Get your political fix from an unrepentant political junkie.
March 10, 2016
If you have travelled by air lately, you assuredly have noticed that airplane travel in the United States has grown increasingly intrusive as security measures strain our personal freedoms and right to privacy. Transportation Security Administration (T.S.A.) officials, security experts, and Congressional leaders argue that the risk of a terrorist attack outweighs individual rights and that these intrusive measures are necessary, despite the overt violation of the Fourth Amendment’s prohibition of unwarranted searches and seizures. As Philip Mudd, a former F.B.I. and C.I.A. senior official told Wolf Blitzer on CNN in 2014, when new body screenings and electronic-device searches were implemented, “We have to find a balance and ensure that we protect against legitimate plots by Al Qaeda.” The American Civil Liberties Union agrees, “The government should enact procedures that pose the least threat to our civil liberties and are also proven to be effective.” TSA’s effectiveness is disputed by key groups and their methods are constitutionally questionable at best.
The first requirement of any security measure is that it not violate our personal boundaries, which partially undressing in public, full body scans, and intimate body pat-downs clearly do. Not only are these measures undignified and embarrassing, they violate an individual’s right not to be publicly exposed and touched without a proper warrant, per the Fourth Amendment.