Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Snow And Screening Day

We're back from our quick assistant-babysitting gig in Issaquah and enjoying sitting inside viewing a chilly outdoors bathed in a light skiff of snow. The temperature is right around the freezing point.

We're spending a lot of Internet time between making reservations for future trips and following (and contributing to) the ongoing debate on the FlyerTalk Travel Safety/Security Forum about the TSA's new enhanced* screening techniques at airport security check points. The vast majority of frequent fliers oppose the new procedures that may require you to stand in a new X-Ray machine, the safety of which is still not proven, or to submit to an unpleasantly thorough pat-down or "frisk." In some instances, you might go through the back-scatter X-Ray machine and still be required to submit to the frisk. Not exactly the Friendly Skies we'd imagined.

The TSA bureaucrats are sounding a slight note of retreat as of Sunday afternoon. This has been precipitated by a variety of unpleasant videos and personal accounts of experiences at TSA check points.

You can watch a disturbing video of a young boy being checked out here, for example. You can also view it on Drudge Report or in any one of a number of other news and opinion sites. The video itself may be a year old, and there might even be extenuating circumstances. The fact is, however, that perception is reality. We think and hope the politicians will start to retreat on this, leaving their appointees on their own to eventually follow.

We'll just have to await the results. We're happy that we're not scheduled to fly for awhile, and we don't usually feel that way.

*Whenever anybody connected with the travel industry uses the word enhanced, bet on it being something negative.

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