City Slickers

Photo above: City Slickers III. Wind River area, Wyoming. Son Matt, Brother Dave, Son John Paul, Me J.P.

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Are We a Nation of Sheep?

Or, are we going to stand up and fight against this latest affront to our personal dignity?

It is with grumbling compliance that we Americans accept the need for airport screening. So for the most part, we placidly put up with all the irritations and small humiliations that are part and parcel of the process. We shuffle through the Disney waiting line maze with detached annoyance, but resigned to do our part to keep our future flight from harm. The Thousands Standing Around (TSA) for the most part perform their duties with detached professionalism, not wanting to further irritate the masses of passengers who have arrived before them already irritated. So it is with an almost sheep-like acceptance we have come to cope with the realities of the post 9/11 era. Until, that is, TSA unveiled it’s latest technology that I call the Peep Show and Probe initiative. This, somehow, steps over some invisible line in the sand because it invades the very essence of our right to personal privacy. To pose, like a common criminal in a back scatter X-Ray device, knowing that some professional peeping tom is checking out the size of your privates, is a grave insult to our dignity as a human being. Or, as an alternative, to undergo an invasive pat down that ends only when “resistance” is met with a man, and the lack of “resistance” is met with a woman is the ultimate invasion of whatever personal privacy you thought was guaranteed by the U. S. Constitution. We have to stop this, and stop it fast. The time for action is now. With this in mind, I offer the following practical plan of action.

Forget individual resistance at the airport. If you refuse the back scatter or the pat down, at the least you are going to miss your flight; at the worst you are going to be detained unlawfully as TSA tries to figure out what to do with you.

First, we need to bring public pressure to bear by writing or calling our Representatives and Senators to make them aware of our concerns. (As an aside, it would be a good idea to require all members of our Congress to undergo mandatory back scatter or pat down screening when they fly).  In addition,  a campaign of writing Letters to the Editors of our local newspaper in order to raise the level of awareness of our objections.

Concurrently, employ that good old American tradition: sue the government in Federal Court to cease and desist a practice that observably violates our Constitutional right against unreasonable search. What better organization to assign this task than the ACLU? They have the power and the funding to carry this into our courts while showing us they really do care about our civil liberties. It would also give them something to do besides suing the Boy Scouts.

Finally, institute the practice of what I call Positive Profiling. Let me explain how this would work. I know who I am. I am not a terrorist. The problem is that TSA does not know who I am. They have their “watch list” of  thousands of potentially dangerous people, but they don’t have a “watch list” of the millions of Americans who pose no danger. May I suggest, that over a period of time, they develop the second watch list that would qualify for minimal airport screening. The key to this list would be a foolproof identification system which is technologically feasible today. This system would consist of either thumbprint or iris matching to positively identify the person on the list. Getting on this list would be akin to the process of obtaining a U.S. Passport--by vetting documentation of one's citizenship, occupation, and background and once vetted, the capture of your unique thumbprint or iris scan to be used at the airport to match the person with the “Go Fly” list. Positive Profiling would have the additional benefit of reducing passenger angst and speeding up the screening process.

I believe that with the application of the three positive actions listed above, we can put an early end to this terrible practice that so clearly violates the personal liberties guaranteed by our Constitution. The time for action is now, before all vestiges of our human dignity is taken away from us in the name of security.

James  P. Morgan
Sandy, Utah

See  http://tinyurl.com/39dpnlv  for a Washington Times article. Excellent. 

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree. I am personally sick and tired of the lines and humiliations at the airport. I know that I am not a terrorist. I am a white American female. Why the hell am I being patted down? Is it to "not offend" the dark haired man from another country" what the hell!

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JP said...

Janet has already started to cave on this insult to our privacy. I predict that the outrage will only grow during the week. Soon, the MSM will consider it a story and maybe we can get some action. In the meantime, put some pressure on your Congressional delegation.

crockettlives said...

Any bomber stupid enough to get caught by these unionized government groin-grabbers should have his license to practice terrorism revoked. Excellent post, JP.

Bob Mack

JP said...

Great new name for the TSA

GGA "Government Groin Grabbers"

The next attempt will be by a guy with 4lbs of explosives stuffed up his butt.

What the hell are we going to do then?

crockettlives said...

Call in the Suppository Squad? There's a WT editorial today: Obama's Hand In Your Crotch (http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/nov/15/obamas-hand-in-your-crotch/)arguing that TSA procedures are attributable to the administration's refusal to admit that we have a Muslim problem. IMHO, the moderate Muslim is much like the Himalayan Yeti--often rumored but never seen.

Bob Mack

JP said...

Eeeew! Just the thought picture of the article's title makes me cringe. The other hand is in your wallet. What could be next?

Anonymous said...

A herd of arctic dwelling musk ox can and do defend against grizzlies and wolves by forming a tight circle of adult members facing outward from the weaker animals like their young. Faced with a great shaggy wall of shoulder to shoulder brutes with massive horns, predators tend to go look for easier prey. The only weakness in this form of defense is that occasionally one or more individuals may panic and break the circle. When that happens, the breakdown proceeds precipitously and the herd becomes a mob of scattered frightened individuals each trying to save its own skin. The end result is 100% predictable: A young calf or a weaker adult becomes lunch.

Isn't that a perfect analogy for how our masters succeed in brainwashing us into believing that "resistance is futile". Refusing a full body scan and denying a TSA thug the fun of groping your teenage daughter will provide them with the excuse of making you an example to the rest of the travelers watching the demo.

Why not try another tack? Let's call it the Musk Ox Barrier. What would be the reaction of the blue shirt molesters if several hundred individuals in an airport creening line had agreed beforehand to refuse to submit to the invasion of their modesty, not to mention their constitutional right to privacy? Could they arrest all of them? How would the carriers feel about massive flight delays costing millions of dollars and disrupting the flow of air traffic all over the country in a ripple effect? How would viewers of the evening news react to hearing about the incident?
Clue:They're already pissed off...!

We have to stop thinking in terms of "What will they do to ME?" and begin thinking about what they're doing to ALL OF US.

Aram
"We must hang together, gentlemen...else, we shall most assuredly hang separately."
B. Franklin

JP said...

Excellent comment Aram. Love your analogy. Great idea but of course it will never work: We are so used to being herded like sheep through the TSA lines that it would take a miracle to turn those sheep into cats. However, if they ever do....watch out.