Why full body scanners at airports are wrong

I do not like body scans at airports. They are contrary to the 4th amendment.  Radiation scans are not safe. Full airport body scans are a waste of money and another example of old technology  being deployed in the war against terror. Call me a libertarian constitutionalists American,  but hear me out and then take my poll at the end.

  • Full body scanners are ineffective – Terrorists are using more sophisticated tactics. It is another example, of people deploying money in the wrong places to fight terrorists. Everyone is preparing for the next 9/11 and building The Maginot line at air terminals, when the enemy is preparing for something else:

I don’t know why everybody is running to buy these expensive and useless machines (they are useless). I can overcome the body scanners with enough explosives to bring down a Boeing 747, that is why we have not put body scans our airport.

These are the words of Rafi Sela, an Israeli airport security expert who helped design the security in Israel’s largest airport. The Israeli’s really know what they are doing with security, the USA is heavily involved with lobbyists. Do you think Israeli security is brainless? I do not. Terrorist organizations are not brainless either, they are constantly revising their tactics and not using the same ideas they did ten years ago. There are new types of chemical scanners that are more useful. Even dogs are more effective. Sure I was stopped in an airport by dogs because my bag was next to someone else’s bag who had some illegal substances.  Lie and stress detectors like used Vegas will let you know better what is going on with a person because you can trick a body scanner, but contrary to popular belief it is very hard to trick a lie detector. In Austria they use a much more effective machine scan that can smell explosives and not expose people to radiation and humiliation.  Terrorist can give the TSA full body scanners the slip with certain material, thin .5 millimeter lead lining. Maybe you would not think of doing this, but Al Qaeda does. They plan and rehearse.  Terrorists are now focused on home grown cells committing acts in the country, now. But again, the question is why if these are effective, then Israel does not use them in their airports? If you can answer that question then we can talk.

  • If you support these scans you might be helping the enemy – Yep, since people can trick the scans they are only a fancy distraction, read this about how the scans are ineffective . It is nothing but a wasteful way of taking the eye off the ball, so the enemy can slip through the lines and cause real damage in another place and way.
  • Lobbyists are in bed with the company that makes the scanners: I know you are saying Mark it is not true. Washington has no lobbies. But it is true. For example, former Homeland Security secretary Michael Chertoff  promoted them while not disclosing he was a lobbyist for the producers. His company Chertoff group (pronounced ‘shirt – off’ group) and Rapiscan Systems were clients and he admitted a conflict of interest. This is so wrong.  You can read up on this. This is clearly wrong. Body scanners are wrong morally and the USA spending money on something again that is not effective. See point 1 above. You can also read up on people like Tom Blank, Chad Wolf, Kevin Patrick Kelly, Former Senator Al D’Amato etc.
  • Airport body scanner lobbyist in WashingtonHe has no concern of skin cancer and radiation as he is glowing image of health. Would you trust this face? Chertoff does not trust you. He lobbied hard for Rapiscan.
  • Radiation danger from body scans – Just like all the police who got cancer from speed detectors years ago, the risks are there. The radiation on full body scans are low, if and only if it is distributed over your entire body mass. It is not.  Many experts are not thinking objectively. It is focused on the thin layer of your skin. This is a focused beam of radiation. Respect radiologist will counter the claim that the radiation is low because the companies doing the study do not consider the fact the radiation is beamed and focused on the thin lay of your skin. The last I herd skin cancer is very dangerous.  Even if only ten to one hundred people die from this radiation a year, do you want to be that one. Even if you are not one of the unlucky ones it affects your health. Radiation causes DNA damage. No radiation steam baths for me, I will opt out. It is warned and advised that people who are pregnant, want to have children and children should not go through these scanners also if you are at risk for a number or illnesses. It will take time to see the affects but these radiation scanners will affect more people than any terrorist action. But its good money for the producers, I guess. The company will tell you they are safe you can check out their sales page, and but again be objective.  if and only if you calculate it over your whole body mass. Airport full body scanners are not safe if you look at it this way, as it is focused on your skin not distributed though out your whole body.
  • Pictures of body scans have hit the Internet –  Hands up in the air and drop your pants. Basically this is what you do. Sure you do not think some how someway these body scan images of you with no clothes have not hit the web? I know what you are saying ‘Mark listen, no one would ever use the world wide web to search for pictures of bodies without clothes’. Well I have herd people do.  OK so they are only these blue and white x-ray images, but people simply add a Photoshop layer or two and boom, there is color and life to your photo. Again, I do not really care too much about my body image, but what about kids? There are many freaks in the world.
  • Images of full body scans will be on the Internet

    This is not an image from a body scanner but it is to make a point. The Internet and photo editing will result in problems.

  • Something called the US constitution – ‘Oh Mark, why do you keep bringing that silly document up again?’ Because clearly the 4th Amendment states:
  • The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    So we all are suspects and guilty until proven innocent? The whole world has probable cause. Therefore the 4th amendment, the US constitution does not matter. Just to get your blood going, it is a little sensational of course, so take it with a grain of salt, but watch this on the TSA scans.

  • Opt out – of the Body scan and you will be in for a real treat. Children being touched and taught this is OK for a stranger to do this to you. Your private area felt. Any complaints and you will be swarmed by the TSA keystone cops as was Nicholas Monaghan was. You can look up his case. Total government submission of the population and not for an increase in security.
  • TSA checks that use these scanners may give you the warm fuzzies, that terrorists are being stopped, but terrorists are clever and fanatics, and as much as the TSA is trying to sell people on their website, I do not buy it. Maybe I am wrong and off base, but I really think they are an example of setting up a road block which the criminals see well in advance and find a work around for.
  • Many Americans accept and submit easy when the buzz word ‘national security’ is spoken – For example, we invaded Iraq and fought a ten year war, and no weapons of mass destruction were found. All you have to say is ‘it is in the name of security’ and Americans are sold and turn off their critical thinking. They are like come on don’t be a party pooper, you are a radical or a conspiracy theorist. I am not, I am just an American that likes to be skeptical. I believe that extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. If you tell me these expensive machines will stop terror, prove it, and tell me why do the Israeli’s not use them?

Body scans are bad

In conclusion, I guess my biggest concern is they are ineffective and a waste of money. I keep pointing out that certain technology is very good in the war on terror (drones, satellites, lie detection and stress scans, chemical scanners,  identifying people of interest with new computer technology etc). Other things like the shot-gun approach of scanning all travelers is not, it lulls people into a false sense of security because the bad guys already know how to get around them. Again why does Israel not use them? Homeland security should spend money on certain things, yet other things devices are not.  Full body scanners and the headaches that go along with them are not the most effective means to stop the bad guys.

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Here is my video on the TSA full body scanners Let me know what you think?