Posted by: Meagan | November 17, 2010

Simplifying Airport Security

If you haven’t heard about the debacle of TSA, John Tyner refused the TSA’s backscatter x-ray machine screen. If you do refuse to do these machine test then they do a thorough pat-down. In the past pat-downs would exclude groin/private areas, now however the security agents have been instructed to go “until there is resistance” meaning they will be touching your groin and other private areas. John Tyner refused the more intimate pat-down saying he would be willing to a non-invasive pat-down and a walk through the metal detector. It goes on and on, now the TSA has filed a civil suit (up to 10K) against Mr. Tyner for refusing the security check and then leaving the airport; if he can’t get on the flight what else is he supposed to do? (Not to mention he was escorted out.) There has been tremendous coverage of it, here is an article, and in this article and video the TSA pats down a 3 year old.

I bring this up because in talking to my husband he brought my attention to this article about Israelification of airports which I have to say is A-MAZING! They have a common-sense approach to security including looking people in the eye and asking them simple questions like, “How are you?” “Where are you flying today?” They do behavior analysis of people coming into the airport. Why aren’t we doing this? The way Isrealis do airport security is seamless and their goal is to always get people from their car to their terminal in 25 minutes. Who doesn’t want that? In the US if a terrorist got a bomb to the “security check” at the check-in desk (which isn’t hard) they would evacuate the entire airport, in Israel if someone were to get by the previous security checks and questions and a bomb were found they put the bomb in a “bomb box” that can take a blast of over 200 lbs of explosives and only a few dozen employees would need evacuated from the area.

” ‘Israelis, unlike Canadians and Americans, don’t take s— from anybody. When the security agency in Israel (the ISA) started to tighten security and we had to wait in line for — not for hours — but 30 or 40 minutes, all hell broke loose here. We said, ‘We’re not going to do this. You’re going to find a way that will take care of security without touching the efficiency of the airport.’

That, in a nutshell is ‘Israelification’ – a system that protects life and limb without annoying you to death.”

I feel that people make things so much harder than they need to be. I hope that the US government and the airports around the country will go for simplification. Look at how other people have done things, and see what works. This is truly amazing and I would rather do a radical (better) change of the airport security than allow people to do invasive scans of my body (and my children) and pat-downs. We don’t have to give up our liberty and freedom to fly.



  1. Thanks for posting this! I had heard about the pat down story and frankly, I am TERRIFIED of flying this season with my 3 children. It is going to be such a hassel! We’re going to be flying 3 different times and I’m not looking forward to it. The system now seems to punish the honest people. I wish we could take a more sensible approach to airport security. I like the Israelification idea. We are the USA for crying out loud, but in the airport it feels like we have no rights at all. I wish people would use their brains instead of trying to be PC all the time.

  2. I am not a fan of the new pat downs. I would rather strip naked than have some security worker probe inbetween my bum cheeks with clothes on (they’re supposed to now!).

    I don’t think trading freedom for security is a smart trade. It’s not worth it to me – and frankly I don’t even find these things to be justifiable measures to guarantee security.

    Maybe the Israelis will get to us and shake things up.

  3. I’m with y’all. I was talking with my husband about this the other day, we are to the point of never flying again. None of us will go through the body scanner or a pat down of any kind. Metal detector, walk through or wand, go ahead, xray my personal items, fine, but I’m not doing anything more than that. We got profiled on our way home from Washington last year, put in a seperate line, Noah and me. Tyler was a few steps behind, when he went to follow us the guy got ticked, he follwed anyway. And then with a beard and a tattoo on his hand they decided that they needed to screen Tyler for any “residues” on his hand… let me guess what they were thinking. It’s completely rediculous anymore. And I think as American’s a lot of us are finally putting our foot down and saying that we are fed up with things and we are not putting up with it anymore.

  4. The other thing that DRIVES ME CRAZY is that NO terrorist has ever been caught using these invasive procedures! All terrorists have been taken down by the passengers on board flights. I think it is crazy to give up our freedoms to fly, because where will it stop?

  5. My brother and father have both traveled to Israel on separate occasions and that account is very in line with what they experienced. In fact, the travel companion my dad had w/ him on a business trip there was detained for additional questioning and he STILL made his flight.

    In addition, it interesting to note that the underwear bomber (that inspired this whole system) was on a no fly list and shouldn’t have been on that plane in the first place.

    There has recently been a lawsuit filed by a pilot saying the TSA has violated his constitutional rights of unnecessary search and seizure.

    I have heard other reports of TSA agents making fun of people going through the scanners or pat downs.

    I have more thoughts..but this is a comments section not a place for an essay!

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