Letter to the Editor: Brussels, bicycles and talk of terrorism

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April 5, 2016

Remember “Brussels?” It’s in Europe, or was last week, or parts of it were. For our troubles, I’d recommend an OTC (over-the-counter) tranquilizer — “R.E.A.D.” (That’s Resistance, Evasion, Avoidance, Denial). Works fine for now.

Our “leaders” employ it effectively. They labeled the Fort Hood jihadist massacre (you do remember), as “workplace violence,” nothing more or else.

They tag the Islamic State as a “junior-varsity” league on-the-run (As against what our lying eyes perceive). Heck, they can’t even employ an I-word or an M-word (Meaning, of course, “Insurgency” and “Military,” what else?).

Brussels was preceded (we remember) by Paris, Madrid, London, Mumbai, Bali, others.

In fact, by all of 27,000 terrorist attacks since 9/11 (Or so claims thereligionofpeace.com). Plus even earlier ones—U.S.S. Cole, Lebanon barracks (Oh, even way back: Vienna in 1683, etc.—and no, we didn’t forget, just never heard).

In the 1930’s, pacifist Britons found R.E.A.D. effective. So what if Hitler had clearly announced plans in the 1920’s. Although, for some unfortunates (Winston Churchill), our miracle drug didn’t work. Side-effects included his pesky, irritating warnings. Currently, the IS broadcasts loudly: “Coming soon to a reality near you” (But they might be bluffing).

The point to all this: an expert surmises that although the 3,000 casualties of 9/11 didn’t rouse us, “300,000 fatalities might perhaps do so; and 3,000,000 American deaths finally would”  (Pearl Harbor, on a memorable Dec. 7, required fewer).

In horror films, a “Turnaround” is when the subjugated victims finally, pro-actively, arise and attack the Threat.

This summer, I plan to visit friends in California, bicycle between Milwaukee-Chicago, and do some visual-art work. Sounds like a plan. Join me?

Brian Kevin Beck

Emeritus Associate Professor, UW-W