In a stunning display of unchecked raw power, the TSA has decreed that once you enter an airport security check, you can't just leave the airport.
Refuse to subject yourself to their officially-sanctioned sexual abuse will get you a very long delay while they "question you", and you could face a fine of up to $11,000 and be arrested.
All because you refuse to have a nude picture taken of your body, or allow their minimum-wage "security experts" sexually assault... I mean physically check you for weapons.
Despite all the opposition, the TSA still stands by their decision to force passengers to undergo humiliating strip-searches, both virtual and physical. They claim they have very few complaints about the so-called security procedures.
I'm guessing the phone lines have been turned off and the garbage cans emptied hourly if that's the claim they want to stand by.
I've been reading news reports from around the United States over the past few weeks and one thing is constant through all of them: TSA has no comment.
The growing DO NOT FLY movement is something I've been watching with interest. The National Opt-Out Day protest against the TSA and the moronic security-over-common-sense-mania they propagate is a good thing. Wednesday, November 24th, 2010 is the day Americans are being urged to "opt-out" of nude body scanning and force the TSA moron squad to physically"inspect" each passenger.
It has the potential to bring air travel to a standstill, and I think that's a very good thing. My preference would be to just refuse to fly at all, but for some that's just not realistic. You can't drive from Seattle to Miami on a long weekend and expect to have any quality time with your family, after all.
But for the rest of us, just don't fly. Refuse to fly until the "porno-scanners" are removed from every airport.
"We are not criminals. We are your customers. We will not beg the government anymore. We will simply stop flying until the porno-scanners are history." – We Won't Fly.
The goal of National Opt Out Day is (1) to educate the traveling public about airport naked-body scanners and the new “enhanced” TSA groping so they can make an informed decision; (2) force positive change on the TSA by slowing down their security theater with creative protest; and (3) show the airlines our consumer power so that they will lobby the government on our behalf to get the naked-body scanners removed and the TSA abolished.
In Germany a group of protesters paraded around Berlin-Tegel airport carrying signs that said "you do not need to scan us - we are already naked" and "be a good citizen - drop your pants". Some even painted "something to hide" on their bodies in their effort to get their point across.
Aside from the massive privacy concerns associated with TSA's porno-scanners, there is a big health risk that nobody from the TSA wants to talk about. They claim the technology is harmless (don't they always?) but there is growing evidence that the government agency is lying, or shall we call it "not telling the whole truth".
And lest we get on our high horses, we good Canadians aren't immune to this garbage either. I've been digging into the Canadian Aviation Regulations from Transport Canada and we've got the same crap going on here, just not as widely publicized.
I'll be writing more about that later this week.
Until then, enjoy your freedom, what little of it remains!