Some big news was made on Thursday when Senator John McCain called Code Pink protestors, disrupting an Armed Services meeting, “low-life scum”. The forceful statement, perhaps if for no other reason than its lack of PC tact, got lots of headlines.
But, sensationalization of the story allows a most critical question to be overlooked. How is it that easily identifiable, infamous activists, managed to get handcuffs past Capitol Hill Security, and get within inches of 3 former Secretaries of State? While the focus of their anger was directed at Henry Kissinger, top diplomats Madeleine Albright and George Schultz were also literally in reach of the uncivil Code Pinksters.
How could a placard carrying group, with hands painted red, not receive extra scrutiny before entering a smallish Senate Hearing Room filled with so many distinguished Americans? In the interest of context, we’ve been part of a tiny group being given the Capitol Tour, that was delayed 15 minutes, because a miniature, 1inch folding knife, was discovered on someone’s key chain.
So a metal detector and/or subsequent pocket book search could snatch up something a trained ninja couldn’t use to inflict any bodily harm, but a number of full sized shackles got overlooked, and wound up being waved about the head and shoulders of Albright, Schultz, and Kissinger. Yet the main storyline from the day was John McCain’s “brash” declaration. Secondary mentions of the Arizona senator’s outrage over a delayed Capitol Police response got some play, but even McCain’s complaint badly misses the most important point.
There’s “a letter going to the police” and they’ll be “asking for a full investigation”. But investigating what? It would appear they want to find out what took law enforcement so long to arrive on the scene. But the critical issue should be how security allowed notorious dissidents, waving smuggled handcuffs, to lurch at famous government officials in the first place!
If the main concern over Thursday’s disgraceful and potentially dangerous display is to focus on what took the police to long to react, we’re forgetting all that’s been preached about “preventing” tragedies. Evil doers watching the chaos unfold and subsequent response were no doubt greatly heartened by headlines that featured Sen. McCain’s words….but omitted mention of porous security that allowed this incident to so easily unfold.