Once again it is necessary to rebut the case for the use of procedures that are unnecessary for the vast majority of the travelling public.
I live in Australia and we do not employ the x-ray machines that are now being used in the USA, neither do we have to remove our shoes to go through security. I have gone through the experience of setting off the metal detector at Sydney Airport. At least I was able to explain what happened and was not treated like a criminal. My DIL is an amputee. She has a card to show. Yet in America amputees are forced to go through pat down procedures because TSA refuses to accept their medical certificate.
There are two major concerns for the travelling public with regard to the new procedures. First there is the actual machine. Second, the procedure to be used if travellers want to opt out from going through the machine.
There are people who fear the damage that can be done by radiation. With these machines we do not have any reliable way of knowing whether or not the radiation dose can do harm. However, there seems to be mounting evidence that the radiation from these particular machines can be harmful.
There are alternatives to the Rapiscan machine, and these alternatives are being employed in Europe. This leaves open the question of whether or not the best product was chosen to do the job. If an alternative machine had been used, perhaps the public would have been feeling less alarmed. I see this as something that needs further investigation.
It is the Opt-Out procedure that has people upset and annoyed. It is the manner in which the new procedure is being implemented that has people upset. The fact remains that people are being groped and the TSA staff are touching genitals which should be deemed as sexual assault. This is the cause for alarm.
The other issues that were raised again are not all that relevant to the travelling public, or even to granny and grandpa as well as those who are mentally disabled. Can a situation relevant to war-torn Iraq be applied to travelers in the USA? I believe that the comparison is indeed irrelevant.
The TSA has not successfully thwarted any plots to blow up an aircraft. The shoe bomber, Richard Reid boarded his flight in London. The underwear bomber boarded his flight in Amsterdam. In both cases it was the security procedures in these foreign airports that had failed.
What is working is surveillance. The liquid bomb plot was thwarted because of surveillance methods used in the U.K. There are many other plots that have been thwarted – in Australia, the U.K., USA, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Italy.
Another reason for this outcry is that the people who have been “randomly” picked for further security procedures see those who are the most likely to be carrying bombs being waved through security. They get subjected to a most humiliating experience. They get threatened, bullied, harassed, are forced to miss their flights but the most likely enemy sails through without being stopped because people are afraid to enforce proper profiling procedures.
If there is another tragedy it will be due to this bowing to political correctness, because the TSA is not targetting the right group of people for further checks. John Pistole himself has proudly stated “we do not do profiling”. In the end it will be the lack of profiling that will cause further tragedy. The Fort Hood massacre occurred because of PC attitudes. Another tragedy could occur because of those same PC attitudes.