The news is full of reports of outrage by travelers who are being subjected to pat downs  by TSA personnel that many are calling intrusive, insensitive, and even obscene.

Some of the things I am hearing are completely disgusting, including a 61 year old bladder cancer survivor who said the pat down he received was so rough that his urostomy bag broke, covering him in urine, and that he had to board the airplane without having an opportunity to clean up and change clothes.

In another case, a breast cancer survivor, who is also a flight attendant for U.S. Airways, was waiting to board a flight for her job,  reported that  when an overzealous TSA worker felt her prosthetic breast, she was ordered to take it out to prove what it was.  

In yet a third case, a father removed his young son’s shirt after the boy set off the metal detector and required “secondary screening.”

In this day and age, if you are going to be traveling for business or pleasure, you have to expect some inconveniences. I have no problem going through a metal detector, or even a total body scanner. But how far do we take it?

While I think we need to do everything that we possibly can to insure the safety of air travelers, there is no excuse for Americans to have to undergo such humiliation by what may be poorly trained security personnel. Over 20 years ago, I witnessed the hassles a friend of mine who has two prosthetic legs underwent while waiting to board a flight in Seattle. I can only imagine how bad it could be by now.

Okay, how about we inject some common sense into the situation? You know, and I know, the people hijacking or trying to blow up airplanes are not middle aged Americans, or families traveling with children. They are, with a very few exceptions, men of Middle Eastern extraction. But we can’t limit security searches to those people, because that would be racial profiling, and that’s not nice, right?

Bulls*&%!!!! It’s time we stop all of this politically correct nonsense, and just take care of business. If somebody rapes a woman, the cops are going to round up any suspicious males who match the description of the attacker. Is that gender profiling? No, it’s concentrating on the most likely suspects. They don’t detain and question soccer moms and grandmothers, just to make the males they are looking for feel less picked on.

That’s all we have to do for airport security. Make everybody go through a basic security screening, and if they object to that, they either don’t fly or get subjected to a professional search, not being manhandled by some insensitive idiot with the brains of a baboon. If somebody has a prosthetic device or some other special situation, they should tell the screener, and be taken into a private area to confirm that.

And then, exercise some profiling. If somebody matches the profile of the people who are committing terrorist acts, give them the thorough searches that are called for. Sure, we’ll offend and maybe even humiliate a few people who don’t deserve it. But isn’t that better than humiliating every passenger?

Or, do what I do and travel by RV. It’s a lot less hassle, and the only person groping my wife is me!

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28 Comments on How About Some Common Sense?

  1. Arley Running says:

    I know this is not an original thought but bears repeating. Not all muslims are terrorists but all terrorists who have hijacked airplanes were muslims.

  2. Joe says:

    Take into consideration the “news media” is reporting all this, and I’m sure they aren’t telling both sides, (that wouldn’t sell) so they are making it sound the worst.
    Airplanes are only one source of transportation, and if you don’t want to go through the screenings don’t go to the airport.

  3. I I was a pilot I wouldn’t let middle east people on my plane just to be a little safer they seem to being the ones causing the problems like the joke about isralies they have areinforced box you go in and a ray puts off any explosives then the loud speaker comes on for standby passengers that a seat just open on the next flight lol

  4. Pat and Jim says:

    As a frequent flier to the U.S. I have not had any problems at all at security. Unfortunately, the louder and angrier the noise in the press, the happier the terrorists, as that is their objective.

  5. Debbie says:

    The really sad thing is that the terrorists we are dealing with are so low, they would not hesitate to send in a mother with children all packed with explosives on a “suicide” mission. But I agree, the entire situation we have now is disgusting, and a victory for terrorists. They must be sitting in front of their TVs laughing their cursed heads off.

  6. Tom says:

    Shame we can’t just print more common sense like we do when the government needs more bailout money. I truly wonder what our country will be like in another 25 years. Thank goodness I grew up during simpler times. Won’t be long now before you’ll see printed instructions on bathroom tissue rolls…after all we all know how much smarter they inside the beltway. I have offen wondered how many goverment employees are…(related)…think inbreeding here.

  7. PC is nonsense, and always has been. Profile, profile, profile!

  8. Donna Huffer says:

    Flew yesterday. Got randomly searched for gun powder residue. I a 70 yo gray haired grandma who hates guns and has never touched one or fired one. Go figure.

  9. Kathe says:

    If we are going to ditch being PC, then I vote we not allow anyone from any Muslim country into our borders for any reason. Watch how quickly those in power who want to send their children to our universities or want to bring their families to Disneyland step up and do something about it within their own system.

    While we are at it, jail all US employers of illegal aliens and watch how quickly that problem resolves.

  10. Dale says:

    We should learn from the Israelis and the Europeans who now do a combination of scanning, profiling and pat downs. They’re not having the problems we are right now.

  11. Palmsrv says:

    After the shoe bomber everybody had to remove their shoes.

    After the underwear bomber everybody had to go through a full body scan or else a intrusive style pat down.

    Wonder what TSA is going to come up with after they catch a terrorist with a couple of pounds of G4 shoved up his butt.

  12. concerned in texas says:

    Uh. Er. It is C4. Not G4.

  13. Bill Joyce says:

    I guess since we recently visited the Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial I take a different view of the situation. I do think the TSA is being thick headed and incompetent, but there is a real possibility of terrorism from middle-aged white people in this country because it has happened before.

  14. Bob Martel says:

    @ concerned in texas, you inadvertently highlight the problem, someday, someone will invent a G4 explosive while we are only looking for C4 and he/she will get through undetected. The whole problem with our current airport security system, as far as I can see from what is reported in the press, is that they are fighting last week’s war. There were no shoe checks until AFTER that British idiot tried a shoe bomb, the body scans were less intrusive BEFORE the underwear bomber, etc… What they need to do is to hire some terrorists and use them to “plan the next attack” so TSA can get ahead of the curve! That’s more or less what the computer security companies are doing when they hire ex-hackers. BTW, the Israelis have a very sophisticated interview technique that goes way beyond profiling to ferret out the bad guys. When was the last time you heard of a problem on an Israeli airline?

  15. Dennise says:

    Having three joint replacements (yes I carry that dufus card the doc gave me which is useless…) I get patted down EVERY time I go to the airport. This even happened after having surgery, was in a wheelchair I had to STAND and get the patdown. It is not as envasive as everyone seems to be screaming about. I don’t care if people are pissed…let’em drive or take the greydog. If it saves ONE disaster it is worth it. B*tching about Muslims is a waste of breath. This is the world we live in and it is changing faster than most of us can keep up with or refuse to accept. My grandpa moaned and groaned about how the country had changed and was going to hell in a handbasket and he died 30 years ago. Betcha he heard my great-grandpa mutter the same words. Please refrain from saying ALL Muslims are terrorists, RADICAL muslims are terrorists. Most RADICAL folks whether they be the headstompin’ libertarians in KY who demand an apology from the woman whose head was stomped, or the folk who carry weapons at rallies, or the radical domestic terrorists who blow up federal buildings or start forest fires…they all have by normal standards RADICAL beliefs and the beliefs of others, if they don’t fall into what the racical believes should be punished in some way. Listen to the far right “Christan” minister who railed against the kid (of Mexican decent BTW) by saying the MOH has been sissified and should only go the the guy who kills the most. I continue to be confounded by the ignorance in this country…the folks in the RGV who have the money to “winter” in Texas all call the POTUS the n-word. THAT is ignorance.

  16. Oooo! Aren’t many of us getting carried away with this topic today! Ranting and raving and painting with a broad brush is no way to solve a problem. Yes, do a little profiling, get our Congress and other political leaders to show a little more couraged, rather than simply trying to get re-elected. Get ‘er done, but do it rationally! Do I have the answer? No, but ranting and raving ain’t the way to find the answer.

  17. Dennise says:

    I retract that the Medal of Honor winner was of Mexican decent…he is of Italian decent born in Iowa.

    No disrespect to those who don’t want rants about a subject…the poster asks for comments. The comments are varied and interesting. Answering to a comment is allowed I believe. I apologize if I tend to “preach”. I just can’t abide prejudice and ignorance.

  18. Barbara says:

    Nick that is why I travel by motorhome, know who is sleeping in my bed, and using my toilet. I can also have a meal at anytime and it tastes great and I payed very little for it. Oh also no bed bugs to worry about.

  19. Wasn’t there a old movie “1984” or something like that. “big brother is watching you” theme.
    Could this be the real thing ??

    Yes Nick ! Common Sense has been dead for years now ….

  20. Lela says:

    I once had a 6 year old thell me that there are so few people who have common sense. That was some 15 – 18 years ago. So it is even worse today. Good Blog.

  21. Denise Gray says:

    All of the people who are talking about the boycotting of the machines at the airports and who are making the biggest fuss about all of this are going to be the first ones to be screaming that the TSA should have done more when a plane goes down. On one hand we have people screaming that the govenment should be doing less, at the same time they were yelling that the government should have done more about the oil spill. Seems like the government cannot do anything right, no matter what they do. While the TSA needs to work on the airport security, at least they are trying. I agree with Nick, less politically correct, more common sense. We need more airport security, not only for those flying, but those of us on the ground, that could be hit with the fall out from a terrorist attack on a plane. I also agree, the terrorists must be laughing their heads off at us. It is a strange world that we are living in today.

  22. Bob Martel says:

    Well those terrorist may indeed be laughing at us, but they’re doing it from a cave or some other God awful place on this earth. At least we who are being laughed at are in the greatest place on earth!

  23. Cheryl says:

    What everyone seems to be forgetting is that all of this is a violation of the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution. The Fourth Amendment is the part of the Bill of Rights which guards against unreasonable searches and seizures. Even the former Assistant TSA Director admits that the Fourth Amendment is being violated at the airport with these TSA procedures (watch the video here

    How many freedoms are we willing to give up in the name of ‘safety’? Life is a crapshoot. You are more likely to get killed in a car accident than a plane bombing. No one can make you safe from EVERYTHING, and I personally don’t feel these pat downs and scanners are really going to make anyone safer anyway. If a terrorist wants to blow up a plane, he’ll find a way. If not a plane, it will be something else. What then? Pat downs and body scanners to ride a subway, train, bus, etc? How about to get into a mall or local football game? It can happen anywhere! What are you willing to give up in the name of safety? Are you afraid to die or just afraid to live?

    I am an American citizen. I was fortunate enough to be born in a country that is supposed to be FREE. I am also a Veteran. I did not serve my country so that my rights can be taken away because the government says the sky is falling and no one questions it, just follows like frightened sheep. Yes, if you don’t like these procedures, don’t fly. I know I won’t. But that’s not the point. The point is that our freedoms as American citizens are being taken away piece by piece in the name of National Security. When will it stop? The terrorists win when we live in fear and lose our freedoms and change our way of life based on their actions or threats. Personally, I will not surrender.

  24. bill says:

    So let’s make their job easier: When we get in a line where it’s all moving slowly due to TSA over-zealousness let’s all disrobe (to each of our own comfort level) right there and then. 30 or 40 people in their all-togethers will draw enough of a crowd to get some “common sense” consideration really quickly! -Besides, who knows how many new friends your’re gonna make!!

  25. T & R Martin says:

    I wonder if there is a DIVERSION going on in the media lately with all the talk about airport security & it is the holidays & more people are flying (let’s create fear).Usually when all the media is focused on only ONE subject something else is “flying” under the radar. Perhaps profiling is best.

  26. D.Dot says:

    My problem is they’re treating EVERYBODY as a criminal! We know the terrorists are exclusively muslim, middle eastern and men between 18 and 45.They are the only people who should be subjected this ridiculous “politically correct” theater of the absurd.

  27. Doug Thompson says:

    Yeah…Israel has been doing this for years. Ask them about their security procedures and they’ll tell you, “We know what our enemy looks like.”

    This is absolutely NOTHING to do with the freedom of religion clause in the US Constitution. The way I look at it, if it turned out that there was a huge cabel of fat white guys in Al Queda, I’d fully expect to be pulled aside and patted down at every security site.

    People need to understand that there’s a big difference between racial profiling in a random bullshit traffic stop and racial profiling in a no-shit somebody’s getting on an airplane situation.


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