"Professor Spiro comments, “Following 9/11, U.S. society reacted by constructing a complicated and largely useless “security theater.” Policies give the appearance of keeping control and protecting people against existential threats, but in reality they do very little.”
According to Professor Spiro, the foundation of the author's claims is “ what scholars call “risk irrationality.”
Reviewer Spiro also comments on the symbolic rebuilding of the ground zero site, namely the “Freedom Tower” now under construction and slated to reach 1776 feet (if the television antenna on top is counted in its official height). Spiro concurs with Professor Molotch in questioning this endeavor and points out that one of the author’s friends has named it the “Bomb Me First Building.” Reviewer Spiro offers his own suggestion towards questioning the rationale behind this rebuilding effort:
" I suggest subsidizing a lease for the top floors to the Target Corporation, with the condition that they place their logo on the outside of the building.”
While the seriousness of 9/11 is never called into question, Molotch’s book does inspire a hard investigation of the nation’s security responses.Professor Spiro notes that Professor Molotch concludes each chapter with reasonable suggestions for improved security.
Overall, Spiro recommends “Against Security: How We Go Wrong at Airports, Subways, and Other Sites of Ambiguous Danger" as "an interesting book that will appeal to all sorts of readers… It never falters in presenting interesting and thought provoking stories, which will make it attractive to an audience much broader than social scientists.”
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