Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Because I work at a facility managed by the U.S. government, they have a number of basic security protocols in place. One of which is a contingent of guards that can regularly be seen cruising about the site. However, the other day when I came to work, the security detail had noticeably increased in size and presence. There were guards stationed at every roadway entrance and city police cruisers were parked in front of our main office complex. The normal building entrances were all locked and we were made to enter only through a single door. It was a bit of a surreal scene.

I soon found out that the increased security force and police presence was caused by a fired worker who had apparently made convincing threats about killing the people who were responsible for his plight. It seems that they have not yet caught up with this person as the site lockdown has been going on for more than a week now.

Yet even though I realize that the increased attention to monitoring the personnel on site is for my own good, I cannot help but remain in a heightened sense of alert. Not because I fear for my safety, but because I have the sense that if I make one little slip up, I will be arrested. I have been particularly careful to come to a full and complete stop at all stop signs and to be especially mindful of the speed limit postings. If I have to walk or drive past one of the sentries, I make sure that I do not make eye contact and I try not to draw suspicion to myself. It feels a lot like the mindset of a motorist driving past a parked police car. Regardless of how fast they are going, folks always seem to subconsciously slow their car even further for fear of the man.