Stephen Harper Not Quite Ready

Header-image-StephenBy Robert K Stephen

(PARIS, FRANCE) – There is nothing like an unexpected incident in one’s life to shine a spotlight on reality. My incident was a bomb scare at Orly Airport in France.

After checking in and heading to security, a group of heavily armed French soldiers began using whistles and forced back hundreds of people into a safe zone. An unclaimed piece of luggage on a baggage carousel caused a high alarm and, considering recent jihadist events in France, I happily took the slight inconvenience of this incident as a genuine attempt to safeguard my physical security.

A French soldier stands guard at Orly Airport in Paris. Robert Stephen says he would feel more comfortable seeing the same security measures in Canada.Photo by Robert Stephen.

A French soldier stands guard at Orly Airport in Paris. Robert Stephen says he would feel more comfortable seeing the same security measures in Canada.
Photo by Robert Stephen.

The bomb squad was sent in and apparently all was in order.

Now, in Canada, do we see any military presence at our airports? About all that I can see is police handing out parking tickets and an occasional beagle sniffing for salami or cheese.

Is this a heightened level of security to deter those jihadists who are looking to kill and maim?

And the amount of unclaimed baggage sitting around at Pearson after my flight from Paris was astounding. What causes extreme alarm in France is unnoticed in Canada, yet Stephen Harper seems to think our safety is best assured by bombing missions in Syria.

Personally, I’d rather have some heavily armed Canadian Forces personnel patrolling our airports. Beagles are cute, but not a good defence for terrorists looking for seven virgins in heaven.

The security continues in Lyon, France, at the main train station where, once again, heavily armed soldiers patrol the station.

No tasers to be used by Mounties, but automatic rifles and pistols.

In Canada, don’t even expect to see beagles at a train station protecting your safety. Our airports and train stations are disasters waiting to happen.

You and I are at risk of death or physical harm at very public places because there is no military deterrent visible. Our prime minster has failed to take the French approach to public safety.

I am uncertain what burka he is hiding behind but, as far as I see it, he is not quite ready to protect my safety at home where it counts.

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About the Author

Robert Stephen (CSW)
Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he loves The Square. His motto is "Have Story, Will Write." Email Robert Stephen