Friday, January 15, 2010

A Fresh Take on Airport Security

NY Times: "“Meet Mikey Hicks,” said Najlah Feanny Hicks, introducing her 8-year-old son, a New Jersey Cub Scout and frequent traveler who has seldom boarded a plane without a hassle because he shares the name of a suspicious person. “It’s not a myth.”

Michael Winston Hicks’s mother initially sensed trouble when he was a baby and she could not get a seat for him on their flight to Florida at an airport kiosk; airline officials explained that his name “was on the list,” she recalled.

The first time he was patted down, at Newark Liberty International Airport, Mikey was 2. He cried.

After years of long delays and waits for supervisors at every airport ticket counter, this year’s vacation to the Bahamas badly shook up the family. Mikey was frisked on the way there, then more aggressively on the way home.

"Up your arms, down your arms, up your crotch, someone is patting your 8-year-old down like he’s a criminal,"
Mrs. Hicks recounted. “A terrorist can blow his underwear up and they don’t catch him. But my 8-year-old can’t walk through security without being frisked.”
Before leaving for the Bahamas on Jan. 2, she reached out to Congressman Pascrell’s office, which then enlisted a T.S.A. agent to meet the family at the airport. Even this did not prevent Mikey from an extra pat-down.

On the way home last Friday, Mikey’s boarding pass showed four giant red S’s at the airport in Nassau. “Oh, random screening,” Mrs. Hicks said. ... Mrs. Hicks said she wanted to take pictures of her son being frisked but was told it was against the rules."

In the words of Paine's Common Sense, "Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one. "

TSA has become naught but a ponderous, intolerable, unsustainable blight upon the world.
To wit,
Mandatory removal of shoes
Inhospitable 4oz of liquid limit
Exclusion of all blades, tweezers, ect...
Now, coming to you from the main stage...
Terahertz Scanners that provide full color nude images of each Human passing though,
Terahertz Scanners that have the potential to rend your DNA into base proteins.

Under the guise of security, we are being adjusted to a posture of acceptance of draconian checkpoints, invasive regulation of inconsequential items, and a violation of all claims to physical space, even regarding children.

All of this misses the real point however, and it is a simple one. Why should the government me operating a Transportation Security Administration? The principle is that because the transportation in air is public space, then the government must maintain its security.
To follow this to its logical conclusion, we should be subject to screenings for the purposes of driving, biking, walking, riding a bus or train as well. These are in public and often on public roads, yet we would consider the suggestion foolhardy and wasteful.

Yet, air travel is regarded differently, for reasons I have yet to fathom.
Perhaps the numerous government bailouts of the failing industry has lashed them so tightly together that no other option is weighed beyond the onerous force of centralized governmental control.
If the airlines want pre-screened security, let them provide it themselves. I have no doubt they could do no worse then my government is doing now.


Solameanie said...

And I think it's time for some profiling. I really don't give a rip if CAIR likes it or not.

Palm boy said...

I'm not even sure if profiling is a solution, as even the likelihood of a person of arabian origin or muslim creed being a terrorist is very small.

Solameanie said...

There's another problem too. Frisking, profiling and patdowns won't necessarily catch bombs placed up body orifices, such as the one that almost killed a Saudi prince some months ago.

Palm boy said...

Nor do these scanners.
Time for rectal examinations!

Solameanie said...

Now THAT would be interesting to see.


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