Friday, November 12, 2010


TSA pat downs, feel ups and day of resistance

by Larry Geller

We talked about this in junior high, the technology of how to do it. It seems strange to see a video posted explaining how to, well, feel up a manikin.

Pat Down or Feel Up

As kids we really did debate: do you use fingers? If so, how many? Every boy had different advice. Where to start? Do you kiss at the same time? Talk or be quiet?

As you see, TSA will be starting with a cupped palm. No kissing, I suppose. Coulda used this advice back in the day…

In the newspeak we employ today, that’s an “enhanced pat-down.” But better endure it, because there are folks at the airport who may know how to do “enhanced interrogation.”

What about some enhancing privacy?? This has all gone too far.

On the positive side, if there is one, it may increase the number of job applications TSA receives, now that the job comes with benefits.

And now middle school kids caught in the act can explain to their parents that they were just engaged in "enhanced homework collaboration" or something like that. It’s the modern way of talking that makes anything you do ok.

The videos are posted on a website promoting Nov. 24 as “National Opt-Out Day.” The website echoes, in part, my article posted yesterday, Preparing kids to be groped by strangers (11/11/2010) :

It's the day ordinary citizens stand up for their rights, stand up for liberty, and protest the federal government's desire to virtually strip us naked or submit to an "enhanced pat down" that touches people's breasts and genitals.  You should never have to explain to your children, "Remember that no stranger can touch or see your private area, unless it's a government employee, then it's OK." 

I’m not sure if a single day of protest will achieve the desired goal, but we’ve got to start someplace:

The goal of National Opt Out Day is to send a message to our lawmakers that we demand change.  No naked body scanners, no government-approved groping.  We have a right to privacy and buying a plane ticket should not mean that we're guilty until proven innocent.  This day is needed because many people do not understand what they consent to when choosing to fly.

As I noted in yesterday’s article, I think at least part of the purpose of this is to soften us up so that we’ll accept pretty much anything our government does to us. If so, it will take plenty of protest to eliminate the intrusions. In fact, I find it hard to imagine that these procedures would be abandoned.

Now, to end on a cheerier note, there is a story going around that may be a parody: tampon bombs. It better be a parody, or we really will have to prepare our kids for cavity searches.

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