Law and Politics

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Examine the program's discussion about the use and abuse of fear in America “now” and “then”.


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The panel's discussion of fear in the context of a post- September 11 political setting is one in which the concept of perpetual fear is used to consolidate those in the position of power.  The panel's discussion of fear and the lack of trust that emerges in the post- September 11 political setting reverts back to what they feel is the driving force of the Bush Administration.  The panelists feel that the use of fear is devised as a tool to maintain social control.  The condition of war Afghanistan, Iraq, and the larger "War on Terror" created constructions in which fear was used as a way to continue submission and control of the body politic to their leaders.  The discussion of the "fear" created regarding "the other" and the "enemy out there" was driven to justify the Status Quo.  Fear was used as a means of ensuring control.  The panel makes the point that the elusive nature of the War on Terror is one in which the enemy is "out there" all the time, ensuring a dose of fear is always injected into the public lexicon.  This ensures that those in the position of power will remain so and ensuring that the structure in which individuals remain submissive to their government will always remain in force.  For the panel, this becomes the use of fear in the post- 9.11 setting.

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