Call Congress about the nude-o-scopes: Monday, November 15
Congress is returning for a lame duck session beginning tomorrow. Those of us active in the Travel Safety and Security forum over at FlyerTalk have developed a targeted list of Congressman to contact and voice our objections. This will have maximum impact if we do it on the same day. There’s also a TSA oversight hearing scheduled for Wednesday the 17th at 10:00am by the Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety and Security (members listed below). When you call please voice your objections to the naked scanners and sexual assault pat downs, and ask that these issues be discussed at the oversight hearing. I have also put some suggested talking points below to use in your discussion with the Congressional staffers.
House Committee on Homeland Security
Subcommittee on Transportation Security and Infrastructure Protection
Sheila Jackson-Lee, Chairwoman (future Ranking Member?)
Charlie Dent, Ranking Member (future Chair?)
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation
Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety and Security
Byron Dorgan, Chairman
Jim DeMint, Ranking Member
Suggested talking points:
* Health concerns, especially for cancer survivors. TSA refused to release the methodology used to determine how they deemed these machines “safe”.
* Privacy: a strip search or genital touching should not be required to board an airplane.
* The machines don’t provide any great security advantage. An explosive concealed in a body cavity would not be detected by either a naked scan or a pat down. They are expensive peep show booths, nothing more.
* If you’re a parent, do you want a government agent in a booth looking at pictures of your teenage daughter?
A common refrain from the establishment is that they are looking out for the traveling public’s best interests, and they’ll predictably cite 9/11 and ask “don’t you want to be safe?” In response, of course we support security, but effective security can be accomplished without sacrificing privacy, dignity and human rights: by x-raying bags, using metal detectors and random swabbing for explosives. This combination would provide more security against explosive threats than all the naked scanners Michael Chertoff’s consulting firm can sell.