Underwear to be banned on all flights (joke);
Napolitano insists “system worked” (not a joke)

(Note: in a comment, Ken Hechtman argues that there are valid reasons for security personnel to check small children, and I reply.)

Kathlene M. writes:

Thanks to this latest terrorist incident, I’m waiting for the Transportation Security administration to announce that underwear is strictly prohibited on all domestic and international flights, especially on toddlers and infants. That would be the next logical step.

You probably can tell that I have a bone to pick with the TSA. My kids and I were patted down the last time we flew (November 2008) because we forgot that we had some dangerous milk and toothpaste in our carry-ons. My daughter was two at the time and was patted down. So was my six-year-old son. My husband couldn’t believe it.

This isn’t the only time we’ve been singled out for inspection. When I was eight-months pregnant with my first child, I was singled out for a pat down. After all, my protruding belly could have been hiding—in plain view—bombs. My husband gets frisked a lot when he travels. Probably because he has a generic American name (e.g., John Smith) that could be hiding his true identity of Mohammed Abdullah Mohammed.

So in addition to full body scans now and forever, it makes sense that underwear should forever be prohibited on flights.

Jonah Goldberg noted that Napolitano was on the news shows this morning, claiming that “the system worked.” I beg to differ. Apparently the terrorist easily got on the flight despite the red flags from his past. Meanwhile the rest of us must continue to strip and be frisked.

Here’s what Goldberg wrote today at The Corner:

Fire Napolitano [Jonah Goldberg]

Understandbly, the White House is trying very hard to get out in front of the would-be Christmas bomber story. The head of the Department of Homeland Security isn’t helping. I watched her on three shows and each time she was more annoying, maddening and absurd than the pevious appearance. It is her basic position that the “system worked” because the bureaucrats responded properly after the attack. That the attack was “foiled” by a bad detonator and some civilian passengers is proof, she claims, that her agency is doing everything right. That is just about the dumbest thing she could say, on the merits and politically. I would wager that not one percent of Americans think the system is “working” when terrorists successfully get bombs onto planes (and succeed in activating them). Probably even fewer think it’s fair that they have to take off their shoes, endure delays and madness while a known Islamic radical—turned in by his own father—can waltz onto a plane (and into the country). DHS had no role whatsoever in assuring that this bomb didn’t go off. By her logic if the bomb had gone off, the system would have “worked” since it has done everything right.

Napolitano has a habit of arguing that DHS is a first responder outfit. Its mission is to deal with “man-caused-disasters” afer they occur. It appears she really believes it. If the White House wants to assure people that it takes the war on terror seriously (a term Robert Gibbs used this morning by the way), they could start by firing this patenly unqualified hack.

Here she is her own words, over at RealClearPolitics.

[end of Corner entry.]

LA replies:

Thanks for the excellent and very disturbing e-mail. The combination of your account of your family’s experiences (which are undoubtedly typical) with Napolitano’s comments show a society whose embrace of unreality has turned it into—literally—a lunatic asylum, except that the lunatics are those managing the asylum.

And this is our future, FOREVER, until the asylum crashes from its own lunacy or until we rise up and remove the managers.

Kathlene continues:

I should add that the terrorist locked himself in the airplane’s bathroom for 20 minutes, so along with prohibiting underwear, bathrooms will be banned on-board as well. To solve the human problem of needing to use the bathroom, TSA will give passengers government-issued (security-approved) diapers.

Wouldn’t this perfectly symbolize our future: the nanny-state escorting its diaper-clad infantilized subjects to their destination?

LA replies:

It’s almost like that now.

- end of initial entry -

December 28

Ken Hechtman writes:

“My kids and I were patted down the last time we flew (November 2008) because we forgot that we had some dangerous milk and toothpaste in our carry-ons. My daughter was two at the time and was patted down. So was my six-year-old son. My husband couldn’t believe”

Believe it. I have a close friend, a guy my age, whose earliest memory is having his parents load up his little schoolbag and lunchbox with explosives so he could carry them through the army checkpoint. He was also about six years old when that happened.

This was in Chile, in 1973. My friend Fidel’s parents were in Salvador Allende’s inner circle before the coup and resistance leaders afterwards.

He handed the explosives over to somebody on the other side of the checkpoint who presumably planted them and set them off. Fidel was a courier, not a suicide bomber.

My point is that the TSA security people aren’t being completely ridiculous by searching a six year old kid. There are parents in this world who will use young children as explosives mules. I know this for a fact because it happened to someone I know.

LA replies:

Yes, but the people who use their children as bomb couriers and suicide bombers are Communists and Muslims. Ordinary, non-Muslim Americans don’t do things like this.

So the familiar argument against frisking 70 year old grandmothers in tennis shoes also applies against frisking small children. What our authorities need to do is start profiling Muslims and subjecting them to close scrutiny, including, if necessary, small children, and stop subjecting the whole American air traveling population to close scrutiny.

Kathlene M. writes:

Ken brings up the same “evidence” my liberal acquaintances bring up to prove that we must look at everyone as possible terrorists and have equal patdowns for all. For example, because a pregnant Palestinian woman was caught in Israel with explosives back in 2005, liberals think white pregnant Western women in the United States deserve friskings too. They fail to see the context of the situation. Muslims have declared jihad against Westerners, so it’s highly unlikely a white pregnant woman with a midwestern accent traveling in the U.S. is a terrorist in the context of our times.

Sure, Palestinian kids are strapped with bombs, but typically they’re in the Middle East and are targeting Israelis. So how about little blond white school kids with bombs strapped to them while at airports in the U.S.? Extremely unlikely.

“Well Tim McVeigh was a terrorist and he was white.” This is the other argument I hear as to why everyone including children and pregnant women should be patted down. Tim McVeigh and people like him (Bill Ayers comes to mind) fit a particular terrorist profile. Muslim jihadists fit their own particular profile. The word “intelligence” hopefully means that our intelligence agencies are using smart information and technology to target the people who are more likely to harm us.

Can you imagine if, every time a drive-by shooting happened in your neighborhood, every man, woman and child within a mile radius was rounded up at the police station and questioned and examined? Then afterward the police would order everyone to hand in their cars? That’s how it appears TSA’s patdowns and decrees operate.

TSA claims that the random searches help keep us secure because the terrorists won’t be aware of what procedures TSA is using. I think these random pat downs of kids and feeble old people embolden the terrorists. Western security combs through purses and diaper bags for milk and water in sippy cups, then pats down the naughty miscreants, while a Yemeni terrorist easily boards a plane. Our Western security looks unfocused, weak and vulnerable.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at December 27, 2009 01:55 PM | Send

Email entry

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):