Have We Lost Our Collective Mind?

The “Pantybomber”

I don’t need to go into all the details about Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab’s attempt to blow up a Northwest flight on Christmas Day. Somehow, even though his name was on a watch list, and even though his own father had contacted authorities to express concern over his beliefs and behavior, he got on this flight. He also was able to hide explosives in his underwear, leading commentators to dub him the “Pantybomber.” Cute, but this was a dangerous man who wanted to kill everyone on that aircraft. He nearly succeeded.

And the system failed, regardless of the early claims by Janet Napolitano.

One of our biggest problems has become the fear of “profiling.” We don’t want to be accused of being insensitive. Sometimes I think we’re more concerned for the feelings of the terrorists [if we can bring ourselves to call them what they really are] than innocent American citizens. By the way, the primary responsibility of a government is to protect its citizenry.

Political cartoons make their point by exaggeration [most of the time], but there’s a lot of truth conveyed via these exaggerations. Take this one, for example.

There was a flap a few months ago about having soldiers on the battlefield read Miranda rights to enemies captured in battle. I don’t think that’s been debunked entirely. Who knows what the future may hold?

Are we more concerned for those who want to destroy the United States than our own military personnel who are trying to stop them?

Now the man who wanted to blow up the plane is going to be tried in a court of law as a criminal, not as a terrorist. This means he has all the rights of an American citizen. He gets a court-appointed attorney; he doesn’t have to testify against himself; he is treated as presumed innocent until proven guilty despite being caught in the act. As many have said—this is absurd.

This terrorist was living in a million-dollar apartment in Britain. His father is wealthy. His actions have nothing to do with poverty or with being oppressed. They come straight from his radical Muslim beliefs. Yet we have been shipping some of the Guantanamo prisoners back to places like Yemen [from where he was trained in jihad and sent on this mission], somehow thinking this is winning their hearts. Rather, they again join up with their radical compatriots and plan further attacks.

The outcry against this policy has been so strong that the administration has had to back off for now, but there’s no guarantee, once the furor had died down, that it won’t start doing so again.

Have we lost our mind as a nation? Not entirely. Polls now show that 40% of the electorate consider themselves conservative, while only 21% are willing to put on the liberal label. Despite the last election, overall, this is still a conservative-leaning electorate. They were fooled by their own lack of principles in 2008. Are they getting enough of a shock to reverse their choice next time? It remains an open question.

Of course, as I always do, I must point to worldviews. Only those with a solid Biblical worldview have a basis for understanding key principles. The goal is to help people see the wisdom of that worldview.