The Department of Homeland Security, increasingly desperate for a reliable way to carry out President Trump’s order to “keep people with bad intentions out of the country”, has unveiled a prototype of a device called the Intentionometer®.
Using the latest brainwave-scanning technology, the device (pictured above) analyzes the intentions of applicants for immigration, and yields one of four results: “Priority”, “Welcome”, “Caution” and “Bad Hombre”. In field tests, the accuracy of the instrument was estimated at approximately 1% – which, as its developers have enthusiastically pointed out, is 100 times higher than a White House press briefing.
Customs and Border Patrol welcomed the invention, hailing it as perhaps their last hope of fulfilling the President’s seemingly impossible demand. “Nothing else has worked,” said a CBP spokesperson. “Not the travel ban; how the hell can you tell someone’s intentions just from what country they’re from? Our plan to hire psychics didn’t go so well either; they all said they had a bad feeling about it. As for the wall, are you kidding me?”
Individual CBP agents were also mostly optimistic, although some expressed reservations. “If it works too well, will they need us anymore?” asked one agent, speaking on condition of anonymity. “To be honest, I’m really not all that worried about immigrants. I’m more afraid that my job might be taken by a machine.”
Other law enforcement agencies have already put in bids for their own customized versions. In particular, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms has proposed requiring gun retailers to use the device on all customers before making a sale. This plan, however, has met with predictable resistance from the National Rifle Association. “If they want to see my brain waves,” said an NRA spokesman, “they’ll have to scan my cold, dead…oh, wait…actually, never mind.”
Congress has given the Intentionometer a mixed, but generally positive reception. While certain lawmakers have raised concerns over its constitutionality, others have eagerly embraced it, with some proposing that it also be applied to candidates for public office. “Where was this during the Presidential campaign?” asked one Democratic Senator. “If we’d had a machine that could say ‘Intends to sell the country out to Russia’ or ‘Intends to appoint a Nazi to the National Security Council’, our political landscape might look very different right now.”