I was asked recently for my thoughts regarding the new security scanners and pat downs at the airport, so here goes:
First, I believe I mentioned a few months ago that I wore a new bra to the airport that set off the metal detector. The pat down that I received that day was serious. I remember thinking it was pretty embarrassing, not just because I was being molested, but because I was being molested in full view of a few hundred other people in broad daylight. Obviously, I don’t wear that to the airport anymore.
Nothing remotely that dramatic happened during the two pat downs I went through this past month. But I have to say I understand the people saying they felt violated by the process.
I have only been through the new scanners once or twice. I didn’t have much of a problem with them. However, they were not monitored in a private room, as we were told they would. I could see the man looking at the scanner shots when I picked up my bag. To be fair, it has been a few months since I was sent through the scanner, so this may have been corrected for the holiday travel season.
One new thing popped up when I came home from Washington. I walked through the metal detector and some sort of light flashed at the TSA agent. He asked me to step aside and another agent swabbed my hands and sent the sample through another machine. I remember the swab thingy being used on one of my bags on an earlier trip. After a few seconds, I was waived through. I don’t know what they were looking for, or what may have triggered the extra analysis. Although I had just put on some hand cream before getting into the line.
An article was going around Facebook that the reason for the new scanners was that someone that had a lot to gain pushed it through Congress. That would tick me off. But I can’t say that the new procedures, on average, take much longer than they did six months ago. And I am sorry to tell you that I am more worried about my time than my privacy in this case. If I am going to get cranky about something in the security line, it is more likely to be the family of six that doesn’t know the rules and tries to push through a stroller with apple juice strapped to the back.
Someone should deal with them.
I don’t see a bunch of outraged people at the airport. Mostly, we all just shut up and go through the motions. We seem to understand that in the line on the day we plan to travel is not the time to make a statement. Does that mean the terrorists have won?