Thursday, July 05, 2007

Crossed lines

I don't know about you, but the reactions of certain members of the public at Glasgow Airport on Saturday have made me feel a lot better about us. There is the by-now superstar John Smeaton with his

You’re nae hitting the polis, mate. There’s nae chance.

There's also a taxi driver, Alex McIlveen, who had just dropped off a passenger. He saw the jeep crash and the two terrorists jump out and start on everyone around them as if they were on something chemical and noxious. One of them

kicked and punched a man to the ground before punching a policeman square in the face. That’s when I saw red. That sort of thing just isn’t on.

As Mark Steyn does not tire of pointing out, the only ones to fight back on 9/11 were the people on United 93 who didn't rely on the authorities. They did what they had to do and what they had to do, they did.

But Smeaton and McIlveen also remind me of special kind of American hero. Specifically, of Will Kane in High Noon. Not big on the exegesis or the footnotes is Will. When it comes to expressing himself, he does it by acting, not by talking. The rest of the town talks and talks and does nothing. Kane knows what's right, and so he does it. Very simple really. At a certain point, you stop understanding or making excuses; a line is crossed, and you act. But the line must be clear (see the post about Magdi Allam below).

It seems that Glaswegian taxi drivers and baggage handlers have a certain clarity of vision that is denied to so many of their 'betters'.

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