Airports are bracing for what may be the worst Thanksgiving holiday, thanks to an Internet boycott of full-body scans at airport security checkpoints.
The protest, called National Opt-Out Day, is scheduled for today, the busiest travel day of the year. It’s lead by Brian Sodergren, who set up the website and is encouraging travelers to decline full-body scanners.
Critics say these scanners — refrigerator-size machines that show a person’s physical contours on a computer — are similar to virtual strip searchers. If travelers opt out of this, they will be subjected to a full pat-down, said airport officials, which takes even longer than the body scans.
Public interest grew this week after California blogger John Tyner resisted the scan and body check, saying, “If you touch my junk, I”ll have you arrested.”
Watch CNN’s interview with Tyner
I’m a big fan in protests and feel it’s necessary to speak out about something you feel strongly toward (or against). But when are protests — the kind that hurt or impede others — just not worth it?
And I’m not sure where I stand on this issue.
On the one hand, the body scans take about 10 seconds and only a small percentage of passengers will have to do it. I’d rather be safe than on a plane with boxcutter-wielding terrorists. But I don’t know I feel about everything — everything — under my layers of clothing being viewed by TSA officers in a private room. (Some are calling them “porno-scanners.”)
Are these scans and pat-downs really a violation of my civil rights?
What do you think?
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