I'll try to post in a non biased manner for the run down... then my take on it.
Earlier this year Air Ports in the US beefed up their security. TSA employees give more thorough pat downs and bringing in new technology. The new "Full body scanners" have been the subject of much controversy. To the small doses of X-rays that everyone (including pilots and staff) must go through to board the plane to the idea of people looking at you completely naked and having the ability to store the image on a personal computer. The federal government claims these new security steps are necessary to keep the public safe from terrorism. These new procedures are so far only in select air ports with random checking and testing. The procedures that are in question is the enhanced
pat downs & clothing penetrating x-rays with a mandatory cavity search if refusal of the previous two. Claims have been made that the x-rays violate rights of privacy by showing would be passengers in the nude. TSA claims the images are no more provocative than your doctor visit x-rays. The rest is up to you.
*Warning The subject of this thread may cross the line of forum rules of nudity and sexual content. Any admin that sees something is inappropriate please remove it but I'd appreciate a comment about your reaction. Some of this will no doubt border NSFW and given that this is happening in a public environment is part of the subject. Reader discretion is advised.
Ok, my take on this. First off... yea.. I'm worried about this stuff. My wife is thinking of flying for the first time across country to Washington State to see her brothers baby being born. Her worries (besides cost) is the growing backlash of stories that are coming from the air ports. Here are a few.
You know that part of "x-ray is no more provocative than your doctor visit x-rays"? well.. you be the judge here.I'm going to source many of these articles to gizmodo but the links there have further sources as well. It isn't just gizomdo that is coming up with these stories.http://lifehacker.com/5690402/what-you-need-to-know-about-the-new-tsa-screenings-and-gropings
Advanced imaging technology safely screens passengers for metallic and nonmetallic threats including weapons, explosives and other objects concealed under layers of clothing without physical contact to help TSA keep the traveling public safe.
further in the article:
The technology has brought up two concerns: privacy (due to the technology seeing through your clothing) and safety (due to low-level x-ray technology being used to generate one of the two images the TSA's scanners generate). If you're curious what the images look like, the TSA has posted a video demonstrating the advanced imaging technology. While the images technically see through clothing, they see through your skin as well. They looks like x-ray images (because, in one of the two cases, they are). With little trust in the TSA these days, there have been many concerns about these images as TSA agents could, potentially, save these "nude" images.
Can You Refuse These New Measures?
The short answer is no. Once you get to security there's no turning back. You're in for some serious consequences if you refuse to participate:
[A]nyone who refuses to complete the screening process will be denied access to airport secure areas and could be subject to civil penalties, the administration said, citing a federal appeals court ruling in support of the rule. The ruling, from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, says that "requiring that a potential passenger be allowed to revoke consent to an ongoing airport security search makes little sense in a post-9/11 world. Such a rule would afford terrorists multiple opportunities to attempt to penetrate airport security by 'electing not to fly' on the cusp of detection until a vulnerable portal is found.
If you opt out of the scan, "the TSA is using what they call an 'enhanced pat down' ...These pat downs are much more rigorous and often include the TSA using their palms to touch your genitals in a manner that could feel like sexual assault."
So your choices are:
1.) Photograph me naked
2.) Touch my genitals
Like this guy!>http://gawker.com/5689925/man-threatened-with-10000-fine-after-refusing-tsa-grope
Or even this:http://www.newser.com/story/105351/tsa-pats-down-3-year-old.html
Could it get worse? Sure.http://gizmodo.com/5692583/woman-suing-federal-government-after-tsa-screener-exposed-her-breasts-to-entire-airport
Listen, we know the TSA's been unpopular lately. But are they really so bad? What about this time a TSA screener pulled down a woman's blouse while frisking her? And then laughed about it? Yes. Yes, they are that bad.http://amarillo.com/news/local-news/2010-10-11/lawsuit-airport-search-indecent
What about men? Are they safe? Hell no.http://www.thesmokinggun.com/documents/bizarre/tsa-screener-cited-torture-scanner-case
TSA Screener Cited "Torture" In Scanner Case
The airport screener arrested for assaulting a coworker who taunted him about the size of his penis after his genitalia was exposed by a full-body scanner told police that he snapped after being subjected to “psychological torture” by fellow Transportation Security Administration employees who repeatedly asked him, “What size are you?”
At least air port staff is safe, right? No...http://gizmodo.com/5692311/airline-pilots-fight-against-tsa-body-scans-too
Not only individuals are standing up against TSA's body scans and practices, but the most powerful pilot union in the world is fighting them too, according to this ALPA security alert sent by a Continental pilot. Napolitano's enemy list keeps growing.
So what does the fed say about this?http://gizmodo.com/5691390/a-message-from-homeland-security-my-way-or-the-highway
Radiation? Sure, might get you out of the scans if you have cancer.http://gizmodo.com/5692198/a-tsa-success-story
So does this actually work? Does this keep us safe? I don't' think so.http://gizmodo.com/5692351/junk-security-naked-scanners-wont-keep-us-safe
On the night in late October that Saudi intelligence tipped the American government off to a plot to blow up planes using explosives packed in printer cartridges, Pistole got a call from White House counterrrorism czar John Brennan. The TSA was then able to give new marching orders to everyone from air marshals to cargo inspectors. An agency team was even dispatched to Yemen, where the bombs originated. It all seemed shockingly logical for an agency that's generally appears to be anything but. The quick response to intelligence and targeted security measures could provide a partial template for future action. The next step would be questioning passengers and employing high-sensors when travelers' behavior or specific threats warrant - instead of making us all get digitally nude.
It seems the best way to stop terrorists is by intelligence. Not get naked and groped in public. On this incident the plan was thwarted by tip offs. Tel Aviv is still the most secure air port in the world and they wont use these machines.
There has to be better ways. I'll sign this off to you guys now.