The TSA has made some changes in its airport security methods. Now, instead of the light patdown, anyone who opts out of the
TSA officials have admitted that the purpose of this is to shame and scare people into the backscatter scanners. The patdowns can be particularly traumatic for rape victims who may relive parts of their assault. And they've threatened to fine passengers who refuse either test and decide not to fly at all. WND has a roundup of related petitions, stories, and blog links, including to a video recording of one passenger's experiences. (The famous "touch my junk & I'll have you arrested" encounter.)
Much rage in the blogosphere. Much fear, much concern, especially around children, because even babies are not exempt: it's x-rays or a grope. (I gotta wonder how they deal with diapers.) Some reactions include National Opt-Out Day on Nov 23; go for the grope (just say "I opt out" when they ask you to step in front of the scanner), slow down the lines, and let them know that you don't want your naked pictures in government databases. At least, not unless you're being paid market rates for nude pics in a classic BDSM pose.
Certainly, I'd encourage small children to strip rather than be x-rayed or groped. Plenty of kids would love "today's naked time is at the airport" instead of the living room.
It's likely that stripping down to just underclothes or a swimsuit would be as effective. If the purpose of the scan-or-patdown is to ascertain that you don't have a gun in your belt or a pack of bomb-making chemicals in your bra, removing the outer clothes will cover that nicely, without need for radiation exposure or being touched by strangers.
Of course, if the purpose is to force people to comply with over-enthusiastic searches and create a gov't database of photos of travelers, stripping won't help. But until the TSA admits that the reason for these "security measures" is "to get people used to authority figures having the right to do anything at all to them," we're free to find other ways to prove our lack of terroristic equipment.
Take it all off! And remember: "indecent exposure" requires "lewd or indecent intent," not just nekkid bits. Nudity for nursing, medical or security reasons isn't indecent. I applaud the TSA's attempt to get America over its nudity squick, even as I deplore their methods! Let airports become the first clothing-optional commercial districts in the US!
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