At 10:40 this morning I received a computer-generated “emergency message” phone call from the San Francisco Unified School District. A recorded woman’s voice informed me that SFUSD, like school districts in several other cities, had received threats of violent acts. The school district assured me the schools have been examined and the threats investigated and there is no danger, therefore schools will remain open as usual.
This half-sounding of an alarm and then assurance the authorities have everything well in hand reminds me of the endless terror alerts after 9/11, the various color-coded threat levels, and the attempt to portray the country as under constant threat of attack. I am concerned about the effect this background noise will have on the ability of Americans to think clearly about their political system, the proposed policies of candidates standing for office, and the violence the US visits upon other lands. Have we always been at war with Eurasia?