Monday, September 17, 2007

The unsung hero of the Larry Craig case

I know Larry Craig is probably old news by now, and I've certainly beat the dead horse off...uh...too many puns... Anyway, I hadn't given the matter any further thought, even despite my recent trip through several airports. Today, however, Barbara Ehrenreich raised a point that had not yet occurred to me:
Short of some undisclosed evidence that the 9/11 killers were closeted Wahabist gays, you may wonder, as I do, why - with the "threat level" at an ominous orange - agents of the law are being deployed to detect people of alternative sexualities. Larry Craig was apprehended by a man apparently consigned to spend his entire day on the can, watching for errant fingers. Possibly this fellow has some intestinal issues which made this a necessary posting. But, sphincter control permitting, could he not have been more usefully employed, say, interviewing passengers as to their willingness to blow themselves up to score some theological point?
How long, exactly, did this vice cop spend on that particular can, just waiting for somebody to tap their feet and do something with their fingers? How many superiors did this cop have to piss off to get this duty? And what happens if, say, he spends an entire eight-hour shift sitting in a stall...waiting...waiting...and no one taps their feet or does anything to invite attention--what kind of impact will that have on that officer's self-esteem? I mean, eight hours and nobody wanted to give him a bathroom hummer??? That has to be hurtful on some level, be it professional or personal.

There actually is a more serious point to make here. The "threat level" does seem to still be hovering around orange, meaning that we should all be generically afraid and thank Bush for the safety we have--but given that "high" risk, can we afford to lose even a single law enforcement officer to "stall duty"? Unless, of course, the next terrorist plot is to unleash a mass public fellating in men's rooms everywhere.

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