Would you rather be slightly inconvenienced to assure a safe flight, or would you rather not have great security and wonder who or what is on that same flight with you?
Mom from NJ
I'd prefer that the TSA instead spend its money on good, old-fashioned detective work, the work that has foiled multiple potential attacks, including the recent cargo bomb attempt from Yemen. The TSA's taking this approach simply because it's the easy way to show that it's doing "something." It's a lazy way out, and I don't want the TSA *ever* taking the easy way out on ensuring security.
No, my kids aren't flying again in the U.S. until the rules change. But that's not really a big deal for us because, as frequent site readers likely know, we're really into roadtrips. :^)
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
Yes a random pat down will not deter anyone from trying whatever… Our US officials always have good intentions but lack common sense…
Still, I think your story has some legs (no pun intended)because I have noticed that Orlando International Airport tends to be very strict on going though security. They are sticklers for the liquids and what you carry on (my mother lost her nail clippers, something she didn't even know was in the luggage on the way back). I have never seen longer lines than at Orlando. So the point is, chances are the Orlando airport will be all over this!
The difference is that nobody is forcing you to fly.. Freedom of choice…
And let’s be real do you think these TSA folks want to do this? Do you think they are enjoying it? Do you think they will go home and try and remember 1 of 5,000 folks that passed through their x-ray machine – Times 5 days a week…. It’s just a pat down…. No one will be touching kids inappropriately with you right there….
I don't like being touched at all, or exposed to anything potentially harmful, so I won't fly, but it's not a bunch of criminals at work here. They're not just doing it for the sake of doing it. The shoe bomber got on a plane, the underwear bomber got on a plane, and the people in charge never want it to happen again. They made a choice to error on the side of safety, not comfort.
After September 11 many people switched from plane to car travel. The resulting additiona lethal accidents (planes are a lot saver) already killed more people than the terror attack itsself.
That however will not make the oil price or the environmental damage asoicated with air travel any lower. Maybe theme park operators are well advised to just shift away from Orlando, build big parks much closer to the population centers. They could start right now as long as the recession still holds construction prices and interest rates down.
One can say that it is the duty of passengers to subject themselves to these screenings, but, let's look at other screenings.
DUI checkpoints. They occur all over Los Angeles on a weekly basis. Drivers on the road are subjected to passing through. They can take another route, but if they divert too close the checkpoint, police will follow and pull them over. Going through the checkpoint, the basic level is a wave through. Officers may shine a light in your face, say good evening and move along. Others are pulled aside, given breathalyzers, walk the line, etc etc. But NOT EVERY DRIVER!
Requiring every airline passenger to submit to body scan or extensive pat down is ridiculous. AND the body scans don't see under skin. Anything being "muled" in, won't be noticed.
Personally, I'm looking forward to my flights this holiday season and the possible groping. As awkward as it will be for me, I'm sure it will be for them. But just because I'm going to giggle at the ludicrousness of the situation doesn't mean it's right.
My biggest problem with the TSA is this: coherency. TSA is a federal program, yet different airports seem to operate under different rules. There are the basics. But sometimes, walking through metal detector with belt and/or jacket is okay.
Here's a specific example. A couple of years ago I flew from LAX, to IAH, to RIC and back to LAX. In Houston, I received a small jar of Egyptian mustard as a gift. This jar was under 3 oz. I carried it on from IAH to RIC. When returning to LAX from RIC, TSA stated that I couldn't carry that item onboard the plane. Their answer, it was a paste. However, I continued to argue the 3 oz rule. My feeling, although I attempted to get them to say this, but they never would, was the arabic language written on the jar made them feel unsafe.
TSA has to realize that you can't change the rules as it will confuse passengers. Name recognition is key here. Everyone knows exactly what type of experience they will have at a Six Flags, Cedar Fair, Disney, or Universal Park.
Flying has been an abomination for years - now even more so. Bring on the Family Truckster, my family is cruising down a Holiday Road!
Solution...do some real work. Use all of that intelligence to find the real bad guys instead of picking on 4 year old girls and little old ladies. If you are worried about security on the plane, train and arm the pilots. You trust them with the plane, why not with a gun as well. Of course it also might be a good idea to pay pilots more than a Taco Bell manager makes too.
Frankly, I haven't been on an Airplane since 2002 and have no plans to fly anyplace. I have four wheels and a hundred thousand miles that pretty much speaks to my husband and my-selves opinion of "Getting there is half the adventure of a vacation". Cause really, you never know what your going to see or the new random places you just might find.Now on the subject of "It's to long": Stop whining, if my 67 year old father can do the 17 hour drive from Orlando to PA himself without sleep and we've always arrived safely.. need I say more?
About the only thing that would get me on an airplane at this point is overseas and frankly you couldn't pay me to get near an American carrier for that. So until I can't get someplace by my own four wheels or someplace that those nice people with the really big boats don't go.. I'll just drive!
Robert, you stated that picking a random person every once in a while isn't going to do anything. It actually does. People that actually wanna commit harm on US Soil are watching our public transportation systems to see if they can maybe not get caught bringing a bomb on board via on their body. If they are staking out at the airports watching our system and they see random people being taken out for random screenings, they might scratch their plan because of the fear of getting caught.
Yes, you can argue that your personal rights are being taken away but I think people would rather have everyone experience the inconvenience than let the enemy have a chance at causing mayhem.
Every change to screening procedures the TSA makes is simply a reaction to yesterday's failed plot, closing the barn door after the horse almost got out. The problem is, until we're only allowed to fly knocked out by hyper-sleep, bound, naked, with cavity searches before hand, there is absolutely no way to shut off all methods of attack for terrorists. And every time we surrender our freedoms for our "safety" they accomplish exactly what it is the set out to do. The body count is merely the means the main objective - fear, slavery, humiliation.
I am aware of my rights. I know I will never be completely safe. I live life aware of my surroundings and the risks, but never yield the experience of living to fear. Until the TSA feels the same way, I will not be flying unless there is absolutely no other option.
Many of the comments here stating that people can just drive are a bit odd. But then I remembered that it's ThemePark Insider and we are mainly talking about vacations. But even with vacations, some people want to maximize their time since they may not have the luxury of two weeks off from work.
Also, think about people who travel for business rather than pleasure, and the pilots and flights attendants. Pilots and flight attendants are subjecting to this every time they report to work. Seems a bit extreme to me.
I will continue to fly and push the edge of fighting back against the invasive checks.
Here are two more experiences I've had.
First, at LAX, I noticed a backpack resting behind a column near the queue for the ticket check. As we waited in line for about 10-15 minutes, no one ever picked up that bag. When we approached the TSA Agent who would look at our boarding pass and IDs, we mentioned that this bag was sitting over there. His response, "don't worry, you'll be safer upstairs."
Thanks for not shutting down the airport? If he knew what the item was, why not just say something.
The other one was a lockdown. Waiting in line at the metal detector, bags are on the belt, shoes off, etc, we hear "LOCKDOWN". Everything comes to a stop. Passengers look around at each other and are ordered by TSA to stay in line. Five minutes later the area is unlocked.
We make it through the metal detector, have our bags, and are about 10' from the checkpoint when "LOCKDOWN". This time, agents swarm in front us, directing passengers to remain where they are and sit down. I casually asked one agent what was happening. The response, "Sir, please have a seat."
So, I'm sitting and think, hey news travels fast in LA, so I check my phone for any news updates. TSA Agent comes over and states that I need to put my phone away. I stop using the phone and engage in conversation. My questions to the agent where in the range of "What's happening? Will our flights be affected? Is this a drill?" and all the responses were synonymous with "Please remain seated."
As for the parks around the world including Orlando i think if this is going to stop people flying, imagine what a plane coming down in the middle of seaworld would do for tourism ! i think that might damage travel a little bit more !
I LOOK FORWARD TO THESE SCANS BEING AS STANDARD AS SCANNING MY SUITCASE OR TAKING MY SHOES OFF !
How about the cavity search? Are you okay with a TSA rep placing a finger inside your child? Because that's coming, too.
A terrorist doesn't need to blow up anything to win, at this point. Neither the shoe bomber nor the underwear bomber succeeded, remember. The strategy that this point might very well be to try something that prompts the TSA to introduce a new, more invasive screening. That way, people throughout the West remain inconvenienced and fearful and the terrorists appear more powerful.
At some point, we've got to decide: are we a free country, or not? If we want to abandon freedom in favor of perceived security, then let's own that decision and quit declaring that we are a free country. It's the hypocrisy of people crying "Freedom" who support police-state tactics that drives me nuts.
I believe that travel is a liberating, enlightening and rewarding act. And while I want law enforcement to use its investigative powers to prevent crime and apprehend criminals, I don't want law enforcement to infringe on the rights of the innocent. Travel is not a privilege. It is and ought to be a right.
It’s just a new scanner and a Pat down…. No civil liberties are at stake… None.. Get over it….
Most kids won’t complain, but the over protective parents will…. What do you have to hide?
It’s simply – Don’t Fly… Take the Acella..
The Supreme Court has stated numerous times that driving is also a privilege and not a right.
When you choose to take advantage of this privilege, you agree to obey by the rules required by the privilege:
You agree to take a driver's testYou agree to follow the speed limitYou agree to wear your seatbelt and not use your cell phone while driving (in some states)You agree to ____ security measures in an airport
Whatever it is, you must remember that these are privileges and not rights.
Amendment IV: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
This is a government mandated search, and given that it involves such intimate touching and/or imaging that creates an image of the person practically nude, and it has already been demonstrated that these images are being stored, government claims to the contrary, I would argue these are unreasonable searches for the populace at large. Now if there is true cause to suspect a certain individual, backed up by evidence and a warrant, then I'd say this would be a reasonable search. However, as a routine search of persons suspected of no crime it is invasive and dehumanizing. And it won't in any way stop a determined terrorist. They'll just use a different method, prompting the government to take away yet another right.
Flying isn't a privilege, it's a right. The free market principle dictates that it is. The planes are owned by private sector companies who charge money to take people somewhere, and they will sell a ticket to anyone. Its like a giant taxi that goes a long way quickly. You don't have to obtain a license to be a passenger in a plane, nor do you have to pass any kind of test to obtain "permission" to be on one. The only thing that excludes some people is the price, but that doesn't mean they can't get the money to fly. If the airlines were dictating who could get on their planes based on some kind of membership or club of some kind, then it would be a privilege. The airlines could do their own security, but that would add to their bottom line and raise ticket prices. These measures do very little to make a plane safer, and they come at the cost of our basic rights. It's unacceptable.
Just put it this way, there would be trouble if I had to witness my 4 year old daughter being frisked and touched by some random stranger (did anyone see that link that's disappearing quickly from the internet?) who happens to have a tin badge and zero cause for search. Any parent worth their salt would be incensed.
In our discussion about the 4th Amendment, etc. we have not dealt with the health risk from the scanners. The government claims they are safe but many experts disagree: Dr. David Caskey, a cardiologist who was also teaching at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans "In the medical industry we try as hard as possible to avoid even the smallest dose of radiation. Here you will be subjected to a rather significant amount. The result can and will be an increase in cataract formation, thyroid cancer, bone marrow suppression, etc." He was especially concerned for female passengers. "Even low level radiation can adversely affect a woman's ovaries. There's the potential for later birth defects. That risk increases if the woman is pregnant in the first trimester when she would likely be unaware of the pregnancy."
Millimeter waves may be even worse. No one knows their exact effects on human flesh, but one study concludes that they "unzip double-stranded DNA, creating bubbles in the double strand that could significantly interfere with processes such as gene expression and DNA replication. ... a new generation of cameras are set to appear that not only record [millimeter] waves but also bombard us with them..."
so it looks like there will be possibly more deaths from cancer from these scanners than there would be from terrorists, assuming that these procedures would really stop terrorists, which has not proved to be the case.
Even if you don't mind you wife and kids having naked images made of them or having their private parts groped, you might want to think twice about subjecting growing children to these machines. There is some evidence that they are especially harmful to those who have suffered from skin cancer or are at high risk of doing so. I for one do not want my DNA "unzipped".
Ask any kid if they will take a small pat down to go to Orlando? Most will find it amusing and fun… No One is looking into your orifices…Lighten up Francis and take the train..!
As the sister of and daughter of veterans, I know that our military has sacrificed so that we could keep our freedoms. Why then is the government trying to take them away little by little? Those who say people are overreacting, don't see the big picture. Is it better to live free with some risk; or live in "safety" with no freedom?
Jay Leno: "It was bad enough when the TSA agents would go through your underwear in your luggage. Now they’re going through your underwear while you’re wearing it.
Now, to make it worse, the airlines are charging a $15 molestation fee."
Conan: "People are concerned that the new airport security scanners could lead to pictures of their genitals ending up on the Internet. Apparently no one has told them that without pictures of genitals, there would be no Internet."
Ideas for T-shirts: "There could be shirts like:
"I'm with this (TSA) pedophile! (arrow pointing left)""Strip if you love the TSA!""Erotic frisking... $50... anal fisting.. $200... TSA Strip Search... just the price of your freedom!"
1) To protect the privacy of innocent passengers who go through the scanner, Congress should pass a law mandating that the TSA immediately delete any scanner image of anyone who "passes" and is not detained for additional screening. A policy statement isn't enough. We need criminal penalties for keeping these images around, in memory or cache, so that they might be released.
2) To address the radiation exposure issue, create a verified ID program, with biometrics, for pilots and others who work past the secure zone, so that they don't have to be scanned every time through.
3) Congress should pass a law mandating that the TSA cannot places hands inside the clothing nor touch the clothed genitals of any passenger under age 18. Scanner, metal detectors and traditional pat-downs are the only acceptable screens for minors.
4) I tried to confirm this, but couldn't get a definite answer. But if it is not yet the case, the TSA should not employ anyone who has a violent or sex-related offense on his or her record. If the TSA hasn't checked for that among screeners, it should be required to check existing personnel and dismiss anyone who doesn't pass.
5) Congress also should outlaw TSA cavity searches without probable cause. They're not doing those now, and I want to ensure that they don't even contemplate starting.
6) If you want to decline all screening, you can turn around and leave the airport without penalty.
If these safeguards were in place, I'd feel more comfortable flying, and would allow my children to go through the checkpoints. And I think it would satisfy more would-be flyers as well.
HR 6416, the American Traveler Dignity Act:
No law of the United States shall be construed to confer any immunity for a federal employee or agency or any individual or entity that receives federal funds, who subjects an individual to any physical contact (including contact with any clothing the individual is wearing), X-rays, or millimeter waves, or aids in the creation of or views a representation of any part of a individual's body covered by clothing as a condition for such individual to be in an airport or to fly in an aircraft. The preceding sentence shall apply even if the individual or the individual's parent, guardian, or any other individual gives consent.
In English, it says that TSA and their employees are not protected by the federal government from violating law and privacy, are bound to the same laws as we are, and can be held responsible for unlawfully touching, unauthorized "photos", and bodily harm as a result of going through the body scanner. Officials can be criminally charged with regard to local and state law, and/or sued by the individual they violated.
Here is the truth of it all. I stopped flying a few years ago because the cost. My family of 4 can travel the day and a half to WDW and cost us a third of the cost to fly. Which gives us extra money to spend at the parks.
These new security protocols have completely turned me off from flying commercially now. I will still go to WDW but will not fly. I am not a person that believes these new practices make us any more safe. Just like I am not impressed with the bag checks when you go into the parks. All it amounts to is a delay for the customer with no benefit. If someone wants to do something they will accomplish it.
The question is what would Walt think of this? Since he was a strong believer in the American ways and freedoms.