Thursday, August 17, 2006

The Portland Chamber of Commerce and the City of Las Vegas Thank You For Your Efforts.

Coffee, Tea, or Should We Feel Your Pregnant Wife’s Breasts Before Throwing You in a Cell at the Airport and Then Lying About Why We Put You There? by Nicholas Monahan

"TSA ... VIGILANT, EFFECTIVE, EFFICIENT" The Motto of the Transportation Safety Administration

Congressional Delegation, Nevada
Congressional Delegation, California
Congressional Delegation, Oregon

TSA.Ombudsman@dhs.gov
To whom it may concern:

1. Do you consider this a satisfactory incident resolution?
2. Do you consider the allegations made by the complainant to be refutable? If so, does the evidence needed to refute it exist?
3. Would you consider a public body search of a pregnant woman to be appropriate, or an emotional reaction to it to be unreasonable?
4. Even if all details of the incident report as given are completely true, what changes to procedure will you be implementing to prevent unfortunate reactions by stressed travelers?
5. Would you consider the overall incident to be indicative of a properly functioning, efficient and professional operation?
6. What does it say about TSA security that it can be apparently be so easily distracted by the breasts of a pregnant woman?
  1. a. Upon review, how many persons passed by with light or no screening while this incident was taking place?
  2. b. Is the use of decoys and distractions covered in TSA training?
  3. c. For what period of time, and to what degree did a potential security gap exist while this situation unfolded?
7. Upon consideration, do you think the average person who witnessed this event or read this account would feel more or less secure in their person than without the protection TSA provides?

As a Citizen of Nevada, anything that impacts transportation is of concern to me, as it directly affects our economy. Furthermore, if it seems to me likely or even that I will be singled out by security for being "insufficiently docile" and arbitrarily punished despite the results of the screening, I will likely choose other means of transportation or not travel recreationally.

This consideration applies with equal force to California, and presumably to the State of Oregon. Frankly, the participation of Portland Police in this incident, if as described, shows a distressing lack of awareness for the potential price of offending the dignity and personal security of travelers.

"Security" that inconveniences the public and makes them feel uncomfortable and insecure misses the point. Any casino in Nevada has better and more effective security than this, and it is accomplished under similar conditions with little or no intrusion upon the customers.

Security that actively creates a climate of fear and apprehension produces a climate in which detection of of would-be terrorists and troublemakers by body-language "tells" is nearly impossible. If everyone is sweaty, tense and apprehensive, you have created ideal camouflage for the would-be terrorist, rather than subtly creating conditions where such behaviors become conspicuous.

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