If you are an urban dweller who frequents malls and other buildings or attends events you will agree that ‘checks’ are the-new-thing-that–I- wish-never-happened. They are here for good reason – I know. With plenty of people walking around with the intention of killing as many people as possible, we need to do something to try and deter them. I hate the checks all the same.
I used to hate having to leave my ID at the reception (I still do, by the way, is it legal for the security guard at a building reception to retain my ID even for a few minutes?)
Now there’s something I hate even more, and that’s having to open up my bag for a stranger to peep through. I have taken to walking around with my bag open just so I don’t have to open it up! And for a mere peep through! I think that if a proper search were done I would not hate it as much because I would justify it by telling myself it’s for stopping bad people from taking bits of arsenal into a building until they have enough to kill hundreds of people. But a glance through the hole at the top of my bag (I never open the zip all the way) is all I get for this invasion. So on top of the fear is this awkwardness that doesn’t make me feel any safer. At some places you go through the scanner while your bag doesn’t, only for a scared security guard to merely peek at a potential carrier of deadly stuff. Sometimes the open space beside the scanner can accommodate 10 bad people while the good ones queue to go through the scanner.
It’s a new feeling, this feeling of insecurity and having to submit to inefficient and insufficient checks. This feeling that someone who has no clue who I am and what obstacles I have overcome to be here today, like this, could snuff the life out of me just like that. It’s a strange feeling knowing that despite the show many of the premises I walk into several times a week are no safer because the security has really not improved. I imagine it’s an outlandish feeling for the security guard who hasn’t been trained or coached well enough to overcome personal biases. I mean which normal person goes through strangers’ bags? To do so with confidence and accuracy the security guards need to change their beliefs about it. From what I see, this has not happened.
This year I am intentionally taking time to do interrogate my inhibitions and to do what I do masterfully and meaningfully.