>I’ve been waiting and waiting focusing on the novel, but just can’t wait any more. I am truly and deeply disturbed by the changes going on in airport security in the US. I read this article yesterday about a retired teacher with an ostomy bag (an external urine collection device for those who have suffered from, among other things, bladder cancer. This man was given the “enhanced pat down” after going through the full body scanner because of his medical prosthesis. Unfortunately, the highly trained and skilled TSA agents refused to listen to him explain that he has a medical condition. How insensitive and disgusting could their behavior be?
Then today, I saw the following video.
You know, what’s truly troubling to me is that most Americans don’t seem to care. Once we take the fear to this level, we’ve lost already. When we say no one is human in order to catch inhuman predators, we’ve lost our own humanity. Mind you, I don’t have a particular issue with pat downs. In Jordan, this is par for the course for women. Somehow metal detectors are not adequate (I won’t even go there), so we get patted down twice for each trip.
Yep, that’s right. Double pat downs in the course of getting to my plane. Yet, somehow dignity is retained. I’ve never had an issue with screeners at the airport here. They ascertain what they need to (I have no weapons and no bombs) without making me feel like I’ve been violated. What worries me is that the media is listening to hacks like the Israeli guy. Really, THIS is the model you want to hold up?
Note in the video that he’s encouraging profiling (which doesn’t work) and talking about loss of privacy. Unfortunately, it seems to me that in Israel only one class of non-citizen is subjected to such inhuman behavior… and it’s created suicide bombers. So, maybe that’s NOT the model we want to follow.
And, as for full body screens, is there anyone in the world who doesn’t foresee these pictures ending up for sale on ebay? Anyone at all? I can see what this will become, whether they can see your face or not. Oh, and do you really think there are no cameras that are taking video of the screeners at all times? How hard is it to match these up? I don’t think all TSA screeners are bad, but there is some percentage that is. There is ALWAYS some percentage that is…
Personally, I plan to say no thank you to “full body screening” and live with the pat downs. But, hopefully by the time I travel to the US again, they will have a more appropriate option available. And, I’m sorry but dial down the fear rhetoric and search for real solutions. I feel the same way about this as the Patriot Act, if you want live in a police sate there are many to choose from. Maybe we should keep America as America… I seem to recall something about it being the land of the free, but that WAS before 9/11 I guess. Perhaps we should change our national anthem to, the land of the kind of free in some ways and the home of those who live in fear. Seems more appropriate these days. So, to Secretary Clinton and President Obama, yeah you really need to think long and hard about that “balance” you’ve been treating so cavalierly. I find America beginning to slide down a slippery slope and I don’t think I like where the end of it is…