I spent a day in Boston this week. And while I have been considering writing about this topic, I hesitated (yes, I hesitated!) as I think it is a wee bit controversial. I am troubled by the lack of criticism regarding the closing of an entire city for a day. Terrorism has a unique effect on people from the U.S.
For example, a friend of my father's who was "locked down" in Watertown, wrote an article about how great a job the police did and how safe they all felt, being protected under what I would call martial law. I humbly disagree. The unarmed, injured 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found BECAUSE people were allowed out of their homes and into their streets. He would not have been spotted had this man not been allowed to check out his boat. And this was in an area outside of the section the police had been searching.
The cost of shutting down a metropolis like Boston was estimated by one analyst in The Washington Post "between $250 million and $333 million per day." http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/04/19/the-entire-city-of-boston-has-shut-down-how-much-will-this-cost/
Others have suggested that closing the city for a one person manhunt demonstrates to terrorists that their individual acts of smaller bombs can have a long range effect of putting an entire city in fear, a tactic that might appeal to them.
I question all of this behavior in response to terrorism. First of all, abortion clinics have been sites of bombings for years and years. Do you recall Boston being shut down in 1994 when the Brookline shootings happened? "According to NAF, since 1977 in the United States and Canada, there have been 41 bombings of abortion clinics." (NAF)
These 41 actions do not include murders, arson and acid attacks on clinics. But I do not recall any "shut down" of a community, town, or city after one of these attacks. An anti-abortion fanatic can bomb abortion clinics all day long with no massive police presence.
My concern for all of this is how easily U.S. citizen, who value freedom, I think, above all else, gave that up so quickly for one 19 year old boy. It was easy. It was quick. No one questioned what was happening.
I expect much more from this country and from our citizens. We are not the "lay down and take it" kind of people. We fight for our beliefs, we debate, we value liberty, but maybe we should begin questioning much more how the media can get us to "do" anything or to "believe" anything, even if they are reporting a request from a Governor or the Chief of Police. Police searched homes, without a warrant, all day long and people allowed it. Protecting us should not mean we are locked in our homes for a day or that we are giving up our 4th amendment rights.
While what happened in Boston was tragic, so were the 41 bombings, 175 acts of arson, 100 butyric acid attacks, 191 assault & batteries, 524 incidents of stalking, 17 attempted murders, and 8 murders. In all violence against abortion clinics, the total is 769 incidents to date. (NAF) This type of terrorism, while ignored by our media and many in our culture, far outweighs what happened in Boston on April 15th.