Friday, April 15, 2011

The TSA Strikes Again, This Time with a 6-Year-Old

On Wednesday, I briefly mentioned the case of a 6-year-old child – Anna Drexel – having to undergo a recent TSA patdown before being allowed on the plane.

Her parents’ attempts to protest the treatment were rebutted, as Mrs. Drexel put it: “I didn’t get a lot of information although I did ask questions as to why she was selected for pat-down…I did ask for alternatives. I asked for her to be rescanned and was refused… They just refused and said they were going to do what they were going to do… Not verbally but in no uncertain terms – apparently the TSA supervisors are very skilled at nonverbal communication – letting me know that there would be trouble if I caused any fuss.”

Mom and Dad videotaped the procedure, in which a female TSA agent ran her palms, fingers and the backs of her hands along the little girl’s entire body, presumably to make sure that her parents weren’t smuggling any dangerous substances on her body with the intent to blow the plane up in a fit of jihadist passion.

Or maybe they thought she had a box of Girl Scout cookies hidden on her tiny person.

Regardless of their motives, her parents say she started to cry after the search, as she thought she had done something wrong in order to warrant such a search.

Their story sparked a pubic outcry, thereby prompting a ridiculously inadequate TSA response, which consisted of: Sorry for the inconvenience, but your rights mean nothing.

It “reviewed the incident and the security officer in the video followed the current standard operating procedures. With that said… our Administrator is looking into ways to move past the cookie cutter approach to screening. Recognizing that terrorists are willing to manipulate societal norms to evade detection, TSA has been actively assessing less invasive screening methods for low-risk populations…”

Forgetting about the unconstitutionality of searching U.S. citizens without a warrant or even reasonable suspicion, the fact is that the TSA is indescribably incompetent. Case in point: How often do you read headlines about the TSA apprehending terrorists?

None immediately come to mind. In fact, it’s quite the opposite…

As Michelle Malkin noted even before this latest incident: “A federal watchdog [recently] revealed… that TSA’s counterterrorism specialists failed to detect 16 separate jihad operatives who moved through target airports ‘on at least 23 different occasions.’”

That makes the TSA a huge waste of money, on top of being a giant, invasive threat to our civil liberties.

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