TSA Backscatter X-ray Backlash
This is a pretty comprehensive round-up of articles about the current TSA uproar. There are numerous links throughout the original, including in the excerpt below, but I was too lazy to add them.
Things are happening so fast that I don’t know if I should bother. But here are some links and observations.
The head of the Allied Pilots Association is telling its members to avoid both the full body scanners and the patdowns.
This first-hand report, from a man who refused to fly rather than subject himself to a full-body scan or an enhanced patdown, has been making the rounds. (The TSA is now investigating him.) It reminds me of Penn Jillette’s story from 2002.
A woman has a horrific story of opting-out of the full body scanners. More stories: this one about the TSA patting down a screaming toddler. And here’s Dave Barry’s encounter (also this NPR interview).
Sadly, I agree with this:
It is no accident that women have been complaining about being pulled out of line because of their big breasts, having their bodies commented on by TSA officials, and getting inappropriate touching when selected for pat-downs for nearly 10 years now, but just this week it went viral. It is no accident that CAIR identified Islamic head scarves (hijab) as an automatic trigger for extra screenings in January, but just this week it went viral. What was different?
Suddenly an able-bodied white man is the one who was complaining.
Seems that once you enter airport security, you need to be subjected to it — whether you decide to fly or not.
I experienced the enhanced patdown myself, at DCA, on Tuesday. It was invasive, but not as bad as these stories. It seems clear that TSA agents are inconsistent about these procedures. They’ve probably all had the same training, but individual agents put it into practice very differently.