Lo, how this mighty nation has fallen.
Purely out of an abiding and superfluous concern for political correctness, we continuously increase the humiliation of our citizens for "security theater," not security ["At Kennedy, travelers adapt," News, Nov. 22]. We know from an intelligence perspective what needs to be done, yet we still dare not do it - that is, until the whole fake system collapses.
We know that we are responding to the previous terror attack, while with ever-new tricks, the jihadists stay a step ahead of us.
We watch as the agents at the Transportation Security Administration scan or perform virtual strip searches of pilots, not even registering that a pilot who has an evil intention need only crash his plane.
We are utilizing methodologies that detect bombs, but NOT bombers.
Jeffrey S. Wiesenfeld
The eternal quest to determine who among us is evil and capable of inflicting death and destruction is being played out by the Transportation Security Administration. The TSA is employing technology with the hope that X-rays will weed out the "bad" from the "good."
Humans for eons have interacted, bonded and judged one another based on personal contact. Our technology and digitized culture have minimized person-to-person contact, and we now have come to depend on electronic circuitry to communicate, shop, date and keep us safe. We tweet, Facebook, chat, e-mail and avoid live personal human interaction.
Israel's airport security agents rely less on technology and more on human psychology, personal contact and interaction. Their success is a matter of record.
It is a commonly held belief that our eyes are the windows to our souls, yet we learn most TSA agents are too busy examining our "junk" to look into our eyes.
On a recent trip to Oregon to visit family, I knew I would be patted down at least twice each way because I have titanium knees and I have to change airlines. The security personnel (always ladies) explained the procedure carefully and asked if I required a private pat-down (I didn't).
I was more than happy to oblige because how else are we to identify terrorists smuggling bombs or weapons? The security people couldn't have been nicer, and I felt that they were more uncomfortable with the procedure than I was.
Lighten up, folks. They are not seeing anything they haven't seen before. You don't have anything unusual or provocative. Unless you're carrying a bomb.
I would feel a lot better about full-body scanning if personal searches were the only weak link in our security program. What about the dozens of other weak points that could be corrected without violating our rights?
For example, the food venues and retail outlets that are available after the security screening. We will take away a nail clipper from an 85-year-old grandmother, but who counts the dozens of sharp objects in the toolbox of the repair guy who's called to fix the refrigerator at an airport bar?
How about the fact that we can only bring three ounces of liquid through a security checkpoint, but then we can walk a few steps and purchase a half bottle of wine? A broken bottle is a serious weapon.
The price of correcting these weaknesses is only convenience and profit. A much lower price than forfeiting our human rights.