That’s me getting scanned by a new backscatter machine at San Jose Airport last May
Over the last week, a storm has erupted around new airport security procedures and devices. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, just google “airport body scanners” and you’ll get half a million results. (Here’s a good round up article from Bloomberg.)
On one hand, we’ve got new “enhanced pat downs” from TSA officers that include touching breasts and genitalia, full-naked-body scans, and no clear answer about radiation risks from new backscatter machines.
On the other hand, we’ve got a very recent incident in which terrorists were able to pack explosives in a printer cartridge and get it on a plane. We are less than a year past the infamous “underwear bomber” incident in which a terrorist nearly brought down a Delta jet over Detroit.
I don’t like the frisky frisking. I worry about radiation. I’m concerned about our right to privacy.
But what’s the solution?
Do we get rid of the scanners (that cost $75,000 each) and go back to magnetometers only?
What will we all be saying if an “underwear bomber” gets through a magnetometer and succeeds in blowing up a plane?
I know the readers of this blog are smart, frequent travelers who know the system well. Can you all suggest any solutions? I look forward to hearing from you. I will forward your suggestions along to my TSA contacts.
And please, let’s just talk SOLUTIONS here and avoid hyperbole and venting. There’s enough of that out there already.
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