Tuesday, December 6, 2011

TSA To Stop Groping Soldiers? Well, Sometimes....

A Washington Post article reported that “The Risk-Based Security Screening for Members of The Armed Forces Act”, introduced by Rep. Chip Cravaack (R-Minn.), was scheduled for a vote on 11/29/11. This Bill would require the TSA to develop a process to more quickly screen uniformed troops and their families traveling through airports on official orders.
While this may be a "feel good" measure that exempts some active military from the absurd TSA security theater, it is also a slippery slope that ultimately jeopardizes everyone and relegates infrequent travelers to the being the primary victims of TSA abuse. It also paves the way for a Congressional exemption, leaving the rest of us with no one to defend our rights from TSA’s unwarranted intrusions.
The Ft Hood terrorist, Nidal Malik Hasan, was active military and yet was responsible for killing 13 victims. He would not have been a good candidate for a checkpoint exemption and supports the argument for consistent and uniform screening procedures for everyone, including pilots. The Egypt Air pilot, Gameel al-Batouty, is widely acknowledged as being responsible for deliberately crashing flight 990. Pilots are just as likely to be terrorists as grandmothers from Iowa. 
The introduction of this Bill is a clear indication that members of Congress recognize that the TSA security theater is an unnecessary and unwarranted harassment of passengers and they must demand that TSA adopt sensible and respectful procedures for everyone, not just select groups of passengers. Congress should withhold funding for the agency until it adopts procedures that we all can live with.