Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Standing Pat with Pat Downs

There is all sorts of outrage right now regarding the new TSA method of screening passengers. The options are a full body scan or a thorough pat down. All it takes is one or two inappropriate actions by TSA staff (out of the thousands of screenings each hour) to feed the complaints about "Big Brother" intruding upon our freedom.

This sort of whining demonstrates that we Americans are not serious about our own security. If you have ever traveled to Israel, a nation that has lived under the threat of terrorism since its inception, you know what genuinely thorough security measures at an airport look like. The hysterical reactions to the new TSA program are embarrassing to me as an American.

All it will take to stifle these grumblings is a successful attack, and frankly, we have been enormously lucky the last few years. I fully expect that many of the same people complaining about the TSA now would also be among the first to blame the government for failing to protect us if a catastrophe were to happen.

Phoney posturing about the dignity of travelers and personal liberty reflects an almost infantile ignorance of the dangers facing us. Be thankful that our government is (belatedly) trying to take airport security seriously, and cooperate with the TSA staffs that are working hard to protect us. A few extra minutes in a security line and a thorough screening are a small price to pay for the safety and convenience of travel.

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