TSA: Making Us Safer

I've been traveling lots lately for work. The joy of traveling is that I get to observe firsthand how obnoxious society has become. For example, I find idiot guys talking on their phones in the bathroom every week now. Stalls, urinals, everywhere. Yeah, it's totally acceptable for you to talk to your boss while taking care of business. NOT!

This week I was in Omaha. Went through security and got tagged for the "backscatter" machine. If you haven't been watching the news lately, these are the machines that have x-ray vision to ensure there's no sharp objects hidden in my armpits.

I've gone through these machines several times before, and I've learned that you need to remove EVERYTHING from your pockets to avoid problems. This time, I went through a different form of machine, so I didn't think to remove my wallet, and Mr. TSA didn't ask me if I had anything in them.

That's me in the photo!

After I got scanned, he asked what was in my pocket, so I pulled out my wallet and showed him. Apparently that wasn't good enough. He then asked me to open the wallet and show him everything in it! I was insulted. What an invasion of privacy. Do you really think I'm gonna have a lethal weapon disguised as a credit card? Watch out or I'll tag you with my Kohl's card!

There's no metal in my wallet, and asking to see what's in each compartment was just a joke. It's kind of like the extreme pat downs that little old ladies with replaced hips get when they come through in their wheelchairs (owing to them having metal in their bodies). You'd think we could actually do some things to actually be safe (like be proactive instead of reactive). Why can't we just interview suspicious looking people like they do in Israel? The next time we get an "underwear bomber" you know they'll decide we need to strip down as part of going through security.

I complained to the supervisor and asked why it's different at each airport. His reply: "you've seen one airport, you've seen one airport," Meaning that they aren't the same because they don't have time to review folks that thoroughly at larger airports. In other words, if you're a terrorist, be sure you go through O'Hare or Atlanta cuz you won't get as scrutinized as you do at small airports where there's not as much going on. Consider this: if something is dangerous enough to be a threat at one airport, wouldn't it be a threat at all airports in the system? Am I missing something here? The truth in the inconsistencies is that for the 50,000+ employees and multi-billion-dollar budget, it's just too hard to enforce rules consistently. I feel safer. Good thing the terrorists can't figure any of this out.

If you haven't been through one of these machines yet, get ready. They are being installed everywhere now thanks to the underwear bomber-thing last year (but mostly thanks to lobbying in Congress on behalf of the companies that make the outrageously expensive machines). Oh, and though the government says it doesn't store the images taken by the machines, there is now proof that is not the case. Enjoy.


Candace said…
Yea, TSA is more an employment bill than a security one
Wimpie said…
Janet Napolitano, John Pistole and many of our legislators can’t understand why frequent fliers are concerned about the cancer risk from the x-ray scanners?

Maybe somebody needs to tell them that intentional radiation exposure to large population groups will create a public health hazard. Especially when the dose has been miscalculated and we don’t yet know how much, but it’s higher than advertised. SOME people will die as a result. There IS NO QUESTION.

Maybe somebody needs to tell them they don’t want their ourselves, our kids/wives/girlfriends exposed naked to some stranger or group of strangers in the back room, and maybe stored or transmitted (we aren’t allowed to know)

Maybe somebody needs to tell them that a growing number of people fear the TSA more than they fear terrorists.

Maybe someone should tell them that airport strip searches and massive pat-downs are a form of terrorism?

This is over-the-top hysteria to a infinitesimally small threat, that they are highly UNLIKELY to prevent.

Americans are being deceived by THEIR government.

What happened to America? How did it become a nation of Wimps?
Lori said…
I dont know how yoy handle flying so much... I'd go mad!!!

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