We have reviewed the circumstances involving this screening and determined that our officers acted professionally, according to proper procedure and did not require this passenger to remove an adult diaper.
Like Pavlovian dogs, we’re conditioned to expect spin, obfuscation and probably lies, after the TSA says it has “reviewed the circumstances.” The fact that TSA continues to use that tired line speaks volumes about its opinion of us, the traveling public.
Does it think we’re idiots?
And finally, here’s the unbelievable story of Abdul Majed, the TSA screener at JFK’s Terminal 7 who didn’t realize the metal detector was unplugged, according to reports. Planes had to be turned around, passenger rescreened. It was chaos.
You can’t make this stuff up.
The truth is, this is the failure of the most basic level of diligence. How can you expect the public to feel confident of the mission of the TSA if they don’t even know if the lights are turned on?
Oh, wait. That was an anonymous law enforcement official, not an official TSA statement.
I can’t find any official statement on this incident from the normally talkative agency. Maybe that’s because in this case, there’s nothing it can say that will make it look any better.
Actually, the TSA has a long history of clamming up when it suits the agency, either by not talking about something or declaring that it’s “SSI” — Sensitive Security Information. But airline passengers know better. After more than a decade of deceptive rhetoric, followed by brief periods of self-serving silence, public discontent with the TSA is about to boil over.
As a best case scenario, the agency assigned to protect America’s transportation systems could try a few new lines on us. It might be nice, just for the sake of variety. Is it asking too much to be offended in new ways instead of the same old, predictable ways?
Then again, it’s possible that the TSA’s image problems will turn an election-year issue. But don’t get too excited. When it comes presidential candidates and TSA policy, it looks like we may have to choose between dumb and dumber.