Yesterday on NPR one of the shows (I think it was “Day To Day”) featured a discussion with land-owners and an assortment of politicians arguing over the building of the fence along the U.S.-Mexican border. Many land owners and citizens in communities along the border are opposed to the construction of the fence; the Bush administration is apparently bypassing several laws and literally just “bulldozing” their way through to build this fence. A link to the story is here.

I was listening to arguments for the fence as shared by Republican congressman Duncan Hunter of San Diego and agreeing with some of his points, but then he said something that I found ridiculous and he completely lost me. To paraphrase his quote: “The fence will stop cocaine from crossing the board and poisoning our children.”

Uh, no.

Border fence aside, if children are doing cocaine then it’s the result of bad parenting and a faulty education system. Building a 1000-mile fence is not going to make bad parents better and it’s not going to make our educational system stronger. This same fence is not going to stop illegal immigrants and drugs from crossing into the U.S. either. It’s a waste of money. It’s a waste of time. And it tramples the rights of many. Remember when the U.S. was the “land of the free” and many aspired to come here?

You know, it must suck to live in a constant state of fear. The current administration has done it’s best to make sure that we are constantly scared. Remember the whole “plastic and duct tape” mess a few years ago? “We might be attacked, by plastic and duct tape to protect your home.” “We have to hear what the bad guys are saying so we have to compromise your freedom and listen into any private phone call anywhere at anytime.” “We need to see what money is going to the Middle East so we are going to monitor all bank transactions.” Land of the Free? Not anymore.

Be afraid, be very afraid. That’s what they want.

The Bible beating crowd is big on fear. “Believe what it is in this book or you’re going to burn, burn, burn in hell.” “Be afraid of Him”. Funny, I always thought that “He” (and I don’t subscribe to that concept of a male God) was an all loving God. To make God into a judgmental, cranky man that will send one of his creations into eternal damnation for eating a burger on Friday* is sort of ridiculous if you really think about the logic.

Here’s the thing. I’m not afraid of much. I’m not afraid of being bombed, I’m not afraid of being gay, I’m not afraid of being gassed by bad meanies from another part of the world, I’m not afraid of being killed. What’s the worst that could happen? That I’ll die? I look at it this way: when it’s my time to go, it’s my time to go. My belief system (which includes reincarnation) tells me that I’ve already sort of planned this go around at life and that in some innate way I’ll know when it’s time to go and I’ll go as I planned before I started all this. Those that remain after I go will learn the lessons that they need to learn from my passing and how I passed, because we sort of discussed it before we were born.

A lot has changed in the 39 3/4 years I’ve been around. Hell, a lot has changed in the past eight years. Do I still believe in the world? I do.

I’m just not afraid of it.

* I have never understood the “no meat on Friday” thing, I’m just using it as a random example and is not meant to offend anyone that believes in that.