‘By buying your ticket you gave up a lot of rights’

By buying your ticket you gave up a lot of rights.” That’s what a man was told when he opted out of a groin check at an airport. I get that we don’t have the right to bring a knife or a bottle of Diet Coke on a plane, but this is just crazy. Doesn’t Israel have the best airline security in the world? Are they sexually assaulting women who fly? Of course, Janet Napolitano defends these violations of our persons, calling them “discreet,” but come on, there has to be a better way.

Maybe there is a better way!

Rather than “nickel and diming” travelers with what now has developed into an excessive security search that has a dubious success rate, a better defense against a terrorist threat would be to focus on locating and neutralizing a suspect at an airport before he or she can even get to the security check. After all, a terrorist could kill as many people in an airport departure hall as on an aircraft.

Curbside handling of luggage is a good start to isolate any baggage that might contain a bomb from where the public congregates.

Indispensible to airport security are canines trained in explosive detection. Their training takes no longer than 10 weeks; they are without a doubt the best method to unmask a suicide bomber and find hidden bombs. Trained dogs ought to be deployed outside and inside terminals in greater numbers, even if on a varying schedule due to restraints on deployment, where they could check the departing passengers. Such a measure is dissuasive as well as being potentially very effective. Even high-volume cargo can now be quickly and efficiently screened using a new method that extracts a small quantity of air from a sealed container, that in turn is then injected into a special filter, the filter is then presented to a trained dog for detection. ….

Look, the last thing I want to see is any plane blown out of the sky or flown into a building by terrorists. But what the TSA is doing now is ridiculous. They aren’t groping every passenger, they aren’t making every passenger use the strip search scanners. I don’t see how randomly traumatizing innocent men, women and children is going to keep us any safer. If anything, it will make us less safe, as it’s been sharp thinking passengers that have thwarted terrorists on planes in the past, not the hapless TSA. If passengers are all in a state of distress it’s a lot less likely they’ll notice if a fellow passenger is acting strangely.

Until the TSA comes up with a better way to secure air travel, I’ll opt out of flying all together. It’s just not worth it. (It looks like I’m not alone.)