Just Because 'National Opt-Out Day' Didn't Do Much, Does It Mean People Don't Care About TSA Searches?
from the say-what-now? dept
Last Wednesday, there was a lot of media attention paid to this concept of “national opt-out day” concerning the TSA’s new “naked scan or grope” security options. I didn’t cover that story at all. Leading up to it, I don’t think I even mentioned the concept of the “national opt-out day” once, because the whole idea seemed pretty silly. In retrospect, it may have been worse than silly. Since there was no corresponding gridlock at airports, it appears that the press has now decided that because “national opt-out day” was a failure, it means people don’t really care about the TSA’s new policies. In other words, the failure of the protest means this “story” is over, much to the relief of the TSA and the administration, who now thinks it can go on ignoring the very real concerns of passengers.
This is a problem.
It’s no surprise that the media storm over the TSA procedures had an arc. It’s how major media stories go. But, it’s unfortunate that there was this misguided focus on getting a bunch of people to do stuff on a particular day (and a day when they are probably least interested in actually doing what’s asked of them). Because of that, suddenly, to the major media, it feels like this story is “over.” But to the people who are still worried about the scans or uncomfortable with being groped by the government without reasonable cause, it’s unfortunate that this story will now get less attention. It’s not because the issue is any less. And it’s not because the TSA has responded to the concerns. It’s because of this one silly, poorly thought-out “event,” which became a part of the media spectacle and an easy way to end the story with a claim that the whole set of protests has been a failure.