My Way reported yesterday that cabinet secretaries, top congressional leaders and an exclusive group of senior U.S. officials are exempt from toughened new airport screening procedures when they fly commercially with government-approved federal security details. Pilots and flight attendants are also exempt from the procedures. How about also exempting 70-year-old grandmothers and children under the age of 10?
The horror stories coming out about these new procedures are coming fast and furious–from women chosen because of their body types, to small children being touched inappropriately, to a man whose colostomy bag was broken during the patdown. The horror stories, combined with the fact that the people who may be a danger are being ignored while grandmothers and young women and children are being routinely groped, are reason enough to find a different way to do this. There are serious questions as to whether these searches are constitutional, and I hope there will be some class action suits coming quickly.
The current screening procedure is not going to make us any safer–there are doubts as to whether the new procedures would have discovered the underwear bomber or anyone else carrying a small amount of explosive powder. If the fear is that an explosive device would be brought on a plane, just let the bomb-sniffing dogs roam freely through our airports, or profile people with certain VISA stamps on their passports.