It’s A Mystery

Today found me thinking about the great mysteries of life. Ok, well, not really. But it did find me thinking about questions that should have very obvious answers, yet they do not.

The most bizarre of these mysteries came from a friend tonight who asked me why Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner decided to have a sex change operation. While I have been accused of being a deep thinker, my brain cannot wrap itself around this idea. Although I don’t sit down and discuss such matters with men, if social media outlets deliver any ounce of truth, then it stands to reason that men in general enjoy their male anatomy.

With this in mind, one must ask, “Why would Bruce want to have his penis removed?” Try as I might, I simply have no answer.

Now, just to be sure, I am still uncertain as to whether Mr./Ms. Jenner has actually had this surgery performed. I did my due diligence and searched for articles regarding this matter, but none of the sources I found have any more credibility than a Kardashian does. I guess enquiring minds will have to wait.

A less crazy, yet more disconcerting mystery, was brought to mind this morning before I had even had a cup of coffee (I desperately needed the coffee in order to realize what was taking place). As I mentioned in an earlier post, a small town in Middle Tennessee has now doubled in population overnight as Bonnaroonies have descended for the annual music festival. After over a decade of handling this event, both the planners and the state highway patrol have gotten very good at dealing with this population explosion.

About three heartbeats after Bonnaroo was first planned, law enforcement realized there would be illegal drugs there. Each year they have set up inspection points at the gates and every car is subject to being searched for any illegal substance. While attendees have gotten better at hiding their drugs, law enforcement has stepped up their game, too.

This morning I pulled into a fast food restaurant and there were four TN Highway Patrol cars parked. Zipping through the drive thru, I collected my dose of caffeine and headed back toward the interstate, but the patrol cars beat me to the road. I really didn’t want to follow them onto the interstate, but I wouldn’t have to. All four cars headed in the opposite direction – toward Bonnaroo.

Later in the day I read a report that revealed that the state would indeed be sending more state troopers to the county in which the event is held. While my Libertarian friends are angered by this, I have no problem at all with it. If there is a drug, or any other, problem at such a massive event, it needs to at least be monitored, and, if possible, fixed. There are potential safety risks for attendees should this issue go unchecked.

Anyone with a brain cell understands that there will be illegal drugs at such an affair. Well, if the drugs, users, and dealers are going to be at a music festival, then it makes sense for the highway patrol to be there and catch them. As the late bank robber, Willie Sutton, is presumed to have said, you go to banks “because that’s where the money is.”

It’s been argued, though, that this is essentially profiling. If you want to catch the druggies, just show up at the hippie music fest and arrest anyone wearing a tie dyed shirt or who hasn’t had a shower in a couple of days. You’re bound to get the right ones. Right?

While our law enforcement officers do a much more thorough job of finding perpetrators at Bonnaroo, we can’t say as much about the TSA agents at the airports. If ever profiling was needed, it is at our airports. In a few weeks, I have to take a business trip that will involve some flight time. Like all other passengers, I will have to remove everything from my pockets, place my shoes in a basket on a conveyor belt, and subject myself to the naked body picture machine, all because of the actions of terrorists.

Just so you know, every terrorist who has attempted to blow up an airplane has been either a Muslim, a male, had dark hair, or never painted their toenails. All of them fit into at least two of those categories and most meet all four criteria.

Keep in mind that I’m Christian, female, have brassy blonde hair, and paint my toenails in bright colors. Now, explain to me the great mystery of why I have to remove my shoes?

Is it really too much to ask for the TSA to use targeted methods to find the bad guys? We know this has worked in Israel for years and they profile like crazy at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport! “The personnel on duty at Ben Gurion are highly trained army graduates who have specialized skills in detection and interrogation.” These soldiers are holding onto their assault rifles and staring potential flyers in the eye as they pass through security. Does it work? The one terrorist who was able to board with a knife in 2002 was quickly subdued by air marshals. One terrorist. Ever. And nobody boarding in Tel Aviv has to take off their shoes. Ever.

If we’re going to go after the bad guys (and we should), let’s go after them strategically. Let’s use some common sense techniques and put the right people at the right place. Let’s prioritize and go after what really matters. Unlike Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner and his/her anatomy, this really is not a mystery.

~Temerity Dowell

Information on Bonnaroo:

Information on Ben Gurion Airport Security:

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