Well if you don’t think the TSA (government) is trying to squelch or imtimidate all resistance to their unconstitutional body scanners and pat downs then I’ve got to swamp land I’d like to sell to you.
As your watching this video and they explain how hard it is to get off the ‘watch list’, remember when Ted Kennedy was on it? Well he got off pretty easily.
Flying Americans Fear Being Put On Government Watch List
he American Civil Liberties Union announced today that it is still receiving high volumes of complaints about the new airport screening procedures, and that some travelers say they have not filed official complaints with the TSA because they are fearful of being placed on a government watch list.
Last week the ACLU revealed that it had received over 900 complaints about the naked body scanners and the new pat down measures being implemented by the TSA.
That number swelled to over 1000 before November was through, according to the privacy watchdog.
“These complaints came from men, women and children who reported feeling humiliated and traumatized by these searches, and, in some cases, comparing their psychological impact to sexual assaults.” the ACLU website noted.
Meanwhile, TSA head John Pistole says there were only 49 complaints from travelers over the Thanksgiving weekend, a figure that prompted the TSA to suggest that Americans were largely unconcerned with the new procedures, and were even appreciative of them.
The ACLU disputes this notion, however:
“The low number of complaints received by the TSA is not an endorsement of the security procedures, but rather a result of real or perceived problems with the TSA’s complaint system.” notes Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst with the ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project.
“As the abundant complaints received by the ACLU illustrate, Americans do not want to be forced to choose between letting government agents touch their bodies or take naked pictures of them.” Stanley added.
The ACLU press release notes that the real reasons people have not filed official complaints with the government is because they believed they would either be totally ignored, or worse still, that their act of defiance would land them on a terror watch list.
“Some complainants reported that they had not filed a complaint with the TSA because they were afraid of being put on a watch list or otherwise retaliated against by the government. ” the ACLU press release notes.
“Large numbers of innocent Americans have been caught up by the government’s out-of-control watch list system.” it continues.
The concern is completely vindicated, following the leaking of a reported TSA memo that was circulated at the height of last month’s opt out controversy which “officially addresses those who are opposed to, or engaged in the disruption of the implementation of the enhanced airport screening procedures as ‘domestic extremists’.”
In response to the story, former Congressman Bob Barr filed a Freedom of Information Act request which demanded to know if the TSA had categorized those leading the charge against invasive security measures, namely Matt Drudge, Alex Jones, and John Tyner, via the websites drudgereport.com and prisonplanet.com, as “domestic extremists”.
The Department of Homeland Security has a history of engaging in such activity, and of course, it is well documented that there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions of entirely innocent Americans on the so called “no fly” list.
“The government should heed the very real complaints of countless Americans who object to the invasive new procedures and develop security measures that are safe, effective and respect civil liberties.” the ACLU’s Jay Stanley said.
“We must strive to be safe without abandoning our most sacred freedoms.” the senior analyst added.
According to the ACLU, recurring themes in the hundreds of reports they have received include:
• The searches are extremely invasive
• Many travelers are reporting intense feelings of violation and humiliation
• Some report being physically hurt by the searches
• Some feel their searches are punitive
• Reports of gawking by agents
• Reports of seemingly unnecessary repeated touching of intimate areas
• Many vow not to fly any more
• Any traveler may be forced to undergo one of these searches
This is the new America. The public fearing that they will be placed on a government database of subversives if they dare speak out over being zapped with ionizing radiation, photographed naked and aggressively groped by government agents, all in the name of protecting their liberties.
The only way such outright abuse of power will be halted is if the majority of Americans say no. A government watch list comprised of hundreds of million people is useless anyway. If the American people continue to hold their tongues, this tyranny will quickly expand beyond the airports and into everyday life.
The Electronic Privacy Information Center is collecting incident reports about passenger experiences during airport security screening through an online form.
Let EFF Know
If you submitted a complaint to the TSA, the EFF asks that you forward a copy to to TSAComplaints@eff.org.
When you submit complaints to EFF, its lawyers will compare them to complaints EFF receives through Freedom of Information Act requests. The EFF states that it will not use a copy of your complaint for any other purpose without your prior permission. However, if you wish to allow the EFF to use your complaint for advocacy and public discussion purposes, you can give them permission when you submit the complaint.