Discussion in 'Aviation Passenger Security in the USA' started by Cartoon Peril, Oct 18, 2011.
We may have hit upon one of the very few completely non-partisan issues!
Here is another Daily Kos diary on the dubious nature of the Junkatron science. I blogged over at DKOS for a long time trying to spread the word, I think people may actually be getting the message. Again, I'm not trying to make this a right/left thing out of this, as I think that would be highly unproductive. I'm just pointing that this is starting to get some traction at a big blog that generally supports the president. And the truth is that I'm glad to see I have some views in common with people on this site who probably don't agree with me on a lot of other political things. But that is the thing about the constitution -- politics aren't supposed to repeal it!
Well, I don't think we need to get into that, I can see a lot of room for discussion!. But I think we all agree TSA has gotten drunk on national security moonshine and driven the constitution into the ditch.
I'm in total admiration of the good doctor who did this, and I support her wholeheartedly. That said, I'm baffled as to how she was surprised by and unprepared for her arrest. People have been cuffed and dragged off for far less at the checkpoints. Remember this story, for example? http://lewrockwell.com/orig3/monahan1.html. And Phil Mocek was far less "disruptive", at the very same airport.
I'm glad she did what she did, I just wish she had been more prepared and strategic with her civil disobedience.
People are, unfortunately, unaware of what goes on at the checkpoint. Period.
She was brave and took an incredible stand, standing her ground in the face of incredible adversity. I admire her.
People don't know what goes on at the checkpoint. She didn't realize that speaking in public would lead to arrest. They desperately need to make examples of people so everybody shuffles through compliantly. Hopefully more people start to wake up.
she was brave. the folks around her telling her to shut up are beneath contempt.
There's a fair amount of expertise on this board.
Should we think about putting together a short 'what to expect in the checkpoint lines and here are your rights' paper for people? Maybe a one pager that they can carry with them?
Do we have the legal expertise to tell others what their rights are? Even the USSC seems iffy on the Constitution.
I think she was surprised by the idea that she'd wasted twenty years in the service defending the rights of people who couldn't give a rat's (expletive deleted) about their rights as long as they don't miss the latest episode of "Jersey Shore."
We wouldn't be giving them legal advice. I guess I envision it more as a short list of the more frequent issues that crop up and how they are usually resolved. For example -- "do I have the right to keep my belongings in sight?" We would say something like -- "people often get separated from their belongings at checkpoints. Politely, but firmly state that you are going to stand where you can see your things. Ask for a supervisor." We might want to add something about retaliation...
So it isn't really legal advice, it's general information about situations that infrequent flyers encounter but don't know how to navigate. They don't know the trade offs.
One could say such things but we have seen even TSA employees disagree on that one simple point. I see a minefield in this kind of thing.
That's why we wouldn't give legal advice. Total minefield.
But I'd love to see something that empowers people when they get to a checkpoint. We go on and on about calling people sheeple, but a lot of them don't know what to expect and are just afraid. If we can demystify the experience some, maybe some of them would be more willing to take a stand.
We can't tell them what to expect because any one TSA (expletive deleted) can make things up as they go. There are no rules that TSA must follow and trying to insist a passenger knows more is sure to lead to issues at the checkpoint.
What we need to tell the unknowing is that TSA is corrupt, not a security agency, and does little to make anyone safer when traveling by air.
They can make stuff up, sure, but if we're careful with the list, at least people might be clued in as to whether or not the TSA is making something up. It will give them a pointer and help them decide if they want to call in a supervisor or the police.
I don't think people care about that when they're actually at the airport. They're thinking it probably, but chances are high that they're going to be worried about how the search is going to go, what's going to happen to their stuff, their kids (if they have them), etc.
And all of those are unknown.
The first thing the HEAD (expletive deleted) is likely to tell you that they do things differently everything, which purportedly enhances their security.
The police will not get involved in the nitty (and very) gritty details of TSA rules and procedures.
This seems like a great on idea on the surface, but getting average joes to stand up for their rights at a TSA checkpoint only gets them arrested on disorderly conduct charges that usually beatable with an attorney. At the first sign of resistance (other than your crotch) TSA seems primed to call for the cops, claiming that your are causing a disturbance and interfering with screening. Remember John Whitehead's summary of the VIPR philosophy: "Intimidate, dominate, control".
A good title for the brochure might be "Civil Disobedience: Preserving Your Rights at the TSA Checkpoint and Winning on Your Day in Court".
I hear you.
But -- if we empower people, even if people don't change their behavior at the checkpoint, they may feel brave enough to file a complaint. And that's a big deal. Those complaints are FOIA-able, which in turn allows them to be used in lawsuits.
Then again, I've always been an activist. It's not really in my nature to not do something.
They're only FOIA-able if they aren't simply tossed into the trash by the first TSA monkey to get their grubby little paws on them.
Not a case I'd be willing to bet on. Not to mention all of the reports that TSA employees are perfectly willing to lie and say comment cards simply aren't available, or demand photo ID to simply get a card.
Complaining to the TSA or any TSA employee is pointless. The entire organization and every last one of their current employees can't be trusted.
Very true. But we're one step ahead. EPIC has a complaint form, so does the ACLU. I bet other organizations have them too. The TSA can't get their grubby little paws on those - they go directly to the organization. But again, the individual at the checkpoint has to feel safe enough in order to make that complaint. And giving them more information is a way to make them feel that way. And by 'safe' I mean that they don't feel like the TSA will retaliate against them, and that their complaint is going to be read and acted upon.
Don't get me wrong. I don't think complaining to the TSA is going to do anything. But the complaints that are gathered can be used in lawsuits against them.
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