In no way, shape, or form “eager” to fly right now.

I’m gonna be honest – there’s been a lot of crap from the TSA in the press lately that’s really starting to creep me out.

I mean, this whole thing about the x-ray/backscatter machines is getting kind of crazy. Reports of people turning them down and then receiving an “enhanced patdown” in “retaliation” that involves a TSA agent touching your privates through clothing … all the while, every response from their part is either “that’s not how it happened” or “people need to accept this to help prevent terrorism.”

Here are the ones that stood out to me:

John Tyner Tells an Agent, “Don’t Touch My Junk!”
Guy opts out of the backscatter machine and after the agent finishes describing the patdown alternative, he replies, “If you touch my junk, I’ll have you arrested.” Agent gets a supervisor … lots of arguing entails … guys ends up not flying … ends with TSA threatening a civil suit and $11k in fines because apparently you can’t just opt-out and go home – there’s some federal law that states you must finish the security check once you enter.

Woman Traveling with Her Baby is Sexually Assaulted
And don’t get me wrong – I don’t throw that term around lightly, but the woman accounts being touched in her private areas without being told – including her labia. The woman was traumatized, and if it happened anyplace else outside of a TSA security area, somebody would already be in jail for sexual assault.

Captain Overhears an Agent Anticipating His 18 Year-Old Daughter Going Through the X-Ray Machine
As the Captain’s daughter approaches, he hears an agent say into his headset, “Heads up – got a cutie for you.” Captain confronts agent and states that neither is going through the scanner.

TSA Agent Aggressively Gives 3-Year Old Pat Down
Young child starts crying through security because her teddy bear has to go through the metal detector, then gets more upset when TSA agent tries to pat her down. At one point, the 3-year-old screams, “Stop touching me!” We teach about “good touches” and “bad touches” in school, and to trust people in uniforms … so what about when the bad touches are coming from a person in uniform???

Radio Host Handcuffed in Chair and Detained by TSA for Asking Questions
This one is where it started getting dirty(er) because after the girl went on the radio and started sharing her story, the TSA released security cam footage on YouTube that they claim proves that she’s a liar. She did a second segment today discussing why they’re full of it because the cameras don’t show the entire area and apparently a lot of her concerns took place off camera. Also, the footage doesn’t actually contain timestamps of the event, which is all bad, except dwarfed in my mind of just how creepy it is that the TSA is posting security footage online in the first place.

The whole thing has gone beyond childish on their part – if you read through the TSA Blog, every recent post is them trying to backpeddle and explain why all of these claims are nonsense … it’s all in the name of security … they’re all trained professionals. Bullshit. I remember at one point early on, I actually thought that their blog was a neat idea to help calm people’s thoughts about security, but watching how they behave under scrunity just over the last two days, I don’t see how anyone could trust a word on the site. Comments are clearly moderated – plenty of negative, but none with any supporting evidence, and they seem to cut off abruptly like they just stopped approving them, even though they still appear to be open.

The last couple of posts are even written in a told you so point of view – “You’ve heard TSA say how most passengers support the use of our Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT). Well, this time you don’t have to hear it from us.” or “You can listen to her radio interview, and then you can view our airport CCTV footage. We’ll let you decide what really happened.” Sure, it sounds all noble until you actually get into the detail and see that they’re all full of shit. The security footage … has gaps. That 80% acceptance poll from CBS … completely opposite because there’s a viewer’s poll on the same site that reflects directly the opposite. But they’re banking on the sheeple not reading into depth, just seeing all of these refuted claims, and taking their side as the proud purveyors of freedom through security.

How in the world do we trust these people?! How can anyone be expected to travel under these ridiculous kinds of conditions? Why in the world should I believe that the machines are safe or that they can’t store our naked images?! We’re past “just following orders” and “the peons can’t change the system.” There’s stuff happening out there right now that’s really, really wrong, and this department of the government just wants to sweep it under the rug ceremoniously in the name of terror. Not freedom, but terror, because we’re all supposed to be afraid that it might happen again. Take off your shoes – just in case of terrorism; throw out your water bottle – just in case of terrorism; let some stranger fondle your testicles – just in case of terrorism. We joke about what happens when someone smuggles a bomb up their ass onto an airplane, but the current measures don’t detect those … what if fondling your testicles still isn’t enough?

You know … because of terrorism.

Guess what? They’re the terrorists now. Look at the real definition of that word and tell me that isn’t the essence of the TSA where we stand today.

As much as I really hate reading all of this, I sincerely hope that the hysteria continues and doesn’t get swept under the rug because this can’t continue. Somehow it has to be made clear that this kind of blatant disrespect for civil liberties cannot stand, whether it’s through passengers refusing to fly, a pilots strike, or an executive order from the President. There are talks of a National Opt-Out Day on the busiest travel day of the year next week and pilots unions left and right are instructing their members to opt-out of the screening as well. I don’t know how much louder this needs to get, but I hope that it gets as loud as it takes…

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