TSA Agents Absolutely Hate New Pat Downs, Find Them Disgusting And Morale Breaking

from the this-is-what-you-get-with-security-theater dept

One of the common themes that people keep mentioning in talking about the new TSA pat down procedures is that those involved must "enjoy" the groping they're giving people. But, of course, most TSA agents are normal every day people who don't actually want to grope random people. Chris Tolles points us to a post from BoardingArea.com, who reached out to some TSA agents and found that many TSA agents hate the new rules and find it to be sapping morale to have to grope passengers. Some of it appears to be the verbal abuse they're getting from travelers, but some of it is just the fact that they have to keep touching people they'd rather not touch in that way:
"It is not comfortable to come to work knowing full well that my hands will be feeling another man’s private parts, their butt, their inner thigh. Even worse is having to try and feel inside the flab rolls of obese passengers and we seem to get a lot of obese passengers!"
Of course, it does seem like a lot of the "morale" part comes from everyone accusing them of molesting them. I recognize, they're not the ones making policy, but many of the people being groped do feel violated and it's not surprising that many of them speak out.
"Molester, pervert, disgusting, an embarrassment, creep. These are all words I have heard today at work describing me, said in my presence as I patted passengers down. These comments are painful and demoralizing, one day is bad enough, but I have to come back tomorrow, the next day and the day after that to keep hearing these comments. If something doesn’t change in the next two weeks I don’t know how much longer I can withstand this taunting. I go home and I cry. I am serving my country, I should not have to go home and cry after a day of honorably serving my country."
This is going to be a serious problem for the TSA if it doesn't figure out something quick. So far, the TSA seems to be in near absolute denial that this is actually a problem, but if these TSA responses are indicative of how most TSA agents feel, there are going to be a lot fewer security people at airports very, very soon.

Of course... it could be true that at least some of those actually are enjoying the process. Reader Lance point us to (an admittedly hearsay) story of a pilot traveling with his 18-year old daughter. As they approached the naked image scanner, the pilot overheard a TSA agent say into his radio: "heads up, got a cutie for you." One of the points the TSA has been making is that the folks looking at the images are off in another room somewhere, unable to see the people -- but they are in contact with those at the security checkpoint, and you'd have to imagine this kind of thing happens.

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  1. icon
    Gabriel Tane (profile), 23 Nov 2010 @ 5:50am

    Re: Re: Sad day for the USA

    "Are you saying you would rather have planes falling out of the sky again?"

    Absolutely not... but we WOULD like some kind of verifiable evidence that these processes have helped keep that from happening. The one time someone asked, they were told "sorry, that information is a state secret". ref: http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20101119/18284511954/whether-not-tsa-has-ever-caught-terrorist-is-a pparently-state-secret.shtml

    "The US has been very lucky, for almost a century, in avoiding massive terrorist attacks (Before you scoff about "Almost a Century" please read a book, any book). Our time has run out and we now have to face the same choices the Brits did in the early 1900's with the IRA.

    Before you start drawing parallels between the Taliban and the IRA, you better make sure you understand their ideals and the reasons behind their actions. I'm sure that you know that the IRA in the early 1900's was a self-proclaimed 'freedom force' fighting to overthrow British rule. Sound familiar? Because if you're saying they're the same as the Taliban, they so are we. We were a self-proclaimed freedom force fighting to overthrow British rule back in 1776... we just happened to win and wrote the history.

    Now, if you're talking about the IRA that most people would call terrorists in the 80's, you’re talking about a splinter group that broke off of the 'official' IRA. Both groups denied the validity of each other, but the splinter-group (later called the Provisional IRA) are the ones most people mean when they say "The IRA" in the same sentence as "terrorism". And if you're going to point out the Belfast incident as one of their actions, remember that that engagement was actually between the two factions of IRA, not the British. It seems that the P-IRA and the IRA were as focused on killing each other as they were with ‘terrorizing’ Britain.

    "If I'm faced with the choice of having my privacy violated by the TSA or by having my plane hit the ground at 400mph; I will choose the TSA."

    Ok, but the rest of us are not so ready to surrender our constitutional rights, especially since the payment for buying our rights is an empty wooden nickel that has no value. Again, no proof that any of this is even effective at its stated purpose.

    "This manufactured outrage racing about the country has done nothing but encourage the bad guys and made the US laughing stocks in the eyes of our allies."

    I'm interested in your definition of 'manufactured' in this. Is everyone who's been in the news being paid to do this by the Right (or is it Left, I can't tell any more) just to stir up trouble? Is the Taliban paying American citizens or placing terrorists in here just to cause this stink?

    And I think the US being laughing-stocks of the world-at-large has already happened and had nothing to do with the TSA Security Theater.

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