders, editorial writers, journalists, PR flacks, bloggers and anyone else who whores, pimps, shills and otherwise facilitates the climate of fear that promotes our bogus war on terrorism, invasions of other countries and erosion of human rights at home or abroad. You know who you are. Cut up your Aeroplan cards and get into another line of work.
Now, if my modest proposal for air safety and national security were to catch on, it would most certainly have a deleterious impact on the air travel industry, at least in the short term. Many folks who travel by air and cross borders are either war mongers or cannon fodder. However, this is a price I think most folks would be willing to pay for a safer, more secure world.