August 12, 2006

Musings in transit

The lineup through security at Vancouver airport was much longer than usual. I'm accustomed to passing through security in under five minutes, with a total entrance-to-gate time never exceeding ten minutes. Today, the lineup took at least fifteen minutes on it's own. As usual, I passed through the metal detector without triggering any alarm, and so no additional search was done. Security quickly checked my laptop, then let me proceed on my way.

I got off much better than most. I saw security agents searching the bags of hundreds of passengers, grabbing any toothpaste and deodorant they could find, tossing the "suspicious" toiletry in a trash can. I was encouraged by the fact that no special attention seemed to be given to the visibly South Asian or Arab passengers. Everyone was inconvenienced equally.

All things considered, I'm satisfied that the worst fallout of the alleged attacks was long lineups and wasted toothpaste.

There was a Chinese man in front of me in the line, while a Caucasian man chatted on his cell phone next to me, informing someone that he expected to miss his flight. The Chinese man informed the Caucasian that there was a delay, so he need not worry. I asked him which flight was delayed.

"All of them," he growled in his heavy Chinese accent. "They're all late."

I was a bit relieved, as I was cutting things short myself, and may have missed my flight if there were no delay. The Chinese man then turned to me, his voice dripping with anger.

"F**k the America," he said. "If there were no American, there would be no problem."

Touché. The thought crossed my mind that I should defend the average American against his hateful statement; something along the lines of, "there are still lots of good people in America. Don't blame the average American for their corrupt government." I opted instead to remain silent, and let the man believe whatever he wants. I recognized that anything I say could be misconstrued; the Chinese guy can say whatever he wants, but if those words were heard coming from my lips? I could very well be arrested.

It's funny; the powers that be want us to believe that the "terrorists" hate the West, and seek to destroy the Western values of freedom and democracy. I wish people would wake up. Nobody "hates your freedom". But many do hate your government. They hate the government that has lied to the world, killing hundreds of thousands of innocent people to get oil. They hate the government that pumps billions of dollars into the defense of a Zionist, fascist government while overlooking problems on it's own soil. They hate the government that is run by inept, arrogant, and spoiled brats, pushed into power by wealth and greed.

"But we can't forgot 9/11," they say. "Remember what happened on 7/7?" This quickly becomes the catch-all justification for any military action, no matter how ineffective and atrocious. But on the other side of the fence, there are people who are asking themselves, remember 9/19? Remember 3/12? Remember 7/16? Remember 7/30? The list goes on and on, and that's only within the last year. And people still wonder why such hatred exists.

And it's not just "angry Moslems" who hate that government. It's the Chinese guy at Vancouver airport. It's the Canadian guy in the cubicle next to you. It's the black man in the sewage water flooding New Orleans. And it's the child who lost his parents, their lives destroyed under the artillery paid for by that government. Say all you want, that child doesn't hate your freedom. He hates that bomb that you dropped on his home. And nothing you say will change his mind.


  1. Hmm. Well, I for one, hate their freedom.

  2. Assalaamu'alaykum

    The irony of it all is that America's freedom and democracy is a myth (and Canada's, to a lesser extent, too) . They're in a state of narcosis where they can't see they they do not have 'freedom' or democracy for that matter.

    If they do have freedom, it is only in that they hadn't been attacked by enemy forces - not until September 11th. The class structure in America is so dramatically stratified where the rich only seem to get richer while the poor fall deeper and deeper into poverty and hardships. As for democracy in America..hmm..I wonder if it has ever existed never mind that it ceases to exist now. But then, what do I know about American history anyway...

    America's secret about what a lousy job they do for their citizens was probably best illustrated with the after events of Hurricane Katrina. Suffice to say, there is no 'democracy' in America nor freedom. Worst of all, they are prisoners of their own ignorance if they continue believe such fallacies.

  3. Farzeen, you're right, there's no democracy, freedom, or government services in America. Or indoor plumbing. Or food. Or water. Don't believe what you see on TV.

    I actually have it on good authority that America itself doesn't actually exist. It's something that the Dutch came up with in order to get rid of New York in the seventeenth century.

  4. Shan: Okay, so you hate their freedom. I hate their freedom fries.

    Sister Farzeen: Wa'alaykum assalam wa rahmatullah,

    As much I dislike American policy, US does still respect many personal freedoms that are missing in much of the rest of the world. It's easy to look at the Guantanamo Bays and the Katrinas and paint the whole country with one bitter brush, but the sad reality is that many Muslims are much better off in the States than in most of the Muslim world.

    That reputation of freedom is quickly declining, however, and the country is becoming more and more of a police state, with privacy laws being trampled left and right. The democracy they celebrate is quickly becoming meaningless; the majority of the population disagrees with the action of the government, but are powerless to do anything about it. That's not democracy, as best as I can tell. It's also shameful how far any political structure strays from a meritocracy; there are imbeciles driven to power only by wealth on each side. No one is really there because they have the wisdom or intellect to be there.

    I agree that many are prisoners of their own ignorance. Many are simply not aware that their rights are being thrown out the window under the guise of national security.

    Adeel: Welcome to IO. Your sarcasm aside, there are still thousands of people who don't have indoor plumbing, food, or water, with no access to government services in the aftermath of Katrina. It's not just New Orleans; that's just the big one that gets the media, and consequently, the most aid. There are many small towns and villages that have been completely neglected, and remain in ruins even today.

    US needs a good dose of a minority government. Get a bunch of other viewpoints in there, and have them yell at each other for a few years. That should shake things up a bit.