How to Paralyze a Nation

Image: How to Paralyze a Nation Jemma Simpson of Great Britain (M) runs the final leg of the USA vs The World Womens Sprint Medley during the Penn Relays. (Getty Images)

Thursday, 25 Apr 2013 11:32 AM

By Chris Freind

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There’s good and bad news.

The good: if you’re still reeling from the self-imposed trauma of watching nonstop bombing coverage from your recliner, you can make your way to the nation’s largest international sporting event — the Penn Relays in Philadelphia — where backpacks are being banned.

Without backpacks, you can pretend you’re safe and feel good about yourself! (Although, just like our wildly inconsistent airport security policies, not all backpacks are banned. Go figure.)

The massive and unwarranted reaction of the government, and the media as its all-too-willing accomplice, to finding two punks was infinitely more frightening than the crude bombs they exploded.

The precedent of imposing martial law whenever a relatively small tragedy occurs bodes ominously for maintaining our rights in the future.

Were the events in Boston tragic? Of course. Three people lost their lives, with scores injured. But let’s shove the wimpy show-emotion-for-the-sake of-showing-emotion mentality aside and put this situation into perspective.

1. This was not remotely close to being another 9/11, despite many “analysts” in the media saying so. It was obvious within minutes that it was amateur hour, unlike the precision attacks of September 11. Comparing Boston to the 2001 attack is the worst insult one could make to the families of the 9/11 victims, as well as to all sane Americans.

2. Government and media officials saying things such as, “no one in America can feel safe until these bombers are caught” only feeds into the hysteria, which is totally counterproductive.

3. It was apparent we weren’t dealing with seasoned military operatives, despite media and government officials’ repeated claims (with no evidence) that the bombers had “paramilitary” training, whatever that buzzword means. Why? Because they didn’t surrender, instead fighting the police with guns and homemade grenades. Well, call out the National Guard, because that means we have “paramilitary” forces in every American city, every night. There is another term: criminals who don’t want to get caught and won’t hesitate to kill. Hey, welcome to any big city.

4. Why the brothers did it is to be determined, and while Muslim fundamentalism certainly may be at the core, it also seems they were two pampered kids mad at the world, desperate for attention. How do we know they weren’t highly-trained terrorists? A) No disguises, despite knowing they would be captured on video. And if they didn’t know that, they’re really dumb; B) You don’t bomb a city in which you live; C) Exit strategies are somewhat important, yet they neglected planning one; and D) Robbing a 7-11 in the city where you live, and just bombed, might raise a red flag.

5. So was it really necessary to impose martial law, locking down an entire metropolis and, topping it all, imposing a no-fly zone? Where are we? Iraq? And if such an extreme measure is used, why publicly announce it?

Even though the media redefined “overkill,” their news helicopters could have aided in finding Tweedle Dee as he scurried below like a scared coward.

5. The biggest irony? You can bet every Massachusetts liberal (that’s pretty much everyone) screaming “gun control” either was wishing they had a gun, or, more likely, grabbing their firearm. Such hypocrisy has no bounds.

Baseball writers on Sunday proclaimed that the Red Sox “defiantly” returned to Fenway. That’s nice. Though who and what they were “defying” remains a mystery since neither the Red Sox nor Fenway were affected in the slightest.

Opening your heart to a tragic situation is one thing. Making it all about you is another. But that’s what Americans do.

We have become a nation of narcissistic sissys, whining and living in fear (perversely liking it), all while seeking constant positive self-affirmations and “Likes” on Facebook about the trauma we (actually don’t) suffer.

When did we embrace the delusional need to always hug each other (and post a corny motivational quote about it), while alternately A) attending our 17th candlelight vigil, B) observing so many moments of silence that we can barely speak, and C) dancing in the streets?

Do these people have the faintest clue what they are celebrating? Given the trite, canned responses of “we’re all just pulling together . . . drawing on each other’s strength . . . we won’t be stopped . . . ” the answer is a resounding “No.”

Worse are employee support services stamping their imprimatur on such absurdities. Sorry, but you don’t need a grief counselor or bereavement specialist to cope with the Boston bombings. If you’re still experiencing anxiety, sadness, anger, fear or any of the other meaningless pyscho-babble traumatic conditions, then move to France.

It’s time America finds itself again, kicking butt and taking names, not coddling from cradle to grave, refusing to ban things just to make people feel good, and not exponentially overreacting every single time something happens. In doing so, we wouldn’t be giving terrorists the recipe, as we just did, for how to paralyze a nation.

If we don’t wake up, the next time a major attack occurs, you can kiss the American way of life goodbye. And no amount of hug-ins will bring it back.

Chris Freind is an independent columnist, television commentator, and investigative reporter who operates his own news bureau, Freindly Fire Zone. Read more reports from Chris Freind — Click Here Now.

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