Everyone have a pleasant Thanksgiving and safe travels? No underwear bombers? Good, glad to hear it. Now, say your thanks to the sleepless Transportation Security Administration administrator John Pistole and his agency.
As someone who constantly keeps his eyes on news stories and blares CNN in the background during my nightly chores (see: reading and drinking wine), I have been appalled at the media’s handling of the so-called invasive pat-down procedures at airports across the country.
From a percentage standpoint, how many people honestly see this as a major issue? Personally, all I care about when flying is that I can enjoy my double gin-and-tonic in peace, without having to save my fellow passengers from a plastic-homemade-gun-toting terrorist by karate-chopping him (or her).
Therefore, if my worry-free enjoyment of my preferred sauce requires walking through full-body scanners or someone “giving me the business,” frankly, I don’t mind.
When did people get so sensitive? Who’s so insecure as to risk an explosive making its way onto their flight by simply not letting someone pat them down?
Plus, given America’s obesity problem, the TSA guards aren’t going to enjoy this new policy any more than the travelers.
You know the Geico commercial where the legendary R. Lee Ermey declares, “Maybe we should chug on over to Mamby-Pamby land, where maybe we can find some self-confidence for you, you Jack Wagon!?” That’s what I imagine when I think of these folks weeping about intrusive fondling.
That, or Phil Gramm, former Republican Senator of Texas, calling us a “nation of whiners.”
Howard Kurtz, the Washington bureau chief for The Daily Beast, gave his two cents last week, saying “in the modern media world, anecdotal accounts rule.”
So, despite the fact that 99 percent of travelers aren’t going to be subjected to the pat-downs during the holiday season, the mainstream media has been leading with all kinds of stories about people being subjected to borderline sexual assault, Kurtz notes.
This is one of the best examples recently of the media making the news as opposed to reporting it. Reporters countrywide have been trekking around searching for someone claiming to have been handled improperly while going through security at an airport.
In reality, these incidents are complete minutia compared with how many people are traveling swiftly.
Obviously no one wants to see Grandma being groped or little Billy forced to remove his shirt, but G-Ma and Willie will only have to undergo such inspection if, first, they set off the walk-through detector, and second, refuse the body scanner.
The full-body scanner conversation is every bit as preposterous. It’s an X-ray! Who takes pleasures from X-rays?! OK, Grim Reaper, you got me.
Like you, I wish we lived in a utopia where none of this is necessary, but we’ve learned -- and continue to discover -- extremists are going to all lengths to terrify and wreak havoc on our society.
To be held hostage during a hijacking 30,000 feet above land, or to go to second-base with a TSA agent, that is the question.