Do you really need to pass through a machine that looks at every square centimeter of your body to make airlines safer? Do you really have to (for all intents and purposes) pose nude for the airline cops? And if you refuse to pose nude, should they be able to grope you like some felon assaulting a schoolgirl on a subway in Japan?
Forbes proposes abolishing the TSA, which is, of course, nonsense. Forbes has never had too many rational thoughts. I consider them finding nude searches to be irrational and demeaning more the accident of them having to ride airplanes than from any actual concern for other human beings. In fact, I am reluctant to quote these doctrinaires but I think you and I will survive this once.
From Forbes -
For fiscal conservatives, it’s hard to come up with a more wasteful agency than the TSA. For privacy advocates, eliminating an organization that requires you to choose between a nude body scan or genital groping in order to board a plane should be a no-brainer.
But won’t that compromise safety? I doubt it. The airlines have enormous sums of money riding on passenger safety, and the notion that a government bureaucracy has better incentives to provide safe travels than airlines with billions of dollars worth of capital and goodwill on the line strains credibility. This might be beside the point: in 2003, William Anderson incisively argued that some of the steps that airlines (and passengers) would have needed to take to prevent the 9/11 disaster probably would have been illegal.
The odds of dying from a terrorist attack are much lower than the odds of dying from doing any of a number of incredibly mundane things we do every day. You are almost certainly more likely to die or be injured driving to the airport than you are to be injured by a terrorist once you’re in the air, even without a TSA. Indeed, once you have successfully made it to the airport, the most dangerous part of your trip is over. Until it’s time to drive home, that is.
Boy, these guys can take a matter of personal dignity and come up with, “Let’s get rid of a public agency! We can find a corporation to come to the rescue! Give us public money now! Now!”
Okay, personal dignity. Do these kinds of searches make us safer? Probably not.
These kinds of searches are more the kind of thing we subject prison inmates to. I fully agree that if all airline passenger are convicted felons, the searches are merited. Are we all one step away from being criminals stopped only by a little humiliation? (Okay, a heaping big helping of humiliation.)
We have given up our internet privacy, our financial privacy, been subjected to camera surveillance all in the name of safety. At what point, are you going to say stop? When they mount camera’s in your home? in your bathroom? implant chips in your children?
Let’s stop them. This has become insane, crazy, just plain loco.
Do we want people around the world to decide that Americans are witless cattle willing to undergo any indignity, any loss of rights because of 20,000 scumbags hiding in caves in North Pakistan?
I think Americans are brave and resourceful. I have never believed that we needed to give up any rights at all in this struggle. These criminals are just a small band of criminals. Those that advocate a war with Islam can’t think and can’t count. There are a billion and a half Muslims. A good number don’t like us, that is not a crime. The organization that attacked us is tiny and we can handle this without this kind of surrender to our worst fears and instincts.
We’re Americans! Did the Kaiser, the Nazis, Tojo’s Japan, or Mussolini scare us into naked searches or genital groping?
No, they didn’t. We have courage. That’s why we have been successful as a nation. When we give up courage, what’s left to fight for?