Security, What security?

When we face a situation of insecurity, that is, where our integrity or our home or belongings is in danger, it is normal that we tend to think of measures to protect ourselves. We can find all kinds of systems and companies that offer us technological means for this. Cameras, sensors, alarms, locks, video surveillance, ....

This security, which we could call “defensive”, acts to stop the problem, but does not help to solve its cause. It even isolates us from the root problem, making us carry on from day to day without facing the root of the lack of security. In addition, it is also individualistic, and only makes the problem move somewhere else.Càmera al carrer de la Cort de Valls

When I speak of "defensive security" I know what I am talking about, because I lived for a while in Israel, where the issue of security is taken to the maximum. In airports, on buses, but also in shopping centers ... Detectors, armed policemen ... If you go to a settlement, it is even more extreme: cameras, watchtowers, minefields and electrified fences, and those who live are armed. And yet it is not the place where one feels the safest.

I explain it because the elements of defensive security give us a false peace sensation, but they remind us every day that we are in danger, causing us to live with an internal fear that we are often not even aware of, and the same bars that protect us are the ones that make us live in our own jail, being able to continue our day to day oblivious to the real cause of insecurity.

Real security is not having enemies, and if you do, your main task should be to understand the other part, respect them, and try to make peace. I heard from a Palestinian that if what Israel spends on helicopters and military oppression was spent on cooperating with them, the situation would be very different ...

So, on insecurity, if what we prioritize is to analyze the root and cause of insecurity and we work on it, we will be walking towards a security that I call empathic security . In this we don’t focus only in our problem of insecurity but we try to understand the problem of the people who cause us insecurity, and we try to solve it for everyone. That is why this security is more real since we are going to solve the root causes.

Part of the problem is also the dichotomy to which it all is reduced. Good and bad, aggressor and victim. In the movies there are some bad guys, very bad guys to defeat or put in prision. The reality is different, we are all people, and the aggressor is often a victim at the same time. Neither the good ones are so good nor the bad ones so bad. Too often someone who commits a crime is someone who has problems and needs to be helped.

The security I want is knowing that I live in a city that cares for all people, especially the most vulnerable, not one that stigmatizes and marginalizes those who have fallen into a hole or are experiencing difficulties.

I don't want to live behind bars and with a door with three locks. The security I want is not to have a good lock to tie the bicycle but to have the security that I can leave it untied and nothing happens, a safe environment that is achieved by taking care of people, not by putting bars and cameras.

Written by: Pere Vidal - Regidor de la CUP de Valls