Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Change I Will Believe In

So, I am literally sick to my stomach that the Obama DoJ is continuing to claim that national security secrets are at issue in a lawsuit challenging rendition. The case was brought by five men against the airline that the US used to fly them to foreign countries, where they were tortured in connection with the "war on terror." If I had wanted this kind of legalist obstruction to continue, I'd have lobbied to put Dick Cheney on the ballot.

Sure, Obama called for the closing of Guantanamo, but this continuation of Bush legal positions makes me dispair. Are we really not going to get the change I (for one) hoped for?

So, here's my suggestion for the Obama White House--do something to let us know that things are going to be different. An easy first step? How about changing the security threat level occasionally?

Every time I drive past or enter an airport, I get signs and voice messages telling me that the "security threat level is Orange." It's always orange. I mean ALWAYS. It never goes up, it never goes down. I still have to take off my shoes, I can only carry a few liquids in carry-on luggage, and the threat level never ever ever ever changes.

So, throw us a bone, Homeland Security. Switch it up a little. Then let us know. Couldn't there be different levels at different times of day, or seasons, or airline, or day of the week, or something? It's hard to take the idea that anything is any safer than it was on 9/11 if the threat level is exactly the same. Why can't I carry on my diet Coke if flying is no more dangerous than it has been over the last seven years? Why can't I take all my cosmetics and facial cleansers in my carry-on bag if limiting me to what fits inside a single quart bag hasn't changed the equation?

Change. Dudes. Look into it.

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