As long as there’s terrorism, no other laws should be enforced

Originally posted 2006-08-25 00:27:21. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

And certainly not petty, unimportant ones like intellectual property laws. That’s what Corante’s Alex Wexelblat argues:

Apparently There Are No More Terrorists

How do I know this? Well, I don’t. I can only infer it from the fact that the Department of Homeland Security is picking up people at the border for apparently nation-threatening involvement in T shirt copyright infringement. No, seriously.

Courtesy of Bruce Schneier’s CRYPTO-GRAM, I was pointed to this gem, titled “Terrorist in a bootleg T-shirt”. According to the piece’s author, he was detained and questioned on entry into the US not on account of his time in the middle east, nor on account of his extensive phoning back and forth while in Pakistan. Instead, he apparently upset someone by selling Boston Celtics’ sportswear without a license in Boston in 2003.

My fellow Americans, this is our tax dollars at work.

“He apparently upset someone” by selling counterfeit merchandise. That’s how you describe and trivialize a law you don’t like. (He doesn’t like the Lanham Act?) “Apparently there are no terrorists.” I don’t even know the name for this logical fallacy, but it’s a beaut. I wonder what would be an acceptable law enforcement action for Wexelblat as long as there are terrorists afoot who, evidently, are flooding across the border right under the noses of the Department of Homeland Security.

The good news is he’s only a scientist and busybody, not a lawyer and busybody (say, like me) from whom we would not expect to hear such silliness about things like law. I suppose I could offer not to offer opinions about, uh, “systems (sometimes called Community Support Systems or Digital Ecologies“) if he stows his deep concepts about IP law, but I don’t appear to be part of his digital ecology and am probably more akin to someone who would get “upset” about piracy and therefore mere static.

MIT’s noodling-around fellowship dollars at work, I guess.

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Author:Ron Coleman

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