James Joyner takes HuffPo to task:
Despite his resignation from the Senate, the Larry Craig story won’t die. Arianna Huffington spent her Labor Day wondering, “In the Age of Terror, Isn’t Busting Toe-Tappers an Insane Use of Our Law Enforcement Resources?”
Sometimes a clever title is used as a hook to attract reader attention but the article itself goes in a different direction. Not so here:In the consensus judgment of America’s 16 intelligence agencies, the terrorist threat to our homeland is “persistent and evolving,” placing our country in “a heightened threat environment.” Given that chilling assessment, isn’t it the height of madness to use America’s finite law enforcement resources to seek out and arrest people for tapping the foot of a cute undercover officer in a restroom?
Does Huffington really believe that Sergeant Dave Karsnia of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport Police Department have been sent to North Waziristan to look for Osama bin Laden had he not been on toilet duty? Or even that there was something he could have been doing to thwart a non-existent terrorist plot at the airport that day?
This is true, and in general this question, popular with bloggers on those thumb-sucking, phone-it-in kinda days, is pretty stupid. Local cops are, by and large, not going to be looking for terrorists whether or not they're prowling around looking for something you disapprove of.
That said, I believe that Minneapolis still has a crime rate. And as Steve Levitt has pointed out, putting more cops on the street is one of the best ways to fight crime. It's hard to think of a crime that isn't a greater threat to the public order than Larry Craig's twinklin' toes.