Uncommon Sense

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I like people, books, and technology. That mostly explains me.

Thursday, October 24, 2002

Ron Lantz Finds the Beltway Snipers

Ron Lantz says he's not a hero. I think he's something even better.

He's an American.

Cheers of course to the police, FBI, ATF, and other officials who took down two murderous wackos Wednesday night. But it wouldn't have happened without Ron Lantz, ordinary American.

If there is one lesson that has been driven home time and again in the first 14 months of the Terror War, it is that ordinary Americans are a key line of defense. The name of Ron Lantz should be mentioned in the same breath as the heroes who fought the Flight 93 hijackers, and the heroic passengers and flight attendants who subdued the shoe bomber.

This is the way it should be. For too long we have trusted our defense, internal and external, to the "experts." Now don't get me wrong, our firemen and cops and soldiers are among the very best Americans you can meet. But the common defense is the responsibility of all us, and as Ron Lantz shows, we are up to the task.

Free people are vigilant people. It is not enough to trust the experts to protect us. We, each of us, must be the eyes and ears of America. When appropriate, we should act ourselves; when the experts are needed, we should call them in as Ron Lantz did.

Let's roll.