I’ve been an air traveler since the mid ‘60s and my tolerance for inconvenience has finally been exceeded. I’ve worked in and around the airline industry since the ‘70s and seen service and amenities disappear faster than a 401k held by Goldman Sachs. I have probably accumulated close to a million air miles but this latest indignity is just too much.
Since 2004 I have been subjected to a ‘pat down’ every single time I’ve flown; my crime – osteoarthritis. In 2004 I got me a shiny new titanium left hip and in 2008 I made it a matching pair. Now I understand the need to keep the airways safe, and I understand technology’s inability to distinguish between a titanium hip and an AK47, so I grit my teeth and stand, with arms upraised, to be patted and wanded for everyone’s peace of mind – but these new measures have just gone too far... Action is required.
The first weekend in December I am planning a vacation trip to Sedona, AZ that will include air travel from Dallas to Phoenix; and as much as I am looking forward to the vacation, I am dreading the inevitable groping I will be subjected to going through security. There is little doubt that my hips will trigger the metal detectors and lead to further screening. What are my choices? I’m not thrilled with the full body scanners – I don’t need more radiation, but I don’t really care if someone sees an image of my body – and I don’t know if that will be an option. They may or may not have full body scanners at the American Airlines terminal. What I really object to is some stranger groping my junk and putting his hands (gloved or not) inside my pants. So what do we do.
The more traditional responses have included all of the usual: write your representative, file a complaint with the TSA, file a complaint with the ACLU, have a travel companion video the entire groping, call the police, file sexual assault charges, etc. I am suggesting another alternative –
DROP YOUR DRAWERS !!!
Make sure that you are wearing your finest; fresh tighty-whities, Calvin Klein designer briefs, a Speedo, your Road Runner boxer shorts, etc. No doubt you have been seen in them before, and certainly no one waiting in line could be more offended by a pair of clean briefs than the sight of people being groped in public. It should speed up the screening process as I am guessing that your pants won’t have to be around your ankles very long for that TSA screener to determine you are not wearing C4 underwear.
This approach might be a bit more challenging for the ladies amongst us, but perhaps wearing a bathing suit instead of underwear might just be an alternative.
In any case, it seems like a non-violent, non-threatening way to make a loud statement about the absurdity of this latest TSA nightmare. What a great way to start the Thanksgiving holiday travel weekend.