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Wiley Miller’s Non Sequitur nails it yet again, as does Cracked.com with a list of four reasons why instead of treating terrorists like evil masterminds and making getting on a plane ten times as big a pain in the arse as it needs to be we should actually be laughing ourselves silly at them.
A lot of people have a strong interest in portraying terrorists as dedicated, evil badasses. Hollywood, is always desperate for proper bad guys. There are people who are trying to get you to vote for their terror safety laws or sell you terror safety equipment. And of course, there are the terrorists themselves.
When they convince us that they’re dangerous Bond-level supervillains, we have to deal with minor airline travel annoyances. But more importantly, we are sending a message to people who sympathize with the terrorists’ cause that, “Hey, this works! They’re very effective guys!”
But, she says, in reality they tend to be incompetent, stupid, hypocritical and apt to be their own worst enemy if left to their own devices. Go and read the whole thing, and keep it in mind as you move from the shoe removal queue to the one for the backscatter X-ray body scanner the next time you have to fly anywhere. The bogeymen didn’t do that – we did it to ourselves.