By Doug Newman
In a little less than a week, I will be flying on an airplane for the first time this year. When I get to the airport, I will be faced with three abhorrent choices:
- Have myself photographed in my birthday suit by one of those very possibly cancer-causing nudie-nukers.
- Have my crotch groped by some tax-mainlining pervert in an act that anywhere else would constitute sexual assault. This is also full of health risks.
- Not flying.
And if you are going to say, “Then just don’t fly”, then you just don’t get it.
As Vin Suprynowicz put it last Sunday, “It’s all a vicious game of ‘let’s pretend.’”
TSA does not keep you safe. It never has. It never will.
I have said before – Suprynowicz says something similar – that if a terrorist really wanted to kill a lot of people and disrupt aviation, he would not go to all the trouble of smuggling a bomb onto a plane. Rather, he would set off a bomb in a terminal.
Terrorists could even orchestrate a coordinated attack at multiple locations. Imagine bombs going off at eight on a Monday morning at, say, ATL, ORD, LAX and DFW. Imagine thousands dead and America’s four largest aviation hubs crippled indefinitely.
TSA waits until well after you enter a terminal before commencing with gate rape. Not only have they never caught a terrorist in almost a decade, but they leave most parts of airports … ahem … “unprotected.”
(Just before I put this to bed, a congressthing announced that there had been 25,000 breaches of TSA since its inception in 2001.)
Besides, who says a terrorist attack has to involve planes and airports?
I mean, like, terrorists could attack train stations, bus stations, schools, shopping malls, stadiums and grocery stores. Are you willing to be sexually assaulted every time you enter such venues? Are you willing to have career perverts grope and ogle your six-year-old kids as they walk into school? How far down this road are you willing to go?
And if TSA is oh so necessary to keep us “secure” from terrorists at airports, why don’t they also station their blueshirts at train stations and bus stations? Why don’t they interrupt traffic on highways? I mean, like, you never know when or where a terrorist could hypothetically, theoretically strike next. You can’t be too careful.
Oh, wait. They already have. They were even supposed to show up at a high school prom in Santa Fe recently.
One of the grievances spelled out in the Declaration of Independence – and the basis for the Third Amendment – was “Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us.” I am sure that King George III never dreamed of authorizing the redcoats to grope the crotches of the colonists, much less justified such institutionalized depravity in the name of a higher good. (And if he had, the “shot heard round the world” would have been fired much sooner than April 19, 1775. People had a lot more self-respect back then.)
Allan Macurdy is perhaps the most amazing person I have ever known. Diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy at age 7, he let nothing stand in his way. In spite of absolutely daunting physical challenges, he would become a professor of law at Boston University.
I don’t know about Allan’s politics, nor will I ever care. And I have no idea whatsoever what he would think about TSA. However, I want to steal a phrase from him: “higher parade of horribles.” He used this phrase when discussing how much physical adversity a person would accept before they simply lost the will to live.
Likewise, there is a “higher parade of horribles” that applies to the whole TSA controversy. As horrible as terrorism is, there would be something immeasurably more horrible: life under a totalitarian government.
And this is exactly what millions of Americans seem willing to accept in the name of “security”. How else would you describe a government that will presume its citizens guilty until proven innocent and molest and assault them as a condition of movement? When we forsake the presumption of innocence, we lose America.
And if you will quietly accept TSA’s sexual – and scatalogical – humiliation, what will you not accept? Where will you draw the line? If you think TSA is no big deal, then don’t complain to me about the IRS or Obamacare.
I would rather live in a free society with the very remote chance of being a victim of terrorism than in a place such as Cuba or North Korea, with a ubiquitous “national security” apparatus and no liberty whatsoever.
And if this higher horrible of a truly totalitarian state ever does come to pass on these shores, it will not be the fault of Dubya or Obomber or Al-Qaeda or Al-whatever. It will be because of millions of Americans allowed their government to do absolutely anything to keep them “secure.”
Oh how I wish I had said this first: Our liberty was not stolen from us. It died from lack of exercise.
Fascinating info on TSA waste. (Thank you, Tony.) ___________________________________________________
If you would like to post this elsewhere – who knows why? – please email me and include a link to this URL. Thanks!
Brilliantly written. Kudos, Sit.
This is AWESOME!!!! Absolutely OUT-EFFING-STANDING!!!
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Thank you Doug for your thoughtful, well-researched and prolific writing. I just recently discovered your home page, and there is enough material to keep me busy for a long time. (as if I don’t have enough reading material already) It’s just a shame that your work doesn’t reach a broader audience. Not that enough people in this complacent society would read or understand it if it was shoved under their noses. When someone as devoted to liberty, limited government, sound money and individual responsibility like Ron Paul is castigated, attacked and blacklisted it sends the message loud and clear that we are truly a lost cause as a country. How many people do you know who have read Adams, Franklin, Jefferson, Bastiat, Hayek, Paine, Locke, the Federalist Papers, etc.? How many people dig beneath the surface just a little bit? Research? Fact checking? haha It is so disheartening, and sometimes outright maddening to hear people say, “I don’t want to talk about politics.” Sheep. Slaves. Subjects. Happy idiots. And we all pay the price…
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Very well written and of course the majority of Americans (including myself), especially travelers agree with you.
That being said…
The issue at hand is that we are all to focused on fighting the wrong battle. A post 911 world combined with our failing economy and ever increasing unemployment rate dictates security upgrades in every aspect of our daily lives. Unfortunately those with political connections and tons of money to invest in lobbying (Michael Chertoff) are always the 1st ones out of the gate. Thus we are forced to have to deal with machines that violate our privacy rights and risk our health like backscatter x-ray scanners and/or millimeter wave (microwave) scanners, or the less desirable “pat downs”.
Here are the facts. Those of us who are tasked with the responsibility of counter terrorism know there are certain “truths” if you will, that give government the justification to insist counter measures exist even to the degree that all Americans must sacrifice their rights (and currently their health as well) for, “no ifs – ands – or buts”. The majority of Americans are completely unaware of just how bad extremists groups (and there are many) want to kill Americans. Recently if any of you follow the News, you may recall hearing the phrase “soft targets”. To simplify, from the extremist point of view this means anywhere that we gather in mass. For instance shopping malls – event centers – schools – colleges etc. To “add insult to injury” so to speak, there are multiple “domestic threats” to consider as well. Some one gets laid off or fired in today’s economy who is unstable to begin with, there is an extremely high likely hood they will come back with a gun or a bomb, or in extreme cases just go into some random place like a restaurant or a school and wipe out as many as they can before they are taken down.
Yet this does not constitute a “catch 22” wherein we as Americans have no recourse at all.
Everyone needs to wrap their mind around the fact that increased security measures are now a fact of life and are never going to go away, period. However we can demand that “safer” and “non-invasive” technology replace what is currently in place and more over it is a battle that we can in mass win. I encourage everyone to check out this website http://www.wellbewatching.com.
There ARE better solutions out there, with no “nudie” pictures and the human body is not bombarded with ANY type of wave. More over this equipment out performs that which is currently in place with extremely low “false positives” (meaning a “grope session” or trip to a strip search room). And best of all this technology works in real time, so you don’t have to stop and pose.
I submit therefore that we re-focus the battle on not trying to get rid of the security, but insisting that safer non-invasive technology be put in place.
I’m thinking that our liberty was not stolen from us, but died from lack of interest. Thank you for a well written piece. Good luck as you encounter TSA this year.
Funny how we “submit” to all of this to board a plane…and just grin and bare it.
If the terrorists REALLY want to make a statement (and I hate to even suggest this idea) why not bomb a football stadium DURING the Super Bowl which is broadcast live on TV around the world. That would make a statement.
Terrorists threats to an airplane are not about just killing some people, they are intended to make a statement. That statement could be made anywhere…we will never be 100% safe. Therefore, why should we routinely be victims of our out system. It is outrageous how the TSA treats people at airports. Like you said…anywhere else it would be sexual assault.
Whats the saying? “Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”
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The TSA guards the airports…. yet the REAL threat to us could easily be MANY small four-seater aircrafts and private rural airports. With the small planes filled with C4, and jihadists willing to die…. they could fly the planes into major oil refineries. Think. What would be the result to the USA’s energy needs if 80% of the refineries were destroyed?? Transportation? Trucking? Business? Dow Jones? Agriculture, food production and distribution? Commodities such as plastics? The list is infinite…. Why hasn’t anyone thought of THAT??
So shall we station TSA *everywhere* to “protect us” against every potential crime that *might* happen? Would you want to live in such a society?