Happy New Year!

I'm on a plane heading to Southern California from Ronald Reagan International Airport in Washington DC. I was fortunate to spend time with my brother's family and toast the new year at his annual bash. Started the trip in NYC and Tall Timbers, New Jersey making a road trip from NYC to DC.

Packed in quite a bit of activity during my DC visit including visits to the Corcoran , Phillips Collection, The International Spy Museum and my first visit to the Holocaust Museum.

Had a short layover in Houston. Over the airport's public address system I heard this:

[…]”Due to heightened security Code Orange, The Department of Homeland Security […] making jokes or comments may lead to your arrest.”

I've traveled extensively over the past 4 months and this is the first time I've heard such an announcement. While I'm in agreement that nobody should joke about terrorism, bombs, threats etc., but where is the line in the sand? Who is responsible for interpreting such “jokes” or “comments”? Putting everybody on heightened alert seems to create more chaos and paranoia than solutions.