By Yochanan Gordon

The sights and sounds of the Boston Marathon bombings were met by all with shock and dismay. By all, I mean nearly all, aside from the Jordanians who reportedly were celebrating upon hearing of the successful terror strike, along with, I imagine, many other bloodthirsty Muslim extremists seeking daily to bring Israel and the West to their knees.

“Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” were not just words written into the American Declaration of Independence by our founding fathers; they represent the ideals and the bedrock upon which American life was founded.

Since the beginning, while America sought to put its best foot forward in forging and securing relations with the nations of the world, we simultaneously knew deep down to distinguish between friend and foe. The Obama administration has blurred the lines between friend and foe in calls for liberty for all and equality for the entire human race. This, in my estimation, is a perversion of the Life, Liberty and pursuit of Happiness that our founding fathers had in mind.

Today, many Americans walk the streets in fear and apprehension, looking forward and backward as if scared of their own shadows, hoping they won’t be blown up by an imposter who has reached these shores in pursuit of a very different life, liberty, and happiness. Today mothers send their children off to school not just with a kiss but a prayer that they will come back laughing and playing, looking ahead to another day of school and a bright future–one of real life, real liberty, and the ability to pursue their dreams as Americans who seek a peaceful world, not just for themselves but peace for all people, races, and ethnic groups.

Freedom is not just an external expression, it is a deep-rooted reality. If someone is driven by criminal or terroristic intent, he or she is, by definition, enslaved to those destructive impulses. If that man or woman happens to be American, there are ways to deal with them and to regulate their situation. There is community service, jail, therapy and other means through which a person could rethink their misdeeds and, if interested, correct them going forward. But if a person succeeded in crossing the ocean to these shores on the basis of freedom to undermine the true freedom that our forefathers lived and died for, we are being robbed of everything that we have been promised as Americans.

There are hundreds or perhaps thousands of citizens who hail from the Middle East who have established lives in this country based on the ideals of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for themselves and their children and have adapted to these ideals. They deserve the right to live peacefully on these shores. However, there must be a system in place to distinguish between those that have come here in search of a life away from the oppressiveness that they and their ancestors knew back home and those that have come to impose their extremist views and wreak havoc, compromising our freedom and undermining the openness of American society and using it against us.

We know just how touchy the subject of racial profiling is and how it is against the Obama way of doing things. But just how does Mr. Obama plan on addressing the root of this issue, stopping these incidents before they change the lives of Americans? Just how many sacrifices are we required to offer before we close the door on this newfound sadness that has become a mainstay in the once-free American life? Israel has long figured out a way to interrogate airplane passengers without trespassing on people’s privacy or being inconsiderate of people’s sensitivities.

Early reports following the explosions credited Israelis with briefing Boston General Hospital on how to react in the face of mass casualties. There is no doubt that the manner in which medical personnel dealt with the wounded succeeded in reducing the numbers of fatalities. America ought to learn a thing or two from its closest ally, namely how to root out terrorists and ultimately improve the quality of life.

As things now stand, the freedom espoused in America is helping terrorists live and operate in our midst, and that is a direct affront to Americans looking to live peaceful lives as we always have on these shores. It’s an oppressive freedom and it’s just unacceptable. Soon the dust of this tragedy will settle and the afflicted will have to adjust to their new realities. At the same time, we hope that the current administration will be hard at work inventing ways to maintain the rights that we have always been afforded as Americans. For the time being, we have been robbed of those basic rights.

The First Amendment protects the rights of Americans to freedom of expression. Last I checked, however, nowhere does it state freedom of oppression. Let’s see to it that our president enforces that and protects our basic right to live happy, fruitful lives to pursue the abundant good that this world has to offer. v

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