Friday, December 16, 2011

Some stuff I didn't have time for #3

New York Senator Charles Schumer and New York State Senator Michael Gianaris want the Department for the Protection of the Fatherland and the T&A to provide "passenger advocates" at airport screening sites in the wake of four elderly women complaining that they were "strip searched" at JFK Airport.

One said she had to raise her blouse and remove her undergarments so a T&A agent could check her back brace. Another was made to drop her pants to check a colostomy bag and a third was required to remove her pants so agents could be sure her diabetic insulin pump was not, I dunno, some kind of leg bomb. The fourth couldn't even get on the plane because her incontinence pad set off alarms.
On Sunday, the TSA denied on its blog that the women had been strip searched.

"TSA does not and has never conducted strip searches, and no strip searches occurred in any of these incidents," the official statement posted by TSA blogger Bob Burns said.
Which seems to depend largely on just how you define the term "strip search," which of course T&A did not do - although I have to wonder if anything short of being stripped naked right on the concourse would qualify in their minds. Maybe not even then, if it didn't involve a little finger-wave action.

Oh, but this is what really ticked me off, the little thing again:
"We truly regret these passengers feel they had a bad screening experience," the TSA said in its blog.
"Feel?" You "regret" that they "feel" they had "a bad screening experience?"

"We are the TSA. We regret that you think you had a bad screening experience. We regret that you imagine you had a bad screening experience. We're sorry that you fantasize that you had a bad screening experience. It disturbs us deep in our institutional soul, truly it does, that you are so out of touch with reality that you maintain this delusion that you had a bad screening experience. We hope you get the help you need. Have a nice day."

"Feel." Couldn't even say something like "we regret their screening experience was unpleasant," which at least would acknowledge the validity of their embarrassment without admitting any legal error. No, it had to be "feel," like "it's all in their heads, the poor dears."


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