'Naked Scanner' detects 'Underwear Bombers'

Posted on 12:47 AM

When I first heard of the 'naked scanner' I was in turmoil. So much so that I had to write down my feelings and get it off my chest. After taking a moment to write my list of reasons why I hated this thing, I sat down to expound each item on my list.

Privacy: I don't want anyone seeing my naked body!
Now, I didn't like the idea of this thing, but despite my immediate hatred for this machine, my arguments are really more emotional than based on any kind of factual evidence. The only one that still stands is privacy. No I actually don't care if someone see's me naked. Poor bastards. But my children are another story. It's an issue of indecency that I just can't get past. I don't want any stranger, except my child's doctor, seeing my children naked. Period.

I might change my mind when they improve the technology so that the scan only shows the items that are not part of the body. Until then, I won't fly. True it's an emotional argument, none the less very tangible. All the better, I hate to fly anyway.

Encroachment: one step at a time, they're stealing our freedom!
This is true. From gun control to motocross park closures, the lobbies in Washington are telling our leaders what we can and cannot do. But there are already rules in place that make concealing weapons / explosives illegal. Also, as soon as you drive into the parking lot at the airport you are subject to search without cause. This doesn't change anything.

Health Risks: backscatter x-ray radiation unzips the dna chain!

Fourth Amendment: This violates our protection against unreasonable search:

I will readily admit, I had a very strong knee jerk reaction that the 'naked scanner' was an outrageous violation of our fourth amendment rights. Now I feel a bit silly for getting so worked up. Because when I really thought about it I realized the search is wholly optional, and this is key because you agree to a search when you enter the airport. You're not forced to go there. Just as you give up your right to bear arms when you enter a courthouse lobby or your right to yell 'fire' when you enter a crowded theater or the hundred other ways we willfully relinquish our rights to gain certain privileges. Your fourth amendment rights are never violated because the search is optional. If you don't like being searched, don't go the very specific places or do the very specific things that require you to give up that right.

Orsen Wells: omg! next things you know they'll read our minds and send us to room 101!

Everyone knows the government has been tracking us and reading our thoughts via satellite since the Carter administration. Where have you been?

I do think its mildly ironic that our fundamental problem with a 'naked scanner' is that along with our privacy, our personal preferences are being 'stripped' at every turn. IMO, if our leaders would see our personal choices as technical challenges instead of something you toss to recycle, we could find the technical solutions to overcome these challenges and put more people at ease.


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