August 18, 2006

Visiting America?

The 'security alert' only delayed my flight to Reykjavik by a few hours - arriving at 3am in the end. But the madness of travelling to America is played out each day on the TV. So I have to ask: why continue to visit America? The question is actually academic for me because I decided when Bush bombed Iraq that enough was enough and adopted a personal boycott. I don't expect this effected the Evil Empire but made me feel better. Recall we all enthusiastically boycotted South Africa. I have been interested for a while in the debates that took place in Germany before the Second World War among artist and writers around whether it was better to stay in the country to resist the rise of Nazism or go into exile. Ultimately most of those who stayed were either dead or compromised. After Bush's last election 'win', there was a brief period of talk about liberal Americans emigrating. Whether they did or not isnt my question. Even if my decision is silly to other people, putting aside the political reason for not visiting, the question is: given the immediate definition of criminalisation of any visitor (except Saudis, maybe), the scans, the visas, the body searches, the massive delays, the stupidity of border guards, the laughable panicks, why are people not voting with their feet?

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