There was of course the famous or infamous don’t touch my junk video. But, from what I’ve read, this was far from a spur of the moment event but something planned out by the guy being frisked. Was this something that the public was really thinking about? Or was it brought about by bloggers and the news media looking for a story since the election was over. Or maybe it was a combination of all three.
I think the pat downs are necessary if you’re not going to go through the scanner. There are issues with the scanner to be sure. People don’t like the idea of the virtual strip search done by these machines. Granted the person looking at you is in another room and never sees you. And your junk isn’t all that easy to see. TSA has says the images are not recorded and disappear when the next person steps into the scanner.
The important thing here is that TSA has disabled the ability of the scanner to record images. So the scanner has the capability to retain images. I think TSA needs to be a little more clear in the manner in which that feature has been disabled. One other thought suppose someone decides to start recording people’s images what happens then. Because you know at some point in time this will happen.
Now on to the pat down. The molestation as some people are calling it. All those perverts at TSA. First and foremost people get a grip. OK maybe not the best choice of words. But if you say no to the scanner you now know what to expect.
I can’t imagine that the run of the mill TSA employee is having a great deal of fun with this. There are of course the usual horror stories. The guy with bladder cancer that has a urostomy bag to catch urine and the urine was spilled all over him. Then there’s this reaction from a story in the Washington Post:
“It’s more than just patting you down. It’s very intrusive and very insane. I wouldn’t let anyone touch my daughter like that,” said Marc Moniz of Poway, Calif., who is planning to accompany his daughter’s eighth-grade class from San Diego to Washington in April. “We’re not common criminals.”
Having said all that TSA certainly was nearly clueless in their response. TSA chief John Pistole made all the rounds of the morning shows and more or less said yeah well this is what's going to happen get used to it. It took a few days of all the horror stories to come out and Obama commenting on the searches before TSA got a clue. They Pistole was on the morning shows again sounding very different. It always amazes me when the government is amazed at people's reactions.
One thing I have noticed, that since the opt-out protest on Thanksgiving was a complete and total bust, suddenly it's not on the news anymore.
Here are a couple of potential bumper stickers a friend sent to me.