Thursday, 11 March 2010

Standing Naked in the Gap

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Becky AkersIf you’re wondering what’s wrong with the country, you have only to watch American Christians’ acquiescence as government’s agents strip passengers naked at airports.

The federal Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has lusted since 2002 to search passengers with the same technology prisons use: whole-body scanning peers through clothing to show exactly what its name implies. That outrage had passengers resisting each time the TSA tried to push them into these gizmos. Then Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab wore explosive underwear for his flight to Detroit — a stunt the TSA immediately exploited. Never mind that Abdulmutallab boarded his flight despite the agency’s iron-fisted control of American aviation, even when it originates overseas, nor that whole-body scanning would not have discerned the bomb in his boxers. The TSA failed to stop him, so now it gets to ogle passengers.

The TSA and its useful idiots in the media continue to insist that even as the agency strips us naked, it has “implemented strict measures to protect passenger privacy.” Baloney. By any measure, whole-body scanning violates simple decency and Christian precepts. The Bible repeatedly prohibits nudity; the Almighty condemns it as a crushing humiliation and punishment; the New Testament commands “modest apparel.”

So you might assume that American churches now resound with denunciations of the TSA, its wickedness, and its violation of God’s Word. Christian organizations are no doubt circulating petitions while Christian publications editorialize against the Feds and urge their readers to civil disobedience. And individual Christians are either boycotting airports, or, if they absolutely must fly, refusing to comply with the TSA while reciting St. Peter’s thrilling response to earlier dictators, “We ought to obey God rather than men.”

Nope. For such courage and conviction, we turn to Moslems.

The Salt Lake Tribune reported Tuesday, “Concerns about the grainy body images produced by the scanners prompted the 18-member Fiqh Council of North America to issue a fatwa, or religious edict, which said the scanners violate Islamic law. …’It is a violation of clear Islamic teachings that men or women be seen naked by other men and women,’ the edict said. ‘Islam highly emphasizes 'haya' [modesty] and considers it part of faith.’"

The Council advises followers to “choose” a groping instead, as though molestation isn’t as diabolical as compulsory nudity. How unfortunate that the imams swallow the TSA’s Kool-Aid about offering a “choice” — as though an assailant who threatens to break either your legs or arms somehow redeems himself by letting you decide which.

There’s another option, however, and it’s the only true one: abolish the TSA. Let airlines assume responsibility for their own security, as do other industries, rather than sponging off taxpayers to the tune of $7 billion annually.

Around the time the Council was fatwa-ing, a Moslem woman at England’s Manchester Airport forfeited her £400 ticket rather than violate her faith. Britain’s rulers are usually a few years ahead of ours when it comes to destroying liberty; the TSA will eventually abandon its pretense of “choice” and require virtual strip-searches for every passenger on every flight while Britain now does so for “randomly selected” victims. Our heroine lost her bet that she wouldn’t be chosen, collected her luggage, and left the airport rather than surrender to such evil. Why can’t I imagine any American Christian, whether he’s an evangelical pledging allegiance to the “Republic” as part of his weekly worship or a mainline liberal urging the government to steal money from us for abortionists, showing even a tenth of Miss Moslem’s integrity?

Orthodox Jews have also taken a stand against the national strip-tease, albeit a weaker one. “Agudath Israel, an Orthodox Jewish umbrella group, has told lawmakers that scanners should be used only on passengers who had failed metal detectors. In a letter to Congress, the group called full-body imaging ‘offensive, demeaning and far short of acceptable norms of modesty’ within Judaism and other faiths.” Psst, guys: abolish the TSA, for pity’s sake.

But at least they protested, though mildly. Contrast that with the apathetic silence and craven submission of American Christians. An editor at Christianity Today, which bills itself as “a magazine of evangelical conviction,” published a blog in which she admits that “No major Protestant groups have issued statements about the scanners.” Why in hell — and I use that term advisedly — not?

Instead, the editor falls back on Miss Moslem’s story and a clarion call from a Catholic nun against “a ‘revelation’ of the body that takes place anonymously, apart from personal communion, in which I am being revealed to someone I cannot see or know; whose reaction I cannot gauge; whose trustworthiness with the sacredness of my body's image I am asked to take on the good faith of the [TSA].” Amen.

Even the godless ACLU protests the TSA’s pornography, yet Christianity Today’s editor scrupulously refrains from criticism. Nor does she bother citing Scripture. She also makes the mistake of asking readers their opinion — never a wise move in these dumbed-down times. Weep as the spiritual, intellectual, and moral bankruptcy of modern American “Christianity” parades itself: “I have had a full body scan before, and I will not mind having it again. It is a breeze…,” says one apostate, also ignoring the Bible that is supposed to be our Guidebook through this present world. Another announces, “I'm Catholic … and have no objections to a full body scan. Electronic strip searching is fast and easy….” Do you suppose there’s any hoop, however immoral or obscene, through which this serf would hesitate to jump so long as our masters permit her to board her flight? A third eagerly trades freedom and righteousness for the TSA’s illusion of safety: “I mean, it had to come to this! Right? They [sic] really are weirdos [sic] out there who want you and all the other passengers on the flight to join them in ‘paradise’ with or without your permission.”

We expect such contemptible compromise with evil from pagans and the heathen — but from those who name the name of Christ? Where is the Church’s traditional hostility to the State, its refusal to bow the knee to Satan’s citadel of government even if it means torture and death? Where is the “firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence” that equipped earlier Americans to defy the most powerful government on earth?

Christians are called to be a light to the world, salt that retains its savor, a city set on a hill. Instead, they’ve become cheerleaders for the State, regardless of its vile iniquity.

No wonder America’s oppressive, corrupt, and belligerent empire rivals Rome’s at its worst.

Becky Akers, an expert on the American Revolution, writes frequently about issues related to security and privacy. Her articles and columns have been published by, The Freeman, Military History Magazine, American History Magazine, the Christian Science Monitor, the New York Post, and other publications.

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