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TSA Body Scanners

A device that creates an image of a person's nude body through their clothing.

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Boycott is the only way out!

  • Nov 22, 2010
I believe I went through one of these the last time I left the U.S.. Damn, my sexy figure is now on file?! Yuck!!!

So, other than being treated like potential terrorist, visitors or Americans themselves are subjected to the high-tech body search in the most gross way possible, if I read some of the reviews here right. I suppose I can't complain since those Constitutional rights don't apply to foreigners, do they? Since I'm not Americans, there are no ways for me to argue or fight for freedom on another's soil.

What then is the best recourse? Well, don't visit the country! Unfortunately, that's what it's been coming to. Other than subjecting oneself to these Peeping Tom, one is at times being subjected to other demeaning kinds of glares. Yep, I've been through it when I returned to Houston from Ecuador. That was one of the rare times I vowed not to even transit in the U.S.! As for my sister, she has totally refused to go to the U.S. ever since immigration subject foreigners to finger printing! Now that I think about it and have gotten enough of my travel bugs, I tend to agree. Why do we subject ourselves to such unpleasant procedures when we are going to the country to spend money?

In the real sense of the matter, airport security body scanners may be intrusive, but wait till you are being questioned for more than an hour in a room which they segregate visitors into. I haven't gone through those, thank God! But my friend had. And she was only in the U.S. to visit her fiance!

Anyhow, the root of all these problems doesn't lie in the security system in place, I believe. It lies in a government (past and present) that has failed in it's foreign policies, thereby creating tons of enemies in the process. Sad to say that is the case for a country as great as America, but that's the truth as far as I'm concerned. If one goes into another's territories waging war often enough, you can't expect others (no matter how weak they are) to sit still and not retaliate. That's human nature. And in this regard, the U.S. has failed to understand human nature. Worse, it has probably failed to take into account that even as mighty as the elephant is, the mouse has a way to get into its system and brings it down!

I do believe that when humans take lives, no matter how justified the reasons are, eventually it'll return to haunt. Of course, it is counter productive to say that no lives should be taken, there are afterall lots of bad guys in this world. We choose to call them terrorists. Yet, in the process of safeguarding the ordinary citizens, it is my opinion that many governments have themselves been "terrorizing" its citizens in the name of protection and safety. It is then up to individuals to weigh the effects of these methods and to choose their personal course of action. Those in power has the tendency to overstretch what they can and cannot do until the day each individual stands up and says NO! Until then, too bad if you've to travel on the plane. That's the way it is! The authority's stand has always been, take it or leave it!
Boycott is the only way out! Boycott is the only way out! Boycott is the only way out! Boycott is the only way out!

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November 27, 2010
I don't fly much but I guess if I was given a choice, I'd pick the pat down. Nice one, Sharrie!
November 25, 2010
For the record, I don't think the Constitutional analysis depends on whether or not you are a foreigner. Yes, by being in the US, you have Constitutional rights. Unfortunately some courts think you waive those entirely by choosing to fly. Other courts seem to use a balancing test and haven't addressed this question yet.
December 31, 2010
The world seems to be full of hassles these days!
January 03, 2011
Certainly you don't think that the Constitution allows foreign tourists to be detained indefinitely without charge just because the police chief is pissed off, do you? Habeas Corpus does not know bounds of nationality. And the Supreme Court has rightly stated many times that due process requirements don't go away just because an individual is not a US citizen.
January 03, 2011
"The writ of habeus corpus only applies to American citizens if you are referencing the U.S. Constitution. "

Um, the Constitution in no way limits it in this way.  It says only that the great writ may be suspended by Congress.  It has NEVER been limited to citizens.  Can you provide any case where the court refused to consider a habeas petition solely because the petitioner  was not a citizen?

Talking about activism and the Warren court is sometimes justified, but usually people who seriously make such arguments point to older sources to show that the Warren court broke with tradition.

The same thing goes for "due process."  If process is due, it must be given.  And while changes over the years have affected how much process is due, the idea that foreigners arrested on US soil have the same right to due process as everyone else has never been very controversial in the courts, unless you can point to cases that say otherwise.  In fact that this is so uncontroversial can be found by the fact that I could not find any law review articles or cases addressing the question.

With due respect, you are the one trying to make the Constitution say what you want it to say.
November 22, 2010
I think you make a good point, Sharrie. Whether you're the mob or the government, if you create enemies they will find innovative ways of striking back at - and sometimes beating - you. If we ever want to get on top of terrorism, we're going to have to face the fact that bullying our way around the world will have to change.
November 23, 2010
Unfortunately, for everyone concerned and in this particular case, the saying what goes around does indded comes around is so very true (both good and bad!)! Thanks for taking the time to read and comment, James!
More Airport Security Body Scanners reviews
review by . November 19, 2010
If the pornographic image I've added to this subject in Lunch offends you (and it should since this is supposed to be a safe-for-work site!), then surely the fact that these images are being collected from US Citizens who have committed no crime should OUTRAGE you. At the risk of ending up on the no-fly list for speaking out about this gross abuse of our Constitutional rights, let's just take a moment to consider what on earth is going on here and why this is such as unbelievable step.   …
review by . November 30, 2010
I am an IT consultant, not a lawyer.  If you wish to follow my protest ideas, you may wish to seek legal advice first.  This is not legal advice.      These scanners are unbelievably bad ideas.  They make very little sense unless you believe the manufacturer hype and expect security to be packaged in a big box, which those of us in related fields know is never the case, and that our Constitutional rights are waived when we travel, which the Supreme Court has repeatedly …
Quick Tip by . December 07, 2010
posted in Politics Your Way
This was a bad idea, costing a lot of money and doesn't really make me feel any safer when flying. It probably causes health risks to frequent travelers or those who work in the airport shops. I myself don't mind submitting to them but I am probably in the minority.
About the reviewer
Sharrie ()
I'm a traveler at heart & have been nicknamed Travel Queen by friends & colleagues alike. Traveling has been my life passion for the last decade or so. As we enter a new decade, I'm excited … more
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The full-body scanner is a device that creates an image of a person's nude body through their clothing to look for hidden objects without physically removing their clothes or making physical contact. They are increasingly being deployed at airports and train stations in many countries.

One technology used under the name "full-body scanner" is the millimeter wave scanner, in which extremely high frequency radio waves are reflected off the body to make an image on which one can see some types of objects hidden under the clothes. Another technology in use is the backscatter X-ray.

Two advantages of full-body scanners over a physical strip search are that it is quicker (takes only 15 seconds) and that people do not have to be touched in a manner that some might consider offensive. A disadvantage is that the scanners are being used to perform routine, virtual strip searches without probable cause which opponents claim are illegal and violate basic human rights. Furthermore, the true long term health effects of these technologies are unknown.
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