Canada is Free and Freedom is Its Nationality

Sir Wilfrid Laurier

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Airport Security

Look it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that when the Toronto Star is campaigning for the "Israelification" of airport security, that maybe this would be a good idea. It isn't like that kind of statement comes naturally to them after all.

And it also doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that evacuating Pearson terminal as a first response to a suspicious bag is not really a great idea. Actually let me amend that, it doesn't even come up to the level of an idea.

It also shouldn't come as a particular surprise to anyone that some people aren't crazy about getting sexually molested in order to fly on an airplane. Think I'm exaggerating? How would you describe this? “I was wearing shorts at the time – between the underwear, right on the skin, all the way around the back, all the way around my front, 360 degrees, touched inappropriately,”

And no it doesn't make me feel much better that it is same-sex pat-downs. After all, I have this sneaking suspicion that they aren't allowed to discriminate against gay and lesbian TSA officers. And frankly I don't want anyone touching me there regardless of orientation.

But it is wonderful to know that apparently Muslim women who wear hijabs don't, or shouldn't, have to go through a pat down. According to CAIR anyway.

  • Before you are patted down, you should remind the TSA officer that they are only supposed to pat down the area in question, in this scenario, your head and neck. They SHOULD NOT subject you to a full-body or partial-body pat-down.

  • Instead of the pat-down, you can always request to pat down your own scarf, including head and neck area, and have the officers perform a chemical swipe of your hands
  • That would be after you demanded to know why you were selected for screening, if it had anything to do with your wearing a hijab, and probably threatening to sue for discrimination.

    Web page complete with contact info for CAIR, apparently in case these guidelines aren't followed by the TSA.

    CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, or 202-488-8787, E-Mail:; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail:

    The ACLU, in one of it's rare fits of usefulness, supplies a handy form for you to file a complaint.

    In related news a woman is suing because she was publicly exposed during a search, and experienced crude jokes from airport staff.

    And to make it all better, you have as much chance of getting cancer from the naked scanners as being a victim of a terrorist bombing.

    But you can sue and send the TSA people to jail for up to three years if you can prove they acted inappropriately.

    That's nice.

    But I'll bet nearly impossible.

    So how far is too far in the name of security?


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