Barks At & Bites Its Latest Victim
ZERO PLUS 1189 DAYS,--New York, NY, Tuesday,
December 14, 2004--Bernie
Kerik knows a little about Terrorism. He was the police commissioner
in New York City on September 11, 2001 and witnessed the death
and destruction of both civilians and his own men, dying at
the hands of Terrorism.
This past week
he got another taste of Terrorism. This time it was aimed at
Bush nominated Bernard Kerik to head up Homeland Security
hoisted Bernie Kerik up the political flagpole and nominated
him to be the head of Homeland Security, a key cabinet post
and the pivot point of the president's anti-terrorism platform
that won him a second term.
But as Kerik's
flag flapped in the wind and created a national target for any
and all to take potshots at, a storm hit, tattering Kerik's
reputation and pulling the sheets back on his personal life.
There, in the bed he made, were Terror Demons, one after another,
jumping up and down with glee that the world knew that the man
promoted to become the head of Homeland Security was nothing
more than a moral and ethical Terrorist in his own right.
It seems Mr.
Kerik's past was riddled with character flaws large enough to
drive a truckful of explosives through the gates of 100 Pennsylvania
was an illegal alien and Mr. Kerik had paid no taxes on her
employment. Illegal aliens are a primary concern of Homeland
Security since the flow of them through the U.S.'s porous borders
exaggerates the threat of insurgency.
Then Mr. Kerik's
monetary morality fell into question. It seems he made millions
of dollars selling tazers to Homeland Security and allegedly
misappropriated funds while serving as the police commissioner,
including purchasing a $2,000 pendant from Tiffany's with public
two extra-marital affairs at once in the same love nest
in Battery Park
The icing on
the cake, however, was that despite being married and the father
of two children, he maintained an apartment love nest in Manhattan
and sported two lovers simultaneously, one a female corrections
office and the other the head of a major publishing company.
In one fell
swoop, Bernie Kerik became not the Terror Hunter but the Terrorist,
a man who violated not one but countless principles of Vigilance
necessary to sustain acceptance as the head of the nation's
most coveted security post.
The big question
on everyone's lips was: "How could a man who abused public
money and kept two mistresses on the side, and allegedly had
ties with criminal elements, and ignored the law regarding hiring
illegal aliens, be in charge of protecting the 100 million households
In other words,
"How could a Terrorist of family values be the Sentinel
of Vigilance for them?"
of Homeland Security is about being a sentry
of Homeland Security is not so much about being a policeman
as being a sentry protecting the village from attack.
In days of
old the villagers slept in peace knowing that a sentry or a
number of them were at their posts watching the dark, warning
off intruders that should they try to creep into the village
they would be met with deadly force.
to do his or her job well, had to be the mother or father of
Vigilance for all the villagers. To offer one's life in defense
of the whole is a monumental obligation, one that cannot be
held in contest with selfish needs or goals.
A sentry who
is more concerned about his or her own welfare, warmth, comfort,
sleep, will be disinclined to stand in the freezing rain, hungry
and cold, and keep a Vigilant eye cocked on the horizon, investing
all his or her energy in protecting others despite the discomfort
and threats to the self.
the role of Homeland Security is the role of the Sentinel of
Vigilance. The welfare of the 100 million homes in America has
to come before all other things. The safety of a mother and
her children, of a father and his children, of grandparents
and grandchildren, of the helpless and infirm--all has to be
the first and foremost obligation of the Sentinel of Vigilance.
had other priorities. He had two mistresses and an urgency to
promote himself beyond the law. He became his own demise. He
was his own Terrorist.
dilemma now is for another to take the place of Bernie
Now, the dilemma
is for another to take the place of Bernie Kerik. The president
will nominate another man or woman for the job, but will that
person be flawlessly concerned about the welfare of a 100 million
households and the 300 million people who reside within them?
Or, will the person be thinking first of himself or herself?
This is conundrum
of political appointments, and, the fallacy of anyone who believes
the "government" can protect them from Terrorism.
all about what's inside us. It's about our attitude and outlook
toward protecting our children and their children. Homeland
Security does not belong in Washington D.C., but in each of
the 100 million homes where Terrorism can rear its grotesque
head at any moment and inflict pain and suffering on any and
all in its path.
A child who
is told he or she isn't smart enough, good looking enough, lucky
enough, is being attacked by the Terrorism of a parent's tongue.
There is little difference to such an attack than in driving
a bomb into the soul of the child and letting it explode. The
child's self-image is being destroyed, a chunk here and there,
until the child believes he or she is not as worthy, not as
gifted, not as lucky as, not as attractive as all the other
destruction of a child's soul by a parent's tongue is
no different from an exploding bomb
is the physical abuse of children. That form of Terrorism is
easy to denote but hard to stop, for the Beasts in the parents
often attack the innocence of the child. Beasts of Terror are
is the Beast of Terror within each parent. Mothers and fathers
who look into the mirror and see unhappy or not-as-good-as-others
people, or reflections of a person who has failed to meet his
or her dreams, or considers himself or herself stuck in a rut,
is not a Sentinel of Vigilance.
self-obsessed with his or her station in the world, either above
or below others, has little time to peer out onto the horizon
of a child's inner emotional security and act to protect that
child from the countless Beasts of Terror that infiltrate the
child's pliable sense of worth.
Only when a
parent elects to become a Sentinel of Vigilance, and to fight
his or her Beast of Terror, can Homeland Security be truly installed
in the home.
If Bernie Kerik
serves us any example, he reminds us all that we must first
clean up our own houses before we can clean up others'.
that means whomever is selected for the head of Homeland Security
need be capable of meeting the requirements of cleaning the
houses of 100 million households. To achieve that, the person
needs to have no conflict with personal goals or obligations--similar
to the sentry looking over the village.
But, in practice,
this is impossible.
What is possible
is that a Bernie Kerik reminds us all we need to take care of
our own backyard before we try to clean up the rest of the nation.
That is possible.
lesson to us is that we must clean up our own backyards,
get on the right road and be our own head of our Homeland
If we all become
Sentinels of Vigilance and vow to fight our own Beast of Terror
so that we might be better able to protect our children and
their children from its Fear, Intimidation and Complacency,
then we're on the right road.
So if Bernie
Kerik taught us anything, it's that we must be our own head
of Homeland Security.
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