Backlash Builds Against TSA

In the aftermath of my own encounter with the TSA Thugs, I submitted complaints to “my” representatives: Barbara Lee, Dianne Feinstein, and Barbara Boxer. To paraphrase a favorite poet, I didn’t get no satisfaction, and Dianne Feinstein had the gall to include this line in her emailed response:

As a frequent traveler, I understand the frustrations that can result from the increased security measures.

Really, Dianne, you face the choice of “assuming the position” in a scanning machine with unknown radiation levels, or getting your breasts and pubic area felt by a stranger wearing blue rubber gloves?

It has thus been heartening to see what one hopes is a growing, vocal backlash against these intrusive new backscatter machines and groping “pat downs” instituted by TSA late last year.

Recent notable posts include this by a former Miss USA:

Ms. USA 2003 Susie Castillo is a frequent flyer, but rethinks her travel plans after a recent incident at Dulles airport. Castillo, an actress, says that she was sexually harassed by TSA employees while flying out of the Washington DC-area hub. In this video she explains how she opted out of a body scan machine and, as a result, was humiliated and hassled by a government employee. Has it come to choosing between a dangerous machine or molestation? Castillo discusses her encounter moments later here.

And this vivid description of one man’s triumph over the idiocy that has become the norm in America, “My TSA Encounter:”

I’ve read a fair amount about the controversy surrounding the new TSA policies. I certainly don’t enjoy being treated like a terrorist in my own country, but I’m also not a die-hard constitutional rights advocate. However, for some reason, I was irked. Maybe it was the video of the 3-year old getting molested, maybe it was the sexual assault victim having to cry her way through getting groped, maybe it was the father watching teenage TSA officers joke about his attractive daughter. Whatever it was, this issue didn’t sit right with me. We shouldn’t be required to do this simply to get into our own country.

So, since I had nobody waiting for me at home and no connecting flight to catch, I had some free time. I decided to test my rights.

Read his full story, here.

And Jesse Ventura is suing the TSA, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and TSA Administrator John Pistole, charging that the pat-down to which he was subjected due to his hip replacement surgery:

exposed him to humiliation and degradation through unwanted touching, gripping and rubbing of the intimate areas of his body.

Utah is now following Texas’s lead in proposing legislation that would prohibit TSA pat-downs unless TSA agents have reasonable suspicion.

Let’s hope we see more and more stand up against these petty thugs emboldened by too much power. Send any you are aware of and we’ll keep posting!

Mary L. G. Theroux is Chairman and Chief Executive of the Independent Institute.
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