Admit it, you never heard of Fazliddin Kurbanov. You heard of Nidal Hasan, the Fort Hood shooter, and you heard of the Tsarnaev brothers who bombed the Boston Marathon, and you sure as heck heard of the 9/11 terrorists. You never heard of Fazliddin Kurbanov, though, or a hundred others like him, because their plans were scuppered by Daddy Government keeping us safe by snooping on our private activities.
Yet we could be spared the snooping, not to mention Mr. Kurbanov`s, quote, "long and costly case," and further not to mention the horrors of Fort Hood and the Boston Marathon and 9/11, if we just kept Muslims out of our country.
Sure, that`s profiling; and sure, most Muslims are nice and harmless people. If you let hundreds of thousands of Muslims settle in your country, though, you`ll get a few hundred Major Hasans, Muhammed Attas, Tsarnaev brothers, and Fazliddin Kurbanovs. In a perfect world our visa officers would have mind-reading machines so we could tell, individual by individual, who the lunatics are. In the world we actually inhabit, no such machines exist, and we must fall back on profiling.
More generally, an ounce of security at our borders would save a pound of snooping and data-mining inside the country. I favor maximum liberty of citizens within the nation; and I believe an essential precondition for that is maximum rigor of security at our borders. The more security we have at our borders, the less we need inside them.