The Blackburn Questions About Terrorism In The USA
Yesterday in Congress, U.S. Representative Marsha Blackburn was eager to talk about “dangers of President Obama’s reckless refugee resettlement agenda”. What’s causing Blackburn’sattention to this issue? “In my office, we are getting many calls about this as you hear about the new plans that he has and also as our constituents watch the news,” Blackburn explained.
No one in the United States, either this year or last year, has actually been hurt by any refugee from Iraq or Syria. Not a single person. Yet, Marsha Blackburn’s constituents are watching the news, and what they see on TV news shows is making them upset.
If refugees from Iraq and Syria aren’t hurting anybody in the United States, what are Marsha Blackburn’s constituents getting so upset about? Well, there’s the idea that terrorists from Iraq and Syria could engage in terrorist attacks in the United States. Of course, terrorist could come from any country. We could get terrorists from New Guinea, or Nepal, or Luxembourg.
The reality that the risk of actual terrorism from Iraqi or Syrian refugees is profoundly low doesn’t seem to concern Marsha Blackburn. She’s focused on what she thinks Americans should be feeling. Representative Blackburn thinks that Americans should be afraid, and to Americans who aren’t sufficiently afraid, she has proposed the following questions:
“Do you feel more or less safe than you did 8 years ago?
Do you fear the attack of terrorism in your community?
Do you question your safety when you go to a public event?”
Politically-experienced readers will notice something rather unusual about these questions. They don’t ask people to observe the reality of what’s actually happening around them. Instead, Marsha Blackburn’s questions only ask people how afraid they are.
What if Marsha Blackburn asked the people in her congressional district the following questions instead:
Have you been the victim of Islamic terrorism within the last 8 years?
Has there been any Islamic terrorism in your community?
Have terrorists ever attacked any public events that you have attended?
Marsha Blackburn doesn’t dare to ask her constituents these questions, because if she did, her constituents might realize that, actually, they aren’t being attacked by Muslim terrorists. In fact, there has never ever ever been even one Islamic terrorist attack in Marsha Blackburn’s congressional district.
Muslim terrorist attacks are actually extremely rare in the United States. They’re about as common as Christian terrorist attacks, which it to say that they aren’t very frequent.
The United States is actually a fairly safe and secure country. Marsha Blackburn doesn’t benefit if her constituents to feel safe and secure, however, because if her constituents don’t feel scared, they won’t turn out to vote. If Blackburn’s constituents don’t feel scared, they might question the crazy conspiracy theories that Republicans have been promoting since Barack Obama got elected.
If Marsha Blackburn’s constituents weren’t afraid, they might start asking questions of their own, such as: If Barack Obama is really a Muslim secret agent determined to allow hordes of Islamic terrorists into the United States, then how come, after 7 years of being in the White House, Obama hasn’t actually done anything to allow hordes of Islamic terrorists into the United States?
If Republican voters started asking questions like that, Republican politicians would soon be in an awful lot of trouble. Fortunately for politicians like Marsha Blackburn, Republican voters tend to think with their amygdalas, and amygdalas don’t know how to ask critical questions. They just jump into panic mode at the slightest appearance of anything new and unusual.