While my Twitter account probably reflected my displeasure at being smooshed in Union Station this weekend by legions of un-city aware (read: in-my-way) tea party protesters, it got me thinking about issues where they could do good. Here are the 3 I came up with:
- Reforming airport security. Not only does the current system not work, but the major effect of security theater is to cow travelers into complying, and enforcing fear of our own government. It is harmful, useless, and above all, dumb (although Blogger Bob deserves props for taking to social media to defend his wretch of an agency). The TSA is the perfect example of a bloated government program full of sinecures, whose staff are imbued with a lack of respect for rights to physical privacy.
- Jobs for young men. Nearly everywhere I’ve lived, a lack of meaningful work for men my age has been a smoldering issue. Whether it is the young men in San Jose who turn to gangs because they cannot make a living anyway else, or the young men in Qatar who waste away on boring, government supported jobs, it is a tragic problem. We as a species need to find a way for young men to do meaningful, fulfilling work that will keep them away from ugly drugs and extremism.
- Better free speech rights for students. Ever since the 1960s, student rights to free speech have been slowly eroded, training generation after generation that authority-figures can determine how they discuss and express their beliefs, and what slogans they can wear. Will they suddenly know how to participate effectively in a democracy once they leave the prison-camps of their middle and high schools?
Each of these issues needs new ideas, new perspectives, and new boots to move forward. They also all should be attractive to folks who believe in strong personal responsibility and independence, with a smidgen of anti-government suspicion and a dash of original-construction fervor.
“In the headlong rush to “fix” security after the Underwear Bomber’s unsuccessful Christmas Day attack, there’s been far too little discussion about what worked and what didn’t, and what will and will not make us safer in the future.”–Bruce Schneider