February 5th, 2002|
The Nation that Freaked Out
We've been at war with terrorism for about five months now, which may come as a shock to you if you're an eccentric hot air ballooner just coming down from your ridiculous two year trip around the world. In which case, let me tell you, we've been doing a lot of freaking out. We've almost stabilized, so I've categorized the specific types of freaking out we did and possible ways to avoid them in the future just in case terrorism wins the war and we end up living in a world where it's required by law to be terrifying.
Reaction One-- Increased Secutiry: Pretending to be Idiots
Security immediately became our main concern after 9-11. The only problem with security is that it's based around pretending to be an idiot. A clerk asking me if I packed my own bag isn't going to foil anyone's smuggling operation, but the two of us have to pretend to be stupid enough to think we're keeping the world safe. Airport security quadrupled after September 11th, which meant that security personnel had to pretend to be idiots four times as hard.
I saw a business man get searched a month aftwards. A security woman found his nail clippers, got pissed off, broke off the file part of them, and saved each and every one of our lives. Afterwards she even made eye contact with me as if I might share her intolerance for all these fucking business men that may at any time want to clean under their toenails. Now, I might have an unusual perspective as the world's foremost donkey basketball enthusiast, but to me, if you think crippling bathroom devices is the key to passenger safety, you're either a fucking moron or playing make-believe. Even he was the kind of kung fu master who would try to take on a plane with nail clippers, he has the same chance of doing so with or without the little pointy thing.
Over the holidays, I saw airport security take away a 60-year-old woman's tweezers. Tweezers. I want to tell everyone right now, you don't need to pretend to be stupid that hard to make me feel safe. In fact, if I'm ever a passenger on a plane that gets taken over by a 60-year-old woman with a pair of tweezers, I fucking deserve to die. And after I'm dead, I'll walk up to the pearly gates and say, "Hi, Saint Peter, I'm with the group that got killed by the old lady with tweezers. I assume there's a section of Heaven for unbelievable pussies?"
One of the biggest tragedies involving airport security was the huge number of editorials that appeared in every paper, magazine, and TV show in the country complaining about it. That's fine; you should complain every time someone shoves a bomb-sniffing dog three feet into your asshole for wanting to ride their plane. Those don't bother me. The editorials that bothered me were the ones by people complaining security wasn't tight enough. There were all these brave investigative jouranlists that were outraged they managed to get through checkpoints with a butter knife in their carry on. Some people even got arrested after they got through checkpoints and screamed "Look! I got a pocket knife through! I could have killed everybody!" These fuckers shouldn't think they've spotted the hole in our safety net because non-terrorists like themselves are allowed to get through with harmless everyday items. That doesn't mean we're all going to die. All it means is that the person at the metal detector wasn't a complete fucking moron. If commuters really only feel safe when they're getting punished for something somebody else did, they're going to love my new invention. They're called Airport Pants, and they electrify your genitals every time I think about having sex with Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Now that our airport security is a gag taken straight out of a movie about a possible dark future where nazi Germany won, we should embrace people who don't highjack planes. Like women. My statistics might be off by a decimal or two, but in between the time they spend having pillow fights and slowly trying on lingerie, not one woman has ever highjacked a plane. In fact, they're so unlikely to kill us, I think airport security should issue them helmets that launch rockets. That way, if one of these white people with their nail clippers ever starts some shit we'll have people on our side ready to flex cybernetic hat implants that release a high-powered rocket payload into their faces.
Security agents need to use their heads. While airport security agents are pretending that tweezers are deadly weapons, they're also pretending not to notice that slightly over one hundred percent of terrorists are of middle eastern descent. I know racial profiling upsets all the people who still believe the lyrics in Whitney Houston songs, but everyone will understand if airport security uses a little bit of common sense when they're deciding who is likely to explode something and who is just a person who might need a fingernail file.
Maybe it's wrong to discriminate against a people just because they occasionally blow up a plane, I'm going to try to talk you into it. Say, for example, you're an Arab at the airport. First of all, welcome to one of my country's beautiful airports, suspicious traveller from afar. You'll notice that security searches everyone in the airport including you. That means you have to wait in line for three to four hours while they go through the luggage of all the old ladies ahead of you for no good reason other than try to not hurt you and and your people's feelings. Now imagine how nice it would be if they ignored everyone else and went straight for your luggage. You just saved four hours of standing in line, and all you have to do to get on the plane is not carry a bomb. I want to make it clear that no one is accusing you of being a highjacking murderer, we're only accusing you of being of the only race that has a CHANCE of being a highjacking murderer. Searching white people and hoping to find a terrorist is like searching white people and hoping to find a talking birthmark that can predict the future. It's certainly possible, but mostly you're just wasting everyone's time, you god damn idiot.
On to Part Two
The worst job in America used to be poisonous animal masturbater. After September 11th, it became 911 phone dispatcher. I have a friend who has this job and he's spent the last five months of his life politely hanging up on old ladies who call the emergency line to report cars with out of state plates. Ever since the news scratched the word Anthrax directly onto our eyeballs, people call 911 every single time their junk mail leaves off the return address. Terror and nationalism caused most of us to completely lose our perspective. At the end of it all, Anthrax finished neck and neck with domesticated duck attacks for total kills. When I get older, might go crazy and think terrorists are using my mailbox to kill me. After all, if someone was looking to crush America they would almost certainly start with our suburban elderly. But that doesn't mean you get your own personal bomb squad every time you might have won a million dollars.
As soon as a war starts, there's always some hippy genius who figures out that wars kill people and makes it their bumper stickers duty to put a stop to it. This never works. It would be nice if homicidal madmen took the advice of our fruitier citizens' fenders more often, but there are several historical examples of where bending over and being polite did not turn pure evil into delicious candy.
Fans of peace and harmony are usually quick to accuse the military of baby killing. Everyone knows that our nation's military can't wait to front a war just to get the chance to kill a few babies, the only fuel on which their magic gold making machines can run. Last month I actually saw a guy with a flag sticker on his car, and he had crossed out "PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN" and wrote in "PROUD TO BE AN AFGHANI BABY KILLER." It was a strong statement about This of course came with the small cost of several hundred foot-shaped dents in his car. Now, I do agree with him and the other crazies that killing babies is wrong, but the fact is, I think most soldiers are probably too preoccupied with fighting armed religious fanatics to throw an infanticide party. I'm not saying anyone should try to kill babies. In fact, if you're about to execute someone and notice there's a baby on the electric chair, go get that baby off of there. But we can't just stop a war and let the terrorists explode whatever they want because they have children. And you could also look at it this way-- if a baby is being raised in a terrorist camp, I have a feeling it's not going to grow up to be a volunteer worker.
Maybe some day we'll be able to build bombs that can fly into a terrorist camp and conduct extensive interviews to see if the person it's about to blow up is actually a terrorist or just a nun riding a unicorn who happens to be photographing baskets of kittens in a terrorist camp. Until then, the best advice I can give innocent people is to stay a blast radius away from anyone making video tapes about how much they want to destroy America.
Reaction Four-- Oversensitivity
At the start of the Afghani conflict, our Navy got in trouble after the media took a snapshot of a bomb where one of them wrote, "High Jack This Fags." Gay people were outraged that an explosive could be so rude, and the Navy's Rear Admiral S. R. Pietropaoli was forced to publicly apologize. Even during a time of war, we live in a world where the men in charge of our defense have to stop work to make sure we didn't get our feelings hurt when an inanimate object called a murderer a mean name before it exploded him. Plus, for fuck's sake, his job title is "Rear Admiral." If he has to live with that all day, he can call anyone he wants to a fag.
Political correctness shouldn't be more important to you than blowing up murderers, fruit loop. If it is, then send out your thanks to the pussies whose tears helped solve our nation's smaller, crappier crisis. Maybe the next bomb they drop can have an apology on it and let them know how much they might enjoy vagina so no terrorists have to die worrying about whether or not our Navy thinks they want to hump asses. You know, personally, if it keeps some maniac from blowing up another airplane, I don't care if the Army decorates its next bomb with the words "Gook Cunt" next to drawings of me riding a goat's fuckhole. In fact, if for some reason they think it will help, they can send a military photographer over to my house and I'll let them take pictures of me doing it. Does that make me more of a true American than the ass rammers who called the Pentagon to cry about "High Jack This Fags"? Duh.
Reaction Five-- Rewriting History
It was a horrible tragedy, and every person and corporation extended their sympathies. This was commendable and everything, but I doubt the horror of the tragedy is more bearable for the victims after they find out Kleenex brand facial tissues offers their full condolences. However, for every celebrity tribute to the heroes of the World Trade Center attack, there's a movie or a TV show scrambling to destroy any evidence that the Twin Towers existed. A new version of Escape From New York is going to be released with all the footage of the Twin Towers digitally removed, radio stations refused to play any song that mentioned the word "airplane," Microsoft Flight Simulator released a patch that allowed users to remove the World Trade Center from the game. People are actually surgically removing one of the most important events in history from history. In a few years, we won't even know what a World Trade Center was, and the people in charge will have thought to extend this Orwellian history rewriting technique to keep us from remembering other tragedies. For example, next year they're rereleasing Grumpier Old Men with the late Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon with Freddie Prinze Jr. and Emilio Estevez. And Schindler's List is going to be rewritten to be about a group of teenagers trying to reunite their divorced parents with the ghost of a skateboarding chimp.
The upcoming rerelease of ET will take out the line "You can't be a terrorist for Halloween!" because it's inappropriate to mention terrorism even if it's a mother discouraging her child from becoming one. Also, the episode of Seinfeld where George's fiance dies from an allergic reaction to envelope glue was pulled from the air because it had the chance of reminding people about Anthrax before they watched the half hour news special about Anthrax. By this point, the entertainment industry was openly mocking people's deaths, and it didn't stop there. People just started cancelling any random thing they wanted. Reverend Jesse Jackson wanted us to cancel Halloween. He actually went on TV and said it was too near to the tragedy to dress up in scary masks. Maybe he was right, he's been to more school than I have, but when I went out on Halloween no one came up to me teary-eyed and said, "Please... take off the Spider-Man suit. It's... it's too soon for me."
Whenever something horrible happens, a few people sit in their basement and piece together the puzzle of a dark government conspiracy. Ever since the government covered up the proof of Space Dracula, we haven't trusted a thing they say. Let's keep it in perspective, though. Sure, the government has committees of people that they hire just to lie to you about Bigfoot, but they're not going to kill thousands of people to get people to stop making fun of how our president is stupid.
I'm sure by now you're asking, "How do these insane conspiracy theories affect you and your life, Sean?" A couple months ago, here in Portland I was at a cabaret. A "cabaret" is what art students call it when they strip. It's more artistic and socially relevant than normal stripping because there are drag queens and people perform little musical skits before they take their tits out. Anyway, in the middle of it, a "burlesque performer" got on the microphone and gave a confusing speech hinting that the war in Afghanistan was not about fighting terrorism, but an elaborate plot to do something sneaky. Before she specified what that was, she said, and I quote, "I like the flag and what it means to me. The stripes, as you probably know, represent rebellion, and I've always liked the fashion of stars... which we might one day return to." Then she danced around in American flag panties to a song about sneaking. Clearly, she was a magnificent dumbass which brings up an important point: it's not a very good conspiracy if even the naked dumbasses know about it. Whoever's in charge of our government's secrecy should be told that our nation's stupid bikini girls know everything.
Getting Back to a Normal Life
Okay, so we all went a little crazy, and maybe all these hysterics proved that the terrorists won. If so, I hope the victory feels good from the battered crater that was just a dirty Afghani cave to begin with, Afghani fuckers. The countryside of your homeland might have been temporary, but getting us to cancel an episode of Seinfeld... good job, that victory will last forever.