One month ago in Sanford, FL a 17-year-old African American teenager was murdered. The murderer is known to police; except for the murder, no crime was committed.
Immediately after 9/11, Attorney General John D. Ashcroft said preventing terrorist acts is now more important than punishing crimes after the fact.
Nationwide, police forces, with the cooperation of Homeland Security, effectively deputized all citizens to report any suspicious or perceived untoward behavior. The iWatch program has published a bizarre list of normal human activity which could be viewed as “suspicious behaviors and activities” that you should report.
The underlying reticence of the authorities to treat murder as murder is a demonstration of the plague devastating our legal and, yes, moral sanity.
How is this justified? First, it is “the other.” This can be race, nationality, religion.
Then, we’re given the definition of the other’s bad intentions toward us. Then, knowing those intentions are hostile, we take the sports idea that a good offense is the best defense. Preemption is the fancy word for aggression, to destroy the other for what you believe or are told is in his mind.
A public kept constantly in fear will easily forfeit its rights to authorities who designate themselves as security.
These attitudes towards domestic self-defense and preemption parallel our foreign policy.
Some kind of murder is okay, depending on who does it and who’s murdered.
Like racial superiority, technologically advanced killing devices indicate who should be in charge.
When we deny that warfare is mass murder, we will never learn what Sean Penn’s character in Dead Man Walking said:
“Killin’ is bad. If I do it, if y’all do it, or if the government does it.”
Martin Luther King Jr. said justice delayed is justice denied.
It’s important to know the way Trayvon Martin’s murder is being dealt with is critical to understanding where our country seems to be going.